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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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T-Bird wrote:
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DirtMcGirt wrote:
I agree I should not be able to do something if it violates another person's property rights (either their self or their actual property). This includes pollution. However, our legal system is not limited to these situations.

You don't have to agree with me on this -- but you also don't have the right to interfere with me if I am not harming someone else.


You lost me with the second part, but it sounds like from what you say in the first paragraph your real problem isn't the idea of a tax but maybe what the government does with the tax revenue? (I'm guessing - you've kind of jumped around.)

If we can agree that people who by their actions cause harm to another should compensate the aggrieved (and a tax should be an effective way to do that), maybe the focus should be on how to improve the system so that these payments are better utilized to achieve their intended purpose.


If someone harms another, they should have to resolve it directly with the victim, not by using the tax system. That is an inefficient and corrupt way of solving a problem. I believe Dispute Resolution Organizations are a better way to handle this.

My main point is that we are not just taxed for these issues. Government also uses the tax system and legal system to compromise freedoms even if they do not harm another. This is wrong.

My point about disagreeing boils down to this. You may disagree with someone regarding say, a war. However, your belief does not mean that you should gather up a round of armed individuals who will force you to pay for a war you do not agree with at gunpoint.

Posted on: 2009/12/24 15:59
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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DirtMcGirt wrote:
I agree I should not be able to do something if it violates another person's property rights (either their self or their actual property). This includes pollution. However, our legal system is not limited to these situations.

You don't have to agree with me on this -- but you also don't have the right to interfere with me if I am not harming someone else.


You lost me with the second part, but it sounds like from what you say in the first paragraph your real problem isn't the idea of a tax but maybe what the government does with the tax revenue? (I'm guessing - you've kind of jumped around.)

If we can agree that people who by their actions cause harm to another should compensate the aggrieved (and a tax should be an effective way to do that), maybe the focus should be on how to improve the system so that these payments are better utilized to achieve their intended purpose.

Posted on: 2009/12/24 14:41
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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T-Bird wrote:
Who agrees with everything? I certainly don't, but that's life. Sure we live in a free society. That doesn't mean it's a society in which you and I are "free" to have things exactly the way we wants them, right? And I'm glad that there are "tyrannical" checks in place, as you put it. There are consequences to people's (sometimes selfish) actions that are borne by others (use of non-replenishable resources, pollution, health impacts) and costs associated with the remedies of those consequences. Why shouldn't the creator of the consequences bear at least some of the cost?


I agree I should not be able to do something if it violates another person's property rights (either their self or their actual property). This includes pollution. However, our legal system is not limited to these situations.

You don't have to agree with me on this -- but you also don't have the right to interfere with me if I am not harming someone else.

Posted on: 2009/12/24 14:18
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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Who agrees with everything? I certainly don't, but that's life. Sure we live in a free society. That doesn't mean it's a society in which you and I are "free" to have things exactly the way we wants them, right? And I'm glad that there are "tyrannical" checks in place, as you put it. There are consequences to people's (sometimes selfish) actions that are borne by others (use of non-replenishable resources, pollution, health impacts) and costs associated with the remedies of those consequences. Why shouldn't the creator of the consequences bear at least some of the cost?

Posted on: 2009/12/24 14:10
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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T-Bird wrote:
No one is talking about banning the consumption of carbon. Alcohol has an additional tax and consumption doesn't seem to be bothered by it. Same with gasoline. Why would a black market develop here? Especially when many of the items that would be taxed are not easily provided by non-traditional sources.


You?re right in that you can?t get around everything. And that wasn?t my point ? but your examples just suggest how tyrannical the system is. A few people decide what the rest of must do. What if I don?t agree?

Posted on: 2009/12/24 13:54
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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T-Bird wrote:
No one is talking about banning the consumption of carbon. Alcohol has an additional tax and consumption doesn't seem to be bothered by it. Same with gasoline. Why would a black market develop here? Especially when many of the items that would be taxed are not easily provided by non-traditional sources.


To get around the tax. Just like cigarettes.

Posted on: 2009/12/24 12:18
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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No one is talking about banning the consumption of carbon. Alcohol has an additional tax and consumption doesn't seem to be bothered by it. Same with gasoline. Why would a black market develop here? Especially when many of the items that would be taxed are not easily provided by non-traditional sources.

Posted on: 2009/12/24 11:21
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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T-Bird wrote:
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DirtMcGirt wrote:

Third option, black market.


