A new study has found that approximately two-thirds of the global population faces severe water scarcity for at least one month each year. This totals 4 billion people without a reliable source of fresh water.
In addition to climate change and our growing population, our meat-heavy diets play a significant role in water shortages. Direct water consumption by animals used to produce meat and watering crops used to feed them makes animal agriculture an incredibly thirsty industry. “About one-third of the world water consumption is for producing animal products. Their water footprint is larger than that of crop products with equivalent nutritional value,” states Arjen Hoekstra, a lead researcher, in an article by TakePart.com.