This week my area paper did a story on sustainability in the city. They said several things the city has done to improve efficiency such as the change to LED lights. They encouraged efficiencies for constituents to participate in like better cars, fewer trips, and HVAC systems.
Eventually, it came to the part about how food can play an impact on climate change. Specifically, it said to eat less meat because the cows are the problem. The newspaper followed up with the statement that really struck me. “In the United States, 9% of greenhouse gas emissions came from agriculture in 2017, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Methane from cow’s natural digestion made up a third of that percentage.”
It’s not the cows, it’s the plants.
I’m no math whiz, but I thought it was interesting that we should go after the 3% and not the other 6%. Isn’t six bigger than three? Based on these facts it looks like animal agriculture is basically negligible in terms of greenhouse gas production and it’s actually the evil, greedy, wasteful plant side of agriculture, the crops side of agriculture; that’s really the problem.
Your mom was wrong. It turns out that every time that you finished your fruits and vegetables you were hurting the planet. Had you just stopped with your all-beef hotdog the world would’ve been a better place. We would have had a future for her grandchildren.
If we all work together we can make a change. Six percent of greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture come from the production of crops and fruits and vegetables, and everything but cows. This is why I propose #SaladFreeSaturday. Don’t eat the salad that comes with your steak. Tell the waitress you don’t want lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, and onions on your hamburger, please. Saturday is reserved for meat and dairy all day long. If you really care, avoid the produce section altogether the next time you go to the grocery store. Together we can make a difference.