Sierra Magazine: Explore, enjoy and protect the planet.

From 2015 onward, new posts will appear only here: http://www.sierraclub.org/greenlife


The Green Life: A Meaty Uproar

« Movie Review Friday: The Last Lions | Main | Does Road Salt Harm the Environment? »

March 04, 2011

A Meaty Uproar

A meatless meal Hungry students at Bowdoin College were outraged last week when their dining services implemented Meatless Monday, a campaign to cut out meat one day per week to reduce dietary carbon footprints. Despite these students' carnivorious counter-campaign, which included holding a barbecue outside the dining hall, the national campaign has been gaining momentum.

More than 40 major universities are abstaining weekly, in addition to numerous hospitals, restaurants, schools, and entire school districts. Endorsers include the AARP, Al Gore, and Oprah Winfrey, who recently devoted an entire show to food-system issues and went vegan for a week.

Studies show that Monday is the ideal day to switch up a diet; the transition from the weekend to the work week serves as a natural break of routine. Environmentally speaking, each calorie of feedlot beef requires 40 calories of fossil-fuel energy to produce; the ratio for plant-based foods is much lower.

At Bowdoin, the anger was directed at the Bowdoin College Democrats who initiated the campaign, with some calling it an "assault on choice." A columnist for the student newspaper, The Bowdoin Orient, defended the idea by saying that the dining service decided on meat-free Mondays "not to advance the autocratic liberal bourgeois agenda (whatever that means)."

Tell us your opinion: Should students have to approve the choice to go meatless once a week?

--Rosie Spinks

User comments or postings reflect the opinions of the responsible contributor only, and do not reflect the viewpoint of the Sierra Club. The Sierra Club does not endorse or guarantee the accuracy of any posting. The Sierra Club accepts no obligation to review every posting, but reserves the right (but not the obligation) to delete postings that may be considered offensive, illegal or inappropriate.

Up to Top