Monday, 6 June 2016

Linking up debates with with the evidence base


One of the most useful ways I have found to be able to turn debates online is with the well timed fact. As someone once said, people have a right to their opinions, but they don't have a right to their own facts. If people are basing their argument on an incorrect factual claim then correcting this can often be much easier than debating with someone who refuses to be logically consistent in their opinions.

So on this blog I am just going to post some links to some of the evidence base to address some of the more common factually inaacurate claims people make. Its sort of a living blog so I'll update this as I go.....

Animals aren't conscious?

Animals have episodic like memories, they remember the what where and when of events . (Why is this important? binding is a key feature of conscious, binding together sensory modalities to form a unified representation of the world. If animals have episodic memory, that is sufficient evidence that they are conscious)

Animals have cognitive biases - they experience emotional trauma that affects their cognitive judgement just like it does in human depression

Animals don't suffer when they are killed?

Up to 15% of cows are still conscious even after captive bolt, which means they are still conscious at slaughter

Between 10 and 40% of chickens are still conscious after electric stunning

Most animals these days live good lives?

82% of chickens sold in super markets have hock burns, which are caused by the animal standing in bird droppings for so long the ammonia burns through their skin

Between between 47 and 65% of dairy cows experience painful pus filled udder infections every year

Environmental impact of meat and dairy?

A vegan diet could reduce dietary GHG emissions by 70%, which monetised would save around $600 billion a year in mitigated climate change costs

An omnivorous diet uses three times more total land than a vegan diet

A vegan diet uses half the crop land of an omnivorous diet, and effectively eliminates the need to clear more rainforest to feed a growing population in the future

Crop feeds contain significant amounts of human edible grains. In standard UK feeds, human edible crops constitute 36% of dairy cow feed and 75% of chicken feed

Only grass fed beef tho?

The GHG emissions of grass fed beef are 19.2 kg of CO2 per Kg live weight. The GHG emissions of feedlot beef is 14.8 kg of CO2 per Kg live weight. The GHG emissions of soya is 2 kg CO2 per Kg of soyabeans

Health impact of an omnivorous diet?

A vegan diet would be projected to be able to save 8.1 million lives annually from early death from things like heart disease. Monetised this would save around $1trillion in avoided healthcare costs

A vegan diet reduces cancer risk by 16%, reducing prostate cancer risk by 37% and female specific cancers by 34%

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