2
   

Meat/Milk Rationing to Save the Planet....

 
 
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 09:25 am
Nobody could make this stuff up....

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2008/sep/30/food.ethicalliving

 
roger
 
  2  
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 11:22 am
@gungasnake,
Quote:
Instead, it recommended cutting meat consumption by at least half and making sure animals were fed as much as possible on grass and food waste which could not be eaten by humans.


Regretfully, grass fed cattle take so long to reach market size that they produce more greenhouse gases than those fattened on feedlots. In any case, I haven't completely bought into the idea of man as the major source of global warming.

Hey, China consumes little meat on a per capita basis. Sure glad they're not producing much air pollution.
DrewDad
 
  3  
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 11:46 am
@roger,
And it doesn't make sense, because it's a closed system. If the cattle don't eat the grass, the grass will just rot anyway.

I'm not sold on anthropogenic warming either, but utilizing fossil fuels takes carbon out of the ground and releases it into the air, with a net result of raising carbon dioxide levels.
roger
 
  1  
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 12:18 pm
@DrewDad,
I know. Rosborne posed the question some time ago. He acknowledged that adding a bucket of water would increase the flow over Niagrara falls, but questioned the significance. I don't recall that he got a definitive answer.
0 Replies
 
littlek
 
  4  
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 02:17 pm
@gungasnake,
So...... you think this article is silly?

It isn't, it's reality.
Thomas
 
  2  
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 06:01 pm
@littlek,
gungasnake wrote:
So...... you think this article is silly?

It isn't, it's reality.

It's a rare disagreement where I take gungasnake's side against yours, but this seems to be one of those disagreements. On its face, the tenor of this article does seem silly to me, for two reasons:

The first reason is the one DrewDad brought up: We're talking about a closed system. If cows didn't eat grass, producing methane and carbon dioxide in the process, the grass would die of natural causes and rot, producing methane and carbon dioxide in the process. To a first approximation, there shouldn't be a dramatic difference to the environment. I might change my mind on this point if I saw conclusive arguments that one process emits more greenhouse gases than the other -- but the article isn't making this argument. It simply ignores what happens to grass when it is not eaten.

Another thing the article ignores leads to the second reason I find it silly: If I grant, for the sake of the argument, that people are eating more meat than is good for the planet, the command-and-control rationing of meat is a lousy way to get them to do it. Why not tax the greenhouse gas emissions of farmers, and let the price system do the rest? It works well for the greenhouse gas emissions of factories where it's tried. Yet the article doesn't discuss this obvious option. Instead it frames it as a choice between talking nicely to consumers or rationing food into permissible portions. That's the second reason I find the article well-meaning, but silly.
0 Replies
 
gungasnake
 
  1  
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 06:16 pm
@littlek,
Cats HAVE to eat meat 7 days a week, they don't eat veggies. This guy gonna let me keep my cat??
roger
 
  1  
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 06:42 pm
@littlek,
Well, the part I quoted seems silly to me.
0 Replies
 
littlek
 
  1  
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 07:45 pm
Oh hey - I didn't actually read the article. What I do know is that cows consume a lot of produce which we could eat and take up a lot of space that could otherwise be used to produce vegetables for us. I'm not talking about methane. There are plenty of meat animals which are less resource needy which we (and our cats) can eat: goats, sheep, mice (for the cats).......
Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Wed 1 Oct, 2008 10:54 am
@littlek,
Oh, I agree! It would definitely be more efficient if we ate our soy and corn without passing them through pigs and cows first. But that's an efficiency argument, not an environmental argument: The cost of this detour through the food chain is fully embedded in the price differential between meat on the one hand and corn and soy on the other. As long as consumers are willing to pay this extra cost, who are we -- and who are those scientists -- to hold them back?

Speaking of cats -- I hope yours is fine and on top of his mouse catching game?
chai2
 
  1  
Reply Wed 1 Oct, 2008 11:20 am
@Thomas,
Then people complain about the high price of meat. Confused

I'll have to go back and reread the article, when I scanned it the other day, I wasn't thinking someone was saying people should be forced to restrict, but encouraged....I could very well be wrong though.

Anyway, I thought the proposed portions where quite reasonable. I would have made some slight changes, but it didn't look like something that would be such a huge hardship.

Someone said something about going back to the way our grandmothers ate?

So, what's wrong with that?

I guess I don't see moderation as a dirty word.
chai2
 
  1  
Reply Wed 1 Oct, 2008 11:26 am
@chai2,
oh...this is what I found interesting....

Now in the UK 1.6k are eaten a week, that 1/2 pound a day. I think that's a lot of meat.

The proposal would lower it to 2.4 oz a day. I think that's perhaps a little too low.

I'd say lower it to between 4 and 5 oz a day, around 1k.
0 Replies
 
DrewDad
 
  1  
Reply Wed 1 Oct, 2008 12:34 pm
@chai2,
chai2 wrote:
Someone said something about going back to the way our grandmothers ate?

So, what's wrong with that?

I guess I don't see moderation as a dirty word.

I don't think anyone here claimed there was anything wrong with it, or that moderation is wrong.

IMO, people (including me) eat more meat than is healthy... but that has nothing to do with global warming.
chai2
 
  1  
Reply Wed 1 Oct, 2008 02:48 pm
@DrewDad,
I looked where that thing about grandma was mentioned...it was in the storey, and basically saying it would be a good thing to do that.

I'm dumber than a box of rocks sometimes.

Sling one of them porkchops over here, wouldja?
0 Replies
 
littlek
 
  1  
Reply Wed 1 Oct, 2008 04:24 pm
@Thomas,
Actually, it is also an environmental issue. We'd be much more efficient with land use, fertilizer, pesticides, etc if we were using more hardy crops (don't ask for citations on that one). Also, we could convert some of the pasture land into growing fields for bio-diesel, wind farms, solar arrays, etc.
0 Replies
 
SYNRON
 
  0  
Reply Sat 4 Oct, 2008 12:38 am
@roger,
I think China has passed us and India will soon. But, you really can't ask those two countries to cut their CO2 output. They are developing countries. Where is your humanity--your brotherly love?
0 Replies
 
SYNRON
 
  0  
Reply Mon 6 Oct, 2008 08:03 pm
@gungasnake,
He wont, Gungasnake. If Obama becomes president, as seems likely, he will make Adolf Hitler look like a piker.
0 Replies
 
 

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