19 July 2007

Eat a steak, warm the planet

Meat is murder on the environment, Japanese study finds

AFP, 18 July 2007 - A kilogram (2.2 pounds) of beef causes more greenhouse-gas and other pollution than driving for three hours while leaving all the lights on back home, according to a Japanese study.

A team led by Akifumi Ogino of the National Institute of Livestock and Grassland Science in Tsukuba, calculated the environmental cost of raising cattle through conventional farming, slaughtering the animal and distributing the meat, New Scientist reports in next Saturday's issue.

Producing a kilo (2.2 pounds) of beef causes the equivalent of 36.4 kilos (80.08 pounds) in carbon dioxide (CO2), the principal greenhouse gas, Ogino found.
Most of these greenhouse-gas emissions take the form of methane, released from the cow's digestive system.

That one kilo (2.2 pounds) of beef also requires energy equivalent to lighting a 100-watt bulb for nearly 20 days. The energy is needed to produce and transport the animals' feed.
A Swedish study in 2003 suggested that organic beef emits 40 percent less greenhouse gases and consumes 85 percent less energy because the animal is raised on grass rather than concentrated feed.

The study appears in full in a specialist publication, Animal Science Journal.
This article is reproduced with kind permission of Agence France-Presse (AFP) For more news and articles visit the AFP website.

* The calculations don't include the cost of transporting the meat to market either, so the impact is actually even higher, for both conventionally and organic practices...

13 July 2007

D & Ns Summer 2004

A Bean Salad Recipe with a Twist

Cannellini Beans with Tomatoes & Herbs
This light, fresh salad is perfect for a picnic or BBQ. The lemon zest is an especially nice addition and adds beautiful color to this delicious, healthful dish. Makes 4-6 servings


2 cans of Cannellini beans (or other white beans, such as Great Northern or Navy), drained and rinsed
3 or 4 tomatoes (cherry, heirloom, or any tomatoes in season)
½ medium size red onion, diced
1 cup fresh, frozen (thawed), or canned corn kernels
2 red, yellow, orange, or green bell pepper, finely diced
1 ripe avocado, diced
Assortment of fresh herbs: marjoram, basil, thyme, sage, minced
3 tablespoons vinegar, your choice (red, white wine vinegar, seasoned rice vinegar)
Juice from 1 lemon
Zest of 2 lemons
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
Salt and pepper


In a large bowl, combine all of the ingredients and set aside for 15 minutes or more to allow the flavors to develop. Add salt and serve at room temperature.

Serving Suggestions and Variations:
*You can use any bean you like for this salad. White beans are just one suggestion. You can use kidney, chick peas, black, pinto – or a combination of all them!
*You may add a tablespoon or two of extra virgin olive oil.
*Fresh tomatoes are best, and keep in mind that tomatoes don’t do well refrigerated. So, if you wanted to make this salad in advance, just eliminate the tomatoes, store in the fridge, and add the tomatoes just before serving.

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