After seeing the film Earth I began to think about what I had done to reduce my impact on the environment. The answer disturbed me: I have done sweet FA.
Despite having being aware for at least 10 years that I live in a society that is clearly wasteful and exploits natural resources to the full extent possible, I have not made any serious commitment to alter my lifestyle.
So, for the first time I am thinking of becoming a vegetarian, mostly for environmental reasons, although since I saw cattle stuck in a cattle truck while crossing Cook Straight I have had reservations about where meat comes from and how it is processed and killed. I have not purchased meat at all for two weeks, and we’re slowly using up the meat we have left in the freezer. There are some exceptions to the rule: I will eat fish caught by Tash’s Dad, and meat given to me by hunters (or animals that I’ve hunted if for some unprecedented reason I start hunting).
There is a school of thought that the excessive consumption of meat places great stress on the environment, particularly greenhouse emissions, (for example, this “UN says eat less meat to curb global warming”, “Meat must be rationed to four portions a week, says report on climate change”, “Livestock a major threat to environment”, and so on).
- Livestocks long shadow, the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation’s report
- Wiser Earth
- The Big Question: Is changing our diet the key to resolving the global food crisis?
Is becoming a vegetarian actually going to have the desired effect of reducing my impact on the environment, or am I deluding myself?