Alma Alma
Film Viewing: November 14, 2013, 7 p.m., Humanities Center Room 218

Co-sponsored by the Schmidt Library. According to the report Livestock's Long Shadow published by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, livestock generates 18% of our greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. As such, livestock is a frontline contributor to environmental degradation worldwide. It is heavily responsible for air and water pollution, deforestation, land degradation, loss of biodiversity and climate changes. The greenhouse gas emissions from beef production are particularly high: eating one kilogram of beef roughly equals the GHG emissions of flying 100 kilometers by jet, per passenger. The driving force behind the destruction of the Amazon rainforest is the expansion of grazing land for cattle. Between 2000 and 2007, the Brazilian Amazon was deforested at an average rate of 20,000 square kilometers per year. A Greenpeace survey based on Brazilian governmental data shows that cattle grazing is responsible for 80% of Brazilian Amazon deforestation; while agriculture, mining and infrastructures are responsible for most of the remaining 20%. Alma wordlessly examines how consumerism is transforming the Amazon into a deadly place. Not only is the forest being wiped out, in its place are cows by the millions, destined for slaughter. Tropical forests are very important to climate regulation processes and carbon sequestration, so the role of cattle, logging and leather production in Brazil has a significant impact globally.