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A Contrarian Take on Meat and Climate Change

In Grist today, Farmer Eliot Coleman argues against the conventional wisdom that eating meat itself is a climate change problem: If I butcher a...


In Grist today, Farmer Eliot Coleman argues against the conventional wisdom that eating meat itself is a climate change problem:If I butcher a steer for my food, and that steer has been raised on grass on my farm, I am not responsible for any increased CO2. The pasture-raised animal eating grass in my field is not producing CO2, merely recycling it (short term carbon cycle) as grazing animals (and human beings) have since they evolved. It is not meat eating that is responsible for increased greenhouse gasses; it is the corn/ soybean/ chemical fertilizer/ feedlot/ transportation system under which industrial animals are raised.This distinction between processes that are a natural part of the short-term carbon cycle and those that release carbon from long-term storage is really significant and it doesn't get discussed much. Of course, there are other arguments against meat that have to do with the efficient use of land.
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