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Give Up Meat to Save Planet? - Page 4

post #91 of 115
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45 View Post
Sorry but I like my steak and chicken too much to give it up.
I can understand and sympathize with this. My favorite foods from childhood are pan broiled pork chops and fried chicken. I'm also a type II diabetic, so I have even more reason to eat beef and diary.

I have considered and tried to be vegetarian many times because I am Buddhist and they encourage that. I've never actually stuck to it for more than a few years (I'm really old so a year is a short time to me).

However, this report really blew me away. I already don't drive -- not because of the environment, but because I have vision problems from the diabetes. Now, here was a way that I COULD REALLY HELP! I'm sure I can give up meat and diary several days a week. Giving up all meat and eggs too is also possible. It didn't seem like asking too much.

As for the validity of the report -- I trust the U.N. Food and Agricultural Organization and the many university reports. Not everyone is for sale, and a lot of people care about this issue. This is not something that's really debated in the scientific community anymore.

I happen to like Al Gore -- one of the reasons being his interest and concern about this issue. I was interested in the problem of global warming as soon as I heard about it -- long before a Californian had a chance to vote for him.

Maybe in your states or cities no one in government is interested in this subject, but the mayors of many cities have joined together

http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Mayors_b...l_warming_pact and many governors have agreed to make necessary changes

www.ef.org/westcoastclimate/

www.oregon.gov/ENERGY/GBLWRM/index.shtml

http://www.ocala.com/article/2007081...0350/1001/NEWS

Then there is the Kyoto Pact which many nations have signed.

Europe is doing a fantastic job and Japan is trying hard, too.

No one is alone with this problem -- we're all in it together. We caused it together and we can end it together. Our individual small changes add up as do the big one taken by government.
post #92 of 115
Don't have a car, so couldn't say; but going vegetarian (or even better, vegan) is better for the planet, all the animals you won't consume, AND people as well, as it takes a lot of vegetarian foods to feed the animals people think they can't live without consuming. Something to think about!
post #93 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zissou'sMom View Post
Global warming doesn't predict that it will be 130 degrees in Minnesota in January. It predicts a global rise of temperature of only a couple degrees-- which has disastrous effects on entire ecosystems.
lol,true but the avg temp on the earth has been on the whole going up, for 100's if not 1000 of years, long before man started to have a impact,

11500 years ago is a perfect , example of where the earth suddnly warmed up, with no clue as to why, none in the ice, greenland melted, the same as what is going on today. They have no clue as why, and there are several examples of sudden and fast periods of warming and cooling that they cant explain. All Of this is new, and they are guessing.

i could post the math, but it would just make my head hurt to explain it(and you know how much i hate typing) But there math does not add up.(al gore stuff)

Quote:
Originally Posted by katie=^..^= View Post
I can understand and sympathize with this. My favorite foods from childhood are pan broiled pork chops and fried chicken. I'm also a type II diabetic, so I have even more reason to eat beef and diary.

I have considered and tried to be vegetarian many times because I am Buddhist and they encourage that. I've never actually stuck to it for more than a few years (I'm really old so a year is a short time to me).

However, this report really blew me away. I already don't drive -- not because of the environment, but because I have vision problems from the diabetes. Now, here was a way that I COULD REALLY HELP! I'm sure I can give up meat and diary several days a week. Giving up all meat and eggs too is also possible. It didn't seem like asking too much.

As for the validity of the report -- I trust the U.N. Food and Agricultural Organization and the many university reports. Not everyone is for sale, and a lot of people care about this issue. This is not something that's really debated in the scientific community anymore.

I happen to like Al Gore -- one of the reasons being his interest and concern about this issue. I was interested in the problem of global warming as soon as I heard about it -- long before a Californian had a chance to vote for him.

Maybe in your states or cities no one in government is interested in this subject, but the mayors of many cities have joined together

http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Mayors_b...l_warming_pact and many governors have agreed to make necessary changes

www.ef.org/westcoastclimate/

www.oregon.gov/ENERGY/GBLWRM/index.shtml

http://www.ocala.com/article/2007081...0350/1001/NEWS

Then there is the Kyoto Pact which many nations have signed.

