‘An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power’ has completely overlooked one of the biggest contributors to climate change: our diet. The documentary instead focuses on the events surrounding the landmark Paris climate change talks and Gore’s international efforts to address global warming. Aside from a momentary mention that “agriculture is another major cause” of CO2 emissions the film omits any facts or detail about the major contribution our appetite for meat has on carbon emissions. And all this from a vegan?
Gore, a vegan since 2012, has admitted in the past that “it’s absolutely correct that the growing meat intensity of diets across the world is one of the issues connected to this global crisis—not only because of the [carbon dioxide] involved, but also because of the water consumed in the process.”
So why no exploration of this in the film? None of the shocking, inconvenient truths, are addressed. Like the fact that, according to the U.S Environmental Protection Agency, agriculture, forestry and land-use is the second-largest source of greenhouse gases, primarily methane, after the burning of fossil fuels to produce energy.
Or that many studies, including publications in ‘Nature Climate Change’ Journal, have found that the livestock industry accounts for 18% of all global greenhouse gas emissions, with grazing livestock using 30 percent of the earth’s land and 32 percent of its fresh water.
Currently one-third of global cropland is devoted to producing animal feed. In the U.S. alone diverting grains currently fed to livestock to humans could feed 800 million people or if exported would generate $80billion a year in trade. There’s also the devastating effect slurry and chemicals from the meat industry are having on our oceans and marine life, as reported last week, with the largest dead zone ever in the Gulf of Mexico.
What about the impact on our natural combatant against CO2, our trees? The World Bank asserts that animal agriculture is responsible for nearly 90 percent of Amazon rainforest destruction, with more than 80,000 acres of tropical rainforest and 135 animal, plant, and insect species lost due to this destruction each day.
As a report by Chatham House found in 2015,
“Reducing global meat consumption will be critical to keeping global warming below the ‘danger level’ of two degrees Celsius, the main goal of the climate negotiations in Paris.”
The sequel, released 10 years after the first, continues to promote the great work Al Gore is doing. Sadly, it’s totally avoided the real inconvenient truth for us all, that a meat based diet is not sustainable for us nor our planet. So as the film asks, use “your choice, your voice, your vote” to fight climate change and #BeInconvenient by trying a plant based diet.
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