Oxford University Professor: Tax Meat to Reduce Climate Change and Obesity

Oxford Trinity College High Table
One of Oxford University’s Famous Feasts. Oxford Trinity College High Table. By Winky from Oxford, UK (Flickr) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

According to Dr Marco Springmann, from the Nuffield Department of Population Health at Oxford University, driving up the price of meat will save lives and slow climate change.

Meat tax could save thousands of lives and slash healthcare costs

Although the tax would push up the price of burgers, sausages and mince, scientists are calling on governments to consider it.

A tax on meat could prevent almost 6,000 deaths a year in the UK and save the economy more than £700m in healthcare costs, according to researchers.

A study has found meat taxes could save an estimated 220,000 lives globally by 2020 and reduce healthcare costs by £30.7bn.

Although the tax would massively push up the price of burgers, sausages, mince and steak, scientists behind the study called on all governments to consider imposing it.

Lead researcher Dr Marco Springmann, from the Nuffield Department of Population Health at Oxford University, said: “The consumption of red and processed meat exceeds recommended levels in most high and middle-income countries.

“This is having significant impacts not only on personal health, but also on healthcare systems, which are taxpayer-funded in many countries, and on the economy, which is losing its labour force due to ill health and care for family members who fall ill.

“I hope that governments will consider introducing a health levy on red and processed meat as part of a range of measures to make healthy and sustainable decision-making easier for consumers.

A health levy on red and processed meat would not limit choices, but send a powerful signal to consumers and take pressure off our healthcare systems.”

Read more: https://news.sky.com/story/meat-tax-could-save-thousands-of-lives-and-slash-healthcare-costs-11547012

The abstract of the study;

Health-motivated taxes on red and processed meat: A modelling study on optimal tax levels and associated health impacts

Marco Springmann , Daniel Mason-D’Croz, Sherman Robinson, Keith Wiebe, H. Charles J. Godfray, Mike Rayner, Peter Scarborough

Published: November 6, 2018



The consumption of red and processed meat has been associated with increased mortality from chronic diseases, and as a result, it has been classified by the World Health Organization as carcinogenic (processed meat) and probably carcinogenic (red meat) to humans. One policy response is to regulate red and processed meat consumption similar to other carcinogens and foods of public health concerns. Here we describe a market-based approach of taxing red and processed meat according to its health impacts.


We calculated economically optimal tax levels for 149 world regions that would account for (internalize) the health costs associated with ill-health from red and processed meat consumption, and we used a coupled modelling framework to estimate the impacts of optimal taxation on consumption, health costs, and non-communicable disease mortality. Health impacts were estimated using a global comparative risk assessment framework, and economic responses were estimated using international data on health costs, prices, and price elasticities.


The health-related costs to society attributable to red and processed meat consumption in 2020 amounted to USD 285 billion (sensitivity intervals based on epidemiological uncertainty (SI), 93–431), three quarters of which were due to processed meat consumption. Under optimal taxation, prices for processed meat increased by 25% on average, ranging from 1% in low-income countries to over 100% in high-income countries, and prices for red meat increased by 4%, ranging from 0.2% to over 20%. Consumption of processed meat decreased by 16% on average, ranging from 1% to 25%, whilst red meat consumption remained stable as substitution for processed meat compensated price-related reductions. The number of deaths attributable to red and processed meat consumption decreased by 9% (222,000; SI, 38,000–357,000), and attributable health costs decreased by 14% (USD 41 billion; SI, 10–57) globally, in each case with greatest reductions in high and middle-income countries.


Including the social health cost of red and processed meat consumption in the price of red and processed meat could lead to significant health and environmental benefits, in particular in high and middle-income countries. The optimal tax levels estimated in this study are context-specific and can complement the simple rules of thumb currently used for setting health-motivated tax levels.

Read more: https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0204139

Naturally by environmental benefits, the study authors mean climate benefits.


We used a coupled modelling framework to calculate optimal tax levels for red and processed meat and the associated health and climate change impacts in the year 2020 for 149 world regions (Fig 1). Our calculation included several steps. First, we estimated the health impacts associated with the current and projected consumption levels of red and processed meat. Second, we estimated the health costs associated with those health impacts. Third, we repeated that calculation for a scenario in which we increased red and processed meat consumption by a marginal increase which we take to be one additional serving per day in each region. (Note that we are interested in the change in mortality and health costs per marginal increase in consumption. Because the dose-response functions we use are linear and we divide over the marginal increase when levying the damage costs on baseline prices, it does not matter what we define as marginal.) Fourth, we calculated the marginal health costs of red and processed meat consumption by subtracting the cost estimates of the two scenarios. Fifth, we levied the marginal health costs per marginal change in consumption onto the initial market prices of red and processed meat in each region, and calculated the impacts of those price changes on consumption levels, health impacts, and health costs.

Livestock-related emissions are responsible for the majority of food-related greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions, and for about 14.5% of GHG emissions overall, a similar proportion as from transport [39,40]. Consumption changes towards lower red and processed meat consumption could therefore have major implications for climate change. In a sensitivity analysis, we analysed the potential changes in food-related emissions using emissions intensities of foods obtained from meta-analyses of life-cycle analyses (section A6 in S1 File). We note that the emissions intensities do not account for changes in production methods and technologies that might be associated with changes in consumption. In this static framework, we found that optimal taxation could reduce food-related GHG emissions by 109 MtCO2-eq (CI, 50–139), most of which due to reduced beef consumption (Table A18 in S1 File). The change in emissions represents a reduction of 1.2% globally, ranging from less than one percent (0.6 MtCO2-eq) in low-income countries to 3% (62 MtCO2-eq) in high-income countries, and up to 7% in individual countries (Tables A19-A20 in S1 File).

Read more: (Same link as above)

Meat taxes would brutally regressive. Comfortable middle class professors like Dr. Springman probably have nothing to fear from a meat tax, but energy poverty is a very problem in Britain, with millions of people being forced every winter to choose between heating and eating, and sometimes dying because they run out of options.

Dr. Springman might believe there are affordable alternatives to meat, but this isn’t always the case. The City of Oxford might have lots of vegan stores and specialty shops offering a wide variety of non meat protein, but there are many, many regions of Britain where choices are limited and money is in very short supply.

One winter in Britain I helped an elderly neighbour, when I saw him risking his life hobbling through the ice towards the local store to pick up a few essentials, after being snowbound for a week. His wife was terrified of him going out, but they had run out of food. Lets just say there wasn’t a lot of choice on offer when I visited the local store on their behalf.

If these proposed meat taxes are imposed, I strongly suspect far more people will die from starvation and exposure, than any lives saved due to reduced fat intake or whatever.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Patrick MJD
November 8, 2018 4:46 am

Isn’t taxing air enough?

Reply to  Patrick MJD
November 8, 2018 7:46 am

If you drive a car
I’ll tax the street.
If you try to sit,
I’ll tax your seat.
If you get too cold,
I’ll tax the heat.
If you take a walk,
I’ll tax your feet.

The Beatles – Taxman.


Reply to  schitzree
November 8, 2018 12:22 pm

Ban all morons who believe that coerced social engineering is a good thing.
Stop trying to save the world until you clean up your own room first.

Zig Zag Wanderer
Reply to  schitzree
November 8, 2018 1:18 pm

Let me tell you how it will be
There’s one for you, nineteen for me
‘Cause I’m the taxman, yeah, I’m the taxman

Should five per cent appear too small
Be thankful I don’t take it all
‘Cause I’m the taxman, yeah I’m the taxman

They were a little upset to discover that the highest tax rate in the UK at the time was 95%, understandably so.

