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Resource Language:

English

Regional Focus

Global

Lab Meat: The Taste of a Green Future

Author: ClimateScience
Grades: 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th
Subjects: Science, Biology, Health
Format: YouTube Video
Resource Type:
  • Video, 5 minutes, 11 seconds, CC, Subtitles
Synopsis
  • This video provides an overview of meat production, the carbon and land footprints of meat production, and a step-by-step explanation of how lab-grown meat is made. 
  • Students will learn that 14.5% of global carbon emissions are due to livestock production, which is the same as the entire transportation sector, and that livestock production uses far more land than plant crops but produces far fewer food calories. 
  • This video describes the potential of lab-grown meat as a substitute to raising livestock, provided that the energy required to make it is sustainable. 
Teaching Tips

Positives

  • This animated video is easy to follow and gives students enough information about the topic without being overwhelming.

Additional Prerequisites

  • It might be helpful to review the basics of cell division with students and the many types of stem cells now available to use for research and production.

Differentiation

  • Possible discussion/research topics for students to work in groups to explore:
    • How does lab-grown meat compare to plant-based meat alternatives with regard to sustainability, resource use, or energy consumption?
    • Are there certain plants that would make better substitutes than others?
    • Does how they are grown affect their sustainability measurements?
    • Would the lab-grown meats still have the same negative health effects as their animal-based counterparts?
    • How do government subsidies affect the cost of meat and diary from livestock? Does this affect the demand for these products?
  • Other resources or lessons related to this topic include:
Scientist Notes
The resource provides innovative ways to limit CO2 emissions from meat production and also encourages consumption of plant-based diets. This is recommended for students to reduce their carbon footprint from meat consumption.
Standards
  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • MS-ESS3-5 Ask questions to clarify evidence of the factors that have caused the rise in global temperatures over the past century.
      • HS-ESS3-4 Evaluate or refine a technological solution that reduces impacts of human activities on natural systems.
    • LS1: From Molecules to Organisms: Structures and Processes
      • HS-LS1-4 Use a model to illustrate the role of cellular division (mitosis) and differentiation in producing and maintaining complex organisms.
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