A new report by Greenpeace has said the world needs to cut the production and consumption of meat in half by 2050 to meet the Paris Agreement climate goals.
In the report, Greenpeace have said that if agriculture stays on its current trend, then it will produce 52% of global green house gases in the future, 70% of which will come from the meat and dairy sector, arguing that to stay on track for the Paris Agreement climate goals this needs to be reduced.
Eurostat has recorded that greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture contribute 10% to the EU’s total greenhouse gas emission.
The Common Agricultural Policy
In November 2017, the European Commission released its communication of the future Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). The commission said: “Allowing member states greater responsibilities to choose how and where to invest their CAP funding in order to meet ambitious common goals on the environment, climate change and sustainability is the flagship initiative.”
Greenpeace has argued that EU agricultural policies have been driving us towards an “environmental cliff edge” and backs farmers to turn to ecological plant, meat and dairy production.
EU agriculture policy director Marco Contiero said: “Industrial animal farming is a major source of carbon emissions, water and air pollution, and causes major health problems like antibiotic resistance … Our governments must ensure that the upcoming reform of farm rules accelerates a shift to ecological vegetable farming and less, but sustainable, animal farming, while withdrawing support from intensive animal production.”
Dangers of antimicrobial resistance
The report also highlights the danger of antimicrobial resistance as a result of the intense farming. In a report published by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), they found that bacteria continued to resist antimicrobials in both humans and animals.
“Among the new findings are the detection of resistance to carbapenems in poultry, an antibiotic which is not authorised for use in animals, and of ESBL-producing Salmonella Kentucky with high resistance to ciprofloxacin in humans, which was reported for the first time in four countries.”