The Kenya Agriculture and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) and the Kenya State Department of Livestock within the Kenyan Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Irrigation (MALFI) are organizing next year’s Joint 24th International Grasslands and International Rangelands Congress, to be held in Nairobi, Kenya, 25–30 Oct 2020.
Philip Thornton contributed a chapter to Grasslands and Climate Change, the latest volume of the Ecological Reviews series. In this post Philip tells us more about the chapter, which explains the impacts of climate change on open grasslands used for livestock grazing.
The Economist reports that the future of food lies in Africa. And why that’s a good thing. As Africans get richer, they will eat more meat and live longer, healthier lives.
Finding flexible solutions to land usage, plus more good land on which to grow food, is essential to our survival. . . . [L]ivestock in the right places, using thoughtful methodologies, just may be able to feed us and feed the soil—all while helping us meet carbon and other climate goals.
The narrative posited by cultured meat proponents is that animal agriculture requires large amounts of land and water and produces high levels of greenhouse gases (GHG). The environmental impacts of a product, such as a beef hamburger, is then compared to the anticipatory ones for producing a cultured hamburger patty through tissue engineering-based cellular agriculture. While it is true that conventional meat production has a large environmental footprint, the problem with this dichotomous framing is that it overlooks the rest of the story.
The debate over whether a vegetarian diet is better for the planet is top of mind for many as news of water scarcity, climate change, and deforestation seem to worsen by the day. Sarah Taber, a US-based agricultural scientist added another angle to the debate earlier this month when she laid out the argument that calling vegetarianism and/or veganism a universally ‘better’ diet is a form of colonialist thinking.
Agricultural ecologist Ian Scoones has some important and thoughtful things to say about the science and media publications promoting the recent ‘vegan craze’ in rich countries and the impacts of those publications on millions of livestock herders in poor countries.