“Cowspiracy”, The Sustainability Secret” is a 91-minute documentary that blows open the connection between climate change and livestock production.
Is meat almost a religion or part of being a patriotic American? Is talking about meats dark side taboo or is there more at stake? Who knew that the meat industry/GMO feed industry is the leading contributor to climate change – by a long shot – and why is it being kept secret? Why are we not hearing messaging to that effect on TV and in newspapers?
“Cowspiracy: I should probably start by sharing with you that I am not a full time vegan and not sure if I could ever give up meat completely. Going vegan is something I have tried with limited long-term success.
That said, this movie makes me look at the personal choices I make daily and how any one person does have the power to affect climate change and the future of this planet. The low flow toilets in my house don’t do much to offset the more than 6,660 gallons of water it takes to produce one quarter-pound hamburger. I see now how changing my light bulbs and driving less does not have as much impact as shifting my diet would have. But this is not a message we see in California’s water conservation efforts or at the UN Climate Change Summit. Why not?
The film presents overwhelming evidence that eating a plant-based diet would dramatically reduce the carbon footprint of food production, prevent rainforest destruction, reduce global water and fertilizer consumption, and eliminate aquatic dead zones.
I love the positive idea that all of us can make a difference in climate change, and we can do that several times a day. However, in the last 20 minutes of the movie, it veers from its climate change message to showcasing the shortcomings of pasture-grassed animals (meat/dairy) in helping feed a growing planet. This is a hard first sell for me. Still, I highly recommend this movie for viewing. It is well-done work and a very competent display of information. It builds as it goes, and drew me into the issue.
Kip Andersen, the film’s co-producer and director, is to be applauded, big time, for putting his neck on the chopping block to speak out about the all-powerful meat industry – remember what happened when Oprah was taken to court by the meat industry for her comments. I am going to suggest it is time we all join the ‘meat is driving climate change’ conversation and put our fork where our mouth is by opting for a plant based diet.
Advice for the directors and groups hosting public showings: Let’s stay positive and not alienate those who are part of the shift forward, like local organic dairy producers and pasture raised meat farmers. Arguably, going vegan for many will be a transition not a decision and the transition gap needs to be provided in a more mindful and environmentally friendly manner than that of CAFOs (Confined Animal Feeding Operations). Keep in mind, climate change isn’t about just what one person does; it’s about all of us and the power of our collective choices. Relaying the message that we all need to “be the change” and to do it together could welcome the masses into climate change mitigation.
View the Cowspiracy trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nV04zyfLyN4.
Find out how to host a screening in your community by visiting http://www.tugg.com/titles/cowspiracy. Our join us at the West Hollywood Library on Friday May 13th 2016 for a free showing, see our Facebook Page for details.