In my experience the UK has some of the highest prices for meat in the world. About 15 years ago I was saying to people out shopping that (AU) $70 a kilo for rib eye steak (probably the most expensive cut) was a bit steep, when it was pointed out to me that this was £70 a kilo, at the time AU$168.

In Oz the same cut was $50 a kilo. It’s no coincidence that Australia produces some of the largest people, and places like Japan some of the smallest. It’s all about the meat in the diet.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
November 9, 2018 9:08 am

It really isn’t. About the meat in the diet, that is. Our bodies prefer to burn protein for energy and store carbohydrates as fat for the lean times, a relic of our hunter-gatherer heritage. It’s why the Atkins and Paleo diets are successful. And by diet, I mean a change in eating habits, not just get on the plan for a couple of months.

Curious George
Reply to  Patrick MJD
November 8, 2018 9:08 am

Tax meat? Ban it! For a common good.

Reply to  Curious George
November 8, 2018 9:27 am

Ban all vegans and greens

For the common good!

Reply to  Leo Smith
November 8, 2018 4:35 pm

Just don’t ban onions — I love food on my onions.

I'll find my own label
Reply to  Curious George
November 18, 2018 3:51 am

People like Curious George are the reason why I, as a left-leaning voter, refuse to vote.

Allan MacRae
Reply to  Patrick MJD
November 8, 2018 10:07 am

Instead, let’s tax political dishonesty. It would be like a tax on alcohol and tobacco – a Vice tax.

Every time the political left stated a falsehood in any speech or article that would be taxed $1000 per falsehood. The same would apply to rightist falsehoods.

After a few years the accumulated money would be enough to pay off the national debt. It would be noted that the fines paid by leftists would greatly exceed the fines paid by rightists by one or more orders of magnitude.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Allan MacRae
November 8, 2018 11:06 am

“Instead, let’s tax political dishonesty.”

We could balance the budget doing that.

Joe Wagner
Reply to  Tom Abbott
November 8, 2018 12:37 pm

Balance? The Government would make a hefty profit!

Zig Zag Wanderer
Reply to  Allan MacRae
November 8, 2018 1:22 pm

Instead, let’s tax political dishonesty.

How about this proposal :

Execute any politician who fails to deliver what they promise in campaigns.

There would be a lot fewer promises, and a lot more doings. And probably a lot fewer politicians. What’s not to like?

Pop Piasa
Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
November 8, 2018 7:29 pm

Let’s not go there, friend.
Only extremists execute those who don’t meet their personally designated goals. We don’t want to promote that sort solution here. I believe the moderator will agree.

Tom in Florida
November 8, 2018 4:46 am

“from the Nuffield Department…”

from the Nuttfield Department…… seems more appropriate.

Reply to  Tom in Florida
November 8, 2018 8:28 am

How do these ignorant jerks get into such positions of supposed academic authority?

It is not meat that makes you fat it’s carbs. If you go on a meat only diet you will quickly loose weight.

Tom in Florida
Reply to  Greg
November 8, 2018 8:47 am

I would add that the modern lifestyle of lots of chair sitting and minimal exercise is a likely suspect in fatness.

A fellow named Covert Bailey had it right in his 1978 book “Fit or Fat”. He preached that if you become physically fit and stay that way the weight will take care of itself.

Reply to  Tom in Florida
November 8, 2018 12:27 pm

He also notice that fat people have the longest arms, in that they will extend their reach to grab at something rather than move their corpulent bodies 10 inches closer to the object they are attempting to reach.

James Beaver
Reply to  Tom in Florida
November 9, 2018 7:20 am

Exactly. People with more muscle mass burn more calories even when sitting idle.

Eating simple carbohydrates in the evening exacerbates the problem.

Reply to  Greg
November 8, 2018 9:29 am

Bingo. They should have included a biochemist in their research, or someone whose area of expertise isn’t “Climatology”, which seems every bit as scientific as astrology.

Reply to  KaliforniaKook
November 8, 2018 4:23 pm


Articles: about 984
Search results: reducing meat consumption.

Consider where this tripe comes from?

Reply to  Barbara
November 9, 2018 3:53 pm

UNEP Document Repository

Search results: meat consumption climate change, 5 articles.

Reply to  Greg
November 8, 2018 9:34 am

It’s not meat or carbs.

It’s excess food intake into a body with minimum muscle engagement.

Reply to  Robert Kernodle
November 10, 2018 4:11 pm

My rules to eat by,

Rule 0: Don’t eat when you aren’t hungry.
Rule 1: Eat when you are hungry.
Rule 2: Stop eating when you are full.
Rule 3: Eat what appeals to you.
Rule 4: Try new foods that may appeal to you.

I expect most people with weight problems have not made it past rule zero.

Richard of NZ
Reply to  Tom in Florida
November 8, 2018 10:49 am

I wonder if this “professor” realises that his department would not even exist without the philanthropy of one of the great “polluters” of the world. Herbert Morris was his benefactor, but Herbert produced cars by the million in a period when they were polluting.

Michael Ozanne
Reply to  Tom in Florida
November 9, 2018 5:29 am

Bear in mind that Lord Nuffield i.e Bill Morris was the man who introduced mass production of Motor vehicles to Britain…

November 8, 2018 4:47 am

“Additional meat taxes would (be) brutally regressive. ” ?

November 8, 2018 4:48 am

This is just more demonisation of fat, likely responsible for the massive rise in obesity and diabetes, when people stopped eating healthy meals such as bacon and egg, and switched to unhealthy ones, such as toast and sugary cereals.

Patrick MJD
Reply to  climanrecon
November 8, 2018 5:04 am

The “low-fat” paradox. I was in hospital, a while ago, and a “compulsory health education” course was prescribed. It was sort of interesting but nothing new that I already didn’t know.

But then, the “health educator” started talking about fat and sugar and “low fat” foods. Anyone who knows what they eat knows “low fat” foods mean “high sugar”. I tried to explain this to the “health educator”, who was all but 21 if that, reading from the printed course “material”, but no-go…just kept reading.

Patrick MJD
Reply to  Patrick MJD
November 8, 2018 5:05 am

I also wanted to say google the “french paradox” regarding fat and rich foods.

Reply to  Patrick MJD
November 8, 2018 8:36 am

Fat is good for you. They have been peddling the mistaken mantra for the last 30-40 years and only very slowly starting to realise that it is wrong. Sadly they have so much invested in it that the bureaucracy is unable to loose face and correct the advice.

This will take as long the AGW bandwagon to slow down and get back FACTS.

Reply to  Greg
November 8, 2018 12:01 pm

It will only change once the last of the true believers dies, like with all great scientific blunders.

Reply to  Patrick MJD
November 8, 2018 8:09 am

Never buy “low fat” half and half; that “food” shouldn’t be allowed on grocery store shelves!

Zig Zag Wanderer
Reply to  RockyRoad
November 8, 2018 1:30 pm

I would recommend not buying any processed foods at all. It’s not really that difficult, if you accept that some things like dairy are minimally processed.

I still buy processed condiments, but that is about all.

Reply to  climanrecon
November 8, 2018 5:45 am

Actually with electronic health records, statisticians can do a lot of macro analysis across large populations. Basically they found a lot of interesting things. 75% of people having heart attacks have normal or below normal cholesterol levels. Older people with higher LDL levels live longer, and if you take statins to reduce LDL when you are older, you are opening yourself up to an earlier death.

Insulin sensitivity is the best predictor of health issues and generally your triglyceride to HDL ratio is really what you should use to judge where you stand, not your cholesterol levels. It should be at least less 2 and ideally less than 1. Avoid sugar and simple carbs like the plague. Omega 6 foods (seed oils especially) are bad for you, Omega 3 are good for you. Stay away from soy, especially if you are a male.

