John Robbins Says, “If people ate grains directly instead of cycling them through livestock, the benefits to the ecosystem would be staggering. There is not a single aspect of the ecological crisis that would not be immediately and profoundly improved by such a transformation. In fact, a shift to a more vegetarian diet is probably the most potent single act most individuals can take.”
For every acre of forestland consumed by urban development, seven acres are devoured by the meat industry, for grazing and growing Cattle feed. Percentage of tropical rainforest deforestation is directly linked with livestock rising is more than 50%. Amount of forest loss for every hamburger produced, from livestock raised on what was Central American forest, is 55 square feet. Amount of trees spared per year by each individual, who switches to a vegan diet is one acre. Water needed to produce one pound of wheat is 25 gallons where as water needed to produce one pound of beef is 2,500 gallons. Amount of water a person would conserve per year, by switching from a meat-based diet to a vegetarian diet, would be 14,23,500 gallons. If water used by the meat industry was not subsidized by U.S. taxpayers, a hamburger would cost $ 35.
The amount of food that an acre of prime land can produce is potatoes- 40,000 pounds, carrots -30,000 pounds, tomatoes- 50,000 pounds and beef -250 pounds. Percentage of US topsoil loss directly associated with livestock raising, is at least 85%. Percentage of total US land used for raising livestock is 45%. Percentage of water pollution that can be linked to wastes from the livestock industry is more than 50%. Percentage of US imported oil requirements that would be cut if the US switched to avegetarian diet is 60%. A family of four that cuts back on meat consumption by 2 pounds per week saves the equivalent energy of 104 gallons of gasoline in one year. Growing plants for food uses less than 5% of the raw materials, as does the meat production. Percentage of Americans who call themselves environmentalists is 76% whereas percentage of Americans who are vegetarian is only 2.8%. Pure vegetarian food choices make less than 5% of the demand on the soil, as meat-oriented choices. Livestock production accounts for 85% of all lost topsoil. The U.S. has already lost 75% of its topsoil. The livestock in USA produce twenty times as much excretion as does the human population. Over half of this is not recycled.
Global warming: Cattle and beef production is a significant factor in the emission of the four global warming gases, carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide, and methane. Much of the carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere, is directly attributable to beef production; burning forests to make way for cattle pasture and burning massive tracts of agricultural waste from cattle feed crops. Fifty-five square feet of rain forest is needed to produce one quarter-pound hamburger, which releases 500 pounds of CO2into the atmosphere. CO2 is also generated by the fuel used in the highly mechanized agricultural production of feed crops for cattle and other livestock. With 70 percent of all U.S. grain production now used for livestock feed, the CO2 emitted, as a direct result is significant. Cattles emit methane, another greenhouse gas, through belching and flatulence. Scientists estimate that more than 500 million tons of methane is released each year and that the world’s 1.3 billion cattle and other ruminant livestock emit approximately 60 million tons or 12 percent of the total from all sources. Methane is a serious problem because one methane molecule traps 25 times as much solar heat as a molecule of Co2.
Pounds of Edible Protein produced
from One Acre of Land
Soya-Beans-356 pounds Rice- 256 pounds Corn-211 pounds
Other Pulses-192 pounds Wheat- 138 pounds Milk-82 pounds
Eggs-78 pounds All Meat-54 pounds Beef-20 pounds