Europe is doing a fantastic job and Japan is trying hard, too.

No one is alone with this problem -- we're all in it together. We caused it together and we can end it together. Our individual small changes add up as do the big one taken by government.
No, we did not cause it, no more then we caused the other hot periods in history, or we caused the Ice ages.

did we make it worse, That i will admit is a maybe.

Kyoto pact is a joke, only people it hurts is america, how it allows other countries to keep putting out higher and higher levels of the greenhouse gas(that ones that everyone seems to worry about). Clinton could have signed it, but choose not to,EVen he saw how bad it would hurt the US. bush could have, but it is not normal for new presdent to sign into something that former presdent did not sign.

But i do agree, that small changes in things helps, it would not hurt us to eat less beef, and i promise i will never eat another chicken or pig again(no problem really i hate chicken/pork ehhe).

But like i have always said, i would like to see things cleaned up, just because i live here, and i dont like living in a trash dump
post #94 of 115
No, i will not give up meat. I have several medical issues- and without meat in my diet- i could become quite sick. I am not willing to let my health suffer because someone tells me i'm "killing the planet" by eating a balanced diet.

That being said, I try to buy all of my food locally (supporting local farmers reduces the costs of importing food from other countries, guzzling gas, etc) (hard to do in a city, but i do try!) I buy locally grown produce at the Farmer's Market when i'm able to. I try not to waste water. We don't leave lights on when we're not in the room and we use energy efficient bulbs/appliances. We carpool as much as possible to save on gas (there is no public transit in my area (bartlett)- so not having a car is not an option.) We recycle everything we're able to. We try to do our part to reduce our polution and waste...but sacraficing our health is not an option.
post #95 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by StarryEyedTiGeR View Post
No, i will not give up meat. I have several medical issues- and without meat in my diet- i could become quite sick. I am not willing to let my health suffer because someone tells me i'm "killing the planet" by eating a balanced diet.

That being said, I try to buy all of my food locally (supporting local farmers reduces the costs of importing food from other countries, guzzling gas, etc) (hard to do in a city, but i do try!) I buy locally grown produce at the Farmer's Market when i'm able to. I try not to waste water. We don't leave lights on when we're not in the room and we use energy efficient bulbs/appliances. We carpool as much as possible to save on gas (there is no public transit in my area (bartlett)- so not having a car is not an option.) We recycle everything we're able to. We try to do our part to reduce our polution and waste...but sacraficing our health is not an option.
I don't think any reasonable person would think you should do any more. I certainly wouldn't want anyone to endanger their health!

And that's the point; if everyone would just do as much as they can, we would all be a lot better off.
post #96 of 115
Now way! There are much bigger things we need to do to save the planet. Not eating meat won't do much.
post #97 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by EnzoLeya View Post
Now way! There are much bigger things we need to do to save the planet. Not eating meat won't do much.
Not true. That's the attitude that is preventing people from doing anything. We all know something needs to be done, but if we each do as much as we can, it will matter. Saying that something huge is the only way to fix it leads to inaction, people keep doing exactly what they're doing hoping that the government will step in and fix it for them, which obviously isn't happening. If only something big will help, then suddenly it becomes someone else's responsibility, when it isn't.

And meat is a HUGE use of resources that could be going somewhere else. Think of everything that goes into growing crops that feed the livestock, then actually raising the livestock for a few years, then transporting it all over the place, the killing it and packaging it.
post #98 of 115
Actually it is true, the OP is asking us to give up one meal of meat a week - the results of which would be insignificant for some period considering
1. they have bought the animals that will be slaughtered months from now already
2. if they buy them and don't kill them, they will carry on eating and produce more methane.
3. the results of one meal a week is so small, many farmers would assume it is a small slump and the results would not be seen for quite a while even in numbers of packages on shelves.

