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UN wants Americans to cut back on eating meat. And that's only the beginning

OpinionUN wants Americans to cut back on eating meat. And that's only the beginning

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The UN agency responsible for developing recommendations for agriculture and food policy will soon publish a policy recommendation that will call on Americans to limit their consumption of meat, according to reporting by Bloomberg. 

The controversial new recommendation will reportedly be released by the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) during the COP28 climate change conference, an important annual meeting of the world’s most powerful governments, which ends Dec. 12. 

The stated justification behind the recommendation is related to concerns over climate change. The FAO, like many other agencies at the United Nations, claims that human-created greenhouse-gas emissions are causing dangerous levels of global warming. 

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In a separate 2023 report, the FAO asserted that “the livestock sector is responsible for 14.5% of all anthropogenic GHG emissions,” and that it has an especially large impact on methane emissions. Thus, reductions in meat consumption could, FAO argues, result in less extreme climate change. 

John Kerry, United States Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, attends the UNFCCC Formal Opening of COP28 at the UN Climate Change Conference COP28 at Expo City on November 30, 2023 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The COP28, which is running from November 30 through December 12, brings together stakeholders, including international heads of state and other leaders, scientists, environmentalists, indigenous peoples representatives, activists and others to discuss and agree on the implementation of global measures towards mitigating the effects of climate change. (Photo by Mahmoud Khaled / COP28 via Getty Images)

John Kerry, United States Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, attends the UNFCCC Formal Opening of COP28 at the UN Climate Change Conference COP28 at Expo City on November 30, 2023, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. (Mahmoud Khaled / COP28 via Getty Images)

But wait before you replace your favorite burger with a crunchy cricket sandwich or lab-grown “meat.” It’s important that you keep in mind that, contrary to the claims of the FAO, there is absolutely no good evidence showing that if Americans were to reduce their meat consumption it would save the planet from global warming. 

For starters, even if you believe that the methane produced by animals commonly eaten by American consumers is contributing to a climate change crisis — and there are plenty of scientists who do not — data from the EPA shows that methane accounts for a small proportion of total greenhouse gas emissions. Agriculture-related methane emissions make up an even smaller proportion. 

Second, total U.S. methane emissions have been in decline for three decades. In fact, from 1990 to 2021, industrial methane emissions, which includes agriculture, decreased by nearly 14% in the United States. 

Third, although U.S. methane emissions related to agriculture have increased in recent decades, the increase has been modest (5.7% since 1995), and in recent years, emissions have been trending downward. There was a slight reduction in agriculture-related methane emissions from 2018 to 2021 in the United States, the most recent year for which data are available. 

Fourth, there are many other countries that have experienced significant increases in methane, most notably China. China’s methane emissions have skyrocketed over the past 30 years. From 1990 to 2021, they increased a whopping 75%, and they remain substantially higher than US emissions. 

Even if Americans were to stop eating meat entirely, the reduction in methane would be more than offset by China’s future increases in methane emissions, likely within just a few years. 

All the available evidence shows that if Americans were to cut meat consumption, it would not cause the average global temperature to fall. Why, then, is the UN so keen on keeping meat off Americans’ dinner plates? 

Unfortunately, in recent decades, many UN agencies have been overtaken by environmental radicals, men and women who have promoted one extreme “green” agenda after another, and the problem is only going to get worse in the near future.  

António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations attends the event ‘Delivering Early Warnings For All’, during day four of the UNFCCC COP28 Climate Conference at Expo City Dubai on December 3, 2023, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Kiara Worth /COP28 via Getty Images)

This year’s globalist climate agenda might be fixated on meat, but next year’s planned UN agenda would, if fully enacted, completely transform every part of your life. 

In September 2024, the United Nations will host a “Summit of the Future.” The highlight of the event will be a new “Pact for the Future,” an international agreement that will serve as the culmination of a multi-year UN project called “Our Common Agenda.” 

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Although all the final details of the pact have yet to be decided, the UN has already formally published many of its goals for the new agreement, including a plan to develop a “global code of conduct” for the internet and social media, bans on “misleading” information, the further development of a global ESG social credit scoring system, and costly, sweeping environmental programs. 

The UN’s “Protect Our Planet” commitment is particularly worrisome. It would establish an economically catastrophic “net-zero” commitment for global CO2 emissions, overhaul global agriculture and food systems so that they align with environmental goals, and pledge to reverse biodiversity loss, thereby limiting or eliminating the entirely human ability to expand communities beyond current boundaries. 

Even if Americans were to stop eating meat entirely, the reduction in methane would be more than offset by China’s future increases in methane emissions, likely within just a few years. 

All of these policies would have a devastating impact on human flourishing and economic prosperity, especially for highly developed countries like the United States. You might think, then, that America’s president would be opposed to such policies, but you’d be wrong. The Biden administration’s ambassadors to the United Nations have already praised Our Common Agenda and pledged their support toward many of its goals. 

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The United Nations has always been committed to expanding its own size, power and impact. But we’ve never seen the organization go as far off the rails as it has over the past few years. 

Americans deserve a president who is willing to stand up to the UN, not kowtow to global elites and environmental radicals. Unfortunately, it appears the White House doesn’t agree. 

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