Fight climate change by eating meat, Ottawa farmers say

By Laura Osman, CBC News Ottawa, August 15, 2019

Farmers say people can still take a bite out of climate change while eating red meat, pushing back against global headlines calling for major changes to the world's farming and eating habits.

A UN report released last week left people hungry to know more about what they should eat if they want to help curb the climate crisis. Although it stopped short of explicitly advocating switching to a vegan or vegetarian diet, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change recommended reducing meat consumption.

"It hurts my soul to hear that we're viewing red meat as detrimental to climate change," said Ottawa farmer Amber Payne. "I look at it as a solution to fix many global problems."

Payne is one of a number of small-scale "regenerative farmers" who believe that raising grass-fed cattle can actually help reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

"We use animals here as tools on the land to capture the carbon and store it in the ground," Payne said.

Carbon capture, as it's called, involves keeping plant life healthy so it can pull carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and into the soil, trapping it underground.

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