You are currently viewing our desktop site, do you want to visit our Mobile web app instead?
 Registered users can save articles to their personal articles list. Login here or sign up here

Planning a braai? Not if you want to save the planet

Greenhouse gas emissions could be reduced if large beef and lamb consumers reduced their weekly intake.

Meat sizzling on the barbecue might be synonymous with summer, but consumers should re-think their menus to save the planet, a US-based research group said on Wednesday.

If the biggest beef and lamb consumers reduced their weekly intake to 1.5 burgers by 2050, it could cut greenhouse gas emissions and save forests from becoming farmland, the World Resources Institute (WRI) said.

Currently, Americans and Europeans eat double this amount and Brazilians three times, Timothy Searchinger, lead author of the WRI report and a researcher at Princeton University, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

“This is the most promising and most realistic solution,” he said, adding that it would be harder to reduce the world’s overall meat consumption.

Diners in the United States, Canada, Europe, Latin America and the former Soviet Union make up a quarter of the world’s population, but ate more than half of the world’s meat from ruminants – such as cattle, sheep and goats – in 2010, WRI said.

Agriculture accounts for 11% of planet-heating global emissions, according to the United Nations, most of which comes from gases emitted by livestock during digestion and in manure.

The expansion of agricultural land also creates emissions through the draining of peatland, releasing carbon dioxide – one of the main greenhouse gases – into the air and through the felling of trees, which absorb carbon dioxide.

Global food demand is projected to grow by more than 50% by 2050 due to population and income growth, but meeting this target using today’s farming systems would have dire results for humans and the planet, the WRI said.

It would “entail clearing most of the world’s remaining forests, wiping out thousands more species,” the report said.

It would also release enough GHG emissions to exceed the 2015 Paris Agreement’s target of keeping the global average temperature rise “well below” 2 degrees Celsius (3.6F) above pre-industrial times to avoid catastrophic climate change.

Producing a ton of protein from sheep, goats or cows emits at least four times more greenhouse gases than pigs and eight times more than chickens, while ruminants also require much more land for grazing or growing feed, WRI said.

Scientists have been working to reduce emissions from ruminants through measures including selecting breeds that burp less, but providing higher-quality feed would also help by allowing each animal to produce more meat and milk, WRI said.

Get access to Moneyweb's financial intelligence and support quality journalism for only
R63/month or R630/year.
Sign up here, cancel at any time.


To comment, you must be registered and logged in.


Don't have an account?
Sign up for FREE

More PROPER studies say global warming, I mean climate change, I mean climate resilience is fictitious. The “scientists” put numbers in a computer controlling their model to get out what they got out!! Again, for the challenged, there is NO EMPIRICAL EVIDENCE of global warming! In fact the sun is at a solar minimum. Do your homework instead if listening to 2 minute sound bytes.

Zokey: your point of view is not supported by 99.5% of published research on the topic. Here is a good list

On the issue of meat I am less sure. Cows re-emit current carbon just like a braai burns current carbon. It is not additive. The problems come from burning millions year old carbon and not sequestering more than we emit – coal and oil.

Zonkey is a self professed American, and his comment above clearly shows it, despite overwhelming evidence showing greenhouse gas emissions cause heating his cognitive dissonance doesn’t allow him to believe it, I have challenged many MW readers that deny the science to point me toward a peer-reviewed paper that proves its all a massive hoax, till date I have not received one.

Somewhere along the line, PR firms realized that the best way to avert the climate change debate is to establish misinformation campaigns and instead turn climate science into a political debate.

The only problem with a misinformation campaign however is, you need a big enough audience to spread your campaign, and there they found conservative news/talk shows extremely helpful : Fox News, Louder With Crowder, Ben Shapiro, PragerU etc, and its sad really, the first main stream politician to acknowledge climate change was no other than Margret Thatcher herself, Thatcher was definitely not part of some “Left wing conspiracy”
She took a look at the science and knew what had to be done, unlike today, where people don’t even take a second to challenge their world views, they only seek conformation.

