"Pick one thing"

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lateralis
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"Pick one thing"

Post by lateralis » December 3rd, 2015, 8:59 am

How many watched Racing Extinction last night? The amount of co2 we put out is staggering so if you could "pick one thing" to change about how you go about looking for reptiles and amphibians what would it be?

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by bgorum » December 3rd, 2015, 11:09 am

Exhale less, but somehow I don't think that will really work out all that well. I already herp mostly close to home. I wouldn't mind switching out more night hiking instead of road cruising.

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Nshepard » December 3rd, 2015, 11:41 am

Take advantage for the herps I find. Record them in field notes, share them with state and federal wildlife biologists, and report them to places like Herpmapper so that other biologist will know of the sighting!

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Kelly Mc
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Kelly Mc » December 3rd, 2015, 5:55 pm

I've seen and read some stuff that says the only real dent that could be made would be to reduce agricultural co2 emissions (and Epic water expenditure) That's the biggie.

In order for the downward spiral to be quelled all herpers would have to end the dependence on meat industry, but in order for that to have an effect, everyone in the world would have to be a vegan herper lol.

Theres a documentary called Cowspiracy, and it spurred me to do more research. Basically the doc was presenting evidence that its agriculture that poses the most epic environmental threat, not our driving or personal water use habits.

The thing about the doc that was so compelling was the strong evidence of Greenpeace and other environmental orgs being being (payed off?) to not bitch publicly about impact of agricultural industry. If anybody sees it tell me what you think.

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by SurfinHerp » December 3rd, 2015, 6:41 pm

I watched the show and it made me feel guilty about all the driving that I do for herping. I thought the special cameras that show the otherwise invisible emissions of CO2 and methane were pretty cool - and revealing.

My dream is to have an all-electric SUV that has a 300 mile range and can be charged by a home solar power system.

Until then though, I guess I'll do more night hiking and less road-cruising.

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Noah M
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Noah M » December 3rd, 2015, 7:10 pm

If I could pick one thing, it would probably be to herp more!

My automobile emissions, while bad, are a drop in the bucket compared to the emissions from power generation, industry, and land use/land cover change. Lobbying for better fuel economy, and or investing in green power production would be much better, IMO, than hiking more and driving less.

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by klawnskale » December 3rd, 2015, 7:16 pm

Decrease the rate of human reproduction as a whole on the planet. All these issues lead to the one basic caveat that most environmental scientists/ecologists agree upon: "there's too many people…" This leads to the greater need to feed more people; which means more factory farming, the increased development of genetically modified crops to produce higher yields and are disease resistant, the clear cutting of more virgin land/ecosystems to grow and raise the human food supply and well the whole thing just is one big domino effect that snowballs into increased resources consumption and habitat/atmospheric destruction. This is not reversible. This can only be slowed down to possibly a manageable rate on a global scale for future generations.
One individual trying to decrease his/her carbon footprint if anything would have a negligible impact. It may make you feel good about yourself, though. This is a concept that could only work if it were widely agreed upon by all members of the human species. Ohhhh…I have a headache now. Too much thinking.

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Tamara D. McConnell » December 3rd, 2015, 7:21 pm

Decrease the rate of human reproduction as a whole on the planet. All these issues lead to the one basic caveat that most environmental scientists/ecologists agree upon: "there's too many people…"
Amen, Sister. Well said.

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Kelly Mc
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Kelly Mc » December 3rd, 2015, 7:33 pm

Yeah - Right?!

And its like a taboo to suggest it. And when it is mentioned its always about blaming poor people.

But when I hear people (un poor) happily exclaim how "They're trying for a girl (or boy) this time!" having more kids on purpose like its a hobby, and in the same convo talk about how "conscious their "choices" are, its tinny. Just drawing a blank there.

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Kelly Mc
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Kelly Mc » December 3rd, 2015, 7:55 pm

I really think investigation into what factory farming is doing to the planet is important for anyone who has concerns about emissions and water use.

Oh yes I know its scary to talk about in certain venues, as people shy away from its associated elements, of animal suffering.

But one can ignore that completely if it makes one worry about looking like an "animal activist"

Dont let that stop a look at other facts, or thinking for oneself.


It is kind of interesting though, that what we do to animals is destroying us. Interesting, indeed.

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by chris_mcmartin » December 3rd, 2015, 8:18 pm

Road cruising/shining cuts is one of my favorite means of herping, but I do it infrequently (one to two times per year). Even though when I do it, I drive long distances, my entire household uses little more than half the average US household consumption of gasoline annually. I bike to work 4 days a week (sometimes 5) rather than drive, which helps offset the driving. It makes me feel better about my footprint, to be sure, but I'm also in a position to influence several hundred youngsters with my example, so there's that.

