Animal agriculture accounts for more than 16 per cent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, making it a target for improved sustainability and food security. It’s also, as we saw in British Columbia last year, vulnerable to effects of extreme weather and climate change.

One way to reduce these risks is to remove livestock from the food production equation entirely — and cellular agriculture is trying to do just that.

Laboratories are using micro-organisms and fungi to produce food components, such as the cheese-making enzyme rennet, or animal cells to grow meats and milks. (Cellular salmon, anyone?) While there may be benefits, it could also harm those who work on the 10,000 dairy farms across the country.

Today in The Conversation Canada Evan Bowness and Robert Newell from the University of the Fraser Valley, and Sarah-Louise Ruder from the University of British Columbia write about the rise of cellular agriculture and argue that policy-makers and others can look to the energy sector to find ways to ensure dairy farmers don’t suffer unfairly in the transition.

Also today:

All the best.

Hannah Hoag

Deputy Editor | Environment + Energy Editor

Dairy cows in the Fraser Valley, B.C. (Evan Bowness)

Milk without the cow: Cellular agriculture could be the future of farming, but dairy farmers need help

Evan Bowness, University of The Fraser Valley; Robert Newell, University of The Fraser Valley; Sarah-Louise Ruder, University of British Columbia

Technological changes on the horizon will likely disrupt the dairy industry as we know it — plans to mitigate the risks this transition poses to farmer livelihoods and animal welfare should start now.

Jonathan Marchand, a 43-year-old man living with muscular dystrophy, protested in a cage near the Québec legislature, in Québec City, on Aug. 13, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mathieu Belanger

Warehousing disabled people in long-term care homes needs to stop. Instead, nationalize home care.

Kelly Fritsch, Carleton University; Fady Shanouda, Carleton University

We must support disabled people’s call to abolish long-term care and develop a national home care, palliative care and pharmacare system that funds and prioritizes their desire to live in communities.

SaskWell is a texting-based service that connects users with established and evidence-based digital mental health tools, and offers weekly wellness tips and resources. (Shutterstock)

Texting for wellness: Using digital mental health tools for support in another COVID-19 winter

Tracie Risling, University of Calgary; Gillian Strudwick, University of Toronto

Research on how text messaging could provide mental health resources resulted in SaskWell, a texting service for people in Saskatchewan that provides 10 weeks of mental health and wellness prompts.

An activist holds up a defaced portrait of Myanmar Gen. Min Aung Hlaing during a rally against the military coup in Jakarta, Indonesia in April 2021, as the ASEAN summit was being held. (AP Photo/Tatan Syuflana)

Hopeful signs: How some southeast Asian nations are snubbing Myanmar’s military leader

Quoc Tan Trung Nguyen, University of Victoria

Will the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, known as ASEAN, start taking tougher stances against authoritarian and military regimes? Its recent treatment of Myanmar’s military ruler is promising.

Cold weather exercise can keep us healthy, but there are risks. (Shutterstock)

Cover your face, wear a hat and stay hydrated to exercise safely through the winter

Michael Kennedy, University of Alberta

Preparing for being active in cold weather can help keep us safe and increase our enjoyment.

La Conversation Canada

Les communautés universitaires sont essentielles pour protéger la liberté individuelle

Isaac Nahon-Serfaty, L’Université d’Ottawa/University of Ottawa; Catalina Arango, L’Université d’Ottawa/University of Ottawa

Les communautés universitaires sont essentielles pour protéger la liberté individuelle. Elles remettent en question, innovent, trouvent des solutions, font de la recherche et débattent des idées.



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