It shouldn't come as a surprise that production of animal based food is more resource intensive than that of plant based foods, after all it is plants that the animals consume. This graph illustrates the disparity, but especially highlights the huge difference in land-use (green bars) between the two categories. In a world grappling to manage a changing climate, and seeking solutions to provide food for 9 billion people by the year 2050, it seems obvious where cuts should be made.
Yet, consumption of meats is only projected to increase. This is already placing strain on the world's limited arable land suitable for agriculture, and short of social and cultural shifts, the burden will be carried by scientists seeking solutions to enhance agricultural productivity while reducing environmental impacts.