@PJJ – Al Gore, the so-called hockey stick graph, Climategate, Pachauri’s “disappearing Himalayan glaciers” and especially the eagerness of governments to use climate as scare tactic to extort ever more money from the taxpayer, indicate that this whole climate scare mongering industry deserves all the critical scrutiny it can get and more.

If my continued employment depends upon convincing somebody that X=Y, you can be dead sure I am going to make my models jump through hoops to “prove” just that.

@Incitatus – I will be first to tell you that Al Gore’s predictions where bogus, and want to guess why? Because he is not a scientist! He was a politician looking to pickup some votes, he took solid science, exaggerated the facts and in turn caused more harm to the field than good.

Its funny, the whole funding debate is always the first thing people go to when they are climate “Skeptics” (Ironically enough they are never skeptic enough of the source of their news).
Just ask the folks over at NASA what bringing in bad news gets you, the Trump administration are threatening to cut their funding, why? not because its expensive at 10M USD PA, its not even a rounding error in the US budget, but because it brings bad news, if they came back every year saying : “Hey folks all is good no need to worry!” I am pretty sure no one would bat a eye.

So the total economic cost for climate scientist is 10M USD PA
Ok now lets compare that to say Oil, the US uses 20.5M Barrels of Fuel per day.

Now at say 55USD per barrel that means there is a 1127M USD worth of Oil consumed per day, so, should climate science cut oil usage by 1%, just 1% for ONE DAY, the losses would be 11.27M USD.
Now, you tell me, who has the bigger economic interest in keeping the world on fossil fuels?

Of course dishonest governments will use carbon taxes to help shore up their budgets, SA being one of them, we recently got a carbon tax on fuel (Only 9 cents mind you) but we still have a 40% import duty on electric cars and now rebates/grants on EV’s
Those 2 things are completely contradictory, on the one had you have carbon taxes and on the other you have high import duties on electric cars.

Nothing wrong in being a skeptic, but then you have to be skeptical of everything.

Pachauri was the head of the IPCC, and pretended to be a scientist, and the Climategate conspirators were so-called academics and so-called scientists. There is no reason, based on demonstrable evidence, to trust a so-called scientist any more than you trust a politician. Once again, if a scientist’s job is on the line if he doesn’t sing from the correct hymn book, Climategate has proved that it takes very little temptation to cook the figures.

@Incitatus – Your qoute ” Once again, if a scientist’s job is on the line if he doesn’t sing from the correct hymn book, Climategate has proved that it takes very little temptation to cook the figures.”
EXACTLY, their current findings are endangering their employment! Not promoting it, being the bearer of bad news here does kill the messenger.

The temptation would rather be to understate than to overstate the effects on the climate, care to share your thoughts on my comparison of economic interests? Who do you think has the bigger incentive to cook figures?

99.5% of published research? Under critical gender studies?

Astrology has a better explanation for variations on the stock market man!

Really, I see PJ pulls “photos” from 1984!! with ice and no ice//

Man get some basic stats into your data. There is no significance in the 100 years of “recordings” considering earths x billion years of existence.

And the greatest factor is the sun, a slight inclination of earth in its orbit around sun and we freeze or perhaps burn to death.

But be clear, sure man must try an limit its impact on the complex system that is earth, as a precaution.

I have a theory, just too much evidence exist for fossil fuel emissions causing cancers. This carbon obsession is misplaced, but a sugar coated story to move the masses.

It started out as “global warming.” I remember watching the movie,The Van, with two guys huddled together in a bus shelter in Ireland and one said “This global warming is a lot of sh1te.”
It became “climate change” but this didn’t have much reaction because the climate has been changing for millions of years.
Now we have moved to “climate crisis” and eating meat will cause the end of the world.
So the answer is ….. another sin tax.
Do governments care if you smoke or drink yourself to death, or eat too much sugar ? No, they are happy so long as you pay the tax.
Don’t stop people polluting the atmosphere, just tax them for doing it.

