- Science

Eating insects is better for the environment than vegetarian eating dairy products

Reuters September 17, citing Johns Hopkins Center for Living Prospective (USA), showed that eating insects, small fish and mollusks has as little impact on the environment as on a vegetarian diet, while being full. More nutritious.

Scientists have found that a diet in which meat, fish, and dairy products are eaten daily is less likely to cause climate change and consume water than a diet consisting of eggs and milk alone. .

This is because raising cows for milk, butter and cheese requires a lot of land, energy, pesticides, herbicides and the production of greenhouse gases that make the Earth warm.

The study was based on the amount of clean water used and the amount of greenhouse gases emitted from nine different diets in 140 countries and territories. These diets range from one meat-free day a week, or no red meat, to a non-terrestrial animal-based diet and a plant-only diet.

Another study published in July showed that eating ants, grasshoppers and silkworms may help fight cancer. Tests have shown that these insects are rich in antioxidants and some species are 5 times higher than orange juice.

In the past, many scientists and activists called for a switch to a plant-based diet to curb climate change and reduce deforestation, as red meat production requires a lot of grass land and feed ingredients. .

According to a report last month by the United Nations Science Commission, agriculture, forestry and other land-use activities account for nearly a quarter of all anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions between 2007 and 2016.

However, according to lead researcher Keeve Nachman at Johns Hopkins University, there is no standard model that is suitable for everyone.

In low- and middle-income countries like Indonesia, people need to eat a lot of animal protein to get enough nutrition.

The study concludes that greenhouse gas emissions and water use in poor countries may increase to reduce hunger and malnutrition, while high-income countries should reduce their consumption of meat, eggs and dairy products.

On average, the process of raising, processing to serve beef causes greenhouse gas emissions 115 times more for nuts and 40 times higher than for soybeans, the study noted.

Why is it only 0.04% of the atmosphere, but CO2 is still the main cause of global warming?

Environmental science often tells us that one of the main culprits of global warming is the increasing amount of CO2 (carbon dioxide) caused by human activities. CO2 creates a greenhouse effect, preventing heat from the Sun from escaping into space, turning the Earth into a true furnace.

But you know what, this is a paradox. CO2 is only a very small fraction of the atmosphere – about 0.041%. Note, not 4%, not 0.4%, but 0.04%. In which, up to 32% is created by humans.

So why is it that only 0.04% of CO2 has such a big impact on the Earth’s climate?

Preliminary greenhouse effect
In fact, scientists who first discovered the role of CO2 in the climate in 1850 were also surprised by its influence. John Tyndall from the United Kingdom and Eunice Foote from the United States, two scientists with two independent studies have found that in the atmosphere only CO2, water vapor and methane (CH4) are capable of absorbing heat. Most other gases do not have this function.

In the study, experts found that the Earth is hotter than its recommended temperature to 33oC, based on planetary heat from the Sun. This means that there must be something that can hold that heat, and make the whole planet heat up.

Tyndall and Foote’s research shows that in Earth’s atmosphere, nitrogen (nitrogen) and oxygen account for a total of 99%, and there is no sign that they affect the planet’s temperature. Instead, it is a gas with a much lower concentration, which produces the greenhouse effect, making the Earth a warm enough place to sustain life for the creatures.

And that is CO2 – the “blanket” that covers the planet’s atmosphere
The Earth – like many other planets in the universe, receives energy from its host star (the Sun) and reflects them back into space. If nothing works, then the heat received and reflected will be balanced.

The sun is hot, very hot, so the energy generated will be shortwave radiation waves. The earth is cooler, so when reflected, energy takes the form of long wavelengths. And this is where CO2 enters the story.

CO2 and heat-absorbing gases like methane possess a molecular structure that allows absorption of infrared radiation. The bond between their atoms can vibrate at a certain frequency, and when exposed to the energy from light photons with the corresponding frequency, the energy will be absorbed and transferred into the gas molecule.

More importantly, these gases are made up of more than three atoms, so absorb the infrared emitted from the Earth. Oxygen, nitrogen, both have only two atoms, so this can’t be done.

In a nutshell our story is: the short-wavelength energy from the Sun passes through the atmosphere to reach the ground, reflected back but absorbed by CO2. Part of that heat is returned to the surface of the Earth, and makes our planet warm.

The growing role of CO2 – Everything changed millions of years ago
During the Cold War, the possibility of carbon dioxide was increasingly clarified. More research is being done, allowing science to understand the climate and atmosphere of other planets in the solar system. Venus, for example, has the hottest surface temperature in the solar system – up to 470 degrees Celsius, though not near the sun, because the atmosphere is 96.5 percent CO2.

It is a fact that steam can hold heat more than CO2, but the effect is not much. This is because the Earth’s upper atmosphere, which controls the amount of radiation released into space, possesses a thin layer of gas and less water vapor. Here, only CO2 is the voice, not any other gas.

CO2 is important, and its importance is reflected in past data. Evidence from the eternal ice core shows that millions of years ago, when the Earth warmed, CO2 concentration was about 0.028%. During the ice ages, the concentration is only 0.018%.

Small but martial, extremely terrible effect
CO2 accounts for just over 0.04% of the atmosphere, but it has a huge impact. The thing is, is this really worth the surprise? Don’t we often take a tiny pill and expect it to cause changes in our body?

At the present time, the concentration of CO2 in the Earth’s atmosphere is higher than any other period in history, and the main responsibility lies with people. It is estimated that the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere could reach 0.1% by 2100, which is three times the amount of emissions before the Industrial Revolution. Obviously, the consequences will be great.

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