People who eat high fat diets are healthier than people who eat low fat diets. Fat does not cause cardio vascular disease, it is carbs that do. So you can eat eggs, red meat, cheese, butter and do just fine.

If you just get your butt off the couch, you will give yourself a 50% better chance of living longer. Moderate exercise is just about as good as higher levels of exercise. Lifting weights, especially as you age, is a great life extender. Some studies show lifting is actually more beneficial than cardio.

So if we stay active and eat pretty much the opposite of what the government and all the vegan/do-gooders tell us to eat, you will be healthier and live longer. In fact, the obesity epidemic pretty much started when the government told us to get fat out of our diets. Avoid sugar, simple carbs and seed oils and be well.

Reply to  rbabcock
November 8, 2018 6:18 am

Please do link to sources. Would love to add them to my counter argument lists.

AGW is not Science
Reply to  Jax
November 8, 2018 6:40 am

Me too!

Reply to  AGW is not Science
November 8, 2018 7:27 am

Here is relevant very recent link from journal “Expert Review of Clinical Pharmacology, 11:10, pgs 959-970” thoroughly details multiple dynamics commentator rbabcock brought up. For free full text try: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/17512433.2018.1519391

Reply to  Jax
November 8, 2018 9:01 am

Here is an excellent article from the Guardian from 2016, when the tide started to turn against the anti-fat dogma, but climate change seems to have revived it:


P Gibbons
Reply to  Jax
November 8, 2018 11:46 am

Read The Big Fat Surprise by Nina Teicholz | Why Butter, Meat …
for the surprising origin of the low fat diet ideology.

Eustace Cranch
Reply to  rbabcock
November 8, 2018 6:56 am

Avoiding sugar is all but impossible unless you’re saying don’t eat vegetables. Then you have a vitamin problem.

Robert Stewart
Reply to  Eustace Cranch
November 8, 2018 8:36 am

The three types of sugar you find in fruits and vegetables, sucrose, glucose, and fructose, are processed differently in your body. Glucose is the only one that can be transformed directly to glycogen, which happens in the liver. Fructose, on the other hand, can end up being converted to triglycerides and cholesterol. Our flabby youngsters have not been well served by our use of high fructose corn syrup.

Tom in Florida
Reply to  Robert Stewart
November 8, 2018 8:50 am

Keep in mind that “high fructose” means more than 50%. If could be 51% or 91%, they don’t tell yo that.

Robert Stewart
Reply to  Robert Stewart
November 8, 2018 10:47 am

And a lot of the “sports drinks” feature high fructose corn syrup as a major ingredient. So those who drink the stuff for a quick pick-me-up are packing a good portion of the calories into fat for long term storage. Of course, if you are burning 3000+ calories a day, you’ll metabolize that soon enough. But if you are a desk jockey, don’t be surprised if you find yourself using the next hole on your belt every few weeks. Old jocks often tend to be very large people because they didn’t change their habits as their life style evolved with age.

Reply to  rbabcock
November 8, 2018 8:40 am

Yeah, could you link to the weight lifting study please? I can barely tolerate cardio, but I do. I quite enjoy moderate weight work.

Tom in Florida
Reply to  philincalifornia
November 8, 2018 8:55 am

You will get good benefits just by brisk walking where you can still talk to someone just make sure it is a minimum of 30 mins. No need to over stress yourself. Add a short session of weights, light with lots of reps and you will have a nice workout, 4 days a week is good. When starting out don’t forget to get your rest in between days to let your body recover and adjust.

Patrick MJD
Reply to  Tom in Florida
November 8, 2018 4:53 pm

“Tom in Florida November 8, 2018 at 8:55 am

You will get good benefits just by brisk walking where you can still talk to someone just make sure it is a minimum of 30 mins.”

Totally agree. I am over 50 and don’t have the weight others my age carry simply due to brisk walking.

Reply to  rbabcock
November 8, 2018 9:13 am

Wow meat kills you!

I’ve followed the AGW show for many years watching scientists all agree that CO2 is going to kill us. Five years ago while dealing with a breathing disorder that was very difficult to diagnose and even more difficult to treat my midnight searches for internet answers took me to the lo-carb, low sugar and ketogenic sites. Almost all the hosts were doctors and researchers who had their own stories to tell about being diabetic even though they lived very healthy low fat and high exercise lives which was the standard of care. None of them were selling anything just relating to what they had suffered through and then through research effectively cured themselves by reducing or eliminating most processed carbs and drastically avoiding sugar. The nutrition scam is similar to the AGW one with non believers being vilified, even ridiculed.
So with this new way to eat I eliminated carbs which enabled me to shed 30 pounds but more importantly the medication that was not helping my breathing difficulty stated to work and now I am almost normal.
Names to search in the nutritional battle include Phinney, Noakes, Taubes, Nina Teicholz,Jeff Volek, Robert Lustig among many others. Excellent podcasts on YouTube from all. One of the best sites include Virta Health which is helping type 2 diabetics reduce or eliminate meds through diet alone…great info..https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbkeZcRugU8bUcOKwBIHjsg

Roger welsh
Reply to  rbabcock
November 8, 2018 9:20 am

May I add, read the “Great cholesterol con” by Dr Malcom Kendrick. All will fall into place.

The gibberish and money grabbing “doctors”, plus the idiots who give away money to them to attract votes. Guess who I am talking about!

Reply to  rbabcock
November 9, 2018 8:03 am

The current findings certainly support a lower carbohydrate / higher fat diet. It is clear to me from research that has been published recently, that the ‘Standard Diet’ pushed by the Americans, was not based on any scientific findings that could be verified. Even the Ansell Keys findings, which drove the higher carbohydrate / lower fat mania since the 1960’s, have been contradicted by WHO research in the 1980’s.
It is interesting to note that support for the Standard Diet comes from organisations that benefit from increasing carbohydrates in the diet and pharmaceutical companies that benefit from producing medicines that treat the illnesses caused by this diet.
The Locarb Downunder series of conferences were an eyeopener or me. It made me realise what fake news we were getting about our diet and its safety. The exposure of the fraudulent basis that nitrites were linked to increased cancer left me seething.

From all that I have read and watched about current dietary and health issues, a diet rich in fresh, green and leafy vegetables, moderate amounts of protein from meat ( including fatty meats) and fish ( approx. 15% of caloric intake) and the balance from unsaturated and saturated fats and a moderate amount of physical exercise, is the best combination to combat obesity, Type II diabetes and surprisingly, Alzheimer’s disease. Added sugar and seed oils are to be eliminated. I have heard Alzheimer’s disease described as Type III diabetes due to emerging evidence to linkage with obesity and Type II diabetes.

In a long winded way, I therefore agree with many commenters on this topic, that the Oxford Professors behind this report have used their normal scientific mumbo jumbo epidemiological studies, to support a narrative that they have been paid to support. It would be interesting to see who sponsored or paid for their work. That will reveal a lot about the true nature of their evidence.

Reply to  climanrecon
November 8, 2018 6:16 am

The science clearly incriminates insulin as the guilty party due to it being the driver of metabolic diseases. These loons want everyone to switch to an “all plant” diet of mostly grains, fruits and veggies. Meaning a very high carbohydrate (aka directly converted to sugars) which spikes blood insulin, spikes glucose, shuts down fat burning, etc. He doesn’t mention limiting any protein, regardless of source, to the number of protein grams for your ideal body weight (divide your ideal body weight by 2.2 for the gram maximum you should eat regardless of source). Note: excess protein is converted to glucose by the liver which then gets layered on as fat plus drives insulin. All those grains, the fruits and excess protein create an inflammatory witches brew.

