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Climate Change Is Making the Ocean Warmer and Killing Wildlife. Here’s How You Can Help.

Just a couple of weeks ago, the Arctic Circle reached 90 degrees Fahrenheit, or 32 degrees Celsius. Record- and near-record-high temperatures have singed the northern hemisphere the entire summer, a clear consequence of overall rising global temperatures. But according to The Guardian, it’s not just the air that’s warming up; ocean temperatures are rising and it’s threatening marine life.

Earlier this month scientists recorded all-time-high seawater temperatures off the coast of California near San Diego. In fact, between 1982 and 2016, the number of “marine heatwaves has doubled, and experts expect this to become more common and intense as the planet continues to warm.

This warming will damage fragile underwater ecosystems like kelp forests and coral reefs and endanger countless fish species and other marine life. Over the past two years, consistent high temperatures off eastern Australia have killed as much as half of the shallow coral reefs in the Great Barrier Reef.

According to Thomas Frolicher, a climate scientist at the University of Bern in Switzerland, “This trend will only further accelerate with global warming. If we don’t take action now to curb carbon emissions, scientists warn the planet faces disastrous consequences—from intensified storms and rising sea levels to the extinction of millions of species. And while not everyone can afford an electric car or solar panels, there is something we can all do: go vegan.

You see, animal agriculture is one of the leading contributors to climate change. In fact, raising animals for food produces more greenhouse gases than all the cars, planes, and other forms of transportation combined. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, carbon dioxide emissions from raising farmed animals make up about 15 percent of global human-induced emissions, with beef and milk production as the leading culprits.

What’s more, a recent study from researchers at the University of Oxford found that ditching animal products could reduce your food carbon footprint by up to 73 percent. They also found that if everyone went vegan, global land use could be reduced by 75 percent. This would be comparable to the size of the United States, China, Australia, and the whole European Union combined. Let that sink in.

Similarly, a recent report from Farm Animal Investment Risk and Return found that the meat industry was jeopardizing the Paris climate agreement by failing to properly report its emissions, despite being the single largest contributor to climate change.

Since the majority of us are now on the same page when it comes to climate change, it’s time to acknowledge that there is no such thing as “sustainable meat. All the facts prove that plant-based alternatives to meat, dairy, and eggs take a mere fraction of the resources to produce.

But a vegan diet isn’t just good for the planet—it also spares countless animals a lifetime of misery at factory farms. Pigs, cows, chickens, and other farmed animals suffer horribly their entire lives. From birth to death, these innocent animals are caught in a nightmare: crated and caged, cut and burned, and brutally killed.

Don’t wait another minute to act on climate change. Join the millions of people helping protect farmed animals and the planet by switching to a vegan diet.

Click here to get started, and click here for our Pinterest page with hundreds of vegan recipes!