by MPD
Categories: People
Tags: .

_jessica_capshaw_2_Actress Jessica Capshaw has gone green…well, kinda. 

The Grey’s Anatomy star recently opened up to about her newly green life, crediting pregnancy for making her more environmentally-conscious. 

These days Capshaw buys local, carries stainless steel water bottles, drives a Prius and eats organic. However, when it comes to dinner, Jessica just can’t put down the burgers. She says: 

“I’m a Midwesterner! Not being able to have a cheeseburger once in a while would be torture!”

Here’s the thing: it’s not my opinion that eating meat is bad for the environment…it’s a fact! Half the water we use in this country goes to livestock. Animal agriculture contributes more to global warming than every mode of transportation COMBINED. Deforestation, pollution, the extinction of species — all of these are exacerbated by modern animal agriculture. 

Don’t freak yet though — Jessica seems to be on her way. She continues on to say:

“I know the reasons to become vegetarian and the more I think about them I know I need to stop eating red meat.”

We concur. Do you? Chime in and leave a comment encouraging Jessica to take the next step and commit to vegetarianism. We have a sneaky suspicion that she (or someone she knows) will eventually read this post, and you never know just what your words might help inspire. The floor is yours.

  • Jen Hamilton

    I’m a Midwesterner and I don’t eat meat eggs or dairy. She is using that as a crutch to continue eating meat.

  • s

    i’m from the midwest too, and it’s really not that hard once you start. especially if you’ve ever smelled what those farms smell like when you drive past them… :P

  • Elizabeth

    There are so many amazing meat stand-ins these days, it’s never been easier to leave animals off our plates! Kudos to Capshaw for considering a veg lifestyle; here’s hoping she goes through with it!

  • Proud WI Dairy Producer

    Sounds to me like she is making great strides towards living a ‘greener’ life. It is up to all of us to do what we can to leave as small of an impact on the planet as possible – and farmers know better than anyone what it takes to be a good steward of the land.

    As far as greenhouse gas emissions are concerned, here are the FACTS from the 2008 EPA report. In the US, 3% of greenhouse gas emissions come from livestock (1.3% beef, 0.7% dairy, 1% other). It looks as though the ag numbers in the 2009 report will be even lower, as producers like myself are taking strides every day to improve our operations and their impact they have on the environment.

    The total emissions from residential & transportation equate to over 39%… a bit far fetched to say that agriculture contributes more to global warming.

    And, I would really like to see where you get your statistics on water usage. I HIGHLY doubt that half of the water this nation uses is put towards raising livestock, especially considering the amount that is wasted to water lawns, flowers & golf courses… not to mention, agriculture has ways of reusing & repurposing water, it doesn’t all just go down the drain.

    So, Jessica (or whoever reads this and gets back to you), eat your burger, your cheese and drink a glass of milk – and be proud that you’re a midwesterner supporting the family farmers that work hard to feed this country & the world. It’s easy to bash agriculture when people have their mouths full… and without farmers, we’d all be naked & hungry.

  • Shelly

    She seems too smart to eat meat. Torture is what happens to the meat before it hits her mouth. Someone needs to send her a copy of Earthlings… (Hello? PETA?)

  • Michelle

    “Animal agriculture contributes more to global warming than every mode of transportation COMBINED.” This statement is factually inaccurate, by a mile.

    According to the EPA’s 2008 Inventory of Greenhouse Gas Emisions, animal agriculture contributes only 2.8% to total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. Transportation accounts for 26.4%.

    Having a philosophical belief against converting livestock to food is one thing, but posting factually innacurate statements about meat consumption and climate change to advance your cause, is another.

  • Michael DuDell

    Proud, Michelle-

    A 2006 report issued by the United Nations declared that animal agriculture contributes more to global warming (via CO2, Methane and Nitrous Oxide emissions) than all the transportation in the world. That’s not a made up fact. Here’s a link:

    The water statistic comes from the December, 1999, issue of Audubon Magazine that states: “Nearly half the water consumed in this country…is used for livestock, mostly cattle.”

    Furthermore, in 2002, Newsweek magazine reported, “The amount of water that goes into a 1,000 pound steer would float a (Naval) destroyer.”

