PDA

View Full Version : veganism in cold climates



Pages : [1] 2 3

kriz
Mar 11th, 2005, 04:07 AM
My very lovely relative in Norway does not support veganism in cold climates for environmental reasons. She belives it takes much more energy to ship vegetables, beans etc. across the globe than to raise farm animals. Transport causes more damage to the environment according to her.

I explained that industrial farming and even ecological farming (in bigger scale) is bad for the environment, and in addition causing animals to suffer. Anyhow, she says it makes sense for me to be a vegan in California, where I'm able to find vegetables grown just around the corner, but I cannot use my environmental reasons in Scandinavia, only the health and animal suffering parts. Of course, I know what you guys think about eating animals in whatever climate - but what other argument would you use against people who justifies 'eating meat in the winter' because they're convinced it causes less damage to the ozone layer?

PinkFluffyCloud
Mar 11th, 2005, 07:40 AM
I would say - look into an animal's eyes and tell it about the Ozone Layer.

Astrocat
Mar 11th, 2005, 01:53 PM
Re: PFC

:P but how would her going and chatting to an animal about the ozone layer either answer her questions or show your stance on the matter ?

With all due respect, if i were the relative in question and you said that to me as your response to what was asked, I'd think that you were either barking mad, or trying to avoid answering the question directly.

To be honest, even I'm not sure what your point is ...
I mean, after all transport uses petrol and causes pollution which contributes to enlarging the ozone hole, yes ?
Her point is that extra transport leads to extra environmental damage...

Or is your point that she should go and talk to animals about environmental problems like the ozone hole instead of discussing it with you ?
:P I don;t think that's a very helpful or polite response, if this is the case, and it's likely to make her think that vegans are barmy and prefer to talk to animals than to other humans about things.

Er... anyway, i don;t advise using that answer you suggested.
I'm not trying to be belligerent or anything, i genuinely don;t have the faintest clue what you were trying to imply in your vague answer, and it seems to have a lot of negative connotations.


Re: the Question being asked

I live in the remote isles, in an area which is very close to Norway. The only way to get the vast majority of food on or off the isles is by boat, and a lot of it travels far by truck before then. Because of the way the corporate supply to the UK works a lot of food has also travelled from all corners of the globe even before all of this happening, so it does indeed travel far usually unless it is local.

The biggest industry here is raising cows to be made into beef. The second biggest is commercial fish farming. For obvious reasons (involving the massive wastage of food through flesh production) , a lot of food must also be imported and shipped over to be fed to these creatures too.
It will also come as little wonder to us here that despite the fact that it is technically possible for the islanders here to eat less flesh and sustain themselves with a few very small herds of cows fed with local grass they prefer to eat the 8-10 times inflated amount of flesh which can be provided through artificial methods - methods which include the aforementioned importing of grains, medicines for the animals etc.
As a result, a lot of flesh also is shipped up to these isles generally is flesh made from the bodies of animals raised within factories, which are notorious for their environmental destruction etc.

At any rate, much of the land here which could be used to grow crops is used simply to put cows on for them to graze... as a result, the natural soil erosion caused by the poor climate here is much exacerbated by the erosion caused by "livestock" grazing.... all the same, stuff which is pretty low-maintenance could still be grown even on many of the semi-ruined areas (ie turnips, carrots etc).

You might also want to ask your relative what happens to the masses and masses of methane which the unnaturally swollen herds of cows in the world produce.... it is easy for people to think of it as "just a few cows farting" but actually the methane threat is becoming really rather critical these days and enslaved cows are a surprisingly big contributor towards damaging ozone gases !

But yes, locally raised animals - what do they eat, what do they drink, where does that come from, what do they produce (ie toxic gases or excrement) and where does that go ? Where are they raised and what else could be grown there which would produce more food ?

Does your friend consider the perpetuated perversion of species simply for humans to devour their flesh and no other reason not to be an environmental issue, ie maintaining "domesticated" species of animals which otherwise would be incapable of existing due to their unnatural upbringing and state (ie those unfortunate souls which are referred to by humans as "dairy cows" or "laying hens") - that is to say, how is her approach to environmental damage defined ?

