Meat Industry Research Paper

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Should Americans be eating beef? This question is being considered now more than ever as more the effects of the meat industry on the environment are revealed. Studies have found approximately 20% of the United States methane emissions come from the meat industry, as well contributing to a number of other problems. With over 900,000 total heads of cattle farmed in the United States, the problem is not only the emissions, it’s the allocation of resources. The industry demands copious amounts land and water be devoted to producing feed for cattle. Though a drastic change, if America is to seriously reduce its global greenhouse gas emissions, its citizens must significantly cut down their meat consumption or totally refrain from its consumption.…show more content…
The amount of non-frozen freshwater in the world is a miniscule 0.3%, yet great amounts of it go to watering cattle. Instead of going to water some of the driest parts of the United States, such as southern California, Nevada, and Arizona, to provide municipal water, it goes to cattle. Our country continually faces devastating droughts that force people to live off strict water rations that can destroy crops, leading to economic ruin. America’s breadbasket should not be faced with water insecurity due to cattle farming. Cattle also need large tracts of land to graze which they leave barren and prone to erosion. Because it can take multiple seasons for range land to recover once it’s been overgrazed, America has countless acres of wasted land that cannot be used for agriculture. Land degradation also makes those living near the ranges prone to dust storms and erosion, since no grasses are left to hold together the soil. Both this and the water issue take more than one season to recover from, meaning the country has people without water or land to make their lives…show more content…
Over one third of U.S corn production goes back to cattle. Not only is this wasting land that could be used to produce food for american citizens, it supports an industry that is incredibly harmful to the environment. Just as the machinery and transportation equipment that is required for meat production, the equipment used to grow crops for cow feed also rely on fossil fuels and thus emit harmless greenhouse

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