We are too often quick to find blame for whatever ails us elsewhere. Upon reflection, the commonplace ills of our societies rest largely with us. Pollution is the most critical at the moment in spite of ongoing wars, various incurable diseases and numerous political stupidities… and don’t get me going about religion.
Here’s what I think about global warming (don’t say climate change, that sounds too innocuous):
– Global warming has been the result of too much pollution in the air, right? This includes excessive releases of carbon into the atmosphere as a result of our dependence and widespread use of fossil fuels.
– Related to the excess carbon emissions is the release of methane into the atmosphere from the attempts to find, gather and distribute oil and natural gas (which is 95% methane).
– Methane has formed a simulated blanket around the Earth which keeps the heat from the sun trapped in our atmosphere.
– Are you following me so far? Now think about the population growth over the past 100 years or so and the ability of our natural capacity to absorb the pollution that this growth has created.
– People create methane too. We all know that except we don’t usually call it methane. Whether you tell the kids to refer to “toots” or “passing gas”, they are just plain old farts that, typically, every human passes 7 times a day.
– Guess what, ruminants fart a lot too — that’s cattle and the like.
– So, we have an ever burgeoning population growth that wants more protein in its diet. That means more cattle being raised for meat… especially burgers.
– And, we are seeing more forest being cleared to raise more cattle. That’s a double-whammy: we’re reducing the capacity of the planet to absorb CO2 and produce oxygen and building up more methane-producing herds.
– Let’s learn how to get more of our protein from vegetable combinations and cut back on meat and we’ll all live better and longer.
* Thanks to the late, great Walt Kelly and his spokesperson Pogo.