Meat and climate

In several countries, meat is a particularly ambivalent image. Meat continues to be an element, a food of choice and a major element of the meal, associated with pleasure and conviviality. From a nutritional point of view, it is also considered for its contributions in several nutrients of interest, useful to meet needs. Livestock accounted for about 40% of global agricultural production in 2008. This supports the multitude of small farmers in a country. Animal production for animals and the entire life cycle of livestock farming have very negative environmental impacts: beef, for example, is the second most consumed meat after poultry and is commonly thought to be high in consumption. Several breeders are investing massively in this sector. While only one cattle was used for meat production is responsible for 14.

Indeed, livestock farming is one of the main sources of soil and water degradation. The cultivation of maize and soya for animal feed and fodder uses large quantities of water and arable land. Forage production uses more than 30% of the cultivable land and grazing occupies 26% of the soil surface. Intensive agriculture for maize or soya uses massively chemical fertilizers and pesticides, which are responsible for serious water and soil pollution: eutrophication of water, dead aquatic areas, deterioration of coral reefs, impoverishment, erosion and desertification of soils.

Thus, without intensive livestock farming, the land they tread – roughly the size of the African continent – would be used for growing vegetables, fruits or cereals. In addition, plant life could regain the upper hand, which would help to limit the effects of global warming (sustainable development objective 13). The lack of agricultural land also leads to deforestation: 91% of the land “recovered” in the Amazon forest is used for grazing or soya production, which will later feed livestock. And fewer forests mean less carbon dioxide emissions absorbed. To this end, FAO estimates that 70% of the world’s agricultural land is used either for livestock breeding or for the production of cereals for food. The return of trees or plants to these lands would allow more CO2 to be absorbed. This sector also consumes a lot of water, using nearly 14,000 litres of water to produce one kilogram of meat. This value is higher than the consumption of cereals, for example rice (1 400 litres) or wheat (1 200 litres).

According to FAO, by 2027, world meat production is expected to increase by 15% compared to the reference period. 76% of this production is expected to be particularly strong in the poultry sector.

If this production has increased by another 15%, can you imagine what our environment will look like after 2027?

Imagine the state in which our world is found after 2027 if 14.5% of gas emissions have been emitted and four times emitted by the agricultural sector today

What kind of person would you like us to look for? Whether it is for young environmental ambassadors or for young ecologists?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s