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Why Is Eating Meat Harmful?


Meat production is harmful in a lot of ways. Raising animals for food uses more water than all other uses of water combined. It also causes more water pollution than any other activity and is the reason for about 85% of U.S. soil erosion. A vegetarian diet requires around 300 gallons of water each day, whereas a meat-eating diet can use up to 4200 gallons! Water is a precious resource and by eating meat, we are sucking our planet dry of water. Producing one hamburger also uses just about the same amount of fossil fuel as a small car would use to drive 20 miles. That means that of all raw materials and fossil fuels used in the United States, more than 1/3 is used raising animals for eating. An average pig factory farm can produce raw waste equal to that produced by a city of 12,000 people. Factory farms also (according to the EPA) pollute waterways more than all other industrial sources combined. This is because animals raised for food produce more excrement than the entire human population (about 130 times as much). The waste is unsanitary and usually ends up in the soil, and back in our own homes. People living near factory farms often complain of sickness, and these animals waste is said to be the cause of Pfiesteria, a deadly microbe. Because so much grain is needed for animals that are being raised for food (they need to be fat), 80% of corn and 95% of the oats that are grown in this country are fed to these animals, making the process totally inefficient. To make one calorie of animal flesh, you must feed the animal at least 20 calories of food. In the U.S. 87% of agricultural land is used raising animals for food, which is 45% of the total land mass in the country. Not only that, but more than 260 million acres of U.S. forest have been cleared to make cropland for these animals. Cattle grazing also takes a toll on tropical rainforests, where almost 55 square feet will be cleared just to produce one 1/4 lb. burger. Meat production is very harmful to the environment. Forests are destroyed, food is wasted, resources are depleated, and excess waste is created, all so that you can eat a Big Mac. We won't even start to mention the cruel ways in which animals are slaughtered in factory farms...