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Livestock worse than transport for climate change

News Section Icon Published 04/12/2014

A new research paper, released on December 3rd, looks into greenhouse gas emissions, with the conclusion declaring that the transport sector causes less greenhouse gas emissions, globally, than the livestock farming sector.

While this may not come as a surprise to those ‘in the know’ regarding factory farming, it transpires that it was a shock to the general public.

Alongside the Chatham House report: ‘Livestock – Climate Change’s Forgotten Sector’ Ipsos Mori conducted a global survey. The results found that twice as many people think that transport is the bigger culprit than livestock. 

Consumer awareness needs to change so that the public understand the links between their diet and its effect on the environment.

Prof Keith Richards, at the University of Cambridge and one of the researchers involved, said: “This is not a radical vegetarian argument; it is an argument about eating meat in sensible amounts as part of healthy, balanced diets.”

This paper was the first multi-country multi-lingual survey, specifically looking into the relationship between meat and/or dairy consumption and climate change.

What you can do

It isn’t often, when thinking about food purchases, that consumers think about the impact this can have on the environment. It’s time for that to change.

Eat fewer but higher welfare meat and dairy products, and not only will you be having a positive impact on animal welfare and on your diet, but on the world that we live in as well.

Our CEO, Philip Lymbery says:  “I believe in consumer power, and here is what you can do, what we can all do: I would advise consumers to buy pasture raised meat and milk.

“As long as we buy products from animals reared on the land (free-range, organic), favour local producers or retailers that we trust, eat what we buy and thereby reduce food waste, and avoid overeating meat, we can fill our plates in ways that benefit the countryside, our health and animal welfare.

“Each of us has a chance to change the world three times a day, by choosing pasture-fed, free range or organic food.”


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