Her shower curtain read, “1 Chicken Meal = 30 Showers. Go Vegan to End World Drought!” as PETA India founder Ingrid Newkirk showered at Horniman Circle on 1 December to highlight that the best thing people can do to save water and stop contributing to the climate catastrophe is to go vegan.
“Modern meat and dairy production requires up to 50 times more water than the production of plant foods like pulses, vegetables, and grains,” said Newkirk. “As India is suffering from historic drought, PETA India is asking people worldwide to preserve precious resources by rejecting chicken and curd in favour of tasty vegan foods that can save water, animals’ lives, the planet, and even their own health.”
According to the Water Footprint Network, it takes 322 litres of water to produce 1 kilogram of vegetables. In contrast, 1 kilogram of milk requires 1020 litres, 1 kilogram of eggs 3265 litres, 1 kilogram of poultry meat 4325 litres, 1 kilogram of pork 5988 litres, and 1 kilogram of mutton 8763 litres, while 1 kilogram of beef requires a staggering 15,415 litres of water to produce.
Factory farming, introduced by the West, is now used all over India, causing huge problems. Rainforests are being cut down to grow animal fodder, and according to some estimates, modern animal agriculture is responsible for more greenhouse gas emissions than all the world’s transportation combined. And while 189 million people go hungry in India and fewer than half the country’s citizens have access to safe drinking water, the production of animal-derived foods uses a third of the world’s freshwater resources and a third of the world’s cropland. This cropland could be used to grow food for hungry humans instead of animals deliberately bred and raised to be used and killed.
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