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Title Eating green : valuing the environmental impacts of dietary choices
Author Shephard, Courtney Marin
Department Department of Economics and Business
Institution Colorado College
Degree Type bachelor
Degree Name Bachelor of Arts
Type of Resource text
Digital Origin reformatted digital
Date Accepted 2009
Date Digitized 2009
Abstract Anthropocentric action is the dominant force behind accelerating environmental deterioration and climate change well above historical levels. Personal consumption habits are a significant contributor to rapid environmental devastation. The average diet of developed nations emphasizes animal protein consumption, particularly meat products from cattle, pigs, and chicken, as well as milk and eggs. The industrialized and highly concentrated primary crop and livestock production processes in the United States emit a large percentage of greenhouse gases, contribute to over-exploitation of increasingly scarce water resources, and erode soil. Environmental externalities, such as these, are not currently accounted in consumer prices for animal products. The effects of this market failure are multiplying as developing nations industrialize and begin to adopt the consumption habits of the developed nations. This thesis examines the impact of livestock production in the United States, beginning with crop production and processing for feed, and ending with slaughter and processing. The greenhouse gas emissions, water use, and soil erosion costs are identified, incorporated into current market prices in the form of a demand-side Pigouvian tax, and compared to current market prices. By assessing three significant environmental externalities and determining a conservative estimate of the respective costs of these externalities, this research demonstrates both the failure of the neoclassical market structure to account for the true price of livestock production, and the impact that personal dietary choices make on the global environment.
Keywords Environment
Diet
Agriculture
Rights Statement Copyright restrictions apply. Contact the author for permission to publish.
Extent 99 p. : ill. (some col.) ; 29 cm.
Note (thesis) Senior Thesis -- Colorado College
Note (bibliography) Bibliography : p. 95-99
Language eng
OCLC Identifier 436878533
Handle http://hdl.handle.net/10176/coccc:1358
 
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