S2E29: Jonathan Safran Foer on meat, & his book We Are the Weather

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Regardless of where you stand on the ethics of eating meat, the fact is, it’s a big part of the climate math. It provokes strong feelings all around, some of which may be contradictory within one’s self. And so much of the climate analysis is dependent upon how the animals were raised, marketed, and so on. It’s hard to speak (at least for some) with crisp lines. In this episode we wade into these details.

Jonathan Safran Foer is the bestselling author of Eating Animals, Everything Is Illuminated, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, and We Are the Weather: Saving the Planet Begins at Breakfast. Today, Jonathan joins Ross to describe his relationship with meat, explaining what inspired him to become a vegetarian at the age of nine and why he is willing to admit to moral failure when he grabs a burger at the airport.

Jonathan shares his proposal for reducing our meat consumption as posited in We Are the Weather, weighing in on why it’s dangerous to make our food choices such a big part of our identity. Listen in for Jonathan’s insight on what makes climate change such a difficult story to tell and learn why Jonathan thinks reserving meat for dinner is a productive form of climate activism.

Resources:

We Are the Weather: Saving the Planet Begins at Breakfast by Jonathan Safran Foer

The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals by Michael Pollan

‘Options for Keeping the Food System Within Environmental Limits’ in Nature

Bill Niman

Wendell Berry

Kate Knibbs on Reversing Climate Change S2EP12

The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming by David Wallace-Wells

Learning to Die in the Anthropocene by Roy Scranton

Peter Singer

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