These are all important questions which you might be interested in discussing with your Norwegian friend.

PinkFluffyCloud
Mar 11th, 2005, 02:06 PM
My point is perfectly simple - there is no reason, and no excuse, for anyone to eat an animal. In fact even rearing animals for meat depletes the Ozone Layer. So, I am saying that the Ozone Layer is a poor excuse for flesh eating, and if I were an animal about to be eaten I would not be interested in hearing that argument, even if there were evidence to back it up.

PinkFluffyCloud
Mar 11th, 2005, 02:15 PM
Sometmes I say things to illustrate a point, not because I always expect people to take me literally. My point is - yes, Environmental Damage is a grave concern but not an excuse to sentence millions of innocent creatures to a life of torture and an agonising early Death. It's like someone saying 'War - go and ask that orphaned child lying in the Hospital bed in Iraq, see if he thinks it is necessary'. Sorry, I thought my point was quite obvious. I'll spell it out better, next time.

John
Mar 11th, 2005, 06:14 PM
Does she think that animals eat air?

PinkFluffyCloud
Mar 11th, 2005, 07:02 PM
Yes, and animals are transported, too, plus their feed, etc. And then there's the gasses that the animals themselves expel, plus the noxious fumes from the slaughterhouses, tanneries, and meat production plants, not to mention all the water and energy used to power farm machinery and meat production.

kriz
Mar 12th, 2005, 01:58 AM
Thank you guys for the feed back. My relative says she eats only organic Norwegian meat (I'm not sure it's 100%, though..) so therefore she claims to be more environmentally friendly than a vegan in the same region.... I'll keep reading your input. :) You're such an interesting and knowledgeable bunch. :)

kriz
Mar 12th, 2005, 02:01 AM
I would say - look into an animal's eyes and tell it about the Ozone Layer. He, he, he...this is actually the types of comments we throw at each other sometimes. :D

veganblue
Mar 12th, 2005, 02:25 AM
There is a connection between organic meat and apparent better treatment for the animals involved including slaughter and transport. I doubt that there would be much difference.

As John points out - the animals are eathing something and if there are enough animals locally then there would be crops being imported; producing a very inefficient ratio of animal feed to 'animal product'. If the animals are eating exclusive local organic product then it is fair to assume that other crops would also be able to survive and produce a much better nutritional ratio of acreage to product as Astrocat points out.

You might like to remind your relative that ruminant animals are having a susbtantial effect on the ozone through the release of methane which is ten times more active in destroying ozone molecules than carbon dioxide. Cow's also expell carbon dioxide whereas crops bind the carbon...

kriz
Mar 12th, 2005, 02:36 AM
Astrocat - She only refers to depletion of the ozone layer caused by transporting all those veggies and nuts going to northern countries when she talks about environmental damage, nothing else. I don't know, but if people could stop buying all the non-essential crap, which have to be transported across the globe, it would improve our environment significantly. People in general have gadget mania. We have to slow down our consumerism over all, even food consumption. The western world are overfed and overcluttered. Our garages and storage spaces (not to mention houses) are so full of junk that we hire professional organizers to help us out. :eek: Actually, I think most vegans are very aware of what and how much they buy, so that in itself should be a good argument for vegan environmentalism. :)

kriz
Mar 12th, 2005, 03:03 AM
Thank you, vegan blue, I know you're right. The other day we drove by a place where cows are kept outside ("free range"!) and it might very well have been an organic farm, I'm not sure, but the stench was just unbearable!!. I've never smelled anything like it in my life. And there were thousands of cows, as far as the eye could see. I was inhaling toxic gases right there! I'm sure the land cannot be used for anything else in our lifetime, the soil must be completely destroyed.

eve
Mar 12th, 2005, 08:31 AM
Sometmes I say things to illustrate a point, not because I always expect people to take me literally. My point is - yes, Environmental Damage is a grave concern but not an excuse to sentence millions of innocent creatures to a life of torture and an agonising early Death. It's like someone saying 'War - go and ask that orphaned child lying in the Hospital bed in Iraq, see if he thinks it is necessary'. Sorry, I thought my point was quite obvious. I'll spell it out better, next time.
PFC, I've noticed that on this forum, nobody seems to understand irony. Your illustration of an orphaned child is excellent, though unfortunately posters seem to take everything literally.

