The immense carbon footprint that a meat-based diet has on the planet is explained in this Gidon Eshel keynote.
He describes the typical American diet as being a 'MAD diet', an acronym which stands for 'Mean American Diet.' His statistical background and time on a dairy farm while growing up on an Israeli Kibbutz gave him valuable insight into the food industry which he then used to create a numerical analysis of the geophysical impact that food production has on the planet. The extensive amount of green house emissions that are pumped into the atmosphere during the production of meat-based products has lead to changes in the way by which the Earth and Sun exchange energy.
The speaker advocates a vegan diet or a diet, which is low in meat consumption to help eliminate the carbon footprint left by the world's food choices.