December 10, 2009

European Parliament Members discuss reducing meat and climate change

The European Parliament organized a hearing on Thursday, December 3 titled “Climate Change and Food Policy: Less Meat = Less Heat,” opening the floor for a discussion about ways that reducing meat consumption would mitigate global warming. Invited as guest panelists were former Beatles artist Sir Paul McCartney, known for his Meat-Free Mondays campaign, and Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, esteemed Chair of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, who is also a vegetarian.

Dr. Rajendra Pachauri – Chair, United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Vegetarian (M): I think we have to use every means to mitigate the emissions of greenhouse gases, and I’d submit to you once again that cutting down on meat consumption would be an extremely effective way of doing so.

VOICE: Dr. Alan Dangour, co-author of a recent report published in the esteemed medical journal The Lancet that recommended reductions in meat consumption to save lives, also joined Sir Paul and Dr. Pachauri in the lively discussion.

Dr. Alan Dangour – London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, UK (M): A greater awareness of the climate costs of all of our actions, including our choice about what we eat, is urgently needed. Surely cooling our love affair with animal source foods is a very small price to pay.

VOICE: During this session, Sir Paul and Dr. Pachauri fielded questions from international journalists, including one from our Supreme Master Television correspondent.

Supreme Master Television correspondent: How do you think we can encourage people to change their eating habits, education-wise, and also in the compassion issue?

Sir Paul McCartney – Former Beatles musician, Vegetarian (M): I think what needs to be done is to point out the dangers of not changing our eating habits. There are a lot of facts available. I think we just have to encourage people, to guide them, to help them make the transition. But I think it’s doable, it’s very possible.

VOICE: We send our gratitude, European Parliament members, Sir Paul McCartney, Dr. Rajendra Pachauri and other participants, for your efforts to address this most urgent matter of our time.

May all people quickly make the shift to the vegan diet for the safe continuation of life on Earth. As one who has been dedicated to safeguarding humanity's course on the planet, Supreme Master Ching Hai again called for adoption of the life-giving plant-based lifestyle during an April 2009 videoconference in South Korea.

Supreme Master Ching Hai: We really need to stop global warming now, like yesterday, because I’m sorry to say that while all these green changes are good, there is still one action that must be on the top of the list, the most important one, which, once again, is the vegan diet.

The greenest of all the green policy, the greenest of all the green action, the most compassionate, the most heroic, the lifesaving action, the vegan diet. It will eliminate methane, one of the most heat-trapping greenhouse gases. And this will cool the planet the fastest and give us more time to exercise our green policy or finding better technology. This is the most valuable step, the vegan step, that the governments could make, could encourage, could pass into law, could inform the people at large.

This is the realistic way, the only way that I know, the only way that I see that we can save the planet right now.

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