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by simus343 » December 3rd, 2015, 8:37 pm

Noah M wrote:If I could pick one thing, it would probably be to herp more!

My automobile emissions, while bad, are a drop in the bucket compared to the emissions from power generation, industry, and land use/land cover change. Lobbying for better fuel economy, and or investing in green power production would be much better, IMO, than hiking more and driving less.
+ 1 to that. Vehicle emissions from the herping community pale in comparison to other sources of CO2 and CH4 in the atmosphere.

However there may be something to what bgorum and SurfinHerp said with hike more drive less. For Florida the best way to recreationally herp is road cruise. That being said - it may not always be the best way. I remember reading a few years ago about a study on Northern Pine Snakes in having road aversion, and another about Eastern Hognose having aversion to paved roads. These, along with other telemetry studies that my professors keep referencing have shown that while animals may be seen crossing paved roads, more often they hit the edge then turn right back into the plot of land they were trying to leave. Explanations range from lack of cover, too hot on the open sun-exposed roads, affecting the way they move, along with a few more that I can't recall as of this moment.

Some of the rare snakes that I see that people are always wanting to find (Florida Pine, Mole King, Eastern Hognose) I have very rarely ever seen on paved roads. While I've seen DOR vouchers and heard of DOR stories of these snakes on paved roads, I've never found these species DOR, and I've only seen them off-road after doing some good long hiking, or along drift fences - also off road just intercepting them as they move through the sandhills and turkey oak stands.

Come to think of it, I've only found a handful of species road cruising, a majority of my herps, both individual count and species count, are all from hiking or kayaking.

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Kelly Mc
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Kelly Mc » December 3rd, 2015, 9:21 pm

Token actions discussions are ok or they might be an inappropriate luxury, but facts are facts.

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lateralis
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by lateralis » December 3rd, 2015, 10:09 pm

Some interesting responses so far and it was meant to elicit some reflection on our own impact but as I suspected there are some pessimists. Fortunately they are few. The diversity of approaches to salvation is not limited to driving - and obviously there are co2 sources contributing far more than say road cruising, someone missed the point of the question. It's not about contributing less than commercial buildings and factories it's about contributing less - period


Here are some things I have done to limit my impacts while herping:
Hike more drive less
Plan/Commute more with others on trips with common agendas
Be less dependent upon food and hospitality industry
Worry less about Nat geo glamour shots and limit my interaction with animals

Cheers







+ 1 to that. Vehicle emissions from the herping community pale in comparison to other sources of CO2 and CH4 in the atmosphere.

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Kelly Mc
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Kelly Mc » December 4th, 2015, 4:40 am

Why don't you look into it, and find out how you can make more effective choices. More information is positive, not pessimistic.

Don't miss the point "someone" was making that our concerns about vehicular emissions become hypothetical gesture if other facts are unpalatable to accept.

I was surprised at the information as well and made some choices on the spot, including contacting some entities to retract my support because of it, and other things as well.

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Kelly Mc
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Kelly Mc » December 4th, 2015, 5:11 am

Factory Farming don't be afraid to say it. Don't let a bunch of peta nincompoops dictate the way you keep appearances. I swear its almost eerie what they've done to marr the social impression of what they promote as their own "cause".

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by cbernz » December 4th, 2015, 7:38 am

I did a little math using figures from the EPA and the USDOT. Assuming an average CO2 emissions rate of 8,887 grams/gallon of gas, and a (conservative?) figure of 6,000 herping miles/year, one year's herping by car emits about 2.5 metric tons of CO2. So at that rate, 1,000 herpers herping for a year will create about 2,500 metric tons of CO2. Now, based on a rate of about 90kg/hour CO2 emission by a jet, a single day of domestic flights in the US creates something like 3,500 metric tons of CO2. That figure could actually be a lot higher, because of the increased damage done by CO2 released at high altitudes. I didn't look at the rates of emissions for cargo ships, tractor trailers, factories, etc. but I'm sure they are equally staggering.

I was going to say one thing you could do would be to drive more places instead of flying, since even per passenger, cars emit about half the CO2 of jets, but then when you consider that the plane you didn't take is going to end up flying anyway, you might as well just take the plane.

I think it is still a good thing, even just on a personal betterment level, to actively reduce your own footprint, but the reality is that it is just a drop within a drop within a drop in the bucket. Like Noah said, political action is a bigger step than fretting over milage.

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Kelly Mc
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Kelly Mc » December 4th, 2015, 9:08 am

Factory farming produces more GHG than the exhaust of All cars, trucks, trains, boats, and planes combined.