Look at how much meat presently goes to waste in supermarkets, you see it on sale all the time on 'last day sales', yet farmers keep producing that much because some weeks it does sell and you can't tell how often a person will want chicken / pork / beef in a particular week

Don't get me wrong, any step towards helping the environment is good, but giving up one meal a week is too small a step, and when people think they are doing good in one area, they tend to slack in another and the result of less recycling etc may outweigh the benefit of eating less meat.

We will also still keep cows for leather and milk.
post #99 of 115
Thread Starter 
I began this thread because I read about Livestock's Long Shadow on a Buddhist website. Here is the address of a short talk on caring for Mother Earth by the same teacher, Thich Nhat Hahn:

http://sifting-the-sandhills.blogspo...vironment.html
post #100 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by katie=^..^= View Post
I began this thread because I read about Livestock's Long Shadow on a Buddhist website. Here is the address of a short talk on caring for Mother Earth by the same teacher, Thich Nhat Hahn:

http://sifting-the-sandhills.blogspo...vironment.html
That was a very wise talk.

I think that inter-being is an extremely important idea. Unfortunately, our societies are so individualistic, it is difficult for people to fully understand the extent of inter-being and to practice it.
post #101 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by icklemiss21 View Post
Actually it is true, the OP is asking us to give up one meal of meat a week - the results of which would be insignificant for some period considering
1. they have bought the animals that will be slaughtered months from now already
2. if they buy them and don't kill them, they will carry on eating and produce more methane.
3. the results of one meal a week is so small, many farmers would assume it is a small slump and the results would not be seen for quite a while even in numbers of packages on shelves.

Look at how much meat presently goes to waste in supermarkets, you see it on sale all the time on 'last day sales', yet farmers keep producing that much because some weeks it does sell and you can't tell how often a person will want chicken / pork / beef in a particular week

Don't get me wrong, any step towards helping the environment is good, but giving up one meal a week is too small a step, and when people think they are doing good in one area, they tend to slack in another and the result of less recycling etc may outweigh the benefit of eating less meat.

We will also still keep cows for leather and milk.
And I'm talking about giving up meat, period, as do I think the post I was responding to was. Assuming that people who give up one meal a week of meat will stop recycling is probably a false assumption, imo, if people think that doing a number of small things will help, then it would be possible to do all of them. It's an attitude change, the more you do, the more you think about doing.
I don't think people have to pick one thing and can't do anything else.
post #102 of 115
Thread Starter 
Thank you, Zissou's Mom. You are trying very hard to open people's minds.

I've seen a lot of people looking for reasons to avoid taking action or any personal responsibility. Denying the evidence, wringing hands and despairing of making a difference, hoping technology will save them, and hoping that government will ride to the rescue, even hoping the New Millenium with Jesus Saving us will come in their lifetime.

I don't know anyone who isn't part of the problem, but most people don't seem to be willing to shoulder the burden to be part of the solution.
post #103 of 115
The sad fact is, Zissousmom, I have seen it happen.

We have major recycling programs at work - 95% of waste gets recycled. I have seen people then walk out of the office, after recycling carefully all day and drop their drink bottle in the garbage can right beside the plastics can, and when you say something, they will tell you they have done their part for the environment that day.

I am not saying it is right - but the studies like this cow one that say not eating meat is better for the environment than giving up driving you say 'well if you do this is it is ok to carry one driving'. Then people think of all the news reports regarding emissions for vehicles and think that giving up that one meat meal a week makes up for the wrongs they do. Yes people who are environmentally thoughtful will do both, but don't think because you would that the rest of the world will - look at how many people still don't recycle.