I'm just pointing out what should happen, not what is.


You are very concerned about black markets - that was your answer on the gun thread too. Just so I understand - you are saying that when some sort of carbon tax is put on electricity, some guy with a big trench coat that contains a long extension cord will be standing on my corner, offering me cutrate power?[/quote]

What happened when we banned alcohol? Did alcohol consumption cease?

Posted on: 2009/12/24 5:43
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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CommanderKeen wrote:
WHEN HAVE YOU EVER HEARD OF SOMEONE HAVING A GUN POINTED AT THEM FOR NOT PAYING TAXES


If that doesn't happen, what happens instead? I've asked this direct question several times.

Posted on: 2009/12/24 5:42
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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DirtMcGirt wrote:

Third option, black market.


I'm just pointing out what should happen, not what is.[/quote]

You are very concerned about black markets - that was your answer on the gun thread too. Just so I understand - you are saying that when some sort of carbon tax is put on electricity, some guy with a big trench coat that contains a long extension cord will be standing on my corner, offering me cutrate power?

Posted on: 2009/12/24 4:46
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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stani wrote:
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bodhipooh wrote:

As for Stani, who said
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I'm sure the carbon footprint of humans is much bigger than that of dogs...


How do you KNOW this to be a fact? After all, you said that you are SURE. What makes you so sure?



Let see ...
1. Dogs don't commute to work (they don't drive cars either)
2. Dogs weigh less than humans (most of the time) and therefore consume less calories than humans (generally speaking it takes more carbon to produce and transport more calories worth of food)
3. Dogs life span is shorter than humans
4. Dogs don't erect complex structures (as in buildings), which requires carbon to do
5. Dogs don't go on planes, unless they're taken by humans,
6. Etc, etc

You get the point, I hope.


I get the point (not from you, but from carbon-taxers). I shouldn't drive, I should lose weight, I should die sooner, I should live in a hut and not travel so I don't create more carbon.

Posted on: 2009/12/23 15:32
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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bodhipooh wrote:

As for Stani, who said
Quote:

I'm sure the carbon footprint of humans is much bigger than that of dogs...


How do you KNOW this to be a fact? After all, you said that you are SURE. What makes you so sure?



Let see ...
1. Dogs don't commute to work (they don't drive cars either)
2. Dogs weigh less than humans (most of the time) and therefore consume less calories than humans (generally speaking it takes more carbon to produce and transport more calories worth of food)
3. Dogs life span is shorter than humans
4. Dogs don't erect complex structures (as in buildings), which requires carbon to do
5. Dogs don't go on planes, unless they're taken by humans,
6. Etc, etc

You get the point, I hope.

Posted on: 2009/12/23 15:22
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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2DogDoll wrote:
Global warming is a fraud. Climate change is something that is supposed to happen. Nature is about change not stability. Global temperatures have been going up and down since time began. Besides, humans contribute only .28% of total atmospheric carbon dioxide to the atmosphere. 95% of all greenhouse gases are produced by water vapor (given that most of the planet is covered by water, it makes sense.) And if you recall your biology classes, plants use carbon dioxide to grow and in growing, produce oxygen, something we all need to survive. Look at it this way: the more carbon dioxide, the bigger the plants. Bigger plants = more food. Food is a good thing. So is oxygen.

You want sources for ?climate change? as opposed to global warming? Look at the sun and the lack of sunspots for the past two years creating a global cooling. Want proof? Just look at the temperatures around the country and around the world. They are getting colder, not warmer. Not convinced? Look at the volcanos erupting under the oceans. They are getting more active and spewing tons of greenhouse gasses into the air. So much more than the carbon footprint produced by a dog, cat, or human for that matter.

You want to talk about real carbon footprints, look at the horrible wars we are engaged in. The Pentagon and the wars we are fighting create bigger carbon footprints than that produced by most developing nations. What are the carbon emissions from one fighter jet? One tank? Artillery?

With all this in play you focus on a dog?s carbon footprint??

Politicians seek to gain wealth and power and authority by taking something that occurs naturally, transforming it and promoting it as a crisis, and then selling the population a solution in exchange for higher taxes and increased authority over their lives. Al (B)ore is the world?s first ?carbon? billionaire. Doesn't that tell you something? Stop being so gullable.

I agree with Vigilante?if there is a choice between you and my dog ?.. you will most definitely loose.