The methane from the meat and dairy industry is 86 times more destructive than the co2 from fossil fuels.

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Joseph S.
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Joseph S. » December 4th, 2015, 10:11 am

chris_mcmartin wrote:Road cruising/shining cuts is one of my favorite means of herping, but I do it infrequently (one to two times per year). Even though when I do it, I drive long distances, my entire household uses little more than half the average US household consumption of gasoline annually. I bike to work 4 days a week (sometimes 5) rather than drive, which helps offset the driving. It makes me feel better about my footprint, to be sure, but I'm also in a position to influence several hundred youngsters with my example, so there's that.
Exactly. Those long road trips are really not that bad considering many folks daily commute.

I do try as much as possible to stay local and enjoy locally. This has as much if not more to do with my dislike for driving and buying gas as it has to do with any eco-thoughts of mine.

I think that anything we herpers can do to reduce the amount of driving we do is not a bad thing.

With everything we buy we don't think about how it got shipped to stores, all the mechanized harvesting equipment, etc. etc. etc.

I actually think it would be much more eco friendly in areas with enough greenspace left to encourage people to forage for food(greens especially). I would even go so far as to say that a locally wild collected herp is less environmental impact than a CB animal purchased in a petshop...though this presents a simple numbers problem.

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klawnskale
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by klawnskale » December 4th, 2015, 10:40 am

Another thing to add to the "Green Herping Habits" List is when you are camping try to use more fresh, real food to nourish yourself. You can pre pack it in reusable containers instead of running into the convenience stores en route filling up on packaged, processed snack foods and soft drinks. I tend to steer clear of canned or bottled soft drinks (which generally have 0 nutritional value and empty calories) and will portage my own potable water in my vehicle for washing and drinking in 5 gallon containers. Ofcourse, being herpers it is hard to resist enjoying a beer around the campfire after a long day. Just carry it out with you for recycling. I like to cook when I camp and always carry a cooler of meats,cheeses, bread, fruits and vegetables. Constructing a sandwich for the road and keeping it in a reusable plastic container is packed with far more useful nutrients rather than grazing on bagged snack foods that add to trash. Same holds true with purchasing fast foods; all the wrappers and styrofoam, cardboard boxes they come contained in just creates more garbage. I like to prepare a dish like a nice robust chili (I have a great recipe; Mexican neighbor approved :thumb: ) before a herp camping trip and pack it in a container so all I have to do is heat it up and add stuff to it at dinner. Goes great with beer!

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Noah M
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Noah M » December 4th, 2015, 11:03 am

Decrease the rate of human reproduction as a whole on the planet. All these issues lead to the one basic caveat that most environmental scientists/ecologists agree upon: "there's too many people…"
I think a critical review of this is necessary. Yes there are still a substantial number of people who follow this thought, but there is a growing body of evidence that isn't the case. It isn't the number of people that matters, but how they live. I don't have numbers on it, but I suspect the half a billion or so poor Chinese people are more "green" than the 316 million Americans. The argument that there are too many people on Earth isn't new (Malthus ~1800s; Friedman, 2008). But so far, it appears that advances in technology combined with cultural and behavioral shifts have largely safeguarded us from the impending doom that they and many others have predicted as coming. The famine, war, poverty, (insert tragedy here) of today I don't feel can be safely attributed to simply having too many people. Complex problems require complex solutions; simply saying we have to many people is oversimplifies the issue.
Kelly Mc wrote:Factory farming produces more GHG than the exhaust of All cars, trucks, trains, boats, and planes combined.

The methane from the meat and dairy industry is 86 times more destructive than the co2 from fossil fuels.
Kelly, I'd also recheck these numbers and raise the issue how things are measured and what is being measured. In factory farming, what part of the supply chain is being measured? Do you include the emissions from the tractors and transport tailors, which could be argued to belong under transportation, not farming? Are we talking total tons of emissions? Are we talking about Global Warming Potential? What exactly do you mean by "destructive"?

We should put out some definitions if we're going to have a discussion so we're all on the same page.

Back to the OP:
If I want to reduce my carbon footprint in herping, then I would agree with klawnskale; the amount of emissions used in creating and transporting (cradle to grave) that candy bar, beef stick or even bottle of water is something that could be avoided during herp excursions.

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Kelly Mc
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Kelly Mc » December 4th, 2015, 11:39 am

The numbers are from a United Nations report, that was part of other checked facts.

Check out Cowspiracy

Then research more, or visa versa. That's what I did.

Separating emission "types" from the same industry (animal agriculture) not really understanding your point there .