Quote:
I've seen a lot of people looking for reasons to avoid taking action or any personal responsibility. Denying the evidence, wringing hands and despairing of making a difference, hoping technology will save them, and hoping that government will ride to the rescue, even hoping the New Millenium with Jesus Saving us will come in their lifetime.
I am not denying the evidence - I am giving you other facts that say one meal a week or month is too small a step. If we are to undo any of the mess that the world is in we need to do a lot more than stop eating beef now and then. As for Jesus coming and saving the environment, I belive you are on the Happy Holiday side and know there are other gods and icons who will save the world But seriously - thinking that Jesus will save the world doesn't help - what if it takes too long and people die in the mean time.

What I and others are saying is not making excuses, but saying it is just not enough to save the environment, the results would be so incremental that the planet (or us) may be gone before it 'works'.

According to an article in Time in this year's Environmental Special, we would be better off by using alternative fuel. Most countries did make an effort towards this in recent years but instead of being environmentally friendly, they did the usual lowest bidder wins on building and use coal and natural gas to heat or run the processors.

Small things in your home can reduce heat loss and therefore emissions. Sealing windows and doors, increasing the insulation in your attics and going further, using 'green' materials for furniture. Wash your clothes in cold or warm water and hang to dry rather than use a dryer, where allowed. CFL bulbs and LED lights, which NC has started using for parking lots in Raleigh as a pilot scheme, but can also be used in homes. Many governments are setting up programs for free or cheap energy audits with grants for major improvements that need to be done to save energy. Small things like a hot water tank insulator, costing $15 retail can save 250lbs of CO2 emmissions and are more likely to be done than giving up meat. Rake leaves instead of using a leaf blower.

One of the biggest things that can help is cutting down in size. Our houses are now almost double the size of those being built in the 50s and 60s, despite there being a lot more land back then. This means more trees get cut down, more green space is used up, more building materials, more fossil fuels to heat them, more crap in them, more cars in the new bigger garages.

Allowing people to work from home where possible reduces the need for cars to drive to work, office buildings, furnishings etc. Or carpooling or using public transit, which is often greener than a car. If people work in an office, allow less formal (heavier) clothes as long as still business like and don't turn up the AC as much, or allow sweaters and turn down the heat. We have been doing this at work and have saved a lot on energy. Turn off computers when not being used, the same for other appliances.

Support local businesses, and use your own bags for groceries.

There are so many things that can be done that make an impact - but trying to get people to give up meat is like trying to make them change their religion, without going into the mess of packaging on grocery products, meat or not.
post #104 of 115
I entirely quit doing meat almost 2 years ago. It wasn't anything drastic, or any kind of decision, I just like ate less and less till I just quit. Just didn't crave it anymore. Now, if my mom makes meat dishes at holidays, I'll eat it then. But I never have it on my own.

And, my motorcycle is completely decked out with saddlebags, tassles, grip sheaths...and not one piece of it is real leather
post #105 of 115
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skippymjp View Post
I entirely quit doing meat almost 2 years ago. It wasn't anything drastic, or any kind of decision, I just like ate less and less till I just quit. Just didn't crave it anymore. Now, if my mom makes meat dishes at holidays, I'll eat it then. But I never have it on my own.

And, my motorcycle is completely decked out with saddlebags, tassles, grip sheaths...and not one piece of it is real leather
Thank you

Now you are my hero! I might even tell the Flying Spaghetti Monster to tell you Merry Christmas!
post #106 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by katie=^..^= View Post
Thank you

Now you are my hero! I might even tell the Flying Spaghetti Monster to tell you Merry Christmas!
May ye' be blessed by the touch of his noodley appendage
post #107 of 115
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by marie-p View Post
That was a very wise talk.

I think that inter-being is an extremely important idea. Unfortunately, our societies are so individualistic, it is difficult for people to fully understand the extent of inter-being and to practice it.

Thank you for reading it. I think we're the only Buddhists on here.

His writing always surprises me. I feel so deeply affected and yet it seems so very simple.

