Not to be outdone by our other video submission, this Red Hot and Green features a submission by yours truly! My friend John and I are going meatless for marmots and manatees!
Livestock farming generates 18% of the planet’s greenhouse gas emissions (compared to only 13% for all of the world’s cars, trains, planes and boats combined!) so eating less meat can make a big difference in an individual’s carbon footprint. And emissions aren’t the only way farm animals contribute to climate change- much of livestock’s contribution to a warming world comes from deforestation, as the growing demand for meat results in trees being cut down to make space for pasture or farmland to grow animal feed.
Marmots and manatees may be two very different animals, but they’ve got one thing in common: their survival is being threatened by climate change. Alaska marmots live at ground zero for climate change impacts. Because of the small window hibernation allows for feeding and breeding, and its dependence on sensitive alpine tundra, shifting temperatures pose a great risk to the large rodent.
At the opposite end of the states – water-dwelling manatees are in trouble as well. Higher water temperatures along the Gulf Coast has lead to an increase in toxic algae blooms, such as the red tide that killed more than 150 manatees in 1996. Climate change also raises the odds against these already endangered creatures by increasing the likelihood of larger and more frequent hurricanes.
Even if you don’t decide to go completely vegetarian like John and me, just forgoing meat a few times a week (Meatless Mondays, anyone?) can make a big difference in reducing emission and protecting important habitat! What are the other ways you’re working to fight the climate change that threatens our wildlife and natural places? We want to know! Read these simple instructions and tell us what YOU’RE doing to protect wildlife from the harmful effects of climate change.