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Vegetarians have a much smaller carbon footprint

Saturday - 7/5/2014, 11:31am  ET

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Methane released from livestock is a big contributor to greenhouse gas emissions. (ThinkStock)

WASHINGTON -- It turns out there's a surprising way to cut greenhouse gas emissions drastically.

Be a vegan.

A vegan diet consists of no animal products (meats, eggs, dairy, etc.)

New findings published in the Climate Change journal show meat-eaters' dietary greenhouse gas emissions are double that of vegans'.

Producing, transporting and storing food contributes to greenhouse gas emissions, and animal-based products release more emissions than plant-based products, the Huffington Post reports.

Emissions come from carbon dioxides and fossil fuels that are used to power farm machinery, also methane--as a result of livestock.

The Environmental Working Group similarly found that if all Americans adopted a vegetarian diet, the result would be comparable to getting 46 million cars off the roads.

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