Do You Have to Vegetarian?

Do you have to be vegetarian or vegan to be considered an environmentalist? I mean, there probably many people out there who truly care about the environment a lot, and would buy cars that don’t hurt the environment as much, and plant trees, celebrate Earth Day, and be so involved in the environment- but they still eat meat.

Not at all!
There are environmentalists who eat meat and dairy, but elect to buy it from small local farms who use traditional, more sustainable farming techniques, and allow the animals to live in (relatively) humane conditions. Quite a few people keep chickens. You might be interested in reading ‘The Ecologist’ or similar for ideas on an environmentalist lifestyle.

I can’t pretend to be comfortable with the idea, personally, but each to their own. Even “free-range” and “humane” farming inherently involves some cruelty, isn’t always sustainable or financially viable, and some farmers have been known to flaunt the regulations a little… This is why a lot of vegetarians and vegans are eager to educate people as to what exactly is involved in the livestock farming process.

Like you say, there’s plenty of environmentalist activities that fall outside vegetarianism, and I think everyone encourages them.

And, if people are going to eat meat and dairy, I’m naturally in favour of supporting local industry instead of having them hack down the rainforests for cattle ranches. Certainly at one point, the Vegan society were simply encouraging people to explore cutting down on animal products and become more aware of the issues surrounding them, on the basis that it’s all a step in the right direction :smiley:

BBC’s Panorama broadcast a programme on ethical living and environmentalism last night. Most interesting was the following:
Farming animals produces an astonishing 18% of world emissions of greenhouse gases - much of it from the burps, farts and poos of the world’s three billion cows and sheep.

The programme advocated going vegan from an environmental perspective, rather than an animal right one.

Read more here: … 413195.stm

If they truly care about the environment, then they should become vegans.

We all learn things in stages. I do not cast stones at those who are environmentalists but still eat meat. I just hope they realize they can actually reduce greenhouse gases more efficiently by cutting meat out of their diet than by buying an expensive car made at a plant that expelled quite a bit of greenhouse gases to make that car.

I don’t think so, from the definition of environmentalists…

An environmentalist supports any goal of the environmental movement, an information-based perspective on appropriate use of technology to prevent adverse effects on the natural environment. An environmentalist is engaged in or believes in the philosophy of environmentalism

I dont think so. An environmentalist is any person who advocates or works to protect the air, water, animals, plants, and other natural resources from pollution or its effects. I don’t think it has anything to do with diet.

I agree with Calhoun07. For a true environmentalist, you need to be vegan

However I consider an individual who cares & takes action to improve the environment still a worthwhile environmentalist.

Education is the Key I strongly believe. Perhaps their unaware of the role the meat industry play in contributing to a declining environment.

I totally agree with you BigBecka. If people understood the process & living conditions of animals before being served for dinner, they would be appalled. Like Paul McCartney famously quoted, if slaughterhouses had glass walls, everyone would be vegetarian.

Society is strongly conditioned to eating this thing, ‘meat’ which is just a fad really. What is meat? Why do we have these names like veal, steak, chorizo? Isn’t that hiding the fact that it’s actually an animal carcass that we’re eating.

Learning the benefits of a vegetarian lifestyle is important & can greatly influence your decision on why your vegetarian or deciding to find some additional information.

Environmental impacts are 1 of the considerable benefits of living a vegetarian lifestyle.

Did you know one third of all the fossil fuels in the United States are used to raise animals for our food. It is used to grow, process and transport animal feed and to operate farm, abattoirs and refrigerate meat.

The industry also needs water for billions of animals and for watering crops and cleaning debris. It is estimated that 10,000 litre’s of water are used to produce just one kilo of beef!

Totally outragouss!!

You can Preview my book, How To Be Vegetarian & read your monthly newsletter, A Vegetarian Lifestyle for FREE at:

Lol, never knew that vegetarian is also a verb.

Considering the negative impact that eating meat has on the environment, I do think that you have to be vegan to be an effective environmentalist. The livestock sector is one of the top two or three most significant contributors to the most serious environmental problems, at every scale from local to global” The vegetarian diet reduces pollution in the land and waters.

Scientists suggest livestock production is responsible for ten percent of greenhouse gas emissions, including methane and carbon dioxide which contributes to global warming (Bailey). The reasons for these emissions are deforestation, burning fossil fuels, maintaining facilities, transporting feed, methane release and enteric fermentation. In fact, raising animals for meat contributes more to global warming than all the sport utility vehicles combined.

"Switching to a plant-based diet does more to curb global warming than switching from an S.U.V. to a Camry,” said Paul Shapiro, senior director of the factory farming campaign for the Humane Society.

A quote from PETA after the gulf oil spill read" “Oil spills can be blamed in large part on the oil-guzzling meat industry, which owes its existence to the meat-guzzling public. According to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, it takes more than 10 times as much fossil fuel to produce a calorie of animal protein as it takes to produce the same amount of plant protein."

I feel that you’re either part of the solution, or you’re part of the problem! Which side are you on?

I agree with you in that… Eating meat is always been part of big debates when it comes with protecting our environment…

I am also a vegetarian and likes other vegetarian. The environmentalist should change their food habit. If the eat meat who cares their speech!!! To protect our environment and keep biological balance stop killing animal at once. Animal are the beauty of the nature and they helps to keep balance in environment. Only alternate way is convert us as vegetarian. Modern agriculture can product more crops than previous years. So, there will be no food problem at all. :smiley:

It’s pretty hard to say that you care about the earth while eating meat…not matter how it was raised or killed.

A vegetarian driving a Hummer has a smaller carbon footprint than a meat-eater driving a Prius.