Is Meat Production Bad for Our Environment?

Is Meat Production Bad for Our Environment?

( – Nearly everything in this world has some impact on our environment, from what type of car someone drives to whether or not they choose to forgo the dryer and hang their laundry out to dry. Livestock and meat production are included in this list, and a new study published in Nature Food says the carbon emissions from these industries are actually quite high.

According to researchers at the University of Illinois who conducted the study, the entire food production system, from farm machinery to animal feed, makes up roughly 25% of all global emissions. The study claims that meat specifically produces twice the amount of pollution as plants.

Researchers found beef had the largest environmental impact, followed by cow’s milk, pork, and chicken meat. The Guardian shared more statistics from the study on Twitter:

While many researchers push for plant-based foods and the reduction of meat production, some health advocates assert that meat and dairy products are essential to human health. They emphasize there are ways to lower one’s carbon footprint without becoming a vegetarian. Taking steps like eating local meat, opting for plant-based milks, and choosing days to forgo it all together can greatly lessen the impact on the environment while still letting someone enjoy a juicy burger every so often.

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