The latest biological (as in chemistry of the body) science has proven that inflammation is:
1. the main cause of atherosclerosis and thus CAD (coronary artery disease) leading the heart attacks.
2. the main cause of diabetes
3. age related dementia (aka “Alzheimers”)
Plus the science has proven that cancers only use glucose/glycogen for food which means his diet will provide a huge boost to any cancers you may have by insuring they get enough food.

The absolute worst diet in the Universe one high in carbs and high in protein and even more so if it also includes lots of fruits which are mostly carbs and sugars. Unless his goal is population reduction by all the “epidemics” caused by these diets, he’s simply ignorant and agenda driven.

If you need to update yourself how your diet may be slowly killing you, search for names Dr. Thomas Seyfried (Phd,Biology,Boston College), Dr.Eric C Westman (MD, Duke University), Dr. Dominic P. D’Agostino on PubMed (the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) US Gov site for all things medicine) for published research. Or read “Any Way You Can” by Dr. Bozworth *MD Internal Medicine) availble at Amazon. And then continue fact gathering using what you’ve read. There is a very large number of PubMed papers, Youtube sites, etc., for you to become knowledgeable of the science as ti stands today. For example, you’ll find why dementia is being referred to as Type III diabetes.

Focus on the biological proven science and not the whims of some loony climate change Professor lost in his agenda. The facts are on the web waiting.

Reply to  cedarhill
November 8, 2018 12:07 pm

“…ideal body weight…” in what units? Pounds? Grams? Kilograms? Stones? …?

Craig from Oz
Reply to  Red94ViperRT10
November 8, 2018 6:26 pm

More “Ideal body weight” is WHAT exactly.

Our work’s ‘Health Partners’ brought in an automatic health tester booth for us to play with a month or so back. Took about 5 measurements and then passed judgement.

For my height (174cm) my ‘ideal’ weight was 76kg (or there abouts).

My actual weight is 120kg because I am built like a rugby forward, but hey, dropping about 40 odd kilos would still be good for my health. Lose some of the fat or DIE you unhealthy slob being the implication.

Then the machine calculates my body fat % and comes up with about 25%. Now about 10% is what the VERY good athletes get too and anything below is a health risk. Ignoring this, 25% body fat for me works out to about 30 kilos, which mean to get down to my IDEAL body weight I would need to drop all my body fat AND still probably lop off a leg.

No saying I wouldn’t mind toning up and getting a beach body or that I am not carrying the amount of fat I would like, but if I ever get to my ‘ideal’ body weight you probably should be immediately calling me an ambulance.

Reply to  Craig from Oz
November 10, 2018 5:34 pm

Many vitamins and other micronutrients are fat-soluble, so a low body fat% can interfere with their uptake and storage.

Fat deposits can also act like holding tanks for the waste products of digestion and cell respiration, beneficially regulating the workload on the liver and kidneys.

Fat Is Your Friend

November 8, 2018 4:51 am

So, Dr Marco Springmann is essentially saying “Let them eat cake!”

November 8, 2018 4:51 am

Great essay Eric, as always..

“energy poverty is a very ( big / real ) problem in Britain” ?

R Taylor
Reply to  Mark
November 8, 2018 8:02 am

Eric could have said that “Dr. Springmann is the very model of a modern Oxford professor.”

DD More
Reply to  Mark
November 8, 2018 10:04 am

Mark “energy poverty ” yes, but this could also help with another UK problem.
consumption of red and processed meat has been associated with increased mortality from chronic diseases

Would cutting meat consumption also cut down on the numbers of Knives on the street? The stories abound of Death because of extra, stray Knives.

November 8, 2018 4:59 am

Unless something happened in research recently, everyone dies of something. Claims of increased health costs ignore the fact that if you die earlier, you end up costing the health system less over your entire lifetime. Have healthcare costs gone down with fewer people smoking? I think not.

Reply to  Greg61
November 9, 2018 3:16 pm

Along those lines: for a lot of these issues (doing y will prevent x deaths by z), mortality studies show that the death rates do not change when subjects did y and did not die by z. They still died, they simply died for another reason, with no change in longevity.

Steve Borodin
November 8, 2018 5:00 am

Another candidate for the B-Ark.

November 8, 2018 5:06 am

“If you don’t eat your meat you can’t have any pudding … how can you have any pudding if you don’t eat your meat?” – Dr Marco Springmann

Reply to  WXcycles
November 8, 2018 9:02 am

I see you are feeling in the pink today.

November 8, 2018 5:09 am

We are overdoing the criticism here. The academics are almost certainly right about the consumption of red meat as it affects individual health. They are, however, falling for the usual trap on climate change, accepting as truth things that are not in any way proven. This is a problem for all of us. The media will accept as factual any claim made by ‘scientists’, no matter how far their expertise is form the matter being discussed.

Reply to  Allan
November 8, 2018 5:29 am

I’m never taking dietary advice about meat from academics and especially not from someone the internet.

Ian W
Reply to  Allan
November 8, 2018 6:38 am

In fact ‘academics’ studying human diet, have a record as bad if not worse than climate ‘scientists’. With Ancel Keys’ “7 countries study” being for the science of human diet, what the tree rings of the single tree on the Yamal peninsula was for climate science. An instructive book is “Good Calories Bad Calories” by Gary Taubes which covers the history of the ‘science’ at some depth.

AGW is not Science
Reply to  Ian W
November 8, 2018 6:44 am

Agreed. Not only is “dietary advice” based on supposed “science” riddled with misinformation, the number of times they have flip-flopped about what is or isn’t “bad” should tell you they haven’t got a clue.

Reply to  AGW is not Science
November 8, 2018 9:14 am

I go with my gut on these things.

Reply to  WXcycles
November 8, 2018 10:29 am

I also, generally, just eat what I feel like eating.

Reply to  Allan
November 8, 2018 10:27 am

so maybe we should have a progressive meat (or animal protein) tax to protect our “individual” health?

200% on “red” meat.
100% on pork
50% on chicken
20% on rabbit
10% on fishies
5% on things without a face

And since it is for health purposes, even if we start to grow our chickens, rabbits, goats, etc, we still have to pay the tax. Its for our own good.

Reply to  DonM
November 8, 2018 4:19 pm

Negative 1000% on insects !

Reply to  Hivemind
November 9, 2018 10:19 am

If they’ll pay me to eat a bug, I’ll eat a bug.

Bill In Oz
November 8, 2018 5:10 am

Come on Anthony, this dope is a ‘veganista’..Why does anyone here need to know about this unscientific ‘research’…

Far better to read this reply to the vegans : https://www.spiked-online.com/2018/08/30/eat-more-meat/

For me the only issue to investigate is why PLOS even publishes such bunk.

November 8, 2018 5:15 am

Thing that gest me is this is just one story coming from multiple media outlet prosletizing for

Low meat diets
High plant diets
Vegan cooking programs

To name just a few high have noted recently.

November 8, 2018 5:32 am

More elitist drivel… now eat up your cockroaches and then you can have a piece of celery…

Nothing wrong with meat and two veg… that’s what healthy working class folks used to eat, when sugar was rationed this health issue was not a problem and people had good teeth…

Tax on carbon meat sugar what next??

Ron Long
November 8, 2018 5:36 am

They want to tax “livestock-related emissions”? What’s next? An “emissions” tax at the supermarket when you purchase beans? My theory is that if you put barbecue sauce on red meat it cancels out the bad effect. I think I will model that theory, there, done, and I’m right!

Reply to  Ron Long
November 8, 2018 10:40 am

My 96 year old grandfather would have confirmed that ketchup is an adequate substitute for the barbecue sauce (and that tobacco, in the correct form, harms only vision).