Also this whole theory that scientists suddenly changed it to climate change, is also a complete lie,
In fact the first time anyone refered to it as climate change goes as far back as 1956!

The Carbon Dioxide Theory of Climatic Change, was written by:
Plass, Gilbert N.
Publication : Tellus, vol. 8, issue 2, pp. 140-154

If anyone is interest you can go and read the findings, in fact that wasn’t even the fist time someone thought that increases in Co2 could cause warming, In 1896 Svante Arrhenius said that a doubling in Co2 would cause a 5-6C increase in temperature, yes folks, 1896.

In order to become a global warming expert you need to master the ability of “only collect the data that promotes your pathetic theory and scrap the rest”. If you follow this concept you will become rich and prosperous in the pathetic field of global warming or whatever other name they might give it in the future.

Dark age mentality people are always right. In the past a little fire by your feet, and believing you did. Immense successful. From start to around 1500 AD all of Europe was believing anything told. Not was no option. Green safe the planet religion madness works not with torture but just so efficient. Any unbeliever, while trying climbing the living standard ladder, can forget it. He will face one way, down. Worst, if needed, his direct family to. All spokes man for any scientific goal are without exception green believers. Like church priest in the recent[broederbond] past, their word to is becoming law. Watch the lifestyle bonding them. Full of exhaust plane and car fumes. You doing that, spoil the fun they having.

UN Admits Climate Change Purpose: Redistribute World’s Wealth.

I wrote a massive reply, debunking that website and the articles in it, for some reason it did not pass moderation?

But the TLDR is:
The article comes from a Oil lobby group known as the GWPF (read about all their sketchy dealings here :

The actual interview doesn’t talk about wealth, it talks about carbon caps around the world on a per capita basis, ironically enough carbon caps actually hurt developing countries more than developed ones.

NASA? Really? With respect – a consensus chart developed by NASA on its own website citing it’s own research provids no proof of global warming. It did warm my heart a little though watching the consensus fluctuate up and down,, almost in perfect positive correlation. That fact alone makes me wonder… no point did any of these “peers” disagree. Almost always in perfect agreement. LOL!

Lets not forget that back in the day there was a solid consensus among “scientists” that the earth was flat. That was proven to be wrong (without NASA being there, otherwise I might still question it). There is a real desire- that science must be able to provide motivation and answers in a way that is acceptable to most people, despite the fact that it defies logic and the observable reality to manipulate people out of their money and make them feel good about a new tax.

Its amazing that it sounds like you went to the NASA climate change website but clearly you didn’t read while you where there.

As per their website:
“Scientific Consensus
Ninety-seven percent of climate scientists agree that climate-warming trends over the past century are extremely likely due to human activities, and most of the leading scientific organizations worldwide have issued public statements endorsing this position.”

They even give a list of the scientific organizations that they used to create the chart, with links to each of the mentioned organizations research, so this is definitely not a NASA data only chart.

Ok, let me put a challenge to all the skeptics out there, here is a simple, 2 min demonstration that will challenge your belief that there is no warming, and you don’t even need to go and read any scientific research or take anybodies word for it.

Step 1:
Download Google Earth pro for windows
Step 2:
Go to Greenland (The satellite image is from December 2016)
Step 3:
Click on the clock icon so that you can see previous images.
Step 4:
Take it back to say 1984 and flip between 1984 and 2016, you will see the snow cover speaks for itself.

we are back at common sense:

Why is the water in the oceans, up to a depth of average 5km, not frozen?
(Max depth of oceans are 9km, I think)

The sun’s rays only penetrate the oceans up to a depth of 1km.

And heat travels UP, not down.

Therefor, to me it is only common sense that the heat from earth’s core stopped the oceans from freezing.

So, to me, it is only common sense that the oceans are heated by the earth’s core.

Digging tunnels under mountains, where the heat is trapped, the ‘miners’ encountered temperatures of around 60 degree C!

I cannot prove or disprove these things, but somehow I get to answers by asking certain questions about statements that do not make, yes, common sense to me.

