Thanks for your recent special section on sustainability [Nov. 18 Xpress]. I appreciated all of the suggestions about how to be green. However, I'm disappointed that you decided to omit any information about the human activity that is the largest contributor to global warming — raising animals for food.
It's time to stop ignoring the fact that our habit of eating animals is killing the planet. In 2006, a United Nations report concluded that animal agriculture is responsible for 18 percent of greenhouse gases — more than all forms of transportation combined. Recently, two World Bank experts reanalyzed that data and determined that livestock and their byproducts actually cause 51 percent of worldwide greenhouse-gas emissions.
University of Chicago research shows that if we want to reduce the impact we have on global warming, we're better off switching to a vegetarian diet than switching to a Prius. Patrick Brown, a Stanford University biochemist, states that our planet cannot withstand our current eating habits and says the solution is to eliminate animal farming.
Nicholas Stern, London School of Economics professor and a leading authority on global warming, argues that humans must move toward a vegetarian diet if climate change is to be stopped or even slowed down. Andreas Troge, head of Germany's federal environmental agency, suggests that people should drastically reduce their animal consumption in order to reduce their contribution to global warming.
Even Al Gore finally admitted that meat-eaters are greatly responsible for increased global carbon emissions.
The science is in. There is no question about it: Eating animal products is incredibly detrimental to the environment. So if you want to find a healthy, inexpensive, compassionate and easy way to be green, try a plant-based diet. There are countless cookbooks and thousands of Web sites that will guide you on this positive and liberating journey.
— Leslie H. Armstrong