Eating More Plant-Based Meals Can Fight Climate Change
Written by Jenny Rose Edwards
Did you know that humans now exploit 72% of the planet’s ice-free surface to feed, clothe and support the Earth’s growing population? This information comes from a new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
The new report has shown that the food and agriculture industries must reduce greenhouse gas emissions across the board to prevent catastrophic warming; one of the most effective ways to reduce emissions is for us to consume less animal products. If meat consumption is reduced, people around the world could be fed using less land, and if land is used more effectively, it can store more of the carbon that humans emit. (You can check your diets carbon footprint by using the calculator here.)
Countries like Germany, Denmark and Sweden have all been considering the idea of a meat tax in order to make people think twice about their diet. Researchers found that a meat tax in the UK could prevent almost 6,000 deaths per year. Can we really afford not to try this method out?
In addition to this, providing better and more available education regarding the environmental impact of agriculture would be a simple and effective measure to take. As of right now, this information is only really available to you if you go looking for it online, or if you watch certain documentaries.
The Soil Association recently called for pupils in England to be offered a compulsory plant-based menu one day a week. This would be a great step in the right direction, and would start conversations between students on why this change is necessary.