Un mondo senza carne sarebbe davvero più pulito?

Secondo gli ambientalisti eliminare la carne dalla dieta aiuterebbe a ridurre l’impatto dell’uomo sull’ambiente; tuttavia, secondo un’inchiesta realizzata da New Scientist, non è affatto sicuro che un mondo senza carne sarebbe più pulito. Questo, fermo restando che i 280 milioni di tonnellate di carne, 700 milioni di tonnellate di latte e 1,2 miliardi di uova consumati nel 2008 in tutto il mondo (dati Fao) hanno comportato un enorme costo per l’ambiente.

Infatti l’uso dei combustibili per i trattori, i pesticidi e i fertilizzanti immessi nei suoli, con la conseguente contaminazione delle acque, contribuiscono non poco all’inquinamento ambientale. A questi va poi ad aggiungersi l’enorme quantitativo di combustibile necessario per il trasporto della carne, l’erosione dei suoli causata dal calpestio degli animali, la distruzione di boschi e foreste per far posto ai pascoli e l’immissione di metano nell’atmosfera da parte degli animali da allevamento, oltre all’ingente quantità di grano necessaria per il loro nutrimento. Per non contare poi che l’uso massiccio di antibiotici nell’allevamento del bestiame rende i batteri più resistenti ad essi con ricadute negative sulla salute dell’uomo.

Ciononostante,  secondo la rivista scientifica, se tutti decidessimo di diventare vegetariani, questo comporterebbe ugualmente degli svantaggi: anzitutto verrebbero meno i sottoprodotti di origine animale, quali cuoio e lana che dovrebbero essere sostituiti con analoghi meno ecologici; il letame, invece, dovrebbe essere rimpiazzato con l’uso massiccio dei fertilizzanti artificiali con conseguenze deleterie sulla salute dell’uomo e dell’ambiente, mentre la produzione del latte diventerebbe impossibile. Un grave errore poi, sarebbe quello di eliminare dalla faccia della terra polli e maiali che per vivere non hanno bisogno di cereali ed emettono nell’aria quantità di anidride carbonica irrisorie rispetto alle mucche.

Inoltre, come sottolinea Tara Garnett, direttrice del Climate Research Network della University of Surrey in Guildford in Gran Bretagna:

I maiali sono una vera pattumiera dell’uomo moderno. Noi diamo loro i nostri avanzi e loro ci restituiscono carne. Un vantaggio che un mondo senza carne non avrebbe in alcun modo. Purtroppo oggi anche ad essi vengono dati cereali, commettendo un grave errore di sostenibilità.

Quel che è certo è che il mondo occidentale consuma troppa carne: tra il 1980 e il 2002 il consumo di carne pro capite nei paesi in via di sviluppo è raddoppiato fino a toccare i 28 kg all’anno e si prevede che salirà a 37 chilogrammi annui entro il 2030.

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