This yellow turtle was burned in a forest fire. But, unlike tragedy in California, this was no accident.
This turtle (along with countless other animals) was burned in a Peruvian Rainforest that was INTENTIONALLY slashed and burned. But why are we intentionally slashing and burning rainforests?
Well, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), it’s animal agriculture that is the number one driver of deforestation in the world.
The breeding and raising of animals for food uses more land than any other human activity. In fact, it currently occupies a staggering 45% of the Earth’s entire land surface (per the International Livestock Research Institute)!
Keep in mind, it’s not just the land for animals themselves. It’s also the immense expanses of croplands needed to grow all the “feed” to support the relentless cycle of continuously breeding, fattening-up and slaughtering billions upon billions of “livestock” animals.
And every day that passes, as the demand for animal foods grows, more and more sensitive forests are leveled for farmlands to produce more animal foods. This is an unsustainable tragedy, to put it mildly.
Forests are an important carbon dioxide sink – meaning they sequester CO2 out of our atmosphere. And, of course, they are also home for wild animals. So, as we lose forests, we are losing the species that live in them as well.
And, we are losing species at such an alarming rate that scientists have already labeled our time as the Sixth Mass Extinction in Earth’s biological history. We are now witnessing a loss of biodiversity not seen since the dinosaurs disappeared ~65 million years ago.
For all these reasons and more, going vegan happens to be one of the most (if not the most) impactful action you can take to reduce your impact on the planet. Indeed, it will be near impossible to adequately and timely address these existential problems without an urgent mass global shift away from animal foods.
Please think about your responsibility to the environment, the forests we are losing and the animals in them. Please also consider the unnecessary suffering and harm imposed on the billions of animals we directly exploit and kill for products no one needs.
Please go vegan. It’s easy, healthy, and something we can all do starting with our very next meal.