On the 3rd day of COPmas… 3 turkeys dancing and the carbon impact of meat #12COP21

Thank you to Eco Action Games for sharing this wonderful campaign with us.

Day 3: Food: the carbon impact of meat (or make a turkey happy this COPmas)

3cop21

Overview

Most of us are aware of everyday actions we can do to reduce our carbon footprint: turning off lights when not needed; using our cars less for short journeys; turning the thermostat down; having short showers and insulating our homes etc. But much less is understood about the impact our diets could be having on the climate, and the fact that our meat eating habits could constitute a large chunk of our personal annual carbon footprint.  The elephant in this particular room is the cow, the pig and the turkey!

If we take beef as an example, the consumption of just 1kg of beef, a roast dinner for three people typically, is equivalent to driving our cars a distance of about 160km (~100 miles). Meat in general, and red meat in particular, has a very high carbon and water footprint in terms of its lifecycle from farm to plate, and for our health, the well-being of farm animals and the health and well-being of our planet, we really need to reduce our consumption of it.

What eco actions can we take?

There are lots of easy things that we can do to reduce the carbon burden of our diets by being more mindful of our meat choices, and the beauty of taking action on our diets is it also usually has beneficial effects on our health too:

Citizens: individually, we can all make an effort to reduce our intake of meat and dairy products (unless you are veggie or vegan already of course – in which case award yourself a gold star). Why not give our 3 COPmas turkeys something to really dance about by opting for a meat free Christmas dinner this year? Signing up to Meat Free Mondays is a great start in the journey to reduce meat consumption for the long term. Also thinking about reducing red meat generally and replacing with (free range or organic) chicken and other ethically reared poultry will help reduce your carbon footprint. If you want to go further, why not try vegetarianism, or even go vegan, for a month and see how it suits you. Typically a vegetable based diet tends to be healthier than one based on a large amount of meat.

Civil Society: everyone can rise to the challenge and help spread the word about the impact of meat consumption on the planet. If your community group or club is organising a Christmas get together, why not break with tradition and try a vegetarian Christmas meal instead – if people question it, that’s a great conversation opener for discussing the issues around excess meat consumption and climate change especially while COP21 negotiations are in full swing.

Corporatesas with communities, when organising your Christmas work ‘do, why not make it an alternative affair with at least a couple of tasty alternatives to the traditional turkey dinner, lobby to have any event your company organises to go completely vegetarian for canapes and other snacks, and suggest your canteen, if you have one, tries out Meat Free Mondays for a trial period to promote a more planet, and animal, friendly alternative. 

Thank you to Eco Action Games for sharing this wonderful campaign with us.

Find out more here http://ecoactiongames.org.uk/3rd-day-of-COPmas/

Follow the campaign with #12COP21 @6_heads @ecoactiongames

1st Day of COPmas…

2nd day of COPmas…

12dayscopmas

 

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