The Instigator
Meropenem777
Pro (for)
Winning
12 Points
The Contender
Daniel_B
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Being Vegetarian Helps the Environment More than not Being a Vegetarian.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
Meropenem777
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/27/2015 Category: Science
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 681 times Debate No: 81509
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (2)
Votes (2)

 

Meropenem777

Pro

Being Vegetarian Helps the Environment More Than not Being a Vegetarian.

Vegetarian: "the exclusion of meat (In the context of this debate: non-human animal meat)...from the diet"
Environment: "The natural world, as a whole"
Helps: " To contribute to the...improvement of"
Being (state of being/verb)
More: "a greater... degree" (debatable)

1st round: Simply greetings and acceptance.
2nd round: Main arguments
3rd round: Rebuttals/counters/additional points
4th round: Rebuttals/counters/final points

Rules:
- No abuse of semantics.
(This is standard since I gave definitions)
-No trolling.
- A forfeit is an automatic loss.
-Cite sources.

Sources:
-http://dictionary.reference.com...

-http://www.oxforddictionaries.com...

-https://search.yahoo.com...

-http://www.thefreedictionary.com...

-http://grammar.about.com...
Daniel_B

Con

I accept your challenge, Although I believe in the pro, I will try and argue for the con
Debate Round No. 1
Meropenem777

Pro

Reasons why being a vegetarian would aid the environment:

Livestock farming has environmental impacts. By buying and eating meat products, you are continuing to be an incentive for livestock farming to expand.
-In many areas of the world, the expansion of Livestock farming has farming has had environmental impacts such as the destruction of tropical rain forests in South America. "Nearly 80% of land deforested in the Amazon is now used as cattle pasture."[2] The tropical rainforest in South America arguably contributes to a large quantity of needed oxygen that animals and ourselves both rely on in order to stay alive.That is merely one section of the globe though. Huge areas of trees and bushes are cut down or burnt. "A staggering 25% of the planet"s land surface is used for the grazing of domestic livestock."[1] It is a statistic that represents the issue as a problem for all environments of our planet.

The population of endangered species are also affected by this expansion.
- In Australia, "...the native brigalow vegetation has been extensively 'pulled' - again, to facilitate cattle grazing - contributing to the severe decline of the critically endangered bridled nailtail wallaby" [1], which needs the native brigalow vegetation in order to eat. A vegetarian diet would be contributing for how it lessens the incentive for farmers to take away land that wildlife relies on.

There are other various effects on the environment that livestock farming has in relation to other environmental costs.
"To produce one pound of animal protein vs. one pound of soy protein, it takes about 12 times as much land, 13 times as much fossil fuel, and 15 times as much water." [2] Really, we do not need as much land as we are actually using in order to survive. Fossil fuels are a limited resource that has a negative effect on the atmosphere, and using a large quantity of fossil fuels on livestock farming along with the amount we are using for other necessities arguably just promotes ozone degradation even more. Regarding fossil fuels and emissions, " In 2006, the UN calculated that the combined climate change emissions of animals bred for their meat were about 18% of the global total " more than cars, planes and all other forms of transport put together." [4] That is an amazing statistic. We depend on cars and planes arguably every day to get around and that still does not equate to the amount of emissions generated from livestock farming.

Livestock farming has adds additional costs to our and the environment's need for water.
-" According to the Water Education Foundation, it takes 2,464 gallons of water to produce one pound of beef in California."[3] Taking into account that California is in a severe drought (I know this because I live there), using up water is unnecessarily wasteful since it could be used for other purposes and lessen the strain of the drought. "...a pound of beef needs around 9,000 litres " or more than 20,000lbs of water. Equally, it takes nearly 1,000 litres of water to produce one litre of milk." [4] That is water we could be using to farm soy produce or other types of produce. We do not need to use as much water and land to feed ourselves as we might believe we do.

Livestock farmer's have the incentive of profit for using this large amount of water and land, so that incentive should not be given to the by becoming a vegetarian.

Honestly, I am not a vegetarian and love to eat meat but I think I have convinced myself to consider becoming one for the sake of the environment.

Sources:
[1] http://www.lettuceleaf.org...

[2] http://www.chooseveg.com...

[3]http://www.vegetariantimes.com...

