Why Everyone Should Love Chomping Climate Change!

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We’re launching a newly designed Chomping Climate Change website – which we hope you’ll look over, and we welcome your feedback – and we’re doing this because politicians have promised to reverse climate change for more than 20 years, but greenhouse gas emissions have increased by 61% during those 20+ years.

Now it’s said that we may no longer be able to control climatic outcomes if we don’t reduce a significant amount of carbon in our atmosphere by 2020 or at latest by 2026.  Last month’s UN climate talks set the stage for upcoming talks in Paris, and it’s clear that what’s being discussed will not bind politicians to do what’s needed. 

Chomping Climate Change is about reversing climate change through food and forestry, and we’ve posted a two-minute video to provide a visual explanation of what we’re about.  Our website is based on environmental assessment performed by environmental specialists employed by the World Bank Group, which is the part of the United Nations system that’s focused on improving people’s lives through international development. 

On our website, you’ll find:  (a) a statement of our vision;  (b) information on how to get involved, and on No More Bull, our new project under development;  and (c) our blog and publications – including prominent sources that have cited our analysis, such as Bill Gates, a UN General Assembly report, and The New York TimesEven more is on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

The key problem with climate change is that the main solution pursued so far – using renewable energy to reverse climate change – is projected to take at least 20 years and $53 trillion, long past the time we have to reduce a significant amount of carbon in our atmosphere (i.e., by 2020 or at latest by 2026).

Yet as we’ve explained in our last blog posting, there’s a business case to replace livestock products with better alternatives.  Better alternatives are delicious foods consisting of – or made from – grains, legumes, and nuts, such as peas, soybeans, and almonds.  It’s widely recognized that replacing livestock products with better alternatives can have a large beneficial effect on climate change.

Notably, though, the business case for replacing livestock products with better alternatives doesn’t require that people believe that greenhouse gas exists, or that politicians act on climate change.  This business case exists because food production uniquely occurs outdoors – so food companies will suffer more directly from climate change than any other part of our global economy. 

As a result, food companies will soon have to make products that require many fewer crops to be grown.  It takes many fewer crops to produce alternatives to livestock products.  Moreover, almost every livestock product now has a plant-based alternative that tastes about the same.

Equally important, replacing livestock products with better alternatives can be done in less than a year, as that’s how long it takes to produce most livestock products and alternatives.  That’s in stark contrast to the time it takes to replace fossil fuel infrastructure with renewable energy infrastructure – as most infrastructure has a lifespan of at least 20 years, and infrastructure is almost never replaced before the end of its useful lifespan.

If using a business case to replace animal-based foods with plant-based foods on a large scale by 2020 or 2026 sounds improbable, let’s remember that Steve Jobs and Bill Gates acted on a business case for producing and marketing new technology to replace old technology on a global scale within a few years.  Indeed, using a business case is a well-trod pathway that’s successfully replaced millions of consumer products worldwide, including tube TVs, dial phones, New Cokes, and much more.

Arguments for this process to be undertaken have notably been made by Bill Gates, and by the author of the landmark Stern Review on the economics of climate change, Lord Sternas well as by Dr. Robert Goodland, former lead environmental adviser at the World Bank.

Some people will predictably doubt whether large-scale switching from animal-based foods to plant-based ones can really happen by 2020 or 2026.  But it surely can happen if one thinks of animal-based foods as being obsolete in our modern age of climate change.

For example, tube TVs and horse-drawn carriages were widely loved in their heydays— yet once they were perceived as obsolete, they were completely replaced within a few years by automobiles and digital TVs.

So no matter what politicians are doing, there’s still hope to reverse climate change – with our forks.

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