A Climate Hazard, Medium Rare, Please
By JOANNA M. FOSTER
Eating a small cheeseburger for lunch is, in terms of greenhouse gas emissions, equivalent to driving an extra 10 miles. By contrast, eating a serving of lentils would barely get your car out of the driveway, according to a new report released on Monday by the Environmental Working Group, a research organization.
The study, “A Meat Eater’s Guide to Climate Change and Health,” highlights the impacts of the nation’s meat addiction and offers a suite of user-friendly online tools to help consumers understand the many-faceted repercussions of their food choices.
In particular, the study calculates the “cradle to grave” climate impact for 20 different types of protein, including meat, cheese, seafood, beans, nuts and lentils.
These calculations, based on data from the federal Department of Agriculture, factor in everything from the pesticides, fertilizers and water used to grow livestock feed to the emissions related to raising the animals and processing, transporting, cooking and disposing of the meat. (NYT)