My 99 year old uncle would have confirmed that there is no bad effect, and that the barbecue sauce (with lots of brown sugar) is indeed good for you (him).

November 8, 2018 5:37 am

The previous WUWT story is about Jordan Peterson. His daughter had horrible physical problems until she eliminated everything from her diet except meat. link The problem is that she thinks that’s the solution for everyone.

Vegetarians think everyone should be like them. No. That’s just bad. Some people can’t even tolerate some foods. I get a major part of my nutrition from milk but some of my friends can’t cope with it. It’s genetic. link Some people will thrive on a vegetarian diet and some won’t for the same genetic reasons that produce lactose intolerance.

Taxing a certain food group is guaranteed to be extremely harmful to some people.

Tom in Florida
Reply to  commieBob
November 8, 2018 5:44 am

I totally agree cB. I cannot eat green, leafy vegetables, they clog me up. They also taste very bitter to me, perhaps my body telling me not to eat them. I am a protein and carb abuser. Had a colonoscopy at 63 and clean as a whistle. Genetics, genetics, genetics.

Reply to  commieBob
November 8, 2018 4:34 pm

” Some people will thrive on a vegetarian diet…”

I disagree with this point. Yes, some people can survive on a vegetarian diet, but you can’t grow on it. That’s why it’s so appallingly bad for children and babies. Australia had a case around 20 years ago when a mother insisted on feeding her baby no meat whatsoever. He died, of course.

E J Zuiderwijk
November 8, 2018 5:41 am

Vegetarians don’t get older than meat eaters. They only look and sound older.

Reply to  E J Zuiderwijk
November 8, 2018 9:11 am

Many times more flatulent too … not good for Gaia.

Cancel vegans.

November 8, 2018 5:50 am

Hey Mr Watts,
I was diagnosed with lung cancer a few weeks ago. I don’t want any pity, empathy, money, or any of the regular stuff. I just want to be able to write a few light-hearted comments on the unnecessarily morbid topic sometimes, without freakin’ people out. 🙂 Please?
I have on my side in this war, which I shall surely win, evidence based-conventional weapons—now highly focused on tumor only—plus cheap, safe and effective, over the counter drugs that kill cancer cells. These include:
* mebendezole – (a cheap, safe worm tablet!)
* meformin – (type 2 diabetes drug, appears to starve tumor cells of glucose better than normal cells)
N-ACety Cysteine with B6 & C during radiotherapy to portect normal cells
liposomal curcumin (same reason AS NAC/B6/C) All my oncologists are happy with my dual approach. No complaints from anyone

And to make my victory even more incredibly likely, I just happen to be the ideal candidate for the immunotherapy drug Keytruda(R).

My only serious impediment is the amount of opiates i need to eliminate the often extreme pain in my right arm so I can write.
Anyway if anyone thinks it’sa bad idea, tell me to piss off

Reply to  Khwarizmi
November 8, 2018 7:14 am


Best of luck mate. Keep us posted.

Robert MacLellan
Reply to  Khwarizmi
November 8, 2018 7:23 am

Good luck to you in your struggle. Based on one unscientific sample(my wife) I suggest talking to your doctor about trying marijuana oil if it is an option where you are. In her case she was able to greatly reduce her opiate prescription. The cannabidiol (CBD) is what worked, not the THC. Hope it helps.

November 8, 2018 5:50 am

The red meat of this discussion is the NHS – defunding and LiverPool Life Pathway LCP. After all, they gave advice to Peter Orszag of Obama Healthcare which was widely seen as “lives unworthy to live” program like the infamous 1938 Aktion T4 (being the address of Hit-ler’s health ministry Tiergarten 4 Berlin). Trump and many others stopped Obamacare.
Behavioral economics is applied to the population to build a health system for the healthy only, for cost-benefit efficiency.
Britain must reject bevioral economics!

M Courtney
November 8, 2018 5:59 am

This is the obvious action to take following the latest IPCC SPM report.
Equally obviously, Macdonalds share price actually rose in the week following publication of the latest IPCC SPM report.
Because no-one believes that this is going to be taken seriously.

Reply to  M Courtney
November 8, 2018 9:13 am

” … rose in the week following publication of the latest IPCC SPAM report. …”

Fixed it.

Alan the Brit
November 8, 2018 6:07 am

“Lead researcher Dr Marco Springmann”

I don’t think much of this loon, they already did the meatasaurus scarey story 20 years ago with no evidence whatsoever!

November 8, 2018 6:10 am

Another follower of Ancel Keys on diet, which is about as institutionalized as AGW.
And following the evaluations of the IARC, recently involved in the Roundup/glyphosate scam? Considering that one incident, any reports they put out should be held in the same regard as climate predictions by James Hansen.

Nick Schroeder
November 8, 2018 6:44 am

Are all these climate science PhD’s under 25 years of age? Are PhD’s getting handed out like cupcakes at a day care? How about accumulating a few years of real work before becoming smarter than all the rest of us. PhD’s are about playing the political academic game, who you know, a non-controversial thesis, hand picked review committee, 75% smoozing & 25% knowing something useful.

Denver Post reports that Eldora ski area has opened the earliest in two decades with 41 inches of snow.

mark from the midwest
Reply to  Nick Schroeder
November 8, 2018 7:19 am

Breckenridge and A-Basin are open today. Just heard from a friend that there’s skim ice on an inland lake, and I have snow in my yard that’s not melting, (we’re just off the 45th parallel, elevation about 1200ft.)

R Shearer
Reply to  Nick Schroeder
November 8, 2018 6:38 pm

Hey, thanks for the news. I’ll have to get up there for a few turns. https://www.eldora.com/the-mountain/webcams/mountain/timbers-live-cam

phillip bratby
November 8, 2018 6:49 am

This is the kind of article that makes me want to go out and buy more red meat – delicious.

November 8, 2018 6:55 am

“One of Oxford University’s Famous Feasts.” I did laugh. It looks to me as if it’s breakfast in Hall. The absence of students implies that it probably occurred in the depths of a vacation.

November 8, 2018 6:58 am

Shoddy science not just in climate
Nina Teicholz – ‘Red Meat and Health

Coach Springer
November 8, 2018 7:00 am

The things for which academics get attention sometimes convince me that they are all high on smelling their own brain farts. (Classic South Park reference on smugness.)

Al Miller
November 8, 2018 7:01 am

More government intervention is always the answer- surrender!

November 8, 2018 7:17 am

There is no limit to how much control leftists want over your lives.

For your own good of course.

As a second point, this whole kerfuffle is another reason why socialized medicine is a bad idea. When you socialize health care costs, you create a justification for the do gooders to gain control over anything that impacts health care costs. This “meat tax” is just one example.

November 8, 2018 7:20 am

Tax all UK faculty positions out of the abundance of caution.

November 8, 2018 7:32 am

The green keto meat eater, part 1
By Anne Mullens – Posted November 7, 2018
Can a person eat a low-carb or ketogenic diet — with meals regularly featuring meat and dairy products — and still be an environmentally-conscious individual who is contributing to the betterment of the planet?

November 8, 2018 7:37 am

Those 6000 they save this year will die next or the year after. During those additional years, they will also suck up more health care dollars. This is just a lame attempt at delaying the inevitable.

Joel O’Bryan
Reply to  fxk
November 8, 2018 8:21 am

If the government was serious about saving Medicare from future collapse, Cigarettes should be subsidized heavily. Until the war on smoking, People were skinnier as middle age adults and then died quickly in their 50’s and 60’s from COPD or lung cancer.

Tom in Florida
Reply to  fxk
November 8, 2018 9:01 am

Yup, nobody gets out alive. People should have the choice to die with dignity and not be subjected to prolonged misery just because relatives can’t let go and medical facilities can keep charging Medicare.

