The Independent asked its readers to suggest to the government for its green paper–ways of stopping climate change and ecological disaster. The following was published in the paper on 28th October.
Sir: The Government should actively encourage people to give up meat eating in favour of a plant based vegetarian and vegan diet. A staggering 55 billion animals are raised for meat every year which in effect means 55 billion living beings who have to be fed and watered. This is in addition to the eight and half billion human population which will rise to over nine billion by 2050. Our planet is simply not big enough to sustain these numbers. The result is destruction of rain forests, spreading of deserts and massive methane gas emissions leading to further global warming. To sustain a meat based diet we effectively need two planets which- we do not have. It was Albert Einstein who said: ‘Nothing will benefit human health and increase chances of survival of life on Earth as much as evolution to a vegetarian diet’.