World Water Week advocates a meat-free future, for humanity’s survival »
We’ve talked about the ridiculous amount of water needed to sustain our national (and increasingly international) meat-heavy diet, and by “meat-heavy” I mean “20 percent meat-based.” Well, the scientists in charge of World Water Week, happening right now in Stockholm, are now predicting that a meat-heavy diet is an “impossible alternative” to our continued existence.
If you want to read this year’s WWW report, which is really long but also very interesting, here’s a pdf. If you don’t, definitely read the Guardian's analysis (and the internet is full of analyses), which tells you things like “Animal protein-rich food consumes five to 10 times more water than a vegetarian diet. One third of the world’s arable land is used to grow crops to feed animals.”
My main question is, why not just advocate a vegan diet? Those dairy cows don’t spring from the foreheads of their mothers, fully formed and ready to make milk.
People hate a smug vegan because people hate smug. So maybe this isn’t a reason to be smug so much as a reason to worry. Will our rich, privileged peers* change their diets to support the future of the planet? I hate selling veganism with the “lose weight, feel great” line, but if that’s what it takes to get people to stop eating so much goddamn meat, then fine. Maybe we should start lying to people. “I used to be 1,000 pounds before going vegan!” “I had a vestigial skull attached to my neck from the twin I absorbed in the womb before going vegan!” “I was a horrible selfish jerk who was almost incapable of empathy, and it showed on my hideous face, before going vegan!”
Because there is no reason to eat animals. Science is on our side. And it’s just disgusting that, in the face of facts like these, people continue to do it.
[Photo: ILRI/Dorine Adhoch via World Water Week]
*By which I mean, people who aren’t starving to death.
Baby rescue otter gets a bottle! This is Otter 501, the subject of a documentary:
Otter 501, a southern sea otter pup, was found on the central California coast June 10th, 2010. She was only a few days old and without human help her chance of survival was slim. Luckily, she was rescued and cared for by the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Sea Otter Research and Conservation program. We at Sea Studios were lucky to have had the chance to film this incredible process and are creating a feature film, “Otter 501”, based on her experience.
She’s so cute! And if you look at the other videos, so squeaky! You can see some more footage of Otter 501 on their youtube channel and in my daydreams.
Grizzlies make a comeback! Go bears! »
Christ, you guys: BEARS. You know I’m on bears like white on the Republican Party, so let me advise you of some bodacious bear news in between bouts of holiday anxiety: A court has reversed the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s 2007 decision to remove grizzly bears from the endangered species list.
I have two dominant feelings about this news: 1. SAY WHAT, USFWS? Just because grizzlies got it on sufficiently and maybe got killed less to surpass your recovery goal of 500 bears in Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming in the past 30 years doesn’t mean that you can ignore climate change’s affect on the bear population’s health, as conservationists and the Greater Yellowstone Coalition (successfully) argued. 2. HOORAY! The three judges of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals took into account the decline in the population of whitebark pines, whose nuts are a major source of food for grizzlies to increase their fat reserves before hibernation. Bears love deez nuts! I bet they make a mean pesto with ‘em!
[Photo by Barbara Miers via Flickr]
Happy Easter from Vegansaurus and the teeny tiny Washington pygmy rabbit! These little guys were totally almost extinct when conservation groups and the Oregon Zoo took in the remaining buns and started a breeding program. Normally I hate zoos but if they save bunnies, I like that. Now they are going to start reintroducing them into the wild! Go little buns! Get your freak on!
I like these bunnies because they are totally punk rock. Just kidding; their ears are colored to tell them apart. Yeah, don’t try to get to know them or anything! Those damn impersonal scientists and their proclivity for hair [Ed.: HARE] dye.
Slow loris: so cute, so sad. »
Poor slow loris. Somehow I missed this slow loris YouTube craze but according to conservationists, these videos are encouraging the cruel and illegal trade of the cute but endangered animal. You can read all about it on Mongabay and the Independent. It’s a DOWNER: “The only reason the loris isn’t biting the person holding it in the video is because it has had its teeth ripped out with pliers.”
Just because something is cute, people don’t have to OWN them as pets! And people have this idea that we have some sort of right to have every kind of animal in the world in a zoo or on display for our own curiosity—maybe you just don’t get to see a real live slow loris. You won’t die. Meanwhile, the slow loris probably will. I hate everybody.
Wikipedia has a wealth of information on slow loris conservation but I’m having trouble finding ways we could help. Traffic does have information on the situation and I suppose you could donate to them. International Animal Rescue does slow loris conservation so that may be a good place to donate.
Lastly, here’s a different sort of slow loris video. Two slow lorises being treated for injuries by a rescue doctor; not nearly as many video views, eh?
[can’t see the video? Watch it on Vegansaurus.com]