November 8, 2018 7:39 am

Holy mackerel!
I just saw “insect burgers” for sale in REWE , Germany! The packet looked good untill I read the caption. Right beside a good Uruguay beef product, some could be fooled. Apetite gone.

Are these things buzzing around in Sainsbury’s or WallMart?

Now were’s my darned swatter again.

November 8, 2018 7:49 am

50 years ago, as an adult, I stopped eating meat. I do not think trying to tax meat in order to reduce it’s consumption should be imposed anywhere.

I’ll repost here link (2018) I gave above responding to rbabcock pertaining to food (no, it’s not about vegetables) that think many others will find interesting: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/17512433.2018.151931

Joel O’Bryan
November 8, 2018 8:09 am

Why is Oxford U always behind these Orwellian schemes?
Cambridge U seems to have the intelligence.
Oxford seems to have the communists.

Robert Stewart
Reply to  Joel O’Bryan
November 8, 2018 12:07 pm

In 1715 , King George I built a library at Cambridge, and sent the troops to put down a riot at Oxford.

Reply to  Joel O’Bryan
November 9, 2018 3:01 am

The Oxford Fabian eugenics “coefficients” and Rhodes Trust. Some well known members :
Lord Alfred Milner, Sir Arthur Balfour, Lord Robert Cecil, Lord Bertrand Russell, H.G. Wells (protégé of Thomas Huxley), Leo .S Amery and Sir Edward Grey …

An jolly old tradition, what?

November 8, 2018 8:14 am

Never buy “low fat” half and half; that “food” shouldn’t be allowed on grocery store shelves!

Joel O’Bryan
November 8, 2018 8:16 am

“A study has found meat taxes could save an estimated 220,000 lives globally by 2020 and reduce healthcare costs by £30.7bn.”

A Statistical body count of 220,000 out of a 7+ billion population over 3 years.
I’ll take my chances … and my T-bone medium rare with a loaded baked potato, Thank You very much.

Joel O’Bryan
November 8, 2018 8:16 am

“A study has found meat taxes could save an estimated 220,000 lives globally by 2020 and reduce healthcare costs by £30.7bn.”

A Statistical body count of 220,000 out of a 7+ billion population over 3 years.
I’ll take my chances … and my T-bone medium rare with a loaded baked potato, Thank You very much.

Michael burns
November 8, 2018 8:18 am

Is there meat in twinkies?

Joel O’Bryan
Reply to  Michael burns
November 8, 2018 8:23 am

No one knows whats in a twinkie.

Reply to  Joel O’Bryan
November 8, 2018 8:33 am

Put a twinkie in an open jar for a year and after it dries out you can hammer small nails with it!

I kid you not!

Tom in Florida
Reply to  RockyRoad
November 8, 2018 9:19 am

That also goes for my mother-in-law’s meatloaf.

M__ S__
November 8, 2018 8:25 am

Brought to us by people with the same arrogant attitude demonstrated when the flawed food pyramid was pushed down the public’s throat. The one that may have created a number of type 2 diabetics.

There are any number of ways to reduce weight, and in my recent experience, it’s more when one eats and how often one eats that affects weight (and blood chemistry). But climate voodoo seems like a good opportunity to tack on every cause available, I suppose.

Walter Sobchak
November 8, 2018 8:26 am

“I strongly suspect far more people will die from starvation and exposure, than any lives saved due to reduced fat intake or whatever.”

Bug or feature? I think most environmentalists would regard that as a feature.

Walter Sobchak
November 8, 2018 8:27 am

Don’t forget that Hitler was a vegetarian.

Reply to  Walter Sobchak
November 8, 2018 9:56 am

yes but most Dictators such as Mao, Genghis Khan, Napoleon, Stalin and Saddam Hussein all ate meat and were no slouches in killing innocent people


Reply to  tonyb
November 9, 2018 8:58 am

But Hitler takes the biscuit.

November 8, 2018 8:29 am

I’m now feeding my Black Angus cows two pounds of mixed-grain “horse feed” every day to increase the fat content of the meat so it all grades as “prime” beef! Just like I did last year!

Got that?

I’m NOT feeding my cows even one ounce of fat to make them fat!

I figure when I eat such beef, the small amount of fat it contains won’t make me fat and after doing so for the past four years, my theory has proven to be correct!

However, if I ate two pounds of grain every day, I’m sure I’d gain so much weight I couldn’t raise my cows!

I’d be as big as a horse!

winnipeg boy
November 8, 2018 8:32 am

Vegan Oxford University Professor: Tax Meat to Reduce Climate Change and Obesity.

There, I fixed it for you.

November 8, 2018 8:33 am

Makes some sense. Eating meat is what led to the development of mankind’s large brain and in order to accept that global warming is real enough to need fixing you need to dumb down your brain. However; it’s not meat that leads to obesity, but french fries, soda and cookies.

Reply to  co2isnotevil
November 8, 2018 11:29 am

Butter cookies too ?

November 8, 2018 8:34 am

A meat tax will increase the consumption of breads, sugars, potatoes, etc.
This will cause even more obesity and higher health care costs.
Eating more meat and less carbs is one of the best ways to lose weight.
Once again, the ignorant ideologues don’t care how many people they harm.

November 8, 2018 8:47 am

The theory is that cattle create methane. If you transfer the vegetable eating to humans aren’t you just transferring the methane source? Remember Blazing Saddles…!

Reply to  Guirme
November 8, 2018 1:09 pm

It could have been Blazing Saddles if someone had struck a match!

November 8, 2018 8:51 am

As others have said a recipe for obesity and diabetes. We have politicians in America declaring war on added sugar, but go ahead and eat as much potato pasta and white bread as you want. This shows an ignorance of food chemistry and how our body uses nutrients.

michael hart
November 8, 2018 9:00 am

In short, nothing ever changes.
There are always people who think they both understand exactly what is wrong with the world, and what needs to be done to fix it.

It hardly matters whether they merely want to tax something into oblivion for your own good, or ban it completely for your own good, with draconian legal punishments for any offenders against their grand schemes.
They simply just want the power to bend you to their will. For your own good, of course.
Some of them pretend to say please give me this power over other peoples lives (for their own good). Others think that the asking step isn’t really necessary.

“There is no good and evil, there is only power and those too weak to seek it.”

― J.K. Voldemort, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

She got that bit right, it would seem. 🙂

Reasonable Skeptic
November 8, 2018 9:04 am

Solving global warming is actually easier than most people think. We encourage people to emigrate to low carbon emitting countries from high emitting countries. Problem solved.

I am sure WWF and Greenpeace would get behind this easy win strategy.

David M Anderson
November 8, 2018 9:06 am

I think we should have a meat head tax.

Reply to  David M Anderson
November 10, 2018 6:09 pm

And a tax on proposing new taxes.

Tom in Florida
November 8, 2018 9:21 am

Why not just have a fat people tax? Everyone must weigh in quarterly and pay a penalty for being outside some ridiculous height/weight chart.

Reply to  Tom in Florida
November 8, 2018 11:41 am

hang on there, a fat person PENALTY may not be constitutional.

But a fat people TAX could pass muster (court precedent and all that) … got to keep your terms straight.

Tom in Florida
Reply to  DonM
November 8, 2018 12:00 pm

Just mocking Obamacare penalty/tax lingo.

Reply to  Tom in Florida
November 8, 2018 3:53 pm

me too….

Joel Snider
Reply to  Tom in Florida
November 8, 2018 1:06 pm

My guess is that EVERYBODY would be fat by whatever standard they set.

Reply to  Joel Snider
November 10, 2018 6:16 pm

Except themselves. The fatass bureaucrat manning the scale will be in perfect BMI, the starving skin-wrapped skeleton being weighed will be morbidly obese.

