Hard to swallow

New research indicates that gas-guzzling cars are a much less important factor in climate change than the huge amounts of food devoured by carnivorous ‘burger man’. Jonathon Porritt on the geopolitics of food.”

From The Guardian:

Of all the seasonal homilies about “green” Christmases and “sustainable” new year pledges – an oxymoron if ever I’ve heard one – only one stuck in my mind: each of us could make a bigger contribution to reducing emissions of greenhouse gases by becoming a vegan than by converting to an eco-friendly car.

MeatResearchers at the University of Chicago have calculated the relative carbon intensity of a standard vegan diet in comparison to a US-style carnivorous diet, all the way through from production to processing to distribution to cooking and consumption. An average burger man (that is, not the outsize variety) emits the equivalent of 1.5 tonnes more CO2 every year than the standard vegan. By comparison, were you to trade in your conventional gas-guzzler for a state of the art Prius hybrid, your CO2 savings would amount to little more than one tonne per year.

This may come as a bit of a shock to climate change campaigners. “Stop eating meat” is unlikely to be the favourite slogan of the new Stop Climate Chaos coalition.

More here.  [Thanks to Don Lawson.]