Wednesday, December 23, 2015

That Bastard Grinch, Monbiot

Trust George Monbiot to give us a thorough scolding just in time for the festive season.

His latest op-ed is all about food, or at least the sort we really like to eat, and greenhouse gas emissions, environmental degradation, animal cruelty and the road to a certain superbug pandemic.

Read it here, if you like, or not if you would prefer to leave it until after Christmas. Pssst - you might prefer Option B.

As for you, Monbiot, a Merry Christmas - you rat.


Dana said...

What about the carbon released when we are cremated or decompose ?

And farting?

I'd be willing to wager there is not one single human activity that is carbon neutral.

The Mound of Sound said...

Well, Dana, given that all life on Earth is carbon based, yours is one of the safest bets of all time.

Toby said...

As with most of the world's problems, the best option would be fewer people.

The Mound of Sound said...

True enough, Toby. Analysis done by the Global Footprint Network determined that the last time mankind was living within the limits of the planet's environment was in the early 70s when we were at just over 3-billion. Bear in mind that was also at 70s levels of per capita consumption. That too has exploded.

Anonymous said...

Hey Mound,

Long time reader, first time commenting. I gave up meat and dairy two years ago out of concern about climate change. I still eat eggs and fish occasionally, but no beef, cheese, milk, whey, poultry or pork. I'm into weightlifting, so i thought i would lose muscle, but that didn't happen. I actually recover better from workouts now, and I've taken up road cycling and martial arts. I feel like i have more energy than ever.

I don't self identify as a "vegan" or "vegetarian". I simply try to keep it plant based, save for eggs and some local west coast salmon.

Getting people to cut their meat consumption would have a much greater effect on climate change and is much more feasible in the short term than any other action. Don't get me wrong, I'm against the fossil fuel industry and advocate for a global carbon tax. But these actions will take a long time to take affect - cutting down meat and dairy consumption is something we can all do now.

Anyhow, Merry Christmas and keep on doing what you're doing, as you do it very well!


The Mound of Sound said...

Merry Christmas, Nico. Good to hear from you.

As an unreformed omnivore I certainly envy you your dietary discipline and, yes, if we as a species would do the same it would greatly reduce our damage to the environment.

We're trending the other way as newfound affluence arrives in the emerging economies, particularly China and India. Some experts have tagged the new middle classes the "consumer class" for their focus on achieving what we take for granted in North America. That's not just fancier homes, cars and travel but meat in substitution for rice and legumes. In the result our demand for food production greatly outstrips our rapid population growth. It's a big factor in the argument for a transition to insect protein.

It's good to hear that you're finding the change in diet so beneficial personally. It partially mutes the sacrifice for the common good element, real as that is.

I, too, have an interest in cycling only mine takes the form of periodically carving mountain twisties on a powerful motorcycle at decidedly age-inappropriate speeds.

Thanks for commenting. I'll look forward to hearing from you again.