"There is nobody who knows more about the environment than this rancher," says Dr. Frank Mitloehner, air quality researcher at University of California-Davis. Check out this video about the environment and ranchers featuring Dr. Mitloehner.
Incidentally, I met Dr. M at a conference at Kansas State University and was so wowed by his presentation that I could talk of little else for days! Cattle have been implicated in the Greenhouse Gas debate as major polluters, but Dr. M says that is wrong...if you compare apples to apples, then livestock actually contributes approximately 3% of greenhouse gases, while transportation actually contributes 26% of all greenhouse gas emissions in the US.
I would love to see a quick and easy solution to the greenhouse gas/global warming/climate change question. I am not trying to debate whether or not the issue exists, but how to solve it. It is clear that we all are looking for ways to reduce GHG, but the easy solution is not the answer. It will take tough decisions and simply cutting back on your meat intake is NOT the answer. I think people grabbed onto this "solution" as it was simple; it took the responsibility out of their hands and put it on the ranchers. It looked like a great pain-free way to solve the GHG problem.
But look deeper. I try to teach my kids to respect their teachers and leaders, while questioning them thoroughly. Unfortunately, I'm afraid when given a simple solution to this problem, too many people latched onto it and were relieved to find such an option without looking into the true facts. Don't be taken in by misinformation--look deeper.
So Meatless Monday falls flat--if you choose not to eat meat on Monday, don't say it is because of the environment! If you really do want to make an impact on greenhouse gases, stop driving so much. Seriously. It is not an easy answer, but that is the bottom line. For more information about Dr. M's research, start here: UC Davis press release on his research: "Don't Blame Cows for Climate Change."