Curbing Climate Change

Meatless Monday with Katie Cizewski

A recent study at the University of Chicago compared two things: the environmental impact of swapping every vehicle in the country for ultra-efficient hybrid cars, and the environmental impact of reducing meat consumption by 20 percent. Which do you think had a greater impact? You might be surprised to find out that eating 20 percent less meat will do more to curb climate change than trading in your Camry for a Prius. And by cutting the meat out of your diet for just one day a week, you will reduce your meat consumption by 14 percent - so it only takes a day and a half's change.

The positive effect of going vegetarian on Mondays reaches across climate change to impact water and fossil fuel consumption as well. The amount of water required to produce one pound of beef is enough water to produce over ten pounds of soy. And the ratio is even more striking for fossil fuel consumption. The amount of fossil fuel required to produce one calorie of beef could produce twenty calories of plant based food. That means that for the same amount of energy, you could have one steak dinner or twenty vegetarian dinners. Not to mention the personal health benefits of cutting out the meat on one day a week. Call it food for thought.