Posted by: charmedquark | February 12, 2008

Livestock’s Long Shadow

I was uh, gonna start off this entry with an apology for being serious and vegan and preachy but I won’t – because I think this is important.

Livestock’s long shadow is a report released by the Food and Agriculture dept. of the UN. It “aims to assess the full impact of the livestock sector on environmental problems, along with potential technical and policy approaches to mitigation”.

It’s a very in-depth and detailed report. I wouldn’t expect anyone to read it, but there are a few important parts I would like to draw attention to.

The livestock sector emerges as one of the top two or three most significant contributors to the most serious environmental problems, at every scale from local to global.

“In all, livestock production accounts for 70 percent of all agricultural land and 30 percent of the land surface of the planet.

“Indeed, the livestock sector may well be the leading player in the reduction of biodiversity, since it is the major driver of deforestation, as well as one of the leading drivers of land degradation, pollution, climate change, overfishing, sedimentation of coastal areas and facilitation of invasions by alien species.”

“With rising temperatures, rising sea levels, melting icecaps and glaciers, shifting ocean currents and weather patterns, climate change is the most serious challenge facing the human race.
The livestock sector is a major player, responsible for 18 percent of greenhouse gas emissions measured in CO2 equivalent. This is a higher share than transport.

“Livestock’s contribution to environmental problems is on a massive scale and its potential contribution to their solution is equally large. The impact is so significant that it needs to be addressed with urgency.”

Good luck sweeping that under the rug.


Wikipedia article 



  1. Thought you’d appreciate my ‘kudos’ in comment form.
    This blog is full of LOLs and your wit and content provide nuggets for thought.
    Great job (and some nice finds, particularly that twee fashion blog)!
    I’ll send you some reviews and ideas for your perusal when I get the chance.
    In the meantime, my compliments on a highly productive use of free time!

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