It is officially the 5th day of November. November is one of my favorite months and that has a lot to do with the fact that my birthday falls this month. November 21st to be exact for anyone who cares. I like purses, shoes and shiny things as gifts. I also like pizza. A lot of cheese pizza. Even though I am lactose intolerant and should not be consuming cheese, especially at the rate I do. Outside of November being my birth month, November is also National Vegan Month. I am not vegan, however, I am vegetarian. I am trying to slowly transition to a vegan diet but like I said, I love cheese.
If you have read up on the topic of animal agriculture at all, you would know that its impacts are pretty negative. The negative outweigh the positive when it comes to animal agriculture. In honor of this month being dedicated to veganism, I decided to give you some hard facts about why animal agriculture is so damaging. Both for the planet and human life. You may just be surprised at some of the facts here. Or you are already a gem who has done your research and knows all this already. In that case, I hope you have tried to cut down on the amount of animal products you have consumed since.
Animal Waste and Air Pollution
Urine and manure in animal farms emit approximately 400 different gases into the atmosphere. Some of them are: ammonia, particulate matter, nitrous oxide, hydrogen sulfide, endotoxins, etc. This especially has a huge impact on the local communities around the farms since there are sometimes thousands of animals packed into one farm.
Animal Agriculture is also responsible for 18% of the greenhouse gas emissions. This is actually more than the combined greenhouse gas emissions of all transportation methods COMBINED! It is also responsible for 32,000 million tons of carbon dioxide PER YEAR! To make matters worse, cows produce 150 billion gallons of methane every single day. Methane is known to be more harmful than carbon dioxide being emitted into the atmosphere. All these pollutants in the air have increased the likelihood of acid rain. The pollutants combined create nitric acid, which builds up in the atmosphere and returns to the earth as acid rain. Acid rain harms soils, water ecosystems and forest habitats.
Animal Agriculture has been linked to SERIOUS health concerns!
It is not shocking that animal agriculture has negative consequences on the health of the farmers and local communities. Things such as respiratory irritations, bronchitis, lung inflammation, dust toxic syndrome, asthma and on rare occasions, cardiac arrest. These are all common health concerns those who work in these environments and those living around them have. Hydrogen sulfide can cause sore throats, seizures, comas and sometimes death. The ammonia released also has other harmful effects such as dizziness, nausea, irritation and respiratory illnesses.
A huge concern for children is asthma if they are living near these farms. As well there have been an increase in bronchitis for these children. Nothing is being done about reducing emissions at all. Unfortunately with the amount of animals placed in these neighborhoods it is almost impossible to do much to improve these conditions.
Not only are the people around the farms impacted, you are impacted by eating them.
Endless amounts of studies have proven that the consumption of animal products has been linked to heart disease. Especially red meat. Outside of heart disease, you are more likely to face obesity, diabetes, cancer, etc. As a meat eater there are worries about what sort of hormones are used in your food. You could buy hormone free meat, however, it comes with a cost. Most can not afford the extra price tag on hormone-free, organic meat products.
Chicken is not innocent either. Chicken farms have a famous practice using salt water. After the chicken is plucked and cleaned, they inject it with salt water. For what purpose? To make it weigh more so they can resell for a higher price. Chicken is known for its high sodium levels, which is obviously not healthy to over consume.
What Is The Biggest Problem With Animal Agriculture?
Humans have been eating meat for many years. However, the last 100 years have made the negative consequences much more evident. This has a lot to do with the over consumption of meat. Many individuals choose to eat meat multiple times a day. At some point in history, chickens were seen as a luxury. Now almost every family can afford chicken as a daily meal in first world countries.
This article is not meant to turn you off from eating meat entirely. However, I hope it makes you rethink how much you are consuming. I choose to not consume meat at all to play my part with the environment. Even if you cut down to a couple times a week, you are making a difference. I know individuals who choose to eat meat only on weekends. This is awesome! Try cutting down to one meal a day…and then make it five times a week…if you can, go down to three times a week. Seriously, any change helps. You may not think you can have a positive impact on the planet but you can. If you are determined to be the change, you will be.
If you choose to cut down on meat, someone else will as well. Lifestyle choices can be a domino effect. It is important to take part in a positive domino effect. Be a positive domino. Do not be the one that falls the wrong way and messes up the entire setup.
HAPPY WORLD VEGAN MONTH!!!! Look how cute this little piglet is…