There isn't any polarizing subtext implied in my posts either - I don't even drive and have never owned a car, and practice as much personal footprint care as possible.

Just including some information that people and organizations have been noted to conspicuously avoid .

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by klawnskale » December 4th, 2015, 11:43 am

I don't have numbers on it, but I suspect the half a billion or so poor Chinese people are more "green" than the 316 million Americans. [/quote]

I have a hard time accepting this as a comparison. If you are aware of the International Conference on Climate Change currently underway in Paris, some of the most fingerpointing is currently directed towards China. They are one of the major producers of greenhouse gases due to the utilization of antiquated energy procurement practices. They still rely heavily on coal for electric power, most of their major vital river systems such as the Yangtze are extremely polluted because of their recent explosive growth in factories for the mass production of marketable goods, and unfortunately during this growth, have not had any formal environmental standards in place to cap their production of greenhouse gases. It is only now that they have come to realize by public shaming from other countries and the mass of complaints from their own citizens that they need to change their behaviors.

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by cbernz » December 4th, 2015, 1:09 pm

klawnskale wrote:I don't have numbers on it, but I suspect the half a billion or so poor Chinese people are more "green" than the 316 million Americans.

I have a hard time accepting this as a comparison. If you are aware of the International Conference on Climate Change currently underway in Paris, some of the most fingerpointing is currently directed towards China. They are one of the major producers of greenhouse gases due to the utilization of antiquated energy procurement practices. They still rely heavily on coal for electric power, most of their major vital river systems such as the Yangtze are extremely polluted because of their recent explosive growth in factories for the mass production of marketable goods, and unfortunately during this growth, have not had any formal environmental standards in place to cap their production of greenhouse gases. It is only now that they have come to realize by public shaming from other countries and the mass of complaints from their own citizens that they need to change their behaviors.
I suspect he was referring to the Chinese farmers et. al who haven't yet made the jump to the middle class and who still live a basic agrarian existence. The Chinese industrialists are undoubtedly destructive to the environment.

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by klawnskale » December 4th, 2015, 1:32 pm

cbernz wrote:I suspect he was referring to the Chinese farmers et. al who haven't yet made the jump to the middle class and who still live a basic agrarian existence. The Chinese industrialists are undoubtedly destructive to the environment.
Unfortunately, even China's agrarian culture has been influenced by global trends; such as an increased desire by its people to have more animal protein incorporated in their diet and the offer by global corporations that provide foodstuffs all over the world to feed people. China is following economic trends shared by many nations today including Third World ones. I hesitate to refer to China at this point in history as qualifying as a Third World country. Consider the fact right now Chinese businesses are helping to float the U.S. economy with huge lines of credit and investments. Factory Farming is a growing industry in China to meet the worldwide food demands. As it stands, the globalization of the World is hardly deterred by special interest groups which cannot create a lot of influence on global corporations. Check these articles out:

http://www.worldwatch.org/node/5916

http://ecowatch.com/2013/06/07/chinas-g ... ory-farms/

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Kelly Mc
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Kelly Mc » December 4th, 2015, 2:51 pm

[quote=] Do you include the emissions from the tractors and transport tailors, which could be argued to belong under transportation, not farming? [/quote]


It could only be argued if you omit what they were transporting, where they were going, why they were going there, and most importantly, who was paying them.

Its great you made this remark because it is Exactly the omission and deflection addressed in the documentary, which focuses more on some well known eco organizations that are put on the spot with the data and react like a slug under a magnifying glass when presented with facts they themselves cant refute, yet fail to explain why they avoid talking about the huge impact of animal agriculture industry.

Your comment embodies the public perception goals of the industries methodology, perfectly.

See the doc, its light, polished fare, but adequate to inspire further investigation.

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Kelly Mc
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Kelly Mc » December 4th, 2015, 3:12 pm

Its so funny how most of the posters referring to factory farming ie animal agriculture industry, cant bring themselves to type the word Animal or, meat?

What is that about? No one has to answer but whatever is going on with that its quite overt with some odd social trepidation.

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by lateralis » December 4th, 2015, 8:52 pm

Nice to see the offshoots going, vis a vis population c02 #s etc...

"Meat" farming is of course very destructive and intensive in both energy demands and damage to the land. If a steak was the price of an iPhone and the all you can eats (read red lobster, outback) were forced to pay the true environmental costs of the products they served there would be a shift in behavior - food would not be wasted. Of course that's one small piece of a very large puzzle, one just needs to figure which pieces they are capable of contributing.

