Culture

Here’s How Your Hamburger is Killing the Planet

by on January 22, 2015
 

What we don’t pay for at the counter, we end up paying in other ways.

Chew on this: On an average, Americans eat 3 burgers per week. That’s 156 burgers per person, per year. Which translates to a staggering 48 billion burgers every year.

A typical quarter pounder costs about 3 or 4 bucks: pretty cheap, right? But, as this animated short film from Center for Investigative Reporting illustrates in detail, what we don’t pay for at the counter, we end up paying in other ways.

Turns out, a burger isn’t really that cheap after all: the system continues to be a cause for major environmental and health concerns. Mass production of beef entails more and more land reserved for pastures, which in turn means land encroachment as well as other environmental pitfalls. As¬†The Hidden Cost of Hamburgers¬†points out, cows take a lot of space – and a lot of food before they are sent to be slaughtered. All this boils down to heavy resource consumption in terms of land and water resources, and a major environmental threat: mass beef production is responsible for an overwhelming 150,000,000 tonnes of green house gases per year – that’s equal to the annual pollution output of 35 coal powered industrial plants!

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