How Does Meat Cause International Pollution

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How Your Meat Causes Worldwide Pollution

The factory farming industry plays a major role in contributing to the problem of global climate change. This particular issue does not get addressed nearly as much as it should because many of these corporations generate billions of dollars, which has resulted into agribusiness instead of traditional farming. As other countries generally follow the lead of the United States pertaining to legislation and trade policy they watch how we approach the issue of pollution caused by the meat industry. Many countries that are trade partners such as China which produce a large export of poultry, has barely any oversight or policy about how meat is raised, packaged and shipped. Many factories are dirty and violate
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This issue is also important because it goes to examine the lack of humane and responsible farming practices that occur in the United States. “According to data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the EPA, animal feeding operations produce approximately 500 million tons of manure every year, 15 with CAFOs generating 4716-60% 10 of this excrement.” (The Impact of Industrialized Animal Agriculture on the Environment, 2012).
This is a complex and controversial issue that is hindered by lack of media coverage, apathetic politicians and corrupts international investigators. When it comes to pollution generated by animal waste and the overuse of antibiotics, many do not realize that this is also a health issue, as E. coli and other bacteria could easily contaminate our food. However, it is also tied into the aspect of animal welfare, because often times hundreds of animals are kept in such cramped and close quarters, disease runs rampant. In fact, cases of Pfiesteria, a toxic organism continues to rise in factory farms. According to a study by the Organic Consumers Association, due to manure contamination “in 1991 1,000,000,000,000 (one billion) fish were killed
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There is a set particulate standard level in place, which is “35 micrograms per cubic meter (ug/m3) averaged over 24 hours” (Environmental Integrity, 2011). Over 90% of the factory farms surveyed in Iowa, Indiana, California, and Pennsylvania failed these air quality tests. This also means that by the time animals such as chickens and hogs are sent to be slaughtered, the vast majority will be suffering from lung impairment or ammonia. It also puts the farm workers and people in the community who live within close proximity to these farms at a potential health risk as well. As of late there has been a push from community members and NGOs such as the Humane Farming Association and the WSPA for reflexive law policy regarding factory farms. Reflexive law would legally require every farm to include sharing all information including but not limited to labeling, any and all data, and warnings. It would also be “faster and cheaper to implement than command-and-control regulation, and it represents a more politically palatable approach to the problem of CAFO pollution both locally and abroad” (Braunig, The National Agricultural Law Center, 2005). Another benefit to this process is that it more easily allows consumers to share their concern for alternative farming practices and opens the door for lawsuits against corporate

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