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Friday, December 18, 2015

Good morning,

In a bit of irony, two weeks after I ran a video in Living Green about how disastrous raising meat is for the environment, a new article emerged claiming that calorie-for-calorie, growing lettuce is three times worse for emissions than producing bacon.

Is it true?

I have reprinted a few excerpts from the article in the 'Independent' for you below.

Thanks for reading,

Your Living Green editor

Email the Editor

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Eating a healthier diet rich in fruit and vegetables could actually be more harmful to the environment than consuming some meat, a US study has claimed.

Lettuce is "over three times worse in greenhouse gas emissions than eating bacon", according to researchers from the Carnegie Mellon University who analyzed the impact per calorie of different foods in terms of energy cost, water use and emissions.

Published in the Environment Systems and Decisions journal, the study goes against the grain of recent calls for humans to quit eating meat to curb climate change.

Researchers did not argue against the idea people should be eating less meat, or the fact that livestock contributes to an enormous proportion of global emissions - up to 51 per cent according to some studies.

But they found that eating only the recommended "healthier" foods prescribed in recent advice from the US Department of Agriculture increased a person's impact on the environment across all three factors - even when overall calorie intake was reduced.

The experts examined how growing, processing and transporting food; sales and service; and household storage and use all take a toll on the environment for different foods.

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