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Capitalism

October 24, 2020 - New Republic

Instead of Reengineering Cows, Just Eat Less Meat

Instead of Reengineering Cows, Just Eat Less Meat
Young Beef Cow© Photabulous!

Meat consumption is the third rail in climate politics. But no amount of ingenuity is going to make feedlots good for the environment.

The United States has a meat problem. The average American will eat about 220 pounds of meat this year, including around 60 pounds of beef. The cattle needed to support that consumption require vast amounts of land and feed. They emit huge quantities of methane, which heats the planet. The farms and feedlots they’re raised on pollute waterways, and deplete soils, and contribute to the rising threat of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. The workers needed to process the meat toil in Covid-19-infested slaughterhouses, where tens of millions of animals are slaughtered on under-regulated high-speed production lines.

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