Although the above changes are doubtless a great start, they really are a drop in the Ocean. Earlier in the thread vegetarianism/ veganism was mentioned. I thought that I would share some statistics about this, in the hopes that they speak for themselves.
Naturally it is a big lifestyle choice to make, and it is also sometimes quite contentious to bring up, which is why it must be done as an option amongst many. But if we are to really cut down on our emissions and waste, the place to start is with this.
– 2,500 gallons of water are needed to produce 1 pound of beef
– 1,000 gallons of water are required to produce 1 gallon of milk
– 477 gallons of water are required to produce 1lb. of eggs
– almost 900 gallons of water are needed for 1lb. of cheese
– 5% of water consumed in the US is by private homes. 55% of water consumed in the US is for animal agriculture
– Animal agriculture is the leading cause of species extinction, ocean dead zones, water pollution, and habitat destruction
– The planet is currently experiencing the largest mass extinction in 65 million years.
– A farm with 2,500 dairy cows produces the same amount of waste as a city of 411,000 people
– Agriculture is responsible for 80-90% of US water consumption
– Growing feed crops for livestock consumes 56% of water in the US.
– Livestock and their byproducts account for at least 32,000 million tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) per year, or 51% of all worldwide greenhouse gas emissions.
– Livestock is responsible for 65% of all human-related emissions of nitrous oxide – a greenhouse gas with 296 times the global warming potential of carbon dioxide, and which stays in the atmosphere for 150 years.
– Even without fossil fuels, we will exceed our 565 gigatonnes CO2e limit by 2030, all from raising animals.
– 3/4 of the world’s fisheries are exploited or depleted
– Scientists estimate as many as 650,000 whales, dolphins and seals are killed every year by fishing vessels
– Animal agriculture is responsible for up to 91% of Amazon destruction