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High steaks: Meat eaters' climate impact

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) released the "Meat Eaters Guide to Climate Change + Health" Monday, and it contains a few surprises for climate-conscious eaters. EWG staffers linked up with lifecycle analysis firm CleanMetrics to come up with a nifty set of infographics and guidelines for health- and climate-conscious carnivores. It's part of a recognition that industrialized societies are not about to go vegan any time soon, so at least we can make sound judgments about how much and which kind of meat to eat.
According to EWG, the top five worst climate culprits are, in order: lamb, beef, cheese, pork, and farmed salmon. Cheese at No. 3 and salmon at No. 5 surprised me, and though lamb is the worst climate offender, it's a tiny fraction of U.S. meat consumption and not a real contributor to our climate woes. For the record, lamb tops beef in climate impact mostly because of the smaller amount of meat per animal -- not because of anything inherent in the way lamb is raised.

Cheese consumption, on the other hand, is through the roof, thanks in large part to government efforts to promote consumption


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