The planet and its wildlife need us to reduce our meat consumption.
Meat production is one of the main drivers of environmental degradation globally, and the crisis is rapidly growing worse. Production of beef, poultry, pork and other meats tripled between 1980 and 2010 and will likely double again by 2050. This ever-increasing meat consumption in a world of more than 7 billion people is already taking a staggering toll on wildlife, habitat, water resources, air quality and the climate. The only way to stop this environmental crisis is to address both unsustainable population growth and our voracious appetite for meat — and Americans eat more meat per capita than almost anyone else. By eating less or no meat, we can take extinction off our plates and improve our own health along with the health of the planet.
That’s why the Center for Biological Diversity launched our Earth-friendly Diet campaign.
How Meat Consumption Threatens the Environment
Livestock vs. Wildlife
From wolves to elk to prairie dogs, wild animals pay the price of meat production. Some are killed because they prey on cows; others die en masse to make room for agricultural operations; still more are put in harm’s way by pollution and greenhouse gas emissions that exacerbate climate change.
According to the United Nations, meat production is responsible for 14.5 percent — and, according to some studies, as much as 51 percent — of global greenhouse gas emissions, which is more than all forms of transportation combined. Nearly 60 percent of the carbon footprint of the average U.S. household diet comes from animal products.Learn More
Habitat Loss, Water Use and Pollution
The 500 million tons of manure produced annually by U.S. livestock is just the beginning: Animal agriculture has taken over nearly half the landmass of the lower 48 states. And it has polluted 35,000 miles of rivers in 22 states and groundwater in 17 states.Learn More
- Why Choose an Earth-friendly Diet?
- How to Take Extinction Off Your Plate
- Extinction-free BBQ
- Featured Recipes
- Earth-friendly Diet Flyer
- Population and Sustainability
- Bluefin Boycott
- Genetically engineered foods
- Native Pollinators
- Top 12 Ways to Live More Sustainably
- Urban Wildlands