In today’s society, there is so much sensory stimulation, distracting news, and competition for success, that it becomes incredibly easy to let the problems of the world fall by the wayside. After all, so many real problems are out of sight and as a result, out of mind. For example, deforestation for palm oil is a problem occurring across the globe in Sumatran forests. The coral reef is all but dead, but we didn’t really know that much about it, so what’s the difference? And we know climate change is happening, we mention it when a day is unseasonably hot or cold, but it still feels like a problem that we won’t have confront for a several decades. In fact, it may just become a problem for our grandchildren or great grandchildren will have to deal with.

As tempting as it may be to think that climate change is not a problem of our time, there are clear indications that it is a problem will have a major effect on our lives … soon. Entire cities may not be getting submerged under water just yet, but there are still some major changes happening to our ecosystem. In fact, we have already started to see some of these changes on the beaches of Southeastern U.S. after recent natural disaster, Hurricane Matthew. The U.S. Geological Survey found that the storm washed over and damaged 15 percent of sand dunes on Florida’s Atlantic Coast, 30 percent along Georgia’s coastline, and 42 percent of the dunes on South Carolina beaches.

“What Matthew did to us essentially [was] eat about 30 feet of coastline all the way along the county, and created a bunch of breaches through that dune system,” shared County Administrator Craig Coffey with NPR.

These startling before and after photographs remind us of that we may have progressed as a species in a multitude of ways, but as long as we keep exploiting nature, it will continue responding in destructive ways.

Hurricane Matthew 1

These views remind us of the all-too-real possibility that the landscapes we have grown accustomed to seeing can change from one moment to the next without warning. Humans may take up a lot of space on Earth, but we cannot stop nature from taking its course. 

Hurricane Matthew 2

 

 

Not all hope is lost, though. Here, at One Green Planet, we believe that animal agriculture is at the heart of the environmental crisis and we can fight the worst impacts of climate change through our food choices.

The livestock industry currently occupies over half of the world’s arable land resources, uses the majority of our freshwater stores, and drives greenhouse gas emissions. Additionally, this system causes rampant air and water pollution, land degradation, deforestation and is pushing countless species to the brink of extinction. And yet, one in eight people still suffer from food scarcity.

“The real war against climate change is being fought on our plates, multiple times a day with every food choice we make,” says Nil Zacharias, co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of One Green Planet, ”one of the biggest challenges facing our planet, and our species is that we are knowingly eating ourselves into extinction, and doing very little about it.”

As the leading organization at the forefront of the conscious consumerism movement, it is One Green Planet’s view that our food choices have the power to heal our broken food system, give species a fighting chance for survival, and pave the way for a truly sustainable future. By choosing to eat more plant-based foods, you can drastically cut your carbon footprint, save precious water supplies and help ensure that vital crop resources are fed to people, rather than livestock. With the wealth of available plant-based options available, it has never been easier to eat with the planet in mind.

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All image source: U.S. Geological Services