The Low-Carbon Emission Diet Plan

Illustration for article titled The Low-Carbon Emission Diet Plan

A new study says that annual carbon emissions from global agriculture can be reduced by as much as 50-90% by 2030. Among the recommended reforms is changing our food consumption patterns, which could eliminate the equivalent of 2,150 million metric tons of carbon dioxide.


Agriculture accounts for roughly one-fifth of the world's greenhouse gas emissions, when you take into account the entire production cycle that is required to put food on your plate—including deforestation to make room for land, transporting meat and vegetables and using petroleum to produce fertilizer.

The new report, published by the Climate and Land Use Alliance, examines these and other issues worldwide, identifying what it considers the best opportunities to mitigate climate change.

Illustration for article titled The Low-Carbon Emission Diet Plan

As this chart shows, the biggest source of emissions is our current dietary choices (notably our fondness for beef), at second place is the growing level of carbon sequestration on cropland, followed by enteric fermentation (methane from the stomachs of cows and other ruminant livestock) and then waste in the food chain.

For more detailed charts, that break down these issues sector by sector, and country by country, you can read the full report, Strategies for Mitigating Climate Change in Agriculture.



Silliness. Vegetarians just like trying to demonize meat-sources.

From a Google-search yesterday (I was curious about the biomass of ants compared to humans from that pile in the Grand Canyon article):

"Although there may be about 10-15 times the biomass of termites than cows in the world, studies have suggested that termites might produce almost 30,000 times as much methane per year because of their faster metabolism."…

P.S. It turns out that ants would have about the same size pile as that of humanity. Neat. :P