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Animal Agriculture & Water | CleanTechnica

Animal Agriculture & Water | CleanTechnica


Revealed on December ninth, 2018 |
by Daryl Elliott

December ninth, 2018 by Daryl Elliott 

That is the half two of a multi-article collection on the connection between animal agriculture and numerous societal and environmental issues. This text covers animal agriculture’s connection to freshwater use, freshwater high quality, water air pollution violations, fishes and different sea animals, ocean hypoxia, and declining phytoplankton within the oceans.

The primary article on this collection was about animal agriculture’s connection to local weather, land use, biodiversity loss, air air pollution, topsoil erosion, and desertification.

Future articles will cowl wildlife habitat encroachment and extinctions, concentrated animal feeding operation (CAFO) odors, financially marginalized communities, antibiotics produced within the US, antibiotic-resistant micro organism, veganic meals manufacturing, world starvation, tax subsidies for animal agriculture, hidden prices of animal agriculture together with sponsored quick meals, slaughterhouse PTSD and alcohol/drug abuse, home abuse, human rights points, and extra.

Freshwater Use — Amount and Effectivity

In response to the Worldwide Evaluation of Agricultural Information, Science and Know-how for Improvement: “69% of the world’s freshwater withdrawals are committed to agriculture. The industrial sector accounts for 19% while only 12% of water withdrawals are destined for households and municipal use.”

Fact or Drought explains that once we eat crops instantly, we’re direct shoppers of the vitamins. When people eat animals who’ve eaten crops, people are secondary shoppers of crops. That is an inefficient system of nutrient acquisition, land use, and water use.

On the Fact or Drought details overview web page, you’ve gotten a transparent assertion explaining clearly: “There are basic laws of biophysics that we cannot evade. The average efficiency of livestock converting plant feed to meat is less than 3%. … Agricultural practices are not necessarily at fault here – but our choice of food is.” — Bojana Bajzelj, College of Cambridge researcher.

Fact or Drought attracts from the Proceedings of the Nationwide Academy of Sciences of america of America (PNAS) states: “The highly disproportionate scale of animal agriculture is far bigger than most people realize. It is the largest land use system on Earth.”

Fact or Drought continues: “Local livestock associations act as political incubators, stacking the seats on county commissions, launching cattlemen into state legislatures, state and federal administrative positions, and into Congress.” — New Republic journalist Christopher Ketchum.

In a Might 2018 story on avoiding meat and dairy to assist the surroundings, The Guardian states: “Scientists behind the most comprehensive analysis to date of the damage farming does to the planet found that while meat and dairy provide just 18% of calories and 37% of protein globally, it uses the vast majority – 83% – of farmland and produces 60% of agriculture’s greenhouse gas emissions. Eliminating animal agriculture would result in a 75% reduction in overall farmland use and [it could] still feed the world.”

Bloomberg reviews on land use: “There’s a single, major occupant on US land: cows. Between pastures and cropland used to produce feed, 41 percent of U.S. land in the contiguous states revolves around livestock. (USDA via Bloomberg)”

Fact or Drought: “Despite its monopoly on farmland and frequent greenwashing to try to justify it, animal agriculture will always be inherently less sustainable than plant-based. Continuing to exploit animals for food in the absence of necessity is outdated, inefficient, and cruel.”

As for water effectivity, a BioScience summary of “Water Resources: Agricultural and Environmental Issues,” revealed on the Oxford Educational website, states: “Agriculture consumes about 70% of fresh water worldwide; for example, approximately 1000 liters [265 gallons] of water are required to produce 1 kilogram [2.2 pounds] of cereal grain, and 43,000 L [11,359 gallons] to produce 1 kg of beef.”

Nationwide Geographic water ideas declare that the typical animal-eating American makes use of 1,000 gallons (3785 liters) of water for her or his weight-reduction plan and different use per day. Fact or Drought claims that a plant-based dieter solely makes use of 400 gallons (1514 liters) of water per day. Nationwide Geographic: “That quarter pounder is worth more than 30 average American showers. One of the easiest ways to slim your water footprint is to eat less meat and dairy.”

