Meatless Monday: A Burger’s Impact on the Environment
We’re not sure if you had a chance to check it out, but last week was “meat week” on NPR’s food blog, The Salt. There’s plenty of in-depth information to sink your teeth into, like a piece about why less red meat is making its way onto American plates and another that explores the pros and cons of the popular Paleo diet.
We found one story particularly eye-opening (and appropriate for Meatless Monday). NPR highlighted the fact that because raising and transporting livestock requires so much more natural resources than it takes to produce plant-based foods, meat has a bigger impact on the environment than anything else we eat. For example, here’s all that goes into producing a quarter-pound hamburger:
6.7 pounds of grains
52.8 gallons of water
74.5 square feet of land for grazing and growing feed crops
1,036 BTUs of fossil fuel for feed production and transport—that’s enough energy to power a microwave for 18 minutes
Why all this is a concern: On average, Americans chow down on 270.7 pounds of meat per person each year. We’ll let you do the math!
Related: 5 Best and Worst Meat Substitutes
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