Originally posted on http://blog.soylent.com/post/173242251912.

The Earth is big, and we humans are small. We knowingly live on the most vulnerable planet is modern history, yet visualizing our individual responsibility can still be a challenge. But our actions matter.

Everything matters in a world made of matter. Especially in today’s postmodern world, seemingly inconsequential decisions can have the most profound, lasting effect.

This Earth Day, we’d like you to consider one small decision you can make right now that will add up to a lasting, positive impact for our world:

Enjoy one sustainable, plant-based meal.

Here’s why:

Population growth is outpacing food production. Nearly half of the Earth’s arable land is dedicated to agriculture, 70% of which is dedicated to livestock. Since we haven’t yet located a backup Earth, we will need a backup plan. Even though agricultural productivity is increasing, many experts believe that population growth will outpace food output within the foreseeable future.

The gorilla in the room is a cow. Our favorite foods like beef and dairy are the biggest contributors to pollution, water usage, waste and carbon emissions.

Old Bessie loves water

Did you know that about half of America’s water usage goes toward raising animals for food? One pound of beef requires 1,800 gallons of water (1)! That’s right, Old Bessie drinks up three Olympic swimming pools during her lifespan. Today’s modernized water cycle has an incredible impact on the planet. After Bessie drinks and excretes it, it gets transported, purified and transported again and again. Meanwhile, water usage per pound for most plants, especially scientifically developed seed and legume crops is a fraction of that.

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