Blasting the unmistakable sound of a gassy cow and holding signs that read, “You Can’t Be a Meat-Eating Environmentalist” and “An ‘Inconvenient Toot’: Cow Gas Is Killing the Planet,” our “cow” made an appearance outside Al Gore’s keynote speech on climate change in Manila this week. Our fragrant friend was outraged that Gore always forgets to mention that animals raised for food burp and fart massive quantities of greenhouse gasses—so much so that gas from farmed animals is one of the leading contributors to climate change.
The police detained the “cow” and one other activist for making a stink in order to help animals. After several hours in jail, the two protestors were released. Says PETA’s Andrew Salut (who played our cow), “The costume was like dancing in an oven and the being taken away by the police was traumatic, but it’s nothing compared to the suffering of cows and the effect they are having on our planet.”
Carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide are the three leading greenhouse gasses. Raising animals for food is one of the largest sources of carbon dioxide and the single largest source of both methane (during digestion and from feces) and nitrous-oxide emissions. Methane is 20 times more potent than carbon dioxide as a greenhouse gas, and nitrous oxide is 300 times more potent. Researchers at the University of Chicago concluded that switching from a meat-based diet to a vegan diet is more effective in the fight against climate change than switching from a standard car to a hybrid.
I guess it’s hard to speak about the dire consequences of climate change with a steak stuffed in your mouth, but if Al Gore really wants to take a bite out of greenhouse-gas emissions, he’ll worry less about energy-efficient cars and light bulbs and make the move to a vegetarian diet. After all, going vegetarian is as easy as, well, bringing a canvas bag to the grocery store. You can save the planet—and show Al Gore a thing or two—by going vegetarian today.
Posted by Jason Baker