The Chinese are going through the same growing pains that other industrialized nations went through back when the population of the entire planet was only a billion people. With the abandonment of their one child policy to correct gender/generational gaps they may very well end up with millions of children that they cannot feed, house, or provide med care for. The ironic thing is they enacted the one child policy because they already understood they could not sustain their current level of population growth. China has over a billion people currently so they have some serious choices to make in the very near future lest they turn into one giant patch of urban sprawl interspersed with enormous agrifarming and factories all connected by a spiderweb of concrete and steel.

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Noah M » December 4th, 2015, 8:56 pm

I suspect he was referring to the Chinese farmers et. al who haven't yet made the jump to the middle class and who still live a basic agrarian existence. The Chinese industrialists are undoubtedly destructive to the environment.
Yes, I was. China has ~1.3 billion people. The way I've heard it described by demographers is that China has 1 billion people living in poverty, and 300 million people living like we do in the US. Certainly this is changing, probably with a rising middle class. China is now the largest emitter of CO2, but only passed the US in the last decade or so. If we re-evaluate this on a per capita basis, US citizens produce far more emissions than the Chinese. Therefore, the lifestyles of probably even the poorest half a billion in China don't compare to us.

-----------------------------------

The US EPA estimates that around 9% of our (US) CO2 emissions are from agriculture, which includes meat production. Transportation is over a quarter of emissions. Globally speaking the EPA numbers shift, but they lump agriculture, forestry and land use together, and those together are about a quarter, with transportation at 14%. I've seen reports that deforestation and forest health decline contribute around 20-25% of CO2 emissions (FAO documents, etc).

Here is the problem. Measuring all of this is a really tough business. To the best of my knowledge, there is no internationally agreed upon definition of how to measure greenhouse gas emissions (let alone impact!). There is no international definition of a forest for that matter. How different organizations choose how to define certain things often reflect their biases. I think Green Peace put deforestation up towards 30% of CO2 emissions, and the FAO was closer to 22%. I'm not as familiar with the agriculture industry as other elements of climate change. Most of the time when I've encountered it on the job it is lumped under LULCC, which in terms of agriculture is removing trees for things like pasture lands or growing corn for animal feed. And so this muddies the water further. How much CO2 is attributed to factory farming IMO is almost impossible to measure. We need to define the boundaries of factory farming. Are we talking only about the CO2 emitted from the acres of land that house the animals? Do we include the acres of land used to grow the animal feed? Were those acres previously forests and thus should we also include the CO2 released from that deforestation? What about the transportation; if cows and chickens are shipped around do we cound that, or what about a cow or chicken sent to a slaughter house, and from slaughter house to grocery store? What about grocery store to your kitchen? When does it move from agriculture to transportation to residential?

Even further still where this happens matters. Chopping down the forests of Canada to grow crops for turkey production will impact the climate differently than chopping down the Brazilian rainforest for beef production.

So you can't really just measure CO2 output per tree or per cow and then multiply that by however many trees or cows we have. It is a big messy operation with more questions than answers.

But none of this is to belittle a point I think Kelly was trying to make. Meat production does contribute to CO2 emissions. If everybody on this planet cut out meat a couple times of week, I bet there would be a measurable impact on GHG emissions.

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Noah M
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Noah M » December 4th, 2015, 8:59 pm

The Chinese are going through the same growing pains that other industrialized nations went through back when the population of the entire planet was only a billion people. With the abandonment of their one child policy to correct gender/generational gaps they may very well end up with millions of children that they cannot feed, house, or provide med care for. The ironic thing is they enacted the one child policy because they already understood they could not sustain their current level of population growth. China has over a billion people currently so they have some serious choices to make in the very near future lest they turn into one giant patch of urban sprawl interspersed with enormous agrifarming and factories all connected by a spiderweb of concrete and steel.
And there's India. Also the central African countries which routinely are the fastest growing nations on the planet in terms of population and frequently are among the poorest.

It isn't a food production problem, it is a food distribution problem.

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Kelly Mc
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Kelly Mc » December 4th, 2015, 9:48 pm

Noah M wrote:
I suspect he was referring to the Chinese farmers et. al who haven't yet made the jump to the middle class and who still live a basic agrarian existence. The Chinese industrialists are undoubtedly destructive to the environment.
Yes, I was. China has ~1.3 billion people. The way I've heard it described by demographers is that China has 1 billion people living in poverty, and 300 million people living like we do in the US. Certainly this is changing, probably with a rising middle class. China is now the largest emitter of CO2, but only passed the US in the last decade or so. If we re-evaluate this on a per capita basis, US citizens produce far more emissions than the Chinese. Therefore, the lifestyles of probably even the poorest half a billion in China don't compare to us.

