Our guest blogger today is Michael Broadhead, an IB Chemistry teacher at the Canadian International School, Lakeside campus in Singapore. But that barely begins to define the world of information he communicates to the world in his life as an eco-warrior.

Team Secondsguru first met him when he was conceptualizing and putting together the very first Earth Festival in Singapore in September 2015. A first-of-its-kind in our city, the event was created to encourage community-based sustainable and green living. It was a roaring success and was followed by the world’s first crowd-sourced film festival, the Earth Film Fest 2016, running  April 17 – 24 with over 250 participants in our tiny red dot.

Michael is also behind the open source carbon estimator which was launched on Earth Day 2016. Try the calculator out, makes you want to re-think of some key but simple life choices.

In addition , Michael has been Vegan for over 6 years and is an Exco member of the Vegetarian Society of Singapore. In his article below, he raises some pertinent points about the food choices we make in our daily life. He leaves our readers to decide how green can they be in their eating habits- realistically! We do not know how he manages to wear so many hats- clearly he gets extra hours in the day from mother Earth for all that he is giving back!

In his own words,

Food spectrum, vegan diet, meatless
How green is my food?

Around Earth Day (celebrated globally on April 22) we start wondering: what is the most effective daily change we can make to help the environment?  The answer, according to me, is simple: cut back on meat and dairy as much as you can.  In this post we explore how change really is on your plate.

1. A vegan diet has a lower carbon footprint than a meat diet.  Read more.
2. Animal agriculture produces more greenhouse gases than all transportation on the planet.  Read more.
3. Animal agriculture and the crops that support are the number one cause of rainforest deforestation worldwide.  Read more.
4. Animal agriculture is the number one cause of desertification.  Read more.
5. Overfishing has led to 3/4 of the world’s fisheries are exploited or depleted.  Read more.
6. Meat consumption, through driving deforestation, climate change, hunting, and overfishing is the number one driver of species extinction worldwide.  Read more.
7. A farm with 2,500 dairy cows produces the same amount of waste as a city of 411,000 people. This waste goes with little to no treatment before into waterways.
Read more.
8. A third of freshwater is going to animal agriculture.  Read more.
9. Livestock and livestock feed occupies over 1/3 of Earth’s ice-free land.  Read more.

When we choose to eat meat, we choose to support a system that is very destructive to the planet.  When we choose to eat more plant-based diets, our carbon, land and water footprints decrease significantly.  While vegan diets are the most sustainable, cutting back on meat and dairy consumption are also very effective.  For example, skipping one burger saves enough energy to charge your phone for 4.5 years!  That’s how impactful meat reduction is!  We suggest starting by looking at the food spectrum in this article and seeing where you are now and then setting one realistic goal for yourself to start with.

In Singapore we have resources on the Animal Allies website to help you meet your goal! From vegan ice-cream to burgers and pizza – there are more sustainable versions of your favorite foods here in Singapore! In fact, Singapore started the world’s first international vegan fast food chain: VeganBurg! Other chains like Subway, Soup Spoon and Cedele also have vegetarian and vegan options. Bookstores, websites and the library have lots of incredible vegan recipes from the world’s most experimental chefs. Plus websites and apps like Happy Cow make it easy to find vegetarian and vegan options.

So what are you waiting for?  Saving the planet is delicious!

If you want to learn more, we suggest the documentary Cowspiracy, which is available on Netflix and via request on the Animal Allies website. Just write to hello@animalallies.sg.

Related Articles:
Secondsguru’s favourite non-Indian vegetarian restaurants in Singapore

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2 Comments
  • Cool write up- I’ve always thought it’s particularly disappointing to see people claim they’re an environmentalist but still consume a large amount of animal products. Times seem to be changing though, especially with more education which is key to getting more people realise that their everyday habits can add up and change the world. We actually went into the stats of how much you save being vegan if you want to check it out!
    http://veggieathletic.com/veganism-saves-planet-facts-figures/

    • Hi Nat, went through Veggie Athletic and found it very informative and relevant! Thx for dropping by and sharing the wisdom 🙂

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