November 8, 2018 9:25 am

Meat doesn’t make you fat.
Fat doesn’t make you fat. Carbohydrates make you fat.

Tom in Florida
Reply to  Leo Smith
November 8, 2018 10:49 am

Lack of exercise makes you fat no matter what you eat.

Reply to  Tom in Florida
November 10, 2018 6:24 pm

Unless you’re one of those genetic outliers whose metabolic rate is uncommonly high and barely slows down as you age. Some of those guys have to eat multiple large meals a day to avoid becoming morbidly lean.

November 8, 2018 10:25 am

Yes, Brexit causes PTSD.

Hugh Mannity
November 8, 2018 10:43 am

Yet more proof, if any were needed, that veganism leads to mental health issues due to its inherent dietary deficiencies.

Hugh Mannity
November 8, 2018 10:46 am

How can meat be bad for us when it’s what we’re made of ?

November 8, 2018 10:48 am

In the UK meat was in very short supply during WW2 thanks to the Uboats and for nearly 10 years afterwards thanks to the country’s lack of foreign exchange and struggling economy.
So of course the Govts of the day imposed a meat tax to curb demand.
No , they did not.
They imposed rationing because a tax would have made no effect on the consumption of the rich and the poorer members of society would have had less chance to buy meat than before the war.
So if Oxford professors and millionaire socialists want to see a national reduction in meat consumption for health and environmental reasons , then rationing is the only fair way to go .
That way the oxford professor could only have the same number of pork chops , say , weekly as the Romanian woman dressed in what appear to be rags selling the BIG ISSUE in Altrincham precinct.
I do not think the Oxford professor would like that – all the more reason for introducing the measure.
Indeed I would go further . Since barely a day passes without some millionaire proposing a tax on food , fuel, travel or any necessity of life , knowing full well it would not affect him/her , but would impoverish further the already disadvantaged members of society I propose taking away the right to vote , or support any political party from those with income or assets that are , say , 10 times the national average of income or assets . In the UK , 150 years ago , only those (males) rich enough to own property could vote , but their political decisions affected everyone and often the poor disproportionately so. My proposal inverts that, so that only the poor and middle class have the power to vote and take part in political decisions, because, whatever happens, the rich can always survive but if the likes of Steyer and Soros make policies (as happens now) then the lesser advantaged families really suffer.
You might think that makes me a socialist , or something even worse, but I am in no way rich, so I cannot be a socialist in today’s upside down world.

Peta of Newark
November 8, 2018 10:48 am

Lets come in from a different angle that doesn’t involve throwing insults, via the BBC.

In there is a map of the UK showing recent temperatures
(the one with all the red on it, no surprises there)

Supposedly this all all due to Global Climate Change and is exactly as expected/projected/predicted by the experts & their models, again, no surprises.

BUT, the image is NOT global. It is very very local.

YMMV but, what I see in the red parts are where the Vast Majority of people in the UK live = the South East corner because, no surprises, it has Nice Weather.
(another) BUT, the population there has massively increased in the last few decades. Urban Heat island, roads, airports, epic sized distribution centres, shopping malls etc etc.
How many times do we hear that Heathrow, The Big Airport has set a new temperature record?

THEN, the Red Bit is where all the UK’s *serious* arable farming goes on, again because of ‘nice weather’ but especially where a lot of PREVIOUSLY WATERLOGGED ground has been reclaimed. The Cambridge Fen alone runs to over 95,000 acres and is slap bang in the centre of the Really Red Bit on that map.
The town of Whittlesey had an 1800 acre lake (hence= sey = a sea belonging someone name-of ‘Whittle’).
Visit it on Google map and see all the arrow-straight waterways draining the place.

Not least it is where the ploughs and cultivators AND the nitrogen fertiliser are put to work 24 hours per day and damn nearly 365 days per year. If they’re not growing wheat, it is barley, potatoes, *most* of the UK’s fruit and vegetables.

Then compare to the other side of the country.
The Wet Side as it happens and, because of that and very *very* pertinent, is where the UK’s Livestock farmers go about *their* business.
Need I say more?
But me being me I will.
Because the place in the UK with the highest ANNUAL temperature is= (cue drum roll tada)…
The Place where the cows are kept = The South West= Devon, Somerset and Cornwall but right up thro Cheshire, Lancs and not least Cumbria
(I like Somerset = very much like Cumbria WAS, 50 years ago when I was a kid. On a livestock farm)

What I see on that BBC map is an advancing desert……..
And it is coming. The people know.
They call it “Fen Blow” – it’s when the wind picks up the bare dry soil created by the arable farmers and, no surprise, blows it all around.

JUST like a miniature Dust Bowl – caused exactly by the removal of cows (buffalo strictly) and their replacement with The Plough
That invention by John Deere is going to kill many more people than The Sword *ever* did or will.
(Soil Erosion is the Technical Term)

Joel Snider
November 8, 2018 11:50 am

Boy, these elitists – they always seem to view the rest of us as little children that they must take care of, and make sure we behave – always according to their strictures, of course, and always on a short leash.

And academic elitists are among the worst – they’re so smart, remember, after reading all those books in their pompous, close-minded environment, where their heady, intellectual (and always self-serving) theorizing is never challenged by reality – and, of course, resentful that they aren’t calling the shots – what with being so smart, after all that reading.

I find that knowing a lot about a single-subject doesn’t mean you know a damn thing about anything else – and it doesn’t even make you intelligent – or even smart – and it doesn’t even validate that what you read had any merit in the first place.

November 8, 2018 11:56 am

The only problem with following advice on living longer is that it comes at the end when one is probably in a care home.
Now if they could fit in between 30 and 40 then it might be of some use.
(Comment courtesy of Billy Connolly).

Joel Snider
Reply to  StephenP
November 8, 2018 12:15 pm

Well – barring some accident, or catastrophic health-issue – I plan on turning seventy like Chuck Norris did. I just turned fifty – I work out up to three hours a day, five days a week – I can outperform most of the twenty-somethings at my gym – AND I eat a hell of a lot of meat.

November 8, 2018 1:10 pm

if it moves, tax it! If it stops, ban it!

Reply to  nicholas tesdorf
November 10, 2018 6:34 pm

If it moves backwards, subsidize it!

Craig from Oz
November 8, 2018 2:39 pm

This sounds like a variation on the social engineering desire to take ‘fast food’ to force people to stop eating them.

Small and quick practical test for those playing at home. Give yourself a $10 budget and look at what you could get at your closest fast food franchise and then what you buy for the same money at your local fruit and veg.

Spoiler? Fruit and Veg (aka – healthy food) is cheaper. Fast food is and has been more expensive. People do not buy fast (aka unhealthy) because it is cheaper, they buy it because it is fast.

Joel Snider
Reply to  Craig from Oz
November 8, 2018 3:20 pm

Groceries are cheaper than pre-prepared food – it’s not exclusive to fruits and vegetables.

November 8, 2018 2:46 pm

Can you call yourself a scientist if you do not understand that livestock do not emit any CO2 orCH4 that would not otherwise be emitted by the grass when it dies and rots? The same goes for all mammals. We get ours from the cellulose in the vegetables we eat .So the less meat we eat the more CH4 we will emit by increasing cellulose intake

November 8, 2018 3:53 pm

Oxford University Professor: Tax Meat to Reduce Climate Change and Obesity
Ordinary Citizen: Reduce to Extinction Opinionated Oxford University Professors who believe they can tell everyone how to live.

November 8, 2018 4:21 pm

Well, as usual the scientists and the folks writing the press release are exaggerating. Here’s what the press release says:

A tax on meat could prevent almost 6,000 deaths a year in the UK.