Interbeing seems so natural to me, I think we are carefully taught not to understand it. It is subversive to the consumerism that sustains our economy even while it destroys our communities.
post #108 of 115
I'd never heard of it. I read it, and I still don't get it. Is it a discipline, or a philosophy, or ritual or what?
post #109 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skippymjp View Post
I'd never heard of it. I read it, and I still don't get it. Is it a discipline, or a philosophy, or ritual or what?
Interbeing is a little hard to explain in a few words, but I'll try. (Maybe Katie can explain it better)

The idea of interbeing means that there is no inherent difference or separation between us, animals, nature or anything else.

For example, if you look at a cloud, your initial reaction is to perceive that there is YOU and then there is CLOUD. Two separate things. But that is wrong... the cloud is made of water, which was once part of you and other living beings. It will soon become rain and be absorbed by plants, and so on.
This is not to say that the cloud is part of you, or vice versa... interbeing teaches that there is no "you" and there is no "cloud". It's all the same.

Following that philosophy, hurting the environment for your own pleasure makes no sense. Your pleasure will fade long before the harm is gone. And since there is no division between "yourself" and the rest of the world, it makes no sense at all to be selfish and to consider your temporary pleasure to be more important.
post #110 of 115
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skippymjp View Post
I'd never heard of it. I read it, and I still don't get it. Is it a discipline, or a philosophy, or ritual or what?
Interbeing is a core concept in Thich Nhat Hahn's teachings. He even calls his organization the Order of Interbeing.

Marie-P explained his use of the word very well.

It is also a core concept in Buddhism that I can't possibly explain any better. So in answer to your question it is part of a philosophy which is very subtle and difficult to understand at its deepest levels. Unless you're really good at philosophy it has to be taken little by little with big doses of meditation in between.

Wish I could help you more, but I'm just not smart enough.

To me it is summed up by two beautiful lines of poetry: 1) to see eternity in a grain of sand -- I think that's Wadsworth and 2) I see God with the same eyes he sees me Eckhart.
post #111 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by katie=^..^= View Post
To me it is summed up by two beautiful lines of poetry: 1) to see eternity in a grain of sand -- I think that's Wadsworth and 2) I see God with the same eyes he sees me Eckhart.
I love Aquinas and Eckhart, their ability to explain spiritual experiences are very interesting. They would be called Christian mystics IMO.
I stopped eating cow and pig at a young age. From day one I have always understood the earth, nature, plants, animals, all of these things are important. Native Americans understood this, many tribes today living without one God understand this concept. It isn't a hard concept, and it seems to be common sense to me and to many others I would think.

I think the problem comes in when someone says they don't matter or they just don’t care. That we are so far gone, who cares, what is the difference a mere one person can make. Everyone can and does make a difference. You might think you can't make a difference, but you can. And little do you know but others might be watching what you do and listening to what you say, and then they also make a difference. It can be catching. Inspiring. If you look at huge social movements, oftentimes, one person heads that movement. One person can, has, and does make a difference! On large and small scales.

I heard a story about a man walking on a shore. On this shore were hundreds of starfish, trapped on the beach, for as long as the eye could see. A man was slowly walking on the beach and tossing them back in the ocean, one by one. A little child walked by and asked him why he was even trying, he couldn't make a difference, he couldn't possibly save them all, it doesn't matter. The man picked up a starfish and smiled. As he tossed the starfish back in he said, it matters to this one, he pointed to the next one he was going to save, and said it matters to this one...

In my simplistic view, Christians should get it too, as God made the Earth, so hurting the earth in this way is not a good thing, that is His Creation, and we are just destroying it for our own use. Back in the day Christianity did lean more towards respecting Mother Earth. The Bible makes many references to nature, its beauty, etc. I know some Eastern religions believe in harmony with the environment. I think many cultures and religions teach this concept. But we are killing the earth more each day, and this won't come without bad consequences, this is our home, our only home. Can millions of people be convinced that they matter, can we make them care? Will they understand that we can't dump trash & chemicals into the oceans; we can't cut down the rainforests for money, that we can't kill animals for profit and drive them to extinction, etc. It is a small world and we are connected. Destroying the environment across seas can have devastating effects here. In this global society, we put money first, supply and demand, everything else seems second.