-----------------------------------

The US EPA estimates that around 9% of our (US) CO2 emissions are from agriculture, which includes meat production. Transportation is over a quarter of emissions. Globally speaking the EPA numbers shift, but they lump agriculture, forestry and land use together, and those together are about a quarter, with transportation at 14%. I've seen reports that deforestation and forest health decline contribute around 20-25% of CO2 emissions (FAO documents, etc).

Here is the problem. Measuring all of this is a really tough business. To the best of my knowledge, there is no internationally agreed upon definition of how to measure greenhouse gas emissions (let alone impact!). There is no international definition of a forest for that matter. How different organizations choose how to define certain things often reflect their biases. I think Green Peace put deforestation up towards 30% of CO2 emissions, and the FAO was closer to 22%. I'm not as familiar with the agriculture industry as other elements of climate change. Most of the time when I've encountered it on the job it is lumped under LULCC, which in terms of agriculture is removing trees for things like pasture lands or growing corn for animal feed. And so this muddies the water further. How much CO2 is attributed to factory farming IMO is almost impossible to measure. We need to define the boundaries of factory farming. Are we talking only about the CO2 emitted from the acres of land that house the animals? Do we include the acres of land used to grow the animal feed? Were those acres previously forests and thus should we also include the CO2 released from that deforestation? What about the transportation; if cows and chickens are shipped around do we cound that, or what about a cow or chicken sent to a slaughter house, and from slaughter house to grocery store? What about grocery store to your kitchen? When does it move from agriculture to transportation to residential?

Even further still where this happens matters. Chopping down the forests of Canada to grow crops for turkey production will impact the climate differently than chopping down the Brazilian rainforest for beef production.

So you can't really just measure CO2 output per tree or per cow and then multiply that by however many trees or cows we have. It is a big messy operation with more questions than answers.

But none of this is to belittle a point I think Kelly was trying to make. Meat production does contribute to CO2 emissions. If everybody on this planet cut out meat a couple times of week, I bet there would be a measurable impact on GHG emissions.

But there Are answers, Noah. Respectfully I say to you that you keep creating speculative scenarios, and saying IMO where data actually exists, where measurements have been made, and agreed on even by persons in the meat and ocean farming industries themselves.

Unfortunately cutting down on meat during the week isnt going to even be a half measure, and half measures avail nothing..

If you take the time to find the information, unattached to your own desired view or urge to debate before assimilating the information, you might re read your own post that I quoted, and see its problems.

I mean this with sincere respect to you, please inform yourself on this. Its more important than an arguments points or well maneuvered debate.

Im not going to go over every sentence you wrote and mark it with some contention of my own. There are FAR better sources than I about this topic - and that is an epic understatement.

Did you watch the documentary? Are you reluctant to? If so some honest self interrogation is warranted, its not a Nobel Prize Presentation, but its transparent and agenda - less. The filmmaker is much like many people on this forum. Very relatable.

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Fieldnotes
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Fieldnotes » December 4th, 2015, 11:13 pm

Carbon dioxide (chemical formula CO2) is a colorless, odorless gas vital to life on Earth.

--- I'd like to produce more of this life-giving substance :crazyeyes:

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Kelly Mc
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Kelly Mc » December 4th, 2015, 11:41 pm

Yay fieldnotes! The Herping Human Whoopee Cushion :thumb:

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Noah M » December 5th, 2015, 7:13 am

No Kelly, I didn't watch the documentary. I'm not avoiding it, but I am not seeking it out either. I haven't had a subscription to cable for years, and I didn't know about it until this thread.

There is data out there, yes, and I have seen some of it and have had instructors lecture to me about some of it. I've even lectured my own students about some of it. I wasn't saying the data was flawed, but just that I want to know their methods because the way we create knowledge changes the knowledge we create.

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by klawnskale » December 5th, 2015, 8:12 am

Kelly: Okay, what if the entire human species would voluntarily convert to veganism? Do you sincerely believe this will be a grand solution to the complex environmental problems? I highly doubt this. So in order to substitute high protein yield crops for livestock to feed the billions of people inhabiting this planet would still mean the destruction of more virgin ecosystems to plant the tens of thousands of acres of soybeans, other legumes, corn,oats, and wheat, etc.. to sustain ourselves. Less habitat for other species and more for industrialized farming. This would place an even greater demand on industrialized farming to produce much higher yields to feed the population. So the output of methane would be reduced, but there would need to be an increase in the acquisition of necessary acreage to grow more crops. And then these crops would need to be protected by the more extensive use of pesticides and herbicides to ensure less loss by crop damage. "Organic" local farming practices so far are incapable of sustaining larger crop outputs to feed more people. I am in no way condemning or condoning any farming methods here. I am just viewing this from a pragmatic stance. You would still need to employ large industrialized farming practices to feed ourselves. So, it becomes a trade off: less CO2 Emissions for loss of habitat and an increased usage of pesticides and herbicides. Utilizing so called "organic" solutions for pest control on such a large scale are currently not cost effective or as efficient to industrialized agronomy. The way I see it, it is an environmental trade off.

