Sunday, February 14, 2010

Cows and pigs are responsible for global warming

Doctors often recommend lowering red meat consumption to minimize the risk of obesity, cancer and coronary disease. In a 2007 Lancet Medical Journal article titled "Food, livestock production, energy, climate change, and health", McMichael and colleagues argue that cutting red meat consumption could also help combat global warming. The little data that the paper shows has been adapted from the FAO, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, an organization that proposes that livestock production is responsible for 18% of the global greenhouse gas emissions.

Other online websites from National Geographic have reiterated the sentiments of the McMichael article, and expand the recommended ban of meat to include both beef and pork. This article can be found at:

Apparently, this new scientific theory has found a following in Cambridge Massachusetts where a recent city Congressional panel convened to brainstorm new city legislation aimed at combating the "climate emergency". The public notes from this meeting, which was held December 12th 2009, can be found online at:

The controversy sparked by this meeting has been featured on many major news stations for its numerous proposed taxes on the use of both plastic and paper bags, as well as the disruptive elimination of all street curb-side parking within the city. Most alarming of all, these Cambridge meeting notes propose ways to change behavior by mandating "diet changes like eating no (or less) meat" because people don't know the "connection between red meat and methane gas emissions." Explicit recommendations to "try not eating meat for 1-2 days" were made.

These Cambridge Congressional meeting notes also mention public reactions to these proposed policies because people are not "ready to make sacrifices. However, extreme actions may be necessary." 

I don't know about you, but I'm a bit scared of what these "necessary" and "extreme actions" may entail. It's quite alarming that governments in America are trying to regulate our daily diets. Can anyone say Big Brother? Are we going to one day have red meat and pork banned from the grocery stores and only be able to consume it illegally in underground hideouts reminiscent of speakeasies during the prohibition era?

It also seems ludicrous to me that Massachusetts is willing to push an agenda to make meat a controlled substance because it harms the environment, when it pushed to decriminalize marijuana through question 2 of the 2008 election ballot. Apparently Massachusetts didn't get the memo about all the health problems from marijuana use, let alone the crime associated with drug-trafficking. But that discussion is for another day.

1 comment:

  1. Very interesting. I need to read up on this before responding, but I agree that Massachusetts should not have decriminalized the use of Marijuana.