Planet in Peril is on Discovery Channel, I love that show. I recommend anyone watch it if you get a chance and you are interested about the environment.
post #112 of 115
Thread Starter 
Thank you for a great post, cococat.

I'm always impressed with people who find it easy to be vegetarian. It is very difficult for me and I've fallen off the wagon many times. My beautiful and intelligent daughter also became vegetarian at a young age. When she was only three she saw me get a package of chicken out of the fridge and when she saw the blood she wanted to know what that red stuff was.

When I explained it to her it was blood I could see the look of horror on her face. She had realized we were eating a being like the one in one of her favorite stories, The Little Red Hen. She became a vegetarian right then and there.

Later, she fell under the influence of all the kids who were talking about eating at McDonald's and she ate meat from ages 5-9. Then one night she told me that she wanted to be vegetarian again. She said she had wanted to for a long time but was afraid to tell me. No problem. She's never eaten meat again. That's been 22 years.

I agree: We should all think of ourselves as role models. We forget others are watching us and instead sit back and wait for someone else to start.
post #113 of 115
I find it easy to be a vegetarian. All I have to do is think of those poor animals and the way they are raised and slaughtered and I couldn't eat meat if I tried.

Now, I heard an interesting thing on the radio this morning. There are now 1.3 billion Chinese people. They are eating three times as much meat as they did in 1990. As a result grain production, arable land, and all other resources used for raising beef are going through the roof - and it is putting a strain on their economy not to mention the environment.

Now, if each Chinese person had one less meal of beef per week, that would make a HUGE difference. Nobody can tell me small steps don't lead to big leaps.
post #114 of 115
If everyone in one country did it, on the same day so farmers didn't feel the need to stock up in case, yes over time it would make a difference. But the fact is farmers still own the grazing land and would allow the cows the use of the same amount of land, and other farmers probably wouldn't buy it as there would be a slump in their economy.
It would take a few years to turn the grazing land into any successful farming land, and then the farmers would need a cash intake to build new fences, seeds, and whatever else which they would claim they don't have because they have no money because the meat isn't being sold. We would still have cows living (actually living longer) for leather and we would still have milking cows which live much longer than a meat cow.

I just think there are small and big steps that can help the environment by cutting emissions quicker than eating less beef (and we are talking beef here not all animals as their emissions are much smaller than cows). If you want to make this step, great but to say it is better than giving up your car isn't. If one person gives up eating meat once a week, it does not make up for the CO2 their car puts out in a week, and that is what the studies people are looking at say.
post #115 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by icklemiss21 View Post
If everyone in one country did it, on the same day so farmers didn't feel the need to stock up in case, yes over time it would make a difference. But the fact is farmers still own the grazing land and would allow the cows the use of the same amount of land, and other farmers probably wouldn't buy it as there would be a slump in their economy.
Less meat consumption means fewer cows slaughtered, means fewer cows bought, means fewer cows artificially inseminated, means fewer cows. If the demand isn't there, the supply isn't either. In many ways it is as much about stopping expansion as it is reducing what's already there. If farmers don't have as much livestock, they're going to have to start using the land better. It doesn't make any sense to say that they'd have fewer animals using the same amount of land. Short term maybe, but nothing about conservation is short term.

If you want to keep eating beef everyday, then do it, of course there are other ways to do your bit, but don't claim its because it doesn't matter. It takes 40 kcals of fossil fuel energy to create 1 kcal of beef, working out to almost a half a gallon per pound, while 1 lb of potatoes takes .0015 gallons of fossil fuel. Add to that the fact that nothing vegetarian requires several hours in a 400 degree oven. (http://www.news.cornell.edu/releases...stock.hrs.html)

What your saying is like saying that turning off the lights doesn't matter, because the electric company will still make the electricity, or recycling doesn't matter because the plastics manufacturers will keep thinking they should stockpile so they'll keep making new plastics nobody buys. It doen't work that way.
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