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Last updated at 13:24 BST, Monday, 01 September 2014

Eat less meat to save the planet, says study

Summary

1 September 2014

Scientists are warning that we all need to eat less meat to help protect the environment. The study, by Aberdeen and Cambridge Universities, says that greenhouse gases from food production will rise by 80% by 2050 if we don't change our eating habits.

Reporter:

Roger Harrabin

Minced beef

Scientists believe eating beef is particularly damaging to the environment

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Report

The study examines what needs to be done if greenhouse gas emissions from farming are to be cut alongside emissions from transport, homes and industry.

It says, on current trends, with people round the world getting richer and eating American-style diets, farm emissions will boom as forest land is converted to agriculture and fertiliser is sprayed on the fields.

The report says the emissions' growth can be contained somewhat, if farmers in developing countries are helped to improve their yields from existing fields. It'll help to stop wasting food too, the authors say.

But then there's the really hard bit: they say persuading people to eat less meat and dairy produce can actually lead to a big overall cut in emissions from farming.

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Vocabulary

emissions

(here) gases which go into the air

alongside

as well as; together with

boom

(here) sudden period of growth

fertiliser

a substance added to soil to help plants grow

somewhat

partly; to some degree

yields

(here) amounts of something that is produced

dairy produce

foods made from milk

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