Freshwater High quality

Within the US, there are over 9 billion farmed animals killed per yr, and globally, the quantity is over 55 billion animals who’re killed. Manure lagoons by no means bear the identical remedy as human sewage, and the amount of animal manure exceeds human manure by 100-fold within the US. In accordance with the US Division of Agriculture, 108,000,000 kilos (49 million kilos) is produced each hour by farmed animals within the US.

Prestage Swine Farms with manure lagoons, Harrells, NC. Credit score: Google Maps, 2018-10-30

The aquifer and rivers have grow to be polluted in some areas on account of animal agriculture. The rationale for that is the manure and urine created by animals which might be saved in manure lagoons, that are successfully untreated cesspools, generally seep into the groundwater, which in flip flows into rivers. This seepage and runoff course of is exacerbated throughout heavy rains, flooding, and hurricanes.

Hurricane Matthew, October 2016. Credit score: Dove Imaging. Beneath the flooding have been the manure lagoons, which have develop into included into the hurricane flooding water.

Manure lagoon liquid is usually sprayed onto crop fields, which shortly will get into the groundwater and rivers. Crop spraying is the backdoor authorized technique for animal ag to dump poisonous waste.

In accordance with the US Environmental Safety Company, “A typical 2,500 cow dairy operation produces more fecal waste than the entire city of Minneapolis.” The one distinction is that Minneapolis engages a waste remedy system that the dairy farms and different animal ag farms keep away from saving cash. Consequently, there are accumulating manure lagoons, or cesspools, which endanger the water and close by communities. A few of these liquids are sprayed on crops, together with in some instances, instantly on human meals crops.

Water Air pollution Violations

Animal ag and different air pollution after Hurricane Florence Sept. 2018. A NASA satellite tv for pc is monitoring flooding within the Carolinas after Hurricane Florence and its pictures present that rivers and streams close to the coast and spilling darkish, discolored water into the ocean. Credit score: Joshua Stevens, NASA

One Inexperienced Planet stories: “75% of industrial U.S. slaughterhouses violate local water pollution limits.” It continues: “One of many many disagreeable realities related to animals being killed in industrial U.S. slaughterhouses is that the big quantity of waste they produce has to go someplace. The place does it find yourself, you ask? Properly, the extraordinarily gross fact is that a lot of the nitrogen, fecal micro organism, and different pollution that come up from slaughterhouse operations get discharged instantly into our rivers, lakes, and streams.

“As if this wasn’t [sic] horrifying sufficient, the Environmental Integrity Undertaking (EIP) just lately found one thing that takes this soiled little secret from dangerous to worse. Upon looking on the EPA’s data for the 98 giant U.S. meat-processing crops that launched greater than 250,000 gallons [946,353 liters] of waste per day into waterways between January 2016 and June 2018, the nonprofit environmental group discovered that 74 of the crops had violated their air pollution management permits at the very least as soon as.

“And because the EPA knowledge confirmed, the overwhelming majority of the amenities repeatedly exceeded authorized limits for wastewater discharge. In reality, over half of the crops (50 of 98) had 5 violations, and about one-third (32 of 98) had no less than 10 violations. Additional, a number of of the amenities have been discovered to be liable for infecting waterways with as a lot nitrogen air pollution as a small metropolis during the last two years.

“As EIP Executive Director Eric Schaeffer reportedly described the disheartening findings, ‘This water pollution is really an environmental justice issue, because many of these slaughterhouses are owned by wealthy international companies, and they are contaminating the rivers and drinking water supplies of rural, often lower-income, minority communities.’”

Oceans, Waterways, Fishes, and Different Sea Animals

Based on Nationwide Geographic: “Until people act now, seafood might disappear by 2048, concludes the lead writer of a brand new research that paints a grim image for the ocean and human well being.

