Bad news: climate change is happening. Global temperatures rise each year, the Arctic is melting and sea level is rising. The Maldives are disappearing, just like the Amazon Rainforest and the Great Barrier Reef. But there’s good news! Our efforts can change this. The decisions that we make every day have a great impact on this problem. I have a solution that might be unexpected, but can change our world.
Be a Weekday Vegetarian. Meat consumption has a great impact on the environment that is often overlooked. By cutting down on your meat consumption, you will greatly reduce your carbon footprint. Meat production is very water-intensive. In fact, farm animals use more than half the water consumed in the US each year. In 2009, meat production used 47 times more water than soybean production.
Now I understand that cutting meat out of one’s diet seems like a daunting task. Food is a huge part of our social culture and cutting meat out of that completely just might not be feasible. But that’s ok, because the truth is that by lessening your meat intake each week, you’re already making a huge impact! Did you know that you save more water by not eating a pound of beef than you do by not showering for six whole months? The average American eats 62 pounds of beef every year. Cut that number in half and you’ve saved over 15 years’ worth of shower water!
So go ahead and try it. If you’re scared to give it up, start with Meatless Monday! Cutting one meal of chicken out of American diets each week is equivalent to taking 500,000 cars off the road. Maybe you can start a “Tofu Tuesday” or a “Meat-free Friday”. Even better, try being a Weekday Vegetarian! Avoid meat Monday through Friday, and eat what you want Saturday and Sunday. You will make a huge impact on the environment and you’ll make strides toward improving your health.
So will you take the challenge? Will you join me and countless others in this movement? Help me make a difference and start saving our planet.
Check out my inspiration for this blog post! These are two great TED Talks: