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Don't Want to Be a Vegetarian? You May Not Have a Choice


Environment  (tags: diet, health, water, water scarcity, healthconditions, weather, climate-change, politics, humans, green, climatechange, environment, food, Sustainabililty )

Cal
- 816 days ago - alternet.org
Water scarcity's effect on food production means radical steps will be needed to feed a population expected to reach 9 billion by 2050.



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Comments

Past Member (0)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 3:55 am
Interesting, but I can't help thinking that much of what we call shortages actually have to do with supply chains.
 

Past Member (0)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 3:56 am
""There will not be enough water available on current croplands to produce food for the expected 9 billion population in 2050 if we follow current trends and changes towards diets common in western nations," the report by Malik Falkenmark and colleagues at the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI) said.

"There will be just enough water if the proportion of animal-based foods is limited to 5% of total calories and considerable regional water deficits can be met by a … reliable system of food trade."

Dire warnings of water scarcity limiting food production come as Oxfam and the UN prepare for a possible second global food crisis in five years. Prices for staples such as corn and wheat have risen nearly 50% on international markets since June, triggered by severe droughts in the US and Russia, and weak monsoon rains in Asia. More than 18 million people are already facing serious food shortages across the Sahel.

Oxfam has forecast that the price spike will have a devastating impact in developing countries that rely heavily on food imports, including parts of Latin America, North Africa and the Middle East. Food shortages in 2008 led to civil unrest in 28 countries.

Adopting a vegetarian diet is one option to increase the amount of water available to grow more food in an increasingly climate-erratic world, the scientists said. Animal protein-rich food consumes five to 10 times more water than a vegetarian diet. One third of the world's arable land is used to grow crops to feed animals. Other options to feed people include eliminating waste and increasing trade between countries in food surplus and those in deficit."
 

Carol H. (229)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 4:16 am
noted, thank you Cal
 

Dianne ElkoEakin (729)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 4:36 am
noted
 

Jennifer C. (169)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 5:47 am
Thanks for this article.
 

Barbara Erdman (63)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 7:26 am
INTERESTING and NOTED Cal thanx for posting :-0
 

pam w. (191)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 9:00 am
HUMAN OVERPOPULATION IS THE ROOT CAUSE OF EVERY PROBLEM ON THE PLANET!
 

Wim Zunnebeld (144)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 12:52 pm
thx!
 

cecily w. (0)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 1:11 pm
pam w is right. Human population growth exacerbates all of our problems. We have the means to stabilize, and gently reduce human population growth--fairly and humanely.

I'm vegan, so universal vegetarianism is fine with me--but let's correct the basic issue which is human population growth.
 

paul m. (93)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 1:22 pm

Thanks for,,,,,
 

Rosie Lopez (73)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 1:26 pm
thanks cal!!
 

Svetlana M. (0)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 1:35 pm
Watch this wideo and see why there are shortages; http://www.youtube.com/user/davidcammegh1

 

Svetlana M. (0)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 1:51 pm
GM0's,spraying crops from the air destrys bees, and poisens people. Aniaml factories, couse a lot of polution, thanks to people that want to eat cheep animal products instead of eating fruits and vegetables. People having babies to yong and to many of them. If you have a baby at 20,and your child has a baby at 20 and your grand child has a baby at 20 years old and you all live to a 100, that means there are 5 generations in those 100 yaears. And how many generations are there in the contries where people are havig babies at 16 or younger, that is 6 to 7 generations to a 100 years and we all live longer these days than before thanks to machines that keep people alive. These are all the resons water is running out, climat change, arctic melting faster than before. And ules we all wake up and change our ways right away we will all suffer even dose of us that know what the problem is and do nothing!
 

Jaime A. (32)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 2:41 pm
Noted.!!
 

Dave C. (224)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 2:50 pm
there will be MANY choices humanity will need to make if we keep over-populaiting and having excessively large environmental footprints.....a little less greed/selfishness and desire for comforts now will help any future generations not face the destructive changes we are creating....
 

Dave C. (224)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 2:52 pm
reduce, reuse, recycle, compost, eat less meat, care2, butterfly credits for trees and or to offset.....and educate......
 

Rock H. (254)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 4:46 pm
Noted. Thanks Cal!

I agree with Svetlana.

Why wait until you have to become a vegetarian. Becoming a Vegan is the only option that makes sense and the sooner the better. Switching from a meat based diet to a plant based diet accomplishes nearly the same level of CO2 reduction as switching from driving a Hummer to a Pruis. A meat based diet is not sustainable.
 

N B. (0)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 5:49 pm
One of the many environmental problems
 

Monica D. (580)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 7:18 pm
We humans need to restrain our numbers and demands on nature.
 

Nimue Pendragon (268)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 7:27 pm
Not a problem for me, I haven't eaten animal flesh for 17 years :)
 

Rhonda B. (108)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 9:25 pm
Thank you!
 

