Ethics Offsets to the Rescue

by Eric Rogstad Jan 16 2017

Hate hurting animals, but love eating meat? Throw money at the problem!

Farm animals seem to live in pretty miserable conditions.

I'm confused about whether to consider animals conscious in the way that humans are conscious (or in a way that I should care about). But in the interest of ethical caution, I'd prefer not to contribute to animal suffering.

I like eating meat, and am in general quite convenience-motivated, so I'd prefer not to go vegan or vegetarian.

So what to do?

My preferred solution is to purchase ethics offsets by donating to charities that work for the welfare of farm animals. If I donate enough, I can alleviate more suffering than I cause, and come out on net as an animal Champion and Protector.

I am not sure how much money it takes to alleviate as much suffering as eating meat causes, but I'd guess that $1 per day of meat consumption is more than enough.

I last donated to an animal welfare charity in August, 2015. So today I am making a donation of $1 per day since then in order to catch up and retain my (self-appointed) Champion and Protector status. I'm splitting my donation between Animal Charity Evaluators and Compassion in World Farming, as recommended by Lewis Bollard of the Open Philanthropy Project.

Also, I ate a hamburger today. It was delicious.

(Cross-posted from my blog.)


Eric Rogstad

For counterpoint, see:

Kyle Bogosian

This is silly, if reducing animal suffering is a priority then you ought to do it rigorously; if it is not a priority then you ought to focus predominantly on something else.