Agriculture has a considerable impact to climate change however, is also one of the only industries that can help to reverse the impacts and draw the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere back down. The vegetarian and vegan diets are definitely needed at a large scale to decrease overall animal agriculture demand, however there are also many other factors to consider, such as the economic and social consequences. A transition is needed away from a high growing demand of animal agriculture but needs to be replaced with other industries. Some environmental impacts from agriculture can be seen below:
- Agriculture has a 15% contribution to global emissions (general scientific consensus, IPCC Fifth Assessment)
- Deforestation has had significant contribution towards biodiversity loss, increase in carbon emissions and desertification
- It is estimated that we have lost 50% of the world’s forests
- Losses of organic soil carbon due to poor farming practises and topsoil from surface water run-off
- Contamination of aquatic ecosystems from fertilisers and chemicals
What if we can somehow reverse all these impacts while still keep employment rates within the agricultural sector at a high? This can be done by learning and applying Holistic Management principles to regenerate our land in a rapidly changing climate. Purchasing carbon offsets and credits will ultimately encourage regenerative practises and a transition away from traditional agricultural models into more effective ones that help to adapt and mitigate the impacts of climate change.