Agriculture / Climate Change / Environment / Food Safety / Livestock

Livestock: Lengthening the shadow?

CowThe environmental impact of meat is something of a well-done dish.

Rajendra Pachauri, head of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), and Sir Paul McCartney are just two of the public figures who have called on us all to eat less meat in order to curb the rate at which the world warms.

The number most commonly cited in this arena – that the meat industry is responsible for about 18% of global greenhouse gas emissions – comes from a UN Food and Agriculture Organization report entitled Livestock’s Long Shadow.

The figure is a somewhat curious entity, in that it its veracity is easily challenged, and yet manifestly incomplete.

Easily challenged, because like all kinds of accountancy, you can cut the numbers in a variety of ways – and the 18% figure can look way too high if you do the sums differently.

Read more … (BBC)

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