Hey Andrew Yang, Your Climate Policy Could Use Some Work

– by Jacob Holmes

The Yang community is a forward-thinking group. As someone who frequents plant-based communities as well: We have a proposal.

Reducetarian, vegetarian, and vegan are some of the fastest-growing populations in the world. There are about a 1.5 million vegans (%0.5) in the US alone, with a 600% (six HUNDRED- not a typo) rise in population in just the last 5 years. Reducetarians account for about a quarter of voters- people who may still eat animals and recognize the positive effects of cutting back, and %5 of Americans identifying as vegetarian.

Given the largely untapped constituency of plant-based voters, we think it would benefit Andrew’s campaign to understand some of our talking points.

For example, Yang has some of the most progressive policies when it comes to the environment. He recently released his climate change policy proposal to have us be carbon-neutral by 2049. If everyone has extra money it will free the proverbial boots on our throats to purchase more environmentally-friendly products like cars and reusable items. When animal agriculture is known to produce as much or more of a carbon footprint as ALL transportation COMBINED, it seems disingenuous for him to not address this.

Estimates of 70-90 percent of Amazon rainforest deforestation and being the leading cause of ocean dead-zones are both effects of animal agriculture.

Politically: You may not realize it, but there is a ton of special interest-lobbying for milk, eggs, and meat in our government. They push for things like having schools put milk out for lunches and breakfasts, they design our food pyramid and other propaganda to imply you need meat and dairy to be healthy, and they pass Ag-Gag laws preventing anyone from videotaping or trying to spread knowledge of the process.

Economically: there are tons of subsidies that are given to this sector and could be appropriated to cut a huge chunk of cost for the FD or any other program like Democracy Dollars. This is especially true given the amount of price-fixing that goes on with companies throwing away milk and other products to keep prices inflated artificially. These factory farms have to dispose of the waste from these animals and is almost always disposed of locally and in lower-income neighborhoods, further increasing healthcare costs for these people and driving down their property values.

Trophic Level overview

Plant-based eating can be cheaper than the standard American diet when you do not buy the fancy faux foods from Whole Foods. There is a reason poorer countries eat mostly plant-based diets. Meat is expensive. Think about trophic levels; it takes about 10-16lbs of grain to have an animal gain 1lb. That times 57 – 70,000,000,000 land animals yearly means the world produces plenty of food for all of us.

Healthcare: simply googling the effect of a whole-food plant-based diet will yield some incredible results like not only reducing, but reversing heart disease and diabetes, weight loss, and lowering cholesterol (plants have none). If you are worried about costs of healthcare, maybe look into preventative measures with changing your diet- It is cheaper in both the short and long run, noninvasive, and more reliable than nearly any medicine.

If Mr.Yang would at least acknowledge these things above he could win over a large community of voters, push forward-thinking ideas, and potentially save the US money.

With a program like the one AFA has written, we could encompass all aspects of his ideas, from incorporating more sustainable agriculture practices to protecting the ‘mom-and-pop’ farms to creating the right incentives.

Take a look at the answers he gave when asked about land use, human greenhouse gas emissions and poorer farming communities. He is so close to the right answer! Yes we *do* have to shape our food system so we evolve to eating less meat! And AFA is pushing for legislation that would do just that!

Right now we are fundraising in hopes of hiring a full-time lobbyist to help get our ideas into the eyes and ears of those who can make large-scale differences for good. Please consider making a donation. If 1,000 people all donate just $10 a month we will reach our goal. Thank you.


  • https://www.forbes.com/sites/janetforgrieve/2018/11/02/picturing-a-kindler-gentler-world-vegan-month/
  • http://www.fao.org/3/a0701e/a0701e00.htm
  • https://www.cowspiracy.com/facts
  • http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/758171468768828889/pdf/277150PAPER0wbwp0no1022.pdf
  • https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/24/business/energy-environment/deforestation-brazil-bolivia-south-america.html?_r=0
  • http://www.mightyearth.org/mysterymeat/
  • https://time.com/4530659/farmers-dump-milk-glut-surplus/
  • https://mercyforanimals.org/this-is-how-factory-farms-discriminate-against
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4315380/
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5466941/