"If we are to leave a sustainable planet for the generations to come then changing our diet is an essential part of it."
When I worked for a plant hire (heavy machinery hire) company I had a bacon or sausage sandwich for breakfast, a meat based lunch and no doubt something meat based for dinner. It just became a habit, and although I’ve kicked the morning sandwich for the most part the majority of my meals involve meat. It’s this lifestyle that’s helping to destroy the planet.
I don’t normally go in for New Years resolutions - but this time I’ve decided that I need to do more for the planet. I’m going vegetarian for five days of the week.
The prevailing opinion of scientists around the world is that we need to change our lifestyle to save the planet. This include more recycling, more reusing, a lot less consumption of natural resources and increasingly calls for us to eat a lot less meat.
The production of meat around the world before it makes it to your fork fuels climate change and the polluting or destruction of natural habitats. With an industrialised process, the elimination of our natural world and the largest extinction event since the dinosaurs, humans and our livestock now make up 96% of all mammals on our little green and blue life boat.
Last October we were warned by the scientific community that in order to prevent a disastrous 2C rise in global temperatures there needs to a global shift to a “flexitarian” diet. This includes the West reducing our consumption of beef by 90% and replacing it with a 500% increase in eating pulses and beans.
The world's population will grow two billion by 2050 and we’re already consuming 150% of sustainable global resource output. Something is going to give. Whether it is a continuation of climate initiated conflicts like we saw in Syria, sparked tensions over sparse water resources in South America, expansive desertification of Africa leading to increased famine or rising sea levels causing land loss in Bangladesh and other low lying countries.
If we are to leave a sustainable planet for the generations to come then changing our diet is an essential part of it. So I urged you if you’re read to the end, do something for the planet and future generations, reduce your meat consumption to a minimum.
Adam Allnutt is the Local Government Liaison officer on the Young Fabian exec. Follow him on Twitter at @adamallnutt