Debra B. (24)
Wednesday August 29, 2012, 10:04 pm
Noted
 

Patricia H. (454)
Thursday August 30, 2012, 1:59 am
noted, thanks for sharing
 

Seda A. (4)
Thursday August 30, 2012, 2:57 am
thank you.
 

Past Member (0)
Thursday August 30, 2012, 3:18 am
it is important to facilitate an equal access to food for all the people. Today too many communities suffer from hunger while others people are overweight...
 

Frans Badenhorst (556)
Thursday August 30, 2012, 4:12 am
noted... and TRUE.... very true
 

Past Member (0)
Thursday August 30, 2012, 10:15 am
zašto da ne.
 

Debbie Butz (3)
Thursday August 30, 2012, 12:43 pm
Noted and thanks!
 

Hans V. (0)
Thursday August 30, 2012, 1:09 pm
We don't need to eat meat and we definitely don't need 9 billion people. So stop raising animals for human consumption and humans must stop breeding like maniacs!
 

Past Member (0)
Thursday August 30, 2012, 1:43 pm
noted
 

Past Member (0)
Thursday August 30, 2012, 1:43 pm
noted
 

Fred Krohn (34)
Thursday August 30, 2012, 3:22 pm
$implement demolition-man.cine.lng I'll eat rat, no problems! Human omnivores are designed to eat both animal and vegetable food. The whole vegan scam is a crock.
 

Robert O. (12)
Thursday August 30, 2012, 4:09 pm
Thanks Cal. It really makes one wonder how much more the planet can endure and for how much longer.
 

g d c. (0)
Thursday August 30, 2012, 4:14 pm
ty
 

Tom Edgar (56)
Thursday August 30, 2012, 4:57 pm
Water shortage??? Simple solution. STOP excessive procreation. Two alligators in a pond, when in drought the pool shrinks one alligator goes. Kangaroos in a drought stop reproducing, as do many other specie, only humans are too damned stupid not to control their reproduction when they are the one specie with the technical ability to do so. just because of some idiotic religious more's laid down by semi literate, and totally illiterate, religious nutters thousands of years ago.
 

Michael Barth (43)
Thursday August 30, 2012, 5:57 pm
Noted.
 

Elvira S. (82)
Thursday August 30, 2012, 8:55 pm
Interresting, going veg is a solution for a host of problems. It really is the only way for humans to evolve. At present we are mostly Neanderthals in a techno cyber world, how ridiculous.
 

Ruth S. (304)
Friday August 31, 2012, 6:17 am
I'm a Vegan so I have no problem with that.
 

Jo Ellen H. (3)
Friday August 31, 2012, 6:19 am
thank you
 

Valentina R. (4)
Friday August 31, 2012, 7:24 am
This article, starting with the presumptuous title, is full of incorrect nonsense, just like many others I have encountered recently.

We are too many. That's it. Overpopulation is the issue, not being vegetarian or vegan. Those so-called "water scientists", as well as vegan extremists, seem to forget that water scarcity will affect vegetables' cultivation as well. Plants need water, duh, so getting rid of animal farming is not the answer. Factory farms must be banned, not farming in general.

Humans are omnivores. Anyone who actually believes that the whole world will eventually and forcefully turn vegan is a delusional and naive child, to say the least.
 

Lloyd H. (46)
Friday August 31, 2012, 8:06 am
SIWI, evidently has a rather limited grasp of both food production and water use in the real world. As example, Texas is an arid state, in the midst of a drought and a nasty fire season YET 40% of all Texas water usage is being used for OIL and NATURAL GAS production. Now consider just how much water a single GOLF COURSE uses in ONE WEEK, depending on location 1000,000-1,000,000. The average HOME LAWN uses 4,000-9,300 per week with a 40% waste rate. And remember that many cities require lawns and regulate their upkeep, most notably many of these City ordnances are in desert/arid cities. Note that golf course and lawn irrigation are figured into the "irrigation usage" numbers for every area. A large water park requires 50 Million gallons to fill and loses 100 million gallons per year in evaporation.
Then there is the problem that for all the famine and starvation on Planet Earth there is actually no real shortage of food. There are intentional for profit food shortages. The US alone pays farmers to not grow certain food crops to control prices and provides incentives to grow one crop and not another as via one method or another so do nearly all other nations on Earth and that includes animals. Since the 2007 the Energy Independance and Security Act requires that 40% of US corn production goes to Ethanol production, which means that 40% of the land and water used for corn goes into fule production not food production and all of that 'irregation' does not produce food.
Inerestingly enough is that the averge American family wastes 35-45% of all the food that they buy, that is a huge waste of food, water and land. Aside from waste, golf and amusment parks check out http://www.fao.org/docrep/S2022E/s2022e02.htm from NRMED for a clear and lay understandable explanation of crop water use and requirerments.
 
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