Environmental Impact of Animal Farming

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Allocation of land and Deforestation

Environmental Impact of Animal Farming. People get inspired and turn into veganism mainly over mistreatment on animals, effects on one’s health, environmental impact and religious or spiritual beliefs. Even though these are four separate reasons, they all have one factor in common, compassion, or we can say as caring for others.

When someone is having thoughts on stepping into a vegan lifestyle, they always think about the impact it creates towards the community around them. With having a sound mind as an end user and a consciousness to think as a child of mother earth, they begin to grasp that the choices they make on their everyday life affects not only them but on a whole lot more than that. In this article, my plan is to discuss on the adverse effects towards the environment caused by the animal agriculture.

Raising animals for food and other needs of humans is not something that started in near history but the earliest hint of raising livestock dates back more than thousand years. Anyway, given the last 200 years or so, the mass farming practices of animals were introduced and developed with time into larger industries also known as CAFOs or Concentrated Animal Farming Operations. According to recent researches, more than 80% of the farmlands are used for meat and dairy industry around the world. It took over 2 million years of world and human prehistory and just 200 years more for this number to skyrocket up to 7 billion where currently the world population is at 7.8 billion as of November 2020. It has been predicted that by the year of 2050, the world population of humans will rise up to 9.6 Billion thus the rising demand to food and to meet with this rising demand, the production has to be increased and lands are converted into agricultural lands and livestock farms causing major cases of deforestation. Statistics shows that about seven football fields of land are bulldozed every minute throughout the world just to create room for farming animals and for making crops for feeding them. Researches shows that only in 2004 – 05, Deforestation for croplands in Amazon rain forest of Brazil is 2.9 million acres and 80% of the cleared faction of amazon from the 1870’s is used for meat production. With all these claims, a question in return comes out, “So what vegans have to say about all the grains and soy that they have consumed which were produced in these deforested lands?” the answer is very clear, nearly 80% of the crops produced worldwide are used to feed the farmed animals. If the meat and dairy production is reduced, or ceased completely, the global farmland use could be lowered by a percentage exceeding 75%. This can be equalized to the land area of European Union, Australia, China and United States combined. Meat and dairy industry uses the 83% majority of farmlands in the world while they only provide 37% output of total protein and just 18% of calories. These percentages are backed by a study published in the science journal of “American Association for the Advancement of Science” with data collected from almost 40,000 farms covering 119 countries with 40 animal food products representing 90% of all that is consumed.
When considered the flora and fauna species inhabiting planet earth, the natural habitat of those in excess of 70% are the forests and due to the current increased rate and previous events of deforestation, some of those species have become extinct following many others now on the verge of extinction or becoming extinct as we speak. This increasing figures at which the trees are being lopped will take an unbearable toll on the environment in general and it will feature on the headlines when it comes to aftermaths on the ecosystem and biodiversity in planet earth.

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