“CARBON TAX, this hoax is on par with religion, evolution, global-man-made-warming.”

I asked questions on each of the above subjects, and the answers I got lead me to believe that they are ALL hoaxes!
In each of the above categories we are told to believe facts that DOES NOT MAKE SENSE.

But then again, blind believe was never my strength … … …

Well MJ I just want to congratulate you, because unlike other readers you have gotten as far as acknowledging there is heating (as per our previous back and forth)

Do you want to know why the bottom of the ocean isn’t frozen? Its very easily explainable, pressure.

Here is a phase diagram for water:

Water has different freezing points at different pressure, water is actually quite unique when it comes to its handling of pressure, if you want to learn more here you go:


Give up, you may as well stick your finger in a dyke


I really wish I didn’t have to do this, but people need to be informed, I have a strong suspicion that a significant portion of MW readers believe that either :
A- There is no warming what so ever (These are the climate flat earthers)
B- Yes there is warming, but man didn’t do it.

And its all fine and dandy if they deny the science but the fact is, climate change has already changed our world significantly and it will continue to do so, and the economic cost is immense if we don’t do anything about it.
I mean New York is already planning a 25B USD sea wall to keep the water out, New Orleans already spent 14B USD upgrading their levies and sea walls.

I know you understand all of this, but help me and we can get everybody to understand it 🙂

PJJ, yes, you are correct:

There are more factors involved preventing the oceans from freezing, you just selectively mentioned pressure, while I selectively mentioned heating from Earth’s core.

Other factors are salt, currents etc.


4. Earth’s internal heating
As miners are well aware, the earth gets hotter and not colder as you dig straight down, despite the fact that you are getting farther away from the warm sunlight. The reason for this is that the earth has its own internal heat source which is driven primarily by the nuclear decay of elements inside earth’s mantle. The earth’s internal heat is most evident when lava flows and hot springs poke through the surface. Because earth’s insulating crust is much thinner under the oceans than under the continents, most of the earth’s internal heat escapes into the oceans. Although the temperature of the air at an ocean’s surface may be freezing, the temperature of the water deep in the ocean is significantly warmer due to internal heating.

This combination of salt, ocean currents, high volume, and internal heating keeps most of the ocean in liquid form even during cold winters.

I didn’t selectively choose pressure, I remembered a friend of mine asking our physics teacher back in highschool why the bottom of oceans weren’t fronzen, and I that has stuck with me every since.

I didn’t say the earth can’t heat it, its just the effects are VERY small, unless you are right next to an active volcano the heat will rarely see the light of day, remember water conducts heat slowly and at 5KM+ deep that heat will never reach the top.

Let me give you a example:
Have you ever jumped into a gravel dam? On a hot summers day?
The top 5CM is hot, and just a mere 2M down at your toes it feels like its much colder.

How about cutting back on population growth and population numbers? Now there’s your problem.

The world worked together on addressing the CFC problem and apparently the hole in the ozone layer was plugged.

Why can the world not work together on climate change?

I still want to know – is climate change cyclical or man made?

Lol, a certain ‘demographic’ (you know who) gets all crazy when their sacred braais are ‘threatened’.

Youtube is a bad influence on the feeble minded.

Water has its highest density at 4 degrees Celsius. In other words if it cools further it gets lighter. Think of ice which always floats. Due to this uniqueness of water the ocean will only freeze at the bottom if there is no more liquid water left.
Concerning the hoax of rising water levels. I have read some pathetic article (most probably propagated by global warmers) about the previous ice age, stating that the water level was some 125 meters lower. If that is true then it would imply that all the continents were covered by at least a 200 meter high ice cap. Doesn’t make sense does it.

Load All 27 Comments
End of comments.


Insider GOLD
ONLY R63pm

Moneyweb's premium subscription is a membership service which will give you access to a number of tools to take charge of your investments.
Choose a yearly subscription at R630pa - SAVE R126

Get instant access to all our tools and content. Monthly subscription can be cancelled at any time.



Follow us:

Search Articles:Advanced Search
Click a Company: