Reasons to go Veg

Reasons to go Veg(or how to win an argument with a meat eater)

Climate change/global warming

  • Humans kill about 55 billion animals for food production per year. These animals are bred by humans, they would not exist naturally.
  • These animals create AT LEAST 51% of the green house gasses that speed up global warming. This warming occurs much faster than expected, even though scientists noticed the effects of animal industries on the climate already 100 years ago.
  • The most dangerous green house gasses are methane and C02
  • All the transport in the world creates about 20% of the C02 in the atmosphere. Animals produce tons of methane, which oxidizes and turns into C02.
  • Methane is short-lived (and much more short lived than C02), but it doesn’t just evaporate. It heats up the atmostphere 20 times more than C02 - before it oxidizes and turns into long-lived C02, which is less damaging, but takes centuries to be neutralized by the earth’s atmosphere.

Hunger

  • Number of people worldwide who will die as a result of malnutrition in a year: 20 million
  • Number of people who could be adequately fed using land freed if Americans reduced their intake of meat by 10%: 100 million
  • Per centage of corn grown in the US eaten by people: 20
  • Per centage of corn grown in the US eaten by livestock: 80
  • Pounds of potatoes that can be grown on an acre: 40,000
  • Pounds of beef produced on an acre: 250

Environmental

  • Cause of global warming: greenhouse effect
  • Primary cause of greenhouse effect: carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels
  • Fossil fuels needed to produce meat-centred diet vs a meat-free diet: 3 times more
  • Per centage of US topsoil lost to date: 75
  • Per centage of US topsoil loss directly related to livestock raising: 85
  • Number of acres of US forest cleared for cropland to produce meat-centred diet: 260 million
  • Amount of meat imported to US annually from Central and South America: 300,000,000 pounds
  • Per centage of Central American children under the age of five who are undernourished: 75
  • Area of tropical rainforest consumed in every quarter-pound of rainforest beef: 55 square feet
  • Current rate of species extinction due to destruction of tropical rainforests for meat grazing and other uses: 1,000 per year

Cancer

  • Increased risk of breast cancer for women who eat meat daily compared to less than once a week: 3.8 times
  • For women who eat eggs daily compared to once a week: 2.8 times
  • For women who eat butter and cheese 2-4 times a week: 3.25 times
  • Increased risk of fatal ovarian cancer for women who eat eggs 3 or more times a week vs. less than once a week: 3 times
  • Increased risk of fatal prostate cancer for men who consume meat, cheese, eggs and milk daily vs. sparingly or not at all: 3.6 times

Cholesterol

  • Most common cause of death in the US: heart attack
  • How frequently a heart attack kills in the US: every 45 seconds
  • Average US man’s risk of death from heart attack: 50%
  • Risk of average US man who eats no meat: 15%
  • Risk of average US man who eats no meat, dairy or eggs: 4%
  • Amount you reduce risk of heart attack if you reduce consumption of meat, dairy and eggs by 10%: 9%
  • Amount you reduce risk of heart attack if you reduce consumption by 50%: 45%
  • Amount you reduce risk if you eliminate meat, dairy and eggs from your diet: 90%
  • Average cholesterol level of people eating meat-centred-diet: 210 mg/dl
  • Chance of dying from heart disease if you are male and your blood cholesterol level is 210 mg/dl: greater than 50%

Natural resource

  • User of more than half of all water used for all purposes in the US: livestock production
  • Gallons of water needed to produce a pound of wheat: 25
  • Gallons of water needed to produce a pound of California beef: 5,000
  • Years the world’s known oil reserves would last if every human ate a meat-centred diet: 13
  • Years they would last if human beings no longer ate meat: 260
  • Per centage of all raw materials (base products of farming, forestry and mining, including fossil fuels) consumed by US that is devoted to the production of livestock: 33
  • Per centage of all raw materials consumed by the US needed to produce a complete vegetarian diet: 2

Antibiotic

  • Per centage of US antibiotics fed to livestock: 55
  • Per centage of staphylococci infections resistant to penicillin in 1960: 13
  • Per centage resistant in 1988: 91
  • Response of European Economic Community to routine feeding of antibiotics to livestock: ban
  • Response of US meat and pharmaceutical industries to routine feeding of antibiotics to livestock: full and complete support
  • Pesticides
  • Common belief: US Department of Agriculture protects our health through meat inspection
  • Reality: fewer than 1 out of every 250,000 slaughtered animals is tested for toxic chemical residues
  • Per centage of US mother’s milk containing significant levels of DDT: 99
  • Per centage of US vegetarian mother’s milk containing significant levels of DDT: 8
  • Contamination of breast milk, due to chlorinated hydrocarbon pesticides in animal products, found in meat-eating mothers vs. non-meat eating mothers: 35 times higher
  • Amount of Dieldrin ingested by the average breast-fed American infant: 9 times the permissible level

Ethical

  • Number of animals killed for meat per hour in the US: 660,000
  • Occupation with highest turnover rate in US: slaughterhouse worker
  • Occupation with highest rate of on-the-job-injury in US: slaughterhouse worker