Here's a Possible Key to Saving the Planet

By Alejandra Najera

Posted on October 31, 2017 at 

We are all aware of what climate change and global warming are, but why don’t we take action? There is a way to help solve climate change, and all you’d have to do is stop eating meat. The film Cowspiracy is a documentary that goes head to head with global warming, and its number one culprit, Animal Agriculture.

Greenhouse gases released into our atmosphere trap heat, which is a major factor in  why it’s been getting hotter every summer. But, did you know Animal Agriculture is the cause for 32,000 million tons of Carbon Dioxide or 51% of ALL worldwide greenhouse gas emissions? Or that emissions from animal agriculture are going to increase to 80% by 2050? Not only is animal agriculture the lead cause for greenhouse gases, but according to, cows produce 150 BILLION gallons of methane per day. According to Greenpeace,  “Methane, the gas produced extensively by the livestock industry worldwide, traps up to 100 times more heat in the atmosphere than carbon dioxide within a 5 year period, and 72 times more within a 20 year period.”  

Not only does Animal Agriculture affect our atmosphere, it impacts our water as well. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal Agriculture is responsible for 80-90% of the US water consumption. 80 to 90% of our water is going towards animals. Just to break it down:

1 pound of beef = 2,500 gallons of water (Water Content)

1 pound of eggs = 477 gallons of water (Water Education)

1 pound of cheese = 900 gallons of water (Water Education)

1 gallon of milk = 1,000 gallons of water (Water footprint)

If you purchased 1 pound of each of these products, that is 4,877 GALLONS of water alone.

There are now close to 8 billion human beings on this planet. If we keep consuming at our current rate, we will run out of the resources to provide for our increasing population. According to World Meters, 228,000 people are being born every single day. Instead of limiting our meat consumption, the economic system promotes more consumption. Not only does livestock cover 45% (Livestock and Climate change) of the Earth’s total land, Animal Agriculture is responsible for 91% (The World Bank) of the Amazon Rainforest destruction. Yet, our Brazilian Amazon is considered the ‘lungs’ of the earth. Ironic.

Currently we are growing enough food to feed 10 billion (Common Dreams)  people, yet 82% of starving children (Improving Child Nutrition) that are seen in those sad commercials we try to avoid, are living in countries where all of the food that is produced, is being given to animals. According to Dr. Richard’s “The World Hunger Food-Choice,” the animals are slaughtered and sold to more well off countries like the U.S., leaving these children in 3rd world countries with no food for themselves. We have enough resources to end world hunger and to provide for our large, growing population, if we switched to a plant-based diet, veganism.

According to Richard Oppenlander in his article “Less Meat, and Taking Baby Steps Won’t Work”: 1.5 Acres can produce 37,000 POUNDS of plant-based food. While 1.5 acres can only produce 375 pounds of beef.

According to John Robbins in his book “Diet for a New America", It takes only ⅙ of an acre to feed 1 vegan for a YEAR. It takes 18x more land than that to feed ONE carnivore.

Five Facts About Reducing Meat Consumption

1. Solves World Hunger :

According to Independent news, it would take 40 million tons of food to resolve even the worst cases of world hunger. Yet 20x that amount is being fed to farm animals, each year.

2. Provides More Land for Our Growing Population :

Scientists predict that 2.7 BILLION hectares of land currently used for cattle grazing would be freed up by global vegetarianism, along with 100 million hectares of land currently used to grow crops for livestock. Imagine the space we would have!

3. Billions of Animals Avoid a Lifetime of Suffering : states that  in today’s factory farms, animals are crammed by the thousands into filthy, windowless sheds and stuffed into wire cages, metal crates, and other torturous devices. These animals will never raise their families, root around in the soil, build nests, or do anything that is natural and important to them. Most won’t even feel the warmth of the sun on their backs or breathe fresh air until the day they’re loaded onto trucks headed for slaughterhouses. There is absolutely no better way to help animals and prevent their suffering than by choosing not to eat them.

4. Less Methane and CO2in Our Atmosphere :

Animal agriculture is responsible for 18 percent of greenhouse gas emissions, more than the combined exhaust from all transportation.

5. Benefits of Living Sustainably:

The current young adult generation has to realize a change needs to be made. There are countless youtube videos of families with little children, college students, babies, pregnant moms, couples in their 40’s, all thriving off a healthy vegan diet, so why can’t you?

According to CNN, choosing plant-based diets can promote environmental sustainability.

“It is rare that a single choice of ours can have a broad and decisive impact on the climate crisis. We have a moral imperative to choose and advocate for plant-based diets for the health of our planet and the well being and survival of generations to come.

Learn More:

To watch the Documentary that influenced this article, check out

Cowspiracy on Netflix

To see families striving on a vegan diet, check out these youtube videos!

Vegan Couple Story

My Vegan Baby’s first birthday party!

What a Vegan Family Eats in Chicago