Factory farming's environmental damage

Farm animals, as well as wild animals, are suffering as cruel factory farming damages our planet, and we simply cannot afford to continue farming animals at the rate we currently do.

Agriculture is the third largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in Australia, most of which comes directly from animal agriculture.

Despite this, factory farming is often overlooked as one of the key culprits driving climate change.

Banner image: World Animal Protection / Noelly Castro

cattle in Australian feedlots
brazil fire

This worsens natural disasters such as droughts, floods and bushfires – which cause wild animals to lose their habitats and die agonising deaths.

To address these issues, it is vital to reconsider our approach to farming and develop a new food system that relies less on animals and is both more humane and sustainable.

Damage to our planet

cattle in Australian feedlots

High meat demand is causing irreversible damage to our planet

Food production is one of the main contributors to climate change and is estimated to be responsible for a third of all greenhouse gas emissions, with about 60% of these emissions coming from meat and dairy, and only 30% from plant-based foods.

Many people consume meat and animal products from fast food restaurants which mostly come from low-welfare and high-emissions farming systems. This is having devastating effects on the environment.

The effects of water consumption and land used to produce meat are significantly higher than its plant-based alternatives. We commissioned the report, Shifting the Menu from the Institute for Sustainable Futures at UTS. This report outlines the harmful effects of excess meat consumption on the environment and shows how much of a difference our food choices make on the environment and animals.

Switching to plant-based for as little as three days a week will help you make a meaningful difference to our planet and facilitate our transition to a low-emissions and high-welfare food system.

Banner image: Getty Images

Drone flyover of cattle feedlot
Burger on yellow background.

Wildlife habitats

brazil fire

Brazil forest fires: a human-made emergency from clearing land for livestock

The global livestock industry is the single largest cause of wildlife habitat destruction in the world. In 50 years the human population has more than doubled, increasing the demand for animal products, and the land area destined to produce animal feed, such as soy, has more than quadrupled.

As a result, it is not only the billions of farmed animals in the animal agriculture industry worldwide that suffer, but also wildlife. Right now, countless animals are dying from the horrific forest fires that rage in Brazil. These fires are also causing large parts of their habitats to disappear at a horrifying rate.

In 2021, it was estimated that 82% of the vast Encontro das Aguas National Park – home to one of the world's largest jaguar populations – burned down. This emergency is human-made and many of the fires were started deliberately to clear land for the livestock industry and animal feed.

Through your support, we worked with local partners to save and treat the wildlife in areas affected by the fires. We also fed them and transported them to mobile emergency clinics to heal their wounds and released them back to the wild when they were healed.