New study finds positive climate impact of diets that include meat

Sustainability |  < 1 min. read
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Maybe you’ve seen one of those stories lately, some new study saying that eating meat is bad for the environment.  One of those “if we just stopped eating this, or just stopped doing that — then our planet will be fine” stories.

And then — as it usually turns out, we learn that there isn’t one single switch we can flip, to turn off global warming.  There isn’t one single answer to the problem of global warming:  we’re going to need many solutions.

So in this case, an even newer study finds that eating some meat and cheese (and a glass of milk now and again) is better for the planet than eating vegetarian all the time.  Some balance is is best.

That’s from a new study in the journal Global Environmental Change, and you can read it here. Fair warning though, while it’s not long, it does read like this:

“In 95 percent of countries, diets that only included animal products for one meal per day were less GHG [greenhouse gas]-intensive than lacto-ovo vegetarian diets (in which terrestrial and aquatic meats were eliminated entirely) in part due to the GHG-intensity of dairy foods.”

Now, it’s true that according to this study the best diet would probably be plants, insects and a plate of herring or a bowl of mussels.  But we’ve all got to start somewhere.  So just don’t have that bacon cheeseburger for dinner, on the same day you have bacon and eggs for breakfast, ok?

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