Map representing distribution of carbon in potential vegetation in areas of present-day animal feed croplands and pastures

September 07, 2020The carbon opportunity cost of animal sourced protein on land

A report by two Harvard's Animal Law & Policy Program fellows says extensive land uses to meet dietary preferences incur a ‘carbon opportunity cost’ given the potential for carbon sequestration through ecosystem restoration

Nature Sustainability today published a report entitled The Carbon Opportunity Cost of Animal Sourced Food Production On Land by our Food & Climate Policy Fellow Helen Harwatt, former Farmed Animal Law & Policy fellow Matthew N. Hayek, and William J. Ripple, and Nathaniel D. Mueller.

The report finds that shifting to a vegan diet globally would allow for a much greener planet and remove around ten years worth of fossil fuel emissions from the atmosphere. In particular it finds that high and upper middle income countries have a massive potential to make this shift.

By September 10, 2020, the article was already ranked #6 of all Nature Sustainability articles and had been covered by more than 30 media outlets around the world.