Friday, June 06, 2008

Meat and climate change

ABC News last month offered a sharp, concise summary of the environmental case for eating 20 percent less meat. It draws on a collection of research outlined in the UN report, Livestock's Long Shadow.

Jeff Poor of the Business & Media institute has an almost helpless non-rebuttal to the ABC News piece. Poor has nothing to say on the substance of the case, but argues that there would be dire economic consequences. For support, he links to a brief (.doc) by Dan Otto and John Lawrence on the National Cattlemen's Beef Association website. With world markets at their current positions, Poor has a tough time raising the reader's fears of insufficient food demand.

Anna Lappé and the Small Planet Institute have a new related project, Take a Bite Out of Climate Change. I found most of the links in this post at their new blog, which is now added to the sidebar.

As an aside, I have been enjoying Lappé's 2006 book with Bryant Terry, Grub, which reminds me of Barbara Kingsolver's book in its combination of food system criticism and constructive menus and advice. Far from being pedantic in their environmentalism, Lappé and Terry make eating organically and locally seem totally fun. The menus are organized by season, accompanied by cool "soundtrack" recommendations for music to enjoy while cooking and eating.


Anonymous said...

Don't they know the difference between a dairy and beef cow?

Funny video clip states "Leave this cow alone and eat less beef". The cow is a Brown Swiss, a dairy cow, not traditionally known as a beef cow.

Of course, if the cow exceeds its useful milk production years, then it might be ground into hamburger. But then the commentary should state "Leave this cow alone and eat less ground red meat".

Sven said...
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