The Wednesday August 29 New York Times has a story in the business section (pg c3) by Claudia Deutsch, headed, "Trying to Connect the Dinner Plate to Climate Change." It opens:
"Ever since 'An Inconvenient Truth,' Al Gore has been the darling of environmentalists, but that movie hardly endeared him to the animal rights folks. According to them, the most inconvenient truth of all is that raising animals for meat contributes more to global warming than all the sport utility vehicles combined." We are told, "they do have scientific ammunition. In late November, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization issued a report stating that the livestock business generates more greenhouse gas emissions than all forms of transportation combined."
The article includes nice quotes from PETA's Matt Prescott such as: ''Environmentalists are still pointing their fingers at Hummers and S.U.V.'s when they should be pointing at the dinner plate...You just cannot be a meat-eating environmentalist."
We also read:
"The Humane Society of the United States has taken up the issue as well, running ads in environmental magazines that show a car key and a fork. 'Which one of these contributes more to global warming?' the ads ask. They answer the question with 'It's not the one that starts a car,' and go on to cite the United Nations report as proof."
In the article HSUS's Paul Shapiro cites a scientific study that recently came out of the University of Chicago, which shows ''switching to a plant-based diet does more to curb global warming than switching from an S.U.V. to a Camry.'' Shapiro notes that reducing greenhouse gasses can help prevent the carnage that global warming could cause to polar bears, seals and other wildlife, and says, ''Our mission is to protect animals, and global warming has become an animal welfare issue."
The article also notes the work of Vegan Outreach on the issue, and quotes executive director Matt Ball:
''Al Gore calls global warming an existential risk to humanity, yet it hasn't prompted him to change his diet or even mention vegetarianism. And I guess the environmentalists recognize that it's a lot easier to ask people to put in a fluorescent light bulb than to learn to cook with tofu.''
Deutsch lets us know that various environmental groups, and also Al Gore, acknowledge the impact of meat-eating on global warming but have chosen not to focus on it.
You'll find the whole article on line at http://www.nytimes.com/2007/08/29/business/media/29adco.html and also view the PETA and HSUS ads on that page.
The article calls out for appreciative letters singing the praises of plant-based diets. If you follow one, please write!
The New York Times takes letters at firstname.lastname@example.org
Always include your full name, address, and daytime phone number when sending a letter to the editor. Remember that shorter letters are more likely to be published.
Yours and the animals',
(DawnWatch is an animal advocacy media watch that looks at animal issues in the media and facilitates one-click responses to the relevant media outlets. You can learn more about it, and sign up for alerts at http://www.DawnWatch.com. You may forward or reprint DawnWatch alerts if you do so unedited -- leave DawnWatch in the title and include this parenthesized tag line. If somebody forwards DawnWatch alerts to you, which you enjoy, please help the list grow by signing up. It is free.)
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Date: Wed Aug 29 11:58:06 2007