“In line with the research, the lack of ocean biodiversity is accelerating, and 29 % of the seafood species people eat have already crashed. If the long-term development continues, in 30 years there might be little or no seafood obtainable for sustainable harvest.

“The increasing pace of diversity loss thus imperils the ‘ecosystems services’ that many human populations depend on for survival, the study says.” claims that there are as much as 2.7 trillion sea animals killed yearly by people plundering the oceans for meals. It’s troublesome to find out the exact variety of sea animals killed, as they’re weighed, not counted.

These animals often die of asphyxiation when being introduced out of the water as their gills don’t permit them to breathe until they’re within the water. Typically they’re crushed to demise by the load of different sea animals within the nets. A big proportion of those animals are bycatch, which means they don’t seem to be the meant fish. Typically these bycatch fish are discarded again into the ocean, lifeless.

In line with Oceana in its Wasted Catch: Unsolved Issues In U.S. Fisheries report: “According to some estimates, global bycatch may amount to 40 percent of the world’s catch, totaling 63 billion pounds per year” of sea animals. Whereas the Nationwide Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has packages to scale back bycatch, it stays a significant issue for the sustainability of many species within the oceans.

Along with the ocean animals killed yearly, fishing nets make up about 46% of the good Pacific rubbish patch, in accordance with Nationwide Geographic. These giant seines are so huge that they are often seen from area. These fishing practices are liable for bycatch deaths of unintended sea animals.

Based on in a report entitled Overfishing: A International Catastrophe: “over 25% of all the world’s fish stocks are either overexploited or depleted. Another 52% is fully exploited, these are in imminent danger of overexploitation (maximum sustainable production level) and collapse. Thus a total of almost 80% of the world’s fisheries are fully- to over-exploited, depleted, or in a state of collapse. Worldwide about 90% of the stocks of large predatory fish stocks are already gone.”

They proceed: “As a result, the overall ecological unity of our oceans are under stress and at risk of collapse.”

In case you consider that fish farming is sweet, please think about watching the video under, “Salmon Confidential,” about salmon farming in British Columbia. It exhibits the tragic ecologic impression it has had on their waterways. Aside from the damaging environmental impression, utilizing any animals for meals is unto itself thought-about by rising numbers of individuals to be unethical, plus it’s completely pointless, and inefficient.

In a One Inexperienced Planet article entitled: “Time to Get Real. There Aren’t Plenty of Fish in the Sea and It’s Our Fault,” they state: “It seems that we humans, as land-dwellers, have little appreciation of our world’s vast oceans. The oceans provide us with 70 percent of the world’s oxygen and absorb 30 percent of the greenhouse gases that we release into the atmosphere. But, despite this amazingness, we feel free to take as many fish as we want from those mysterious depths.”

They proceed: “Methods such as longline fishing, bottom trawling, and the use of purse seine nets often devastate marine ecosystems by removing far more fish from an area than was intended. Bycatch – a term used to describe untargeted marine animals who end up in enormous commercial fishing nets – is also a serious problem that threatens species such as turtles, dolphins, sharks and manta rays. Using incredibly advanced and aggressive technology [such as sonar] to meet demands for seafood, we’re waging a war on our oceans.”

In one other article from One Inexperienced Planet entitled “10 Alarming Facts about Overfishing,” the author states: “Modern fishing ships use technologically advanced fish-finding sonar that can find a school of fish with almost military precision. Once the fish are caught, the ship is used as a floating factory, with onboard processing and packing plants, preservation systems, and huge engines that allow the ship to drag their enormous nets through the ocean. A fact from Greenpeace.”

In a piece concerning the apex predators disappearing quick: “In simply 55 years, people have managed to wipe out 90 % of the ocean’s prime predators. These are animals like sharks, bluefin tuna, swordfish, marlin, and king mackerel. Reality from Oceana.

