If you want to save the world , you may have to reduce your red meat consumption to the equivalent of just two hamburgers a week, the World Institute for Global Resources estimated in a study .
The production of beef is one of the most polluting factors that are leading the world to a high level of global warming. For this reason, the ‘State of Climate Action 2022’ report from the Global Resources Institute warned that to avoid a catastrophic climate crisis, meat consumption per person must be reduced now.
According to the institute’s calculations, in high consumption regions, daily meat intake should be reduced to 79 kilocalories per person by 2030 and 60 kilocalories by 2050, which is equivalent to consuming only two meat burgers per week.
Currently, in rich countries, 79 kilocalories of red meat are consumed daily. And not only that, but emissions from meat production have gone up, not down. Additionally, 14% of food production is still lost on the way from farm to supply; and another 17% is lost at retail outlets.
But the consumption of meat would only be one of the objectives to achieve the goal of the Paris Agreement, to limit the increase in global temperature to 1.5 degrees Celsius. But it is not the only one for its acronym in English).
In fact, none of the other objectives is being carried out at the speed that is required. For this reason, the institute stated that it is necessary to expand the use of public transport six times faster, reduce the annual rate of deforestation 2.5 times more than what has been done so far.
The other indicators include the accelerated reduction in the use of fossil fuels, use of electric transport, so that annual sales represent between 75 and 95% of the automotive industry. Currently, sales of electric vehicles only represent 8.7% of the total.
But the world lags much further behind on other goals. Mainly in what refers to the use of gas derived from fossil fuels for the generation of electrical energy, the reduction of the use of coal for global steel production, reduction of automobile use, the destruction of mangroves and the reduction of global emissions of greenhouse gases from agricultural production.
More natural disasters await Mexico in the southeast and the Pacific coast
Our country is responsible for 1.42% (647 MtCO2eq) of greenhouse gas emissions worldwide, while the most polluting activities in order of importance are: transportation, electricity generation, agriculture, the manufacturing industry and construction, and waste, indicated a recent report by the Tecnológico de Monterrey.
The Mtra. Mariajulia Martínez Acosta, Deputy Director of the Sustainable Development Goals Initiative at Tecnológico de Monterrey, recently indicated that if greater strategies are not implemented to combat the current situation, the economic losses for Mexico City, Guadalajara and Monterrey could exceed the 1,000 million dollars by 2029, while the accumulated costs would be comparable to the loss of 1,058 billion dollars.
In addition, a decrease in rainfall is forecast, mainly in the southeast, center and the Pacific coast, of at least 10% of its current levels by 2050. Similarly, there is the possibility of an increase in temperature, equivalent to 2°C in the north of the country and 1 to 1.5°C in the rest of the territory.
Likewise, the expert noted that Mexico became the second country in the world to implement national legislation against climate change, with the objective of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 30% by 2020, 35% by 2024 and in 50% by 2050.
Finally, he stressed that it is essential to continue encouraging financial investments in favor of climate action, redouble efforts in mitigation and adaptation actions, as well as continue to align ourselves with the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement, through multi-stakeholder cooperation with the participation of all sectors: companies, governments, civil society and universities.
How much meat does Mexico consume?
The country is the fifth in meat consumption worldwide, with 69 kilograms per Mexican per year, on average, at the end of 2019, according to the Mexican Meat Council. But that includes meat of all kinds, beef, chicken and pork.
As for beef, Mexico consumes about 60 million tons a year and produces, in fact, little more than it consumes, which allows it to export to other markets.