Is plant-based good for the planet?

How can your plant-based diet help the planet? What are the impacts your diet is having on the environment? How can you minimize your footprint or should I say “foodprint”?

How to help our planet?

Diet and greenhouse gas emissions

  • you can reduce your carbon footprint by 50%
  • up to 51% of global greenhouse gas emissions are produced due to livestock and their byproducts
  • livestock is responsible for 65% nitric oxide emissions, which are more destructive than CO2

Diet and deforestation

  • animal agriculture is responsible for 91% of Amazon destruction
  • 1-2 acres of rainforest are cleared every second
  • 26 million acres of rainforest have been cleared due to palm oil production
  • 136 million acres of rainforest have been cleared due to animal agriculture

Diet and land use

  • 1/3 land is desertified due to livestock
  • livestock covers 45% of the earth’s total land
  • 1.5 acres of land produce 37000 lbs plant-based food or 375 lbs meat
  • 1/6th of an acre is needed to feed a plant-based eater for a year, to feed a meat-eater 18 times more land is needed

Diet and water use

  • 1 hamburger requires 660 gallons of water, which is equivalent to showering for 2 months
  • the meat and dairy industry use 1/3 of earth’s freshwater
  • The USA uses 5% of its water for domestic use, and 55% for animal agriculture

Waste

  • waste from 2500 dairy cows equals the waste of a city of almost 500k people
  • 7 million pounds of extremities are produced every minute in the USA

Species extinction

  • 110 animal and insect species are lost every day from rainforest destruction
  • 3/4 of the world’s fish are exploited
  • for every 1 pound of fish caught, 5 pounds of unintended marine species are caught and discarded as by-kill
  • 90 million tons of fish are pulled out of the oceans every year
  • animal agriculture is the leading cause of species extinction, ocean dead zones, water pollution, and habitat destruction.

Plastic

  • a whole-food plant-based diet helps you use less plastic because you buy less processed, packaged foods and you buy more whole-foods
  • whole-foods can be bought in bulk or in your own packaging
Cowsipracy is a great documentary about the impacts that our diet is having on the environment.

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