The problem is, of course, animals can’t flush. OK, OK, some YouTube animals can, but your average chicken or your average cow cannot, even if you’re raising her in the back yard. The other problem is when an animal plops, it doesn’t just sit there waiting for Mom or Dad to somehow clean it up.

Poop and pee tend to go places – rivers, lakes, oceans and, yes, into our precious groundwater. There is nothing quite like nitrates to mess up an otherwise great cup of free trade coffee.

Oh hell, what’s a few nitrates? A few? No problemo. Thing is, our “food animals” just in the United States produce 89,000 pounds of excrement every second. EVERY SECOND. And that’s according to the UN’s 2008 report, “Livestock’s Long Shadow.”

We’ve got way more crap than can be used as fertilizer.

The EPA has come up with the troubling factoid that fully 1/3 of the underground wells in the South fall below EPA safe standard for drinking water in the South. (Nitrates are very concentrated in chicken manure.)

Glad you don’t live in the South? Well, nitrates from the California dairy industry have fucked up 100,000 miles of ground water, according to the EPA.

The moral to this story is don’t eat meat, eggs, fish or dairy. Not eating fish is becoming easier though. In a 2005 National Geographic article John Roach wrote, “Factory farm runoff causes algal blooms which deprives water of oxygen which create “dead zones” where fish can’t survive.” The writer explained that the largest is where the Mississippi River empties into the Gulf of Mexico. That dead zone is now the size of New Jersey. It’s a big freaking dead zone.

Everybody talks about how vegans are thinner, how they don’t have to take statin drugs, how they don’t have heart attacks, how they’re racking up less bad karma, but the truth is, vegans are just a lot less messy.

— A Vicious Vegan blog post —

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