Bravo 2DogDoll, Well said.

Posted on: 2009/12/23 3:58
"I swear by my life and my love of it that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine."

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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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Global warming is a fraud. Climate change is something that is supposed to happen. Nature is about change not stability. Global temperatures have been going up and down since time began. Besides, humans contribute only .28% of total atmospheric carbon dioxide to the atmosphere. 95% of all greenhouse gases are produced by water vapor (given that most of the planet is covered by water, it makes sense.) And if you recall your biology classes, plants use carbon dioxide to grow and in growing, produce oxygen, something we all need to survive. Look at it this way: the more carbon dioxide, the bigger the plants. Bigger plants = more food. Food is a good thing. So is oxygen.

You want sources for ?climate change? as opposed to global warming? Look at the sun and the lack of sunspots for the past two years creating a global cooling. Want proof? Just look at the temperatures around the country and around the world. They are getting colder, not warmer. Not convinced? Look at the volcanos erupting under the oceans. They are getting more active and spewing tons of greenhouse gasses into the air. So much more than the carbon footprint produced by a dog, cat, or human for that matter.

You want to talk about real carbon footprints, look at the horrible wars we are engaged in. The Pentagon and the wars we are fighting create bigger carbon footprints than that produced by most developing nations. What are the carbon emissions from one fighter jet? One tank? Artillery?

With all this in play you focus on a dog?s carbon footprint??

Politicians seek to gain wealth and power and authority by taking something that occurs naturally, transforming it and promoting it as a crisis, and then selling the population a solution in exchange for higher taxes and increased authority over their lives. Al (B)ore is the world?s first ?carbon? billionaire. Doesn't that tell you something? Stop being so gullable.

I agree with Vigilante?if there is a choice between you and my dog ?.. you will most definitely loose.

Posted on: 2009/12/23 3:27
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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I just knew that this article would result on pet-lovers going bonkers... As it is usually the case, the pet lovers will be up in arms by the "threat" of this article to their blind love of their particular pet. I love cats and dogs, and I think having pets is very beneficial to the human spirit and our overall well-being, but I loathe some people's attitude and misguided love and devotion for their pets. If you stop to think about what article's claims, it is all very plausible. Don't blind yourself to what you would like to believe.

To o73o2, who said,
Quote:

last time i checked, stockholm was in sweden and not in the uk, but with this ongoing integration in europe, who knows how the maps change?


Stop blasting your ignorance... The Stockholm Environment Institute is a global organization with offices and locations in a variety of places. York is one such place. They also have three offices in the US.

As for Stani, who said
Quote:

I'm sure the carbon footprint of humans is much bigger than that of dogs...


How do you KNOW this to be a fact? After all, you said that you are SURE. What makes you so sure?

As much as so many of you would like to believe so, your dog is not your son, or your daughter, nor are they above human life. They are animals that we choose to keep as companions (in the best of cases) and whose presence enriches our own lives.

Posted on: 2009/12/23 0:51
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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GrovePath wrote:
Polluting pets: the devastating impact of man's best friend

by Isabelle Toussaint and Jurgen Hecker
Sun Dec 20, 2009


To confirm the results, the New Scientist magazine asked John Barrett at the Stockholm Environment Institute in York, Britain, to calculate eco-pawprints based on his own data. The results were essentially the same.

last time i checked, stockholm was in sweden and not in the uk, but with this ongoing integration in europe, who knows how the maps change?

Posted on: 2009/12/22 22:29
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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shakatah wrote:
Relax VVP, I don't think anyone is suggesting killing all dogs. I just think it is interesting that all the comments attempted to attack, belittle, or completely dismiss the argument instead of thinking about it. You did the same by saying that "there's no validity to this argument".

This is not an argument about what is man made or living as there are things that are man made that are absolutely necessary to the way we live today, like the car. Btw one could argue that man created all these dog breeds by domesticating and breeding previously wild animals to suit our needs..from herding cattle to having the biggest most adorable puppy dog eyes, softest coat, non-shedding coat, etc..

When I read the article it made me curious to read the book, made me think about what humans really need to survive on this planet and the last time I wondered why the hell someone not in construction or part of a security detail is driving a suburban in the middle of a city but don't recall ever thinking about the footprint of the lady down the block with 3 dogs.

