Going Veggie would cut global food emissions by two thirds and save millions of lives - new study.
So I am not saying we should all go veggie but an article this week caught my eye and I thought it would be good to share with you. The following is an extract from Marco Springmann, a researcher from the University of Oxford.
Eating more fruit and vegetables and cutting back on red and processed meat will make you healthier. But as chickens and cows themselves eat food and burn off their own energy, meat is a also major driver of climate change. Going veggie can drastically reduce your carbon footprint. This is all at a personal level. What about when you multiply such changes by 7 billion people, and factor in a growing population? Food-related greenhouse gas emissions would also be cut by more than two thirds.
Of the 105 world regions included in our study, fewer than a third are on course to meet dietary recommendations. A bigger population, eating a worse diet, means that by 2050 food-related GHG emissions will take up half of the “emissions budget” the world has for limiting global warming to less than 2℃.
To see how dietary changes could avert such a doom and gloom scenario, we constructed four alternative diets and analysed their health and environmental impacts: one reference scenario based on projections of diets in 2050; a scenario based on global dietary guidelines which includes minimum amounts of fruits and vegetables, and limits to the amount of red meat, sugar, and total calories; and two vegetarian scenarios, one including eggs and dairy and the other completely plant-based (vegan).
The result found that Vegetarian and vegan diets could result in 7.3m and 8.1m avoided deaths respectively. Thanks to eating less red meat and to eating more fruit and veg, along with a reduction in total energy intake (and the associated decreases in obesity).
If the world went vegetarian that cut in food-related emissions would rise to 63%. And if everyone turned vegan? A huge 70%.
So it looks like with the veg box we’re on the right path to reducing our risks of disease and reducing the planets risks of harmful emissions.
Have a great week - David xx