Currently, about 3.2 percent of U.S. adults follow a vegetarian-based diet, according to Vegetarian Times. Vegetarians who proselytize for their lifestyle tout its health and environmental benefits. But what would the impact be if the whole human population swore off of meat? This question is explored in AsapSCIENCE’s new video ‘What if the World Went Vegetarian?”
If people stopped consuming meat then whole herds of domestic animals disappear, which would free up about 20.5 million square miles of farmland. There are currently billions of chickens, cows, sheep, and pigs in the world, and most of them exist only to become a food or product for humans.
Halting the consumption of meat by humans would have a significant impact on the environment, because livestock production is responsible for about 15 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions.
One downside to the world going vegetarian? More than one billion people would lose their jobs or livelihood.
It’s obvious that some people will probably never stop eating bacon, so this scenario probably won’t come to pass. But if you want to know more about what would happen if everyone in the world was a vegetarian, watch the video below.