Also, do you ever notice that a majority of green building/architecture magazine articles which feature people who are very much into their carbon footprint in many, many instances feature the family pet in the photos?

If the article is correct and a dog=2 SUVs, how ironic is that and try to imagine the same article with the 2 SUVs in place of the family dog in the pictorial.


When this article first came out, I read a few responses. The most coherent take issue with the fact that the study authors assume that a medium-sized dog eats twice as much as a human - which seems unlikely - and don't account for emissions by either dog or car.

I'm also not clear about whether meat for dog food is produced separately from meat for human food. I always thought that most of the meat in dog food was a by-product of producing human food. This would mean that dog food doesn't really become a problem until most humans become vegetarians.

I think the real issue is that things don't cost what they cost. Gas is still pretty cheap in the US. Meat is cheap (look at a McD's hamburger). The environmental (not to mention geopolitical) costs of producing these things aren't factored into the price at the cash register. I think telling people they shouldn't drive SUVs or own dogs just makes them angry. Making them pay the real cost of ownership is probably a better way to change behavior (and I eat meat, own a dog, and keep a car even though I live close to public transportation).

Posted on: 2009/12/22 18:35
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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VVP_Ralph wrote:
I'm sure cows are the worst. I think there's no validity to this argument because they are LIVING creatures. Man has created the SUV. Are you suggesting we kill all dogs? I really don't understand the point of this at all. Do humans leave a bigger carbon footprint than dogs? I'm sure. So what do you suggest. This is all nonsense.


I'm sure the carbon footprint of humans is much bigger than that of dogs. Just like SUV's man creates other men (and women), so you follow the argument to its logical conclusion.

Posted on: 2009/12/22 18:28
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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Relax VVP, I don't think anyone is suggesting killing all dogs. I just think it is interesting that all the comments attempted to attack, belittle, or completely dismiss the argument instead of thinking about it. You did the same by saying that "there's no validity to this argument".

This is not an argument about what is man made or living as there are things that are man made that are absolutely necessary to the way we live today, like the car. Btw one could argue that man created all these dog breeds by domesticating and breeding previously wild animals to suit our needs..from herding cattle to having the biggest most adorable puppy dog eyes, softest coat, non-shedding coat, etc..

When I read the article it made me curious to read the book, made me think about what humans really need to survive on this planet and the last time I wondered why the hell someone not in construction or part of a security detail is driving a suburban in the middle of a city but don't recall ever thinking about the footprint of the lady down the block with 3 dogs.

Also, do you ever notice that a majority of green building/architecture magazine articles which feature people who are very much into their carbon footprint in many, many instances feature the family pet in the photos?

If the article is correct and a dog=2 SUVs, how ironic is that and try to imagine the same article with the 2 SUVs in place of the family dog in the pictorial.

Posted on: 2009/12/22 18:05
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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VVP_Ralph wrote:
I'm sure cows are the worst. I think there's no validity to this argument because they are LIVING creatures. Man has created the SUV. Are you suggesting we kill all dogs? I really don't understand the point of this at all. Do humans leave a bigger carbon footprint than dogs? I'm sure. So what do you suggest. This is all nonsense.


We could neuter all dogs so they don't birth any more carbon-producing critters.

You're right, it's all nonsense. Not just the dog part, though.

Posted on: 2009/12/22 17:47
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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i bet pit bulls are twice as bad as normal dogs..

Posted on: 2009/12/22 17:37
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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I'm sure cows are the worst. I think there's no validity to this argument because they are LIVING creatures. Man has created the SUV. Are you suggesting we kill all dogs? I really don't understand the point of this at all. Do humans leave a bigger carbon footprint than dogs? I'm sure. So what do you suggest. This is all nonsense.

Posted on: 2009/12/22 17:28
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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wow. Still not one response addressing the merits of the argument, i.e. what does it mean when a dog or cat pollutes more than the gas guzzling SUVs that cause so much trouble?

Or even better, when we rage against car owning people who pollute city air and contribute to global warming while we live in the middle of that same city with two dogs and a cat, each of which is twice as bad as 1 SUV, how do we wrap our head around it all (Carbon footprint of pets, dog poop polluting waterways and poisoning wildlife, killing wildlife, etc..)?

We are such a pet loving society that this report will go absolutely nowhere and will likely lead to no major studies nor cultural shifts, but nonetheless is a very interesting conversation to have.