“According to Greenpeace, the depletion of these top predator species can cause a shift in entire oceans ecosystems where commercially valuable fish are replaced by smaller, plankton-feeding fish. This century may even see bumper crops of jellyfish replacing the fish consumed by humans.”

Extra info from this text on why fish farms or aquaculture shouldn’t be the reply: “Aquaculture, or fish farming, requires feed for captive fish. To grow just one pound of farmed salmon, an estimated four to eleven pounds of prey fish are consumed. As the aquaculture industry continues to expand, prey fish are depleted at alarming and unsustainable rates. If current trends continue, some researchers predict that aquaculture will outgrow the supply of fishmeal as soon as 2020. A fact from Oceana.”

The next is an summary video on the state of the oceans.

Ocean Hypoxia, Typically Inflicting “Dead Zones”

The definition of ocean hypoxia is “Reduced oxygen in the ocean, detrimental to living organisms.” This could trigger noxious ocean algae blooms and what’s known as “fish kills.”

Picture by Alejandro Díaz

Eutrophication, also called hypertrophication, is when a physique of water turns into overly enriched with minerals and vitamins that induce extreme progress of waterborne crops and/or algae. This chemical course of might trigger oxygen depletion of the water physique, also referred to as “dead zones,” which may make it troublesome or unattainable for fishes or different life to reside within the affected areas.

“Anthropogenic [meaning: human caused] inputs of excess nutrients into the coastal environment, from agricultural activities and wastewater, have dramatically increased the occurrence of coastal eutrophication and hypoxia. Worldwide there are now more than 500 ‘dead zones’ covering 250,000 km2 [96,526 square miles], with the number doubling every ten years since the 1960s. The economic costs to fisheries, tourism and other coastal livelihoods are already in the many tens of billions of dollars annually and will only continue to increase in the ‘business as usual’ scenario.”

Hypoxia and Declining Phytoplankton within the Oceans

In accordance with environmental reporter Stephen Leahy, in an article titled “Oceans on the Brink: Dying Plankton, Dead Zones, Acidification,” initially revealed for Inter Press Service (IPS) in 2010: “Phytoplankton are a critical part of our planetary life support system. They produce half of the oxygen we breathe, draw down surface CO2, and ultimately support all of our fisheries,” stated Boris Worm of Canada’s Dalhousie College and one of many world’s main specialists on the worldwide oceans.

“An ocean with less phytoplankton will function differently,” stated Worm, the co-author of a new research on plankton revealed this week [2010] in Nature. Plankton are the equal of grass, timber and different crops that make land inexperienced, says research co-author Marlon Lewis, an oceanographer at Dalhousie.

“It is frightening to realize we have lost nearly half of the oceans’ green plants,” Lewis informed IPS. “It looks like the rate of decline is increasing,” he stated.”

The article continues: “The Gulf of Mexico has a 22,000 square kilometre [8,494 sq. miles] dead zone every spring due to run-off from the Mississippi River.” It ought to be famous that the hypoxia within the Gulf of Mexico is contributed to in a big approach by the animal ag upstream within the Midwestern states.

Subsequent articles on this collection will cowl wildlife habitat encroachment, species extinctions, concentrated animal feeding operation (CAFO) odors, financially marginalized communities, antibiotic-resistant micro organism, world starvation, tax subsidies for animal agriculture, hidden prices of animal agriculture (together with sponsored quick meals), slaughterhouse PTSD and alcohol/drug abuse, home abuse, human rights points, and extra.

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Tags: acidification, Algae, Bycatch, concentrated animal feeding operation (CAFO), lifeless zones, division of agriculture, EPA, eutrophication, fish, Greenpeace, hypertrophication, Hypoxia, ocean acidification, Oceana, oceans, Overfishing, phytoplankton, purple tide, Salmon Confidential, Fact or Drought, water air pollution

Concerning the Writer

Daryl Elliott I’ve adopted and supported photo voltaic, wind, geothermal because the 1970s. After discovering its robust environmental advantages, turned vegan within the late 70s. Go inexperienced.

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