Environmental footprint stats aren’t messed up enough yet, but they’re getting there. In the latest round, a mid sized dog is being compared to an SUV. According to researchers, the dog will go through 164 kilograms of meat and 95 kilograms of cereals in a year, which is the carbonastical equivalent of driving a big-ass car for 10,000 kilometres.
Now, it should be mentioned that I’ve seen dogs thrive on a plant-based diet, but on the whole I’m not a fan of these metrics. Sure, it’s great to be proud of the reduced environmental impact of your diet, but now some nut just has to point at your dog and somehow that becomes an excuse for their meat-eating ways. In some ways it’s an extension of the “animal rights activists need to focus on ‘real issues’ like child labour” (or whatever Big Issue doesn’t require an immediate lifestyle change) nonsense, but how many of you have ever thought that you diet gives you “credit” to “spend” on other indulgences, like, OK, a dog?
Put another way, while environmental footprint calculations can be useful to put impact in terms relative to things we’re familiar with, they shouldn’t be seen as budget line-items in your life. What do you think about these calculations? Do they actually help, or do they give everyone something that they can use as a credit/excuse against something really nasty, like eating meat?