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Kelly Mc
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Kelly Mc » December 5th, 2015, 9:10 am

My partner became vegan a while ago because of ethical reasons to not take part in financing animal suffering. I like meat, and milk and those foods have always made me feel healthy. No lactose intolerance, perfect triglyceride and cholesterol levels, and I just like it.

But I didn't like the realities of factory farming either, in regards to the horrific husbandry and practices. But I couldn't stop eating it. We tried to only buy grass fed, etc, which is really a crock I wont get into.

Then I found out the magnitude of animal agricultures unsustainability and impacts on the environment and decided I just personally couldn't do it any more. Even though I really like to eat it.

But the reality is, you are correct.

The reality is the human population. There are too many people and its only going to increase. It really is that simple.

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Kelly Mc
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Kelly Mc » December 5th, 2015, 9:29 am

To say "All we gotta do is share! Feed the people! Love our brothers and sisters of mother earth! We can do it, we can change the way everybody thinks so that we're all on board with developing more efficient ways of processing and distribution - All Will Be Served!"

It will never happen that way.

There are too many humans and it probably wont end well.

I don't have any oracle on "a solution" im a tiny speck. My posts were to broach a subject people are hesitant to discuss.

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Noah M » December 5th, 2015, 10:23 am

Our method, the Western industrialized method, is highly unsustainable. The amount of inputs required per output is ridiculous. A good number of the crops grown in the US are used as animal feed because it takes SO much grain to keep a cow happy. But, globally speaking most people don't eat meat like we do in the US. Agriculture is vastly different in Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Oceania, etc. A lot of these places barely eat meat. (Fishing is a whole different story).

The idea that we have too many people is flawed. Right now there is enough food in the world to feed everybody, and meet the demands of a growing population. How that food is distributed across the globe (connected to poverty) is what causes famine. And the bulk of the environmental impacts from agriculture are from the Western, industrialized nations methods.

I stand by my statement. It isn't the number of people on Earth, but how they live. I would agree that there are too many people living unsustainably (myself included). But just because we live that way doesn't mean everybody else does or has to.

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by klawnskale » December 5th, 2015, 10:47 am

The idea that we have too many people is flawed. Right now there is enough food in the world to feed everybody, and meet the demands of a growing population. How that food is distributed across the globe (connected to poverty) is what causes famine. and the bulk of the environmental impacts from agriculture are from the Western, industrialized nations methods.

I totally disagree with this. We have artificial means nowadays to prolong longevity and cure diseases that would ordinarily have some significant impact on human population growth. Plus other than ourselves, we have no other predators to control our populations. Your opinions here appear to be based on some type of dogmatic idealism. The more we increase our population without Nature's checks and balances, the more cities and villages we need to build and expand in order to live. This means taking away habitat from the other animal and plant species. As it goes we are going to be the source of our own extinction and the Earth will probably be none the worse by our absence; perhaps even have a chance to heal some of the wounds we have created. Homo sapiens the most successful species to inhabit the Earth so far? As it stands not a chance. We have been on this Planet in our present form for a little over a million years; and accelerated changes and caused more environmental problems than any dinosaur. I would say the dinosaurs would probably have eclipsed us in terms of successful longevity on Earth as a species. My biggest complaint regarding this is because of our 'intelligence' based follies we are dragging a whole plethora of other species along with us toward accelerated extinction. And in so far as religious comparisons, this is by far our greatest sin of all.

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Joseph S. » December 5th, 2015, 1:08 pm

We could certainly feed more people than we have currently. We can house more people than we have currently.

But to what end? When is too many too many?

Will we need a water turbine at Yosemite Falls?

Should every last peace of open space be converted to human use?

Do we care about individual quality of life...that each person on this planet ought to have access to fresh clean air, potable water, nutritious food, modern health care, a slice of the outdoors, and maybe more?

As the few who use way more than our share of carbon, note that if everyone lived the way we do we would run out of resources in an instant.

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Kelly Mc
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Kelly Mc » December 5th, 2015, 1:39 pm

Human intelligence may be aberrant. There is no proof it is a successful long term feature. perhaps it is developing into its own self limiting mechanism.

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by regalringneck » December 5th, 2015, 1:58 pm

... dunnoe bout just 1 thang ... nor the original premise; green herping (unless theyre anoles) meateaters or otherwise ... but what i think you were sayen ...