PinkFluffyCloud
Mar 12th, 2005, 08:38 AM
PFC, I've noticed that on this forum, nobody seems to understand irony. Your illustration of an orphaned child is excellent, though unfortunately posters seem to take everything literally.

Maybe you and I are just a bit dry, eh, Eve? ;)

Korn
Mar 12th, 2005, 09:55 AM
My relative says she eats only organic Norwegian meat ( I'm not sure it's 100% true, though..) so therefore she claims to be more environmentally friendly than a vegan in the same region....
Vegans normally say that even if animals are different from humans, a sheep is as 'important' - for itself - as a human is to itself, and even if we are different, the pain we feel, when we feel pain, is equally painful.

There are many known environmental issues re. eating meat, including all the water factory farms use, not to mention all the food they eat (a lot more humans could have been fed on a given agricultural area if we would eat plant based food instead of having someone else eat plant based food and eat them afterwards). Talking of Norwegian meat, there have been several cases where the meat Norwegians believed to be local wasn't, but that's not a main issue here.... In country like Norway, which might be covered by snow several months every year, we can't grow food for the animals either. So they have to eat dried food, imported food or special food made for animals that are 'produced' for food. Since a cow would be lost in the cold snowy climate, it will be kept indoors for long periods, and might need supplements of B12 or vitamin D (it will get vit. D from sundried hay as well). Back to ethics: if we really respect that their life and pain is as 'important' to them as our lives is to us, I'd say that her commentaries would be either a good reason to move to a warmer climate, or to eat more dried/stored food in the cold periods.

I've heard this comment before, and wonder if these people are equally worried about the environmental issues associated with the cotton, tea, rice, fruit and vegetables they eat in the winter months? Pretty much everything animals - or non-vegan humans - eat in the winter in countries like Norway, is either imported, dried/stored, or in some cases grown in greenhouses. For some funny reason (and I might know which ;) ), non-vegans seem to be much more concerned about the plants vegans import when they live in cold climates, but not about all the imported orange juice, peanuts, chocolate, coffee, tobacco, wine, avocados, beans, clothes, cars TVs, radios, computers, CDs and cell phones they use every month of the year themselves...

Norway is a special case: most people in Norway live in the Southern part of the country, from Oslo and southwards. Many so called 'ethical meat eaters' (I know....) eat rein deer meat. Do they realize that the areas where the rein deer live, is further away from Southern Norway than areas in Southern Europe, where they can grow vegan food in seasons (much earlier in the spring, much later in the fall) where Norwegians can't grow vegan food locally?

We are not designed to live this far from Equator. If someone deals with this issue by eating animals, they ignore the fact that the life of a cow is as important for itself, as our lives are for us, and that the pain and frustration captured animals feel are as painful and frustrating as our own pain and frustrations are for us.

http://www.vegforlife.org/earth.htm
http://worldanimalfoundation.homestead.com/VegetarianAndEnvionment.html
http://www.brook.com/veg/

kriz
Mar 13th, 2005, 06:01 AM
Thanks, Korn. I have some very good stuff from all of you to show her now. :) I never thought about transporting meat from the northern part of Norway would probably require the same amount of fuel as transporting oranges and nuts from Spain. Norway is such a long country!

foxytina_69
Mar 13th, 2005, 06:17 AM
that is a wonderful comment pfc. how could anyone look into a helpless animals eyes and then eat him/her? animals dont understand what the ozone layer is therefor how in the world is that fair to them.

