Want to Conserve Water? Eat Less Meat!
First off, why is conserving water so important? We all know that the Earth is 70% water, but that’s mostly saltwater, which humans cannot consume. Freshwater, on the other hand, is consumable, but its scarce, and events like droughts make it even scarcer. The less water we waste and use, the more we will have leftover for the future. Aside from conserving it, there isn’t really a foolproof solution to this problem.
When you think of water conservation, what comes to mind? Quicker showers, turning off the water while brushing your teeth, and using high-efficiency appliances are probably the first things that you think of. While all of these are great things and do make a difference, they don’t make a huge impact on the way we might think. The biggest impact we can make is by changing our diets to include less or no meat.
Did you know, it takes 2,500 gallons of water to produce only one pound of beef? That is a HUGE amount of water for just ONE hamburger. If you eat one hamburger a week, that’s 10,000 gallons of water a month, and 120,000 gallons of water in just one year. Let’s compare that with something like taking shorter showers. Say you decide to take twelve-minute showers, and your shower head creates two gallons of water a minute. That’s 24 gallons of water per shower. Say you also decide to only shower four times a week: that’s 96 gallons of water a week, 384 gallons a month, and 4,608 gallons a year. Would you rather be saving 120,000 gallons of water a year, or just 4,608 gallons?
Some more FOOD for thought: Cutting back on dairy and eggs conserves a lot of water too: it takes 1,000 gallons of water to produce just one gallon of milk, 477 gallons of water to make one pound of eggs, and around 900 gallons of water to make just one pound of cheese.
Trying to cut back on things like meat and dairy that are such a huge part of our diet can be tough, but you’ll be saving the planet while you’re at it, and what’s left of our clean drinking water. Taking quicker showers and all that does help, but not nearly as much as if humans started significantly changing their diets to include less meat and dairy.