Here’s what the scientists say:

The health-related costs to society attributable to red and processed meat consumption in 2020 amounted to USD 285 billion (sensitivity intervals based on epidemiological uncertainty (SI), 93–431), three quarters of which were due to processed meat consumption.

And finally, here’s what the WHO actually says:

Red meat was classified as Group 2A, probably carcinogenic to humans. What does this mean exactly?

In the case of red meat, the classification is based on limited evidence from epidemiological studies showing positive associations between eating red meat and developing colorectal cancer as well as strong mechanistic evidence.

Limited evidence means that a positive association has been observed between exposure to the agent and cancer but that other explanations for the observations (technically termed chance, bias, or confounding) could not be ruled out.

So … they don’t really know. They also say:

Eating red meat has not yet been established as a cause of cancer.

But nooo, that’s no where near scary enough for alarmist scientists. So they put it all into a computer, and pull out Carnegeddon™ …

Here’s the curiosity. There are a couple of whole branches of the animal kingdom which regularly eat red meat—carnivores and omnivores. Does anyone really think that those branches would have first arisen and then flourished for millions of years if red meat were actually a danger to health? Really?

I weep for the loss of common sense, the most uncommon of senses …



Jim Edwards
November 8, 2018 7:57 pm

Tax meat. Good idea. Who needs excess fat on their bodies as the earth heats up. We need to obtain our protein from termites to save the planet.
“Termites generally consist of up to 38 percent protein, and one particular Venezuelan species, Syntermes aculeosus, is 64 percent protein. Termites are also rich in iron, calcium, essential fatty acids and amino acids such as tryptophan.”

I love the new world I’m moving into. I no longer need to think. I’m being told what to think, eat, say, how to consume soon I’ll be told how to die. I’m glad I live in this free world.

Tim Beatty
November 9, 2018 12:39 am

But but but what about the runaway positive feedback cow tipping point? Tax the cows until they go down, then the cow ranchers buy less corn. Farmers grow less corn. CO2 in the air rises. Earth gets hotter. People die and need even less cows. The vicious cycle continues until it’s so hot that the burgers are cooked even efore they leave the cow, Cow tipping points are the best points.

Reply to  Tim Beatty
November 9, 2018 7:23 am

I’m loving the “cow tipping points”, Tim. Brilliant.


Peter Stevenson
November 9, 2018 2:12 am

When our ancient ancestors started to eat meat it brought
on a new age of man. It helped our brains to expand,
It changed our appearance-we lost the large chins needed
to chew vegetation. In order to hunt animals we started
to communicate with each other and cave art was made
to teach others about the prey. Why does meat have such
a bad press ?

Johann Wundersamer
November 9, 2018 5:47 am

The WHO is heartily indifferent to the life expectancy of workers. At the latest with 50+ you expect long-term unemployment.

and whether death occurs 10 years earlier or later does not change any treatment costs.

But the state benefits from received pension contributions – which the deceased will no longer retrieve.

old construction worker
November 9, 2018 5:49 am

Less look at nature: Elephants: vegetarian, A bit over weight. Could become obese if not put to work. Lion: Meat eater, burns a lot of calories to find food. Lesson: If you you stay active and burn a lot of calories you stay thin.

Reply to  old construction worker
November 10, 2018 6:57 pm

More accurately, a fat eater, or lipovore. Most apex predators are actually lipovores. They eat the fat, the most energy-dense part of the carcass and the easiest to get to. Most of the lean meat and offal is left for the scavengers.

Russ R.
November 9, 2018 9:01 am

More “barking at the moon” from academia. The real cause of obesity is the invention and mass production of the tractor. Without it, the majority of the population would still be working the fields to produce enough calories to offset the calories they burned each day working the ground, raising livestock, and hunting/gathering.
Our lifestyles have changed drastically from those of our ancestors of two to four generations proceeding us.
But our biology was optimized for physical labor to produce the digestible calories we need to produce that labor, over tens of thousands of generations.
And our biology is optimized to survive periods of hunger, because that is the natural selection process in a world that does not exist to provide you with the latest fad diet.
So that leaves us with the common sense answer, that costs you nothing, and will provide better results than those that have a financial incentive to “fix what ails you”.
The majority of your diet should be food that your ancestors would recognize as a staple to their diets. Your body is already optimized to process it and use it to fuel your metabolic requirements.
If you are gaining weight and it is making it more difficult to be active, become more active and reduce your portions until you reverse that trend.
If you form a link between your present self, and the history of where you came from, in the choice and amount of the food you eat, and the activity level of your daily priorities, you will optimize the complex system that we take for granted.
I know this is not the solution that most people will accept. Most people want to find a solution that does not require a change in their diet or activity level. It is possible that some day that solution will be found. It is also possible that we have been so optimized by millions of years of natural selection, that there is no easy solution.
I prefer to make my decisions based on “what is” versus “what might be in the future”. And right now we are still statically linked to our biology. And accepting that is half the battle. Doing something about it, is the other half.

November 9, 2018 1:30 pm

I advocate for a tax on faculty positions with the proceeds going into a virtual assistant education system with adaptive learning and testing technology. The productivity gain is needed now.

November 9, 2018 11:57 pm

The two main lines of evidence provided by climate science to relate warming to emissions are climate sensitivity and transient climate response to cumulative emissions.

Both of these rely on spurious correlations
and disappear when that spuriousness is corrected.



November 10, 2018 12:12 am

This professor chap is one ham sandwich short of a picnic – not only that, he is also is an ignoramus.
In many parts of the world, especially Africa, the soils are too poor to grow crops and this is made worse by the lack of rain and readily available water.
Despite this, it is possible for cattle, goats and sheep to find enough sustenance from the sparse vegetation.
This in turn provides vital protein for humans, albeit in very limited amounts.
It is worth noting that the countries that consume the highest amount of meat/fish protein per capita are the ones leading the world in medical research, science and technology.
This may be because over many generations, and from an early age, brains have been receiving the vital protein and other chemicals that only meat/fish provides and that promote brain function.
Perhaps our professor chap is a vegetarian, whose brain lacks vital protein, which would no doubt explain his stupid comments.

November 10, 2018 1:28 am

This issue is much more serious than just one professor sprouting nonsense. The latest There is a concerted push by the alarmist camp to radically reduce the global ruminant herd based on the rediculous assertion that they pose a serious climate risk due to the amount of methane that they produce.
TThis is a completely false hypothesis. All ruminants like all living creatures are part of the bio-cycle. Let’s unpack that:
1. Ruminants live on grass or grain.
2. Grass has a short bio-cycle, 1 to 2 years but lets be generous and say 4 years.
3. When organic matter decays, it either produces CO2 or methane depending on whether the process is aerobic or anaerobic.
4. Methane persists in the atmosphere for somewhere around 9 – 11 years.
So, the C02 produced by ruminants is recycled into new parasite on an annual basis and similarly for methane on a slightly longer scale.
Baring radical changes to the global ruminant herd, tee CO2 and methane produced by ruminants is at equilibrium. Reducing the global herd to zero may have a transitory effect on the ratio of CO2 and methane depending upon whether the grass decays aerobically or anerobically but will not produce an overall reduction in greenhouse gases.
There is also no discussion of how we would replace the wool, leather and other by products of the global livestock industry. Nor is there any discussion on what we would do with the often marginal land that currently produces valuable protein

November 10, 2018 2:56 am

For People Who Eat Tasty Animals the solution is obvious and the data is whatever we say it is (sound familiar?). We just have to homogenise and pasteurise the cause of death data and they die at any appropriate age we identify with-
After all you can’t make this stuff up.

%d bloggers like this:
Verified by MonsterInsights