I mustve dreamed a thousand dreams
Been haunted by a million screams
But I can hear the marching feet
They're moving into the street.

Now did you read the news today
They say the dangers gone away
But I can see the fires still alight
There burning into the night.

There's too many men
Too many people
Making too many problems
And not much love to go round
Cant you see
This is a land of confusion.

This is the world we live in
And these are the hands were given
Use them and lets start trying
To make it a place worth living in.

& happy holidaze 2 all ... : }

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Tamara D. McConnell » December 5th, 2015, 2:58 pm

Surely no one thinks Gaia has an infinite carrying capacity.

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by dthor68 » December 5th, 2015, 8:59 pm

Kelly Mc wrote:Factory farming produces more GHG than the exhaust of All cars, trucks, trains, boats, and planes combined.

The methane from the meat and dairy industry is 86 times more destructive than the co2 from fossil fuels.

If this were true, and I highly doubt that it is, there is not much we can do to change that. However, we can do much about the emissions from factories, power plants, automobiles, trucks, boats, trains, etc. Regardless, no one could ever get me to believe that a more natural process like farming is worse on the environment than something as unnatural as human transportation and the production of goods. As others have mentioned, I agree that the worst thing facing us is the non stop population explosion. I feel that is more of a threat to us than GW. The one thing that I find pretty scary with GW is what is happening to the oceans reefs. If the oceans die we are in serious trouble!

BTW, my next car will be a Prius. I hope they make a roof rack for it so I can carry my kayak.

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Kelly Mc
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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Kelly Mc » December 5th, 2015, 9:17 pm

Natural process... Factory farming????

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Noah M » December 6th, 2015, 7:24 am

Re: the population

Watch some videos by Hans Rosling about the population. We're currently experiencing a boom, but this is forecast by experts to not continue forever. Yes, Earth does have limits, but we're nowhere near needing turbines at Yosemite. That's not to say things like that have not been proposed before, not because of need but because of stupid politics.

Two things are happening right now; as the population increases, we're also starting to see urbanization and urban densification. It isn't perfect, but check out the Demographic Transition Model. The bulk of the growth of the population is not in places like the US, but in burgeoning economies in Africa and SE Asia as they enter stage 2 and 3 of the the model. However, populations will eventually level off. Some of the older economies (Japan, France, etc) are actually seeing population declines. And as these developing nations increase their populations they become highly urbanized, which puts the growth in population happening in the cities. And the rate of world population growth is actually decreasing. The rate is still positive, we're still adding people, but we're adding fewer people today than we were a few decades ago. The point is, growth in population doesn't necessarily equal growth in need for geographic space.

It does however require more resources. We've solved it thus far with agricultural intensification, but this is a folly and we get that. Now people are starting to understand that we need sustainable technologies. And if sustainable ways are being developed, then none of this really matters. For example, image a world with low cost, high efficiency artificial photosynthesis. Virtually every energy demand problem would be solved, the drop in CO2 emissions would be staggering, and the oil dependent economies of the Middle East would suffer. No more need for debate over Keystone Pipeline either (unless stupid politicians intervene).

People have been arguing for over a hundred years now that the Earth is near its carrying capacity. We saw it with Malthus in the 1800s and Ehrlich in the 1960s. But the total collapse and mass famine other horrible things that have been forecast have yet to come to fruition.

I will agree there may be a point in which human ingenuity does not keep pace with human stupidity, but so far it hasn't really happened, even with a doubling of the population in the last couple of decades.

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Noah M » December 6th, 2015, 7:25 am

Kelly Mc wrote:Natural process... Factory farming????

Yeah, this isn't Old McDonald's farm anymore. :lol:

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by Jimi » December 6th, 2015, 9:14 am

http://www3.epa.gov/climatechange/ghgem ... lobal.html

a submission to the question - "move to the Nicoya or the Azuero Peninsula, buy a small cattle ranch near the beach, and reforest all or most of it; all while "living small" (stay put, eat local)"

cheers

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by klawnskale » December 6th, 2015, 10:31 am

[quote="Jimi"]http://www3.epa.gov/climatechange/ghgem ... lobal.html

a submission to the question - "move to the Nicoya or the Azuero Peninsula, buy a small cattle ranch near the beach, and reforest all or most of it; all while "living small" (stay put, eat local)"

cheers[/quote

Or move a portion of the human population to a Goldilocks Planet and start this mess all over again...

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Re: "Pick one thing"

Post by VanAR » December 6th, 2015, 12:29 pm

http://www.pnas.org/content/111/46/16610.short

Relevant to this discussion...

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