Posted on: 2009/12/22 17:06
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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trambone wrote:
Who drives that little. Most people drive at least double that making the footprint equal.


It's just giving the carbon taxers some perspective.

Posted on: 2009/12/22 16:56
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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Who drives that little. Most people drive at least double that making the footprint equal.

Posted on: 2009/12/22 16:39
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Re: Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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I'll take a German Shepard over an SUV anyday.

Posted on: 2009/12/22 16:20
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Carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling SUV
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Polluting pets: the devastating impact of man's best friend

by Isabelle Toussaint and Jurgen Hecker
Sun Dec 20, 2009

PARIS (AFP) – Man's best friend could be one of the environment's worst enemies, according to a new study which says the carbon pawprint of a pet dog is more than double that of a gas-guzzling sports utility vehicle.

But the revelation in the book "Time to Eat the Dog: The Real Guide to Sustainable Living" by New Zealanders Robert and Brenda Vale has angered pet owners who feel they are being singled out as troublemakers.

The Vales, specialists in sustainable living at Victoria University of Wellington, analysed popular brands of pet food and calculated that a medium-sized dog eats around 164 kilos (360 pounds) of meat and 95 kilos of cereal a year.

Combine the land required to generate its food and a "medium" sized dog has an annual footprint of 0.84 hectares (2.07 acres) -- around twice the 0.41 hectares required by a 4x4 driving 10,000 kilometres (6,200 miles) a year, including energy to build the car.

To confirm the results, the New Scientist magazine asked John Barrett at the Stockholm Environment Institute in York, Britain, to calculate eco-pawprints based on his own data. The results were essentially the same.

"Owning a dog really is quite an extravagance, mainly because of the carbon footprint of meat," Barrett said.

Other animals aren't much better for the environment, the Vales say.

Cats have an eco-footprint of about 0.15 hectares, slightly less than driving a Volkswagen Golf for a year, while two hamsters equates to a plasma television and even the humble goldfish burns energy equivalent to two mobile telephones.

But Reha Huttin, president of France's 30 Million Friends animal rights foundation says the human impact of eliminating pets would be equally devastating.

"Pets are anti-depressants, they help us cope with stress, they are good for the elderly," Huttin told AFP.

"Everyone should work out their own environmental impact. I should be allowed to say that I walk instead of using my car and that I don't eat meat, so why shouldn't I be allowed to have a little cat to alleviate my loneliness?"

Sylvie Comont, proud owner of seven cats and two dogs -- the environmental equivalent of a small fleet of cars -- says defiantly, "Our animals give us so much that I don't feel like a polluter at all.

"I think the love we have for our animals and what they contribute to our lives outweighs the environmental considerations.

"I don't want a life without animals," she told AFP.

And pets' environmental impact is not limited to their carbon footprint, as cats and dogs devastate wildlife, spread disease and pollute waterways, the Vales say.

With a total 7.7 million cats in Britain, more than 188 million wild animals are hunted, killed and eaten by feline predators per year, or an average 25 birds, mammals and frogs per cat, according to figures in the New Scientist.

Likewise, dogs decrease biodiversity in areas they are walked, while their faeces cause high bacterial levels in rivers and streams, making the water unsafe to drink, starving waterways of oxygen and killing aquatic life.

And cat poo can be even more toxic than doggy doo -- owners who flush their litter down the toilet ultimately infect sea otters and other animals with toxoplasma gondii, which causes a killer brain disease.

But despite the apocalyptic visions of domesticated animals' environmental impact, solutions exist, including reducing pets' protein-rich meat intake.

"If pussy is scoffing 'Fancy Feast' -- or some other food made from choice cuts of meat -- then the relative impact is likely to be high," said Robert Vale.

"If, on the other hand, the cat is fed on fish heads and other leftovers from the fishmonger, the impact will be lower."

Other potential positive steps include avoiding walking your dog in wildlife-rich areas and keeping your cat indoors at night when it has a particular thirst for other, smaller animals' blood.

As with buying a car, humans are also encouraged to take the environmental impact of their future possession/companion into account.

But the best way of compensating for that paw or clawprint is to make sure your animal is dual purpose, the Vales urge. Get a hen, which offsets its impact by laying edible eggs, or a rabbit, prepared to make the ultimate environmental sacrifice by ending up on the dinner table.

"Rabbits are good, provided you eat them," said Robert Vale.

Posted on: 2009/12/22 15:37
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