LIFE+ | The Relation of Vegetarianism to the Environment

Hello I am Murat. I have been a vegetarian for 9 months. So, this week I wanna write about the relationship between vegetarianism and the environment. First of all, my process of becoming a vegetarian developed independently of the environment. In other words, I became a vegetarian because of the thought that animals are living creatures, that they suffer, and that they have the right to live. Since this is a different topic, I will write about it in my next article. Livestock as a whole is estimated to be responsible for around 18% of global greenhouse gas emissions.

About 80% of the world's agricultural land is used for livestock. More agriculture and more water are required for livestock. For this reason, the methane emission of animals is increasing year by year. The vegetarian diet also preserves water. Studies have shown that non-vegetarians consume 2 times more water than vegetarians. Also to produce 1 pound of feedlot beef requires about 2,400 gallons (1 galloon= 3.78 Liter) of water and 7 pounds of grain. Excessive livestock farming also causes soil erosion. Because cattle trample the soil and cause erosion due to overgrazing.

As a result, quitting or cutting back on meat is one of the most beneficial things we can do for this planet. Because, researches have shown that excessive animal husbandry causes greenhouse gas emissions, soil erosion and deforestation. Water is also consumed a lot in animal husbandry because it takes approximately 10 liters of water to produce one kilogram of beef.

When we make this calculation for other animals in the world, we understand how much water is spent in the livestock sector. In addition, scientific research has shown that it is not necessary to eat meat for a healthy life. Because a person can easily meet all his needs from plants. From this point of view, it can be said that eating meat is only for pleasure and habit.


Murat Bilmez, volunteer@ICDET