    The Water Education Foundation in Sacramento – a non-profit organization that prides itself on being “the only impartial organization to develop and implement educational programs leading to a broader understanding of water issues and to resolution of water problems” – has stated that it takes about 2,464 gallons of water to produce one pound of beef. That almost a hundred times the amount of water used in producing a pound of produce.

    Meat, dairy and eggs are far less sustainable than plant-based foods. I could site you studies for days.

  • Eric

    The problem isn’t necessarily with meat/dairy/eggs in and of itself.

    The problem lies in the production model for these products, and even the factory farming industry has admitted it isn’t sustainable.

    Reducing the amount of dairy, meat and eggs that most Americans eat is not crazy, it is going back to a diet that humans have known for thousands of years.

    We eat too many animal products in our daily diet, and to top that off, much of it is trucked from all over the world.

    Vegans and vegetarians are just as guilty of adding extra greenhouse gas to the equation if they aren’t buying local, but of course, the very nature of a plant-based diet IS lower pollution than an animal product, and there’s no arguing that. There just isn’t.

    The trick is shifting production away from unsustainable practices, and allowing all people involved to become part of the solution. Nobody should be made to be a villain in this scenario.

  • Rosiebloom

    It seems like she is honestly trying to live as green a life as she can in whatever way she can and only occasionally eats red meat, which is 99% more than most people do, so I don’t begrudge her the odd cheese burger now and then.

  • erin raw foods

    Poor Poor Michelle. She believes a sorry govt agency like the EPA (and that fact you listed IS inaccurate by the way)

    I can also give you stats about your chances of dying of cancer if you continue to eat meat. Give up the meat and live


  • hil

    It think she should start with meat free monday’s and see where it goes :)

  • herwin


  • Stephanie

    It’s not just red meat that is bad for the environment but bird meat, fish, eggs and dairy. A recent study found that going veg is better for the environment than eating entirely local. Of course vegan, organic, and local would be best. Meat, eggs, and dairy are also extremely cruel and unhealthy.

    Check out

    And please, watch Earthlings! It will change your life.

  • Pema

    Um, cheeseburgers are torture.

  • s

    @Proud WI Dairy Producer: congrats on getting your operation more green, but remember, much of the dairy and meat consumed in the U.S. is imported from factory farms in other countries, and the CO2 and methane produced from that hasn’t been added to the U.S. total. the worldwide total is something along the lines of 18% of all GH gas emissions.
    keep going green, though, and treat the animals fairily, too.

  • kylo

    Hey Jessica Capshaw. Almost all of us grew up eating burgers no matter where we grew up! Stop blaming your home region for your lack of willpower and go vegan already.

  • s

    @Stephanie: oh. my. god. i just downloaded earthlings onto my ipod from your link and…oh my god. i knew animals were treated horribly in factory farms, it’s why i went vegetarian in the first place, but…holy CRAP!!!!! that is the most disturbig, depressing thing i have ever seen, but at the same time it should be required viewing for every human being on the face of the earth. EVERYBODY GO DOWNLOAD EARTHLINGS!!!!!!!!!

  • Inga Ambrosia

    Won’t or can’t?? Bloody meat is addictive … I can’t even believe I wrote that.

    Being vegan is the easiest thing in the world! Of course, I’m 6 years in but it’s wonderful and now is the best time to do it.

  • steph

    it’s sad that people are SO addicted to some foods that even thought they KNOW the positive impact that the change would make….it is just TORTURE to go w/out.

    it’s really disgusting and just goes to show how self absorbed people are.

  • Antonio

    I can’t see why geographical origin should be an impediment to changing diet when one has left it.

  • VeggieTart

    C’mon, saying you’re a Midwestern/Southern/Country/whatever girl/guy is a cop-out. Better to say that while veganism is great, it’s not for eveyrone; I can go with that. But everyone can and should reduce their consumption of animal products.

    And hey, you said “once in a while”. So, okay, give up everything but the cheeseburgers and have them once in a while as a treat.

  • deana – green with glamour

    Clearly I’m not the only Mid-westerner who thinks using where you grow up as an excuse to eat meat is total bullshit. I went Veg 25yrs ago at the age of 12… and haven’t looked back! And the fact that she has the gall to say her NOT eating a cheeseburger would be “torture” – she should walk a mile in the cows shoes. Ridiculous!