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New Climate Summary: Meat, Livestock Have Little Climate Impact

by James Taylor, Director of the Arthur B. Robinson Center for Climate and Environmental Policy at The Heartland Institute.

American ranchers and U.S. meat consumption have virtually no impact on greenhouse gas emissions or climate, reports a compelling new climate summary. The new climate summary, “Climate at a Glance: Livestock and Methane,” documents that cattle and beef account for just 2% of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. All livestock combined account for less than 4% of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions.

Climate activists, many of whom are vegans for other reasons, often claim that ranchers, livestock, and meat production are a leading cause of rising greenhouse gas emissions and climate change. Yet, EPA data show crop production accounts for more greenhouse gas emissions than total livestock production.

The Climate at a Glance portal provides more than two dozen concise, compelling summaries of topics related to climate change. Bullet-points at the top of each summary provide an easily understandable summary of the topic. A Short Summary section under the bullet-points provides a concise, supporting explanation with links to scientific evidence. Most summaries also include a compelling visual graphic.

 

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