The production of one calorie of animal protein requires more than ten times the fossil fuel input as a calorie of plant protein. (The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition)
Producing a single hamburger uses enough fuel to drive 20 miles and causes the loss of five times its weight in topsoil. (“The Food Revolution” by John Robbins)
Animals raised for food produce approximately 130 times as much excrement as the entire human population and animal farms pollute our waterways more than all other industrial sources combined. Run-offs of animal waste, pesticides, chemicals, fertilizers, hormones and antibiotics are contributing to dead zones in coastal areas, degradation of coral reef and health problems. (The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency).
Seven football fields’ worth of land is bulldozed every minute to create more room for farmed animals and the crops that feed them. (The Smithsonian Institution)
The massive amounts of excrement produced by livestock farms emit toxic gases such as hydrogen sulfide and ammonia into the air. Roughly 80% of ammonia emissions in the U.S. come from animal waste (The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency)
In the Gulf of Mexico, scientists estimate that for every pound of shrimp caught, between four and ten pounds of marine resources are thrown away (Harrington et al. 2005, Nance and Scott-Denton 1997, Alverson et al. 1994). Shrimp trawling in the Caribbean and Central America also has high discard rates, with shrimp trawls in Panama discarding more than 80% of their catch (Teutscher 1999 in Kelleher 2005).
These are just a FEW of the facts that you can research about how detrimental the animal farming industry is to Mother Nature's soils, oceans and air. You can also "vegucate" yourself by watching documentaries like Cowspiracy and Forks Over Knives. It may shock you to learn just how detrimental the meat industry is to the planet, and it may urge you to make the choice to eat less meat or dairy. Know that #EarthDay is not just a good hashtag, but a time to reflect on just how we are treating the Earth and what changes we can make in our daily lives to better the life-span of our big rock. You may think that you're impact is so small that your diet can't possibly have an affect on the planet, but we are here to tell you that every penny counts, so don't be afraid to try adding a vegan meal or a vegan day to your schedule; you can be confident that you are lessening the demands of the meat and dairy industry on the environment at the grassroots level - where all good revolutions begin!