[4]http://www.theguardian.com...
Daniel_B

Con

While your points are completely valid you are forgetting one major fact,

The overpopulation of animals:

Specific species of animals, such as cows need to be killed off to keep the population at a healthy level. If everyone was a vegetarian, the amount of cows and deer roaming the earth would be FAR to much for planet earth to maintain, and we would (eventually) end up dying because we didn't eat meat. You state 25% of the earth is used for grazing, and argue that is too much? Imagine if people were vegetarians,stopped eating grazing animals, and the animals were set free. This would cause a huge amount of the grass and healthy lands such as the rain forest to be torn down due to uncontrolled species. It is much less space consuming to have a tightly packed group of animals then a spaced out one. As for the water usage there are many ways in which we could cut down on this water shortage in other ways without disturbing the 90% of people who aren't vegetarians. Finally Humans are part of the environment too, many vegetarians eat LESS healthy then non-vegetarians.

"And, of course, not all vegetarians eat healthily. If a vegetarian replaces meat with high-fat cheeses, junk food and so on, they"re unlikely to reap many health benefits " after all, there"s no meat in ice cream, potato chips, or fudge brownies! It"s certainly possible to be a vegetarian and still consume large quantities of high-fat, high-sugar empty calories.

Replacing meat with poor substitutes can lead to nutrient deficiencies in protein, iron, calcium, zinc and vitamin B12. Athletes, children and pregnant females are particularly at risk as their nutrient needs are especially high. Vegans (who eat no animal products of any type) especially need to supplement their vitamin B12 intake. Poor meal-planning, illness, stress and the excessive use of supplements can also cause problems. It's therefore wise to seek professional advice on your dietary needs before making the switch to vegetarianism."
~Calorie King

Sources:
http://www.vegetariantimes.com...
http://www.calorieking.com...
Debate Round No. 2
Meropenem777

Pro

I explicitly specified in the instructions that rebuttals were suppose to be in the 3rd round and 4th round. The 2nd round was solely for main arguments without rebuttals.

1. Since when was my argument implying everyone to become a vegetarian? This debate is simply focused on how being a vegetarian helps the environment more than not being a vegetarian.

-These implications in your argument, " If everyone was a vegetarian, the amount of cows and deer roaming the earth would be FAR to much for planet earth to maintain, and we would (eventually) end up dying because we didn't eat meat (Daniel_B)", are irrelevant to the topic. Besides, arguably if we just slaughtered a good portion of the populations of livestock and processed the meat without breeding more livestock, then that would not be an issue at all.


2. What are these "many ways" that you are referring to that would actually significantly help more so than lowering the water supply for livestock farming?
-"As for the water usage there are many ways in which we could cut down on this water shortage in other ways without disturbing the 90% of people who aren't vegetarians." California already has implemented fairly strict regulations now concerning private and public water usage because of the drought, so people are less likely to use as much. However, those policies are an insignificant aid to lowering water usage because of the amount of water that I discussed earlier that is used per pound of beef.

3. Your argument that vegetarians will eat unhealthy food is irrelevant because we are discussing the environment in this debate.
-"And, of course, not all vegetarians eat healthily. If a vegetarian replaces meat with high-fat cheeses, junk food and so on, they"re unlikely to reap many health benefits (Daniel_B)". This is indeed irrelevant because as the topic statement says, "helps the environment more", not people more.

4. Your argument that vegetarians will have a lower nutrient intake is irrelevant because again, we are discussing the environment in this debate.
-"Replacing meat with poor substitutes can lead to nutrient deficiencies in protein, iron, calcium, zinc and vitamin B12 (Daniel_B)". Besides, certain types of meat have a high amount of fat and eating this meat too often can create a higher chance in cardiac diseases. Restating the main issue at hand though, the concern in this debate is over the environment and not people's diets.

There are many other angles of arguments that could have been made, think carefully in your next input for this debate.
Daniel_B

Con

Daniel_B forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
Meropenem777

Pro


This rule was stated in the terms of the debate: “- A forfeit is an automatic loss”.


Therefore, my opponent’s potential to receive favorable votes should be nullified completely regardless of any arguments that are posted by them.


Daniel_B

Con

Don't vote for me :)
Debate Round No. 4
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by gman1041 1 year ago
gman1041
im not a vegitarian but i do have to agree that being one is better for the enviroment.
Posted by Bet-On-It 1 year ago
Bet-On-It
i am a vegetarian and for the most part i think that being a vegetarian is better than being a meat eater. it takes longer for animals to grow than it does plants. for every acer of plants that are farmed 100 animals are killed.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by Bosoxfaninla 1 year ago
Bosoxfaninla
Meropenem777Daniel_BTied
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Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: Good star too bad it was an ff.
Vote Placed by lannan13 1 year ago
lannan13
Meropenem777Daniel_BTied
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Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: Con concedes R4.