Prime Minister Boris Johnson has vowed to slash carbon emissionsby 78% by 2035 and while his commitment is commendable, the Climate Change Committee (CCC) says that the government needs to be proactive in motivating the public to make personal changes to their diet for both their health and the environment.
Eating less meat
According to the committee, by 2030, people should be cutting down their daily consumption of meat and dairy by 20% and a further 35% by 2035. The CCC has also advised Johnson to set up clear policies that help the community to maintain healthy diets, and to have collective targets that will make them part of the country's mission. But the BBC reports that ministers worry about major backlash if they try to take away steak from the Brits.
Will the Brits do it?
Earlier this year, beeco—a marketplace that promotes sustainable alternatives to everyday products and services—published results from their survey which was designed to find out how much percentage of the British population is willing to give up, or reduce, their consumption of meat to save the planet.
The data revealed that 41% of the respondents were to ready make a compromise in order to reduce their carbon footprint. Some respondents were willing to go vegan for a few days in the week, others for a whole year, and some were happy doing ‘Meat Free Mondays.’ Beeco states that that’s all it takes to make a difference. They wrote on their website:
If the remaining 59% of the population decides to remove meat from just one meal a week, it will contribute to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 26 million tonnes which is the equivalent of taking 9 million cars off the roads.
When it came to giving up meat altogether, only 18% said they could sacrifice their carnivorous diets and the rest opted for other alternatives like switching to an electric car.
Beeco also found that the motivation behind people making more sustainable choices was to protecttheenvironment. They said:
The results of our survey show that Brits are ready to reduce their meat consumption to combat environmental concerns such as deforestation, biodiversity loss, or excess water use.
When asked about their main motivation to reduce meat consumption, 57% voted for environmental concerns.