The Leicester Mercury – Africa

6 August 2008

Elizabeth Allison’s excellent letter (Mercury, July 31) tells us that more hungry people would have food if we all ate less meat. Quite right.

However, even with this measure, hunger and starvation is set to continue in sub-Saharan Africa. This is because effective family planning is not available in most countries in this region, and populations double repeatedly.

(In Sub-Saharan Africa, the population was 200 million in 1955, 400 million in 1981, 800 million in 2006, and is expected to rise to 1,600 million in 2050. And onwards from there. United Nations figures)

Millions across the world want to save lives; few are interested in providing effective family planning. Consequently, unless this can be changed, there will be extreme poverty, hunger, starvation, and water shortage in sub-Saharan Africa for the foreseeable future. Perhaps one of the aid agencies could take an interest?

Dr Gerald Danaher

Elizabeth Allison’s plea for us to eat less meat is re-enforced by this main front-page headline:

OBSERVER 7 SEPTEMBER 2008
UN SAYS EAT LESS MEAT TO CURB GLOBAL WARMING
The UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation has estimated that meat production accounts for nearly a fifth of global greenhouse gas emissions.

So, it seems that both those interested in global warming and those interested in alleviating poverty ought to aim at being vegetarians.

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