PinkFluffyCloud
Mar 13th, 2005, 03:48 PM
Thankyou, Foxy, my point exactly. Even if I thought it would repair every hole in the Ozone Layer right now, I could not condone eating a animal. :(

Hasha
Mar 13th, 2005, 07:08 PM
Even if I thought it would repair every hole in the Ozone Layer right now, I could not condone eating a animal. :(

Really? Well, I just might. One of the main reasons that I consider eating animals to be highly problematic is that, not only does eating them not repair any holes in the Ozone Layer, but it actually makes the problem worse. I guess I value the natural environment more than I value big brown eyes...

PinkFluffyCloud
Mar 13th, 2005, 07:27 PM
Really? Well, I just might. One of the main reasons that I consider eating animals to be highly problematic is that, not only does eating them not repair any holes in the Ozone Layer, but it actually makes the problem worse. I guess I value the natural environment more than I value big brown eyes...

Blimey, I'm stunned! :eek: I've never 'met' a Vegan before who would honestly say that! I haven't eaten meat for nearly 18 years, so I suppose it seems so unnatural now to think of animals as a source of food. To be completely honest, I have always loved animals more than anything else in the World, so if I had the choice between the sky falling in on me and killing/eating animals, I would have to stand back and watch the sky cave in. :D

feline01
Mar 13th, 2005, 07:33 PM
Really? Well, I just might. One of the main reasons that I consider eating animals to be highly problematic is that, not only does eating them not repair any holes in the Ozone Layer, but it actually makes the problem worse. I guess I value the natural environment more than I value big brown eyes...
Depends on your perspetive, if it wasn't for humans desire to devour animal flesh, factory farming would not exist and there wouldn't be the numbers of farm animals contributing their methane to the destruction of the ozone layer. If people ate less dead animals, less animals would be bred and ultimately, the destruction of the ozone layer would lessen. That's how I see it.

And I consider those big brown eyes an integral part of the natural environment :) .

PinkFluffyCloud
Mar 13th, 2005, 07:38 PM
Depends on your perspetive, if it wasn't for humans desire to devour animal flesh, factory farming would not exist and there wouldn't be the numbers of farm animals contributing their methane to the destruction of the ozone layer. If people ate less dead animals, less animals would be bred and ultimately, the destruction of the ozone layer would lessen. That's how I see it.

And I consider those big brown eyes an integral part of the natural environment :) .

Yes, it is the Natural Environment for ALL of us, man and beast. :mad:

John
Mar 13th, 2005, 07:39 PM
I know that we are just being fanciful here but let's clarify what causes ozone depletion. The ozone layer is being depleted and that is resulting in a hole over the continent of Antarctica.

Scientists believe that ozone depletion is caused by a family of synthetic chemicals called chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs). They are used as coolants for refrigerators and air conditioners; aerosol spray propellants; and as a component in foam packaging, home insulation, and upholstery. Less importantly, a chemical called halon is also thought to be responsible.

On the other hand, we humans create ozone when exhaust --typically from cars and factories-- reacts with sunlight. Close to the ground this is bad and it creates smog. It is promoted by warm, dry weather and poor air circulation. It tends to be an urban problem but it can drift away from cities and damage vegetation.

John
Mar 13th, 2005, 07:43 PM
Really? Well, I just might. One of the main reasons that I consider eating animals to be highly problematic is that, not only does eating them not repair any holes in the Ozone Layer, but it actually makes the problem worse. I guess I value the natural environment more than I value big brown eyes...

Now some of your previous posts make sense to me.

Hasha
Mar 13th, 2005, 07:51 PM
Depends on your perspetive, if it wasn't for humans desire to devour animal flesh, factory farming would not exist and there wouldn't be the numbers of farm animals contributing their methane to the destruction of the ozone layer. If people ate less dead animals, less animals would be bred and ultimately, the destruction of the ozone layer would lessen. That's how I see it.

I couldn't agree more. My point is that if we have to choose between a certain number of animals and the natural environment, then it's better to choose the natural environment. In the end, not choosing the natural environment leads to the death of more animals later on, so in a sense, you didn't save much. Which, of course, does not mean that I see raising and then killing animals as being environment-friendly, far from it, in fact.