By Dawn Bickett
It's World Meat-Free Week! People all over the world will celebrate by eating plant-based meals. And in communities around the world, people will come together to celebrate with delicious, healthy food.
Why World Meat-Free Week?
Intensive meat and dairy production is destroying our forests, polluting our water, and warming our planet. It is causing deforestation on a massive scale, with over a quarter of the Earth's landmass currently being used for livestock grazing! It is driving global warming: greenhouse gas emissions from livestock are equal to all emissions from cars, trucks and airplanes. And while many places are experiencing water shortages and droughts, livestock are the single largest consumer and polluter of water on the planet.
People enjoying vegetarian/vegan entrees from around the world: Steamed sourdough dumplings filled with buckwheat groats. Fermented beetroot & wild herbs, with sweet & sour chili sauce. Carrot, savoy cabbage & chickpea coconut milk curry. Basmati rice pilav with cashew nuts.Greenpeace
Changing our diets from meat-intensive to more plant-based alternatives is also essential to our health. High red meat consumption has been linked to cancer, heart disease, obesity and diabetes. Five million deaths each year could be avoided by 2050 if people all around the world shifted to healthier diets with more veggies and legumes and less meat.
But the good news is that there's something we can do about this. All over the world, people are taking action in their own lives and communities, by eating more veggies and less and better meat and encouraging their friends and family to do the same.
And on June 11, the first day of World Meat Free Week, people everywhere will stand up for healthy food and a healthy planet by choosing not to eat meat or dairy. Discover how you can get involved and sign up to join in.
Open Boat events consisting of several tents providing an opportunity for our visitors to engage with Greenpeace history, our local campaigns, global and local plastic issues, and cooking meat free meals.
Try New Things on World Meat Free Day
Want to eat less meat but don't know where to start? Check out our online cookbook, Recipes for a Healthy World.
Spread the (Veggie) Love!
You don't have to do it alone! Host a veggie meal or potluck with friends and family. Savor good food, have a great time with the people you love, and do the right thing for our planet.
Enjoying a plant-based meal in Bangkok, Thailand
Get Your City on Board!
Cities and other local governments, from Mexico to Denmark, are getting in on the plant-based action, too! They're serving vegetarian meals in schools, hospitals and other public institutions. They're teaching public employees and students about the joys and benefits of a plant-based diet. Maybe your city could be next! Check our guide to the cities leading the way in this effort, and a toolkit that will help you make this happen in your town.
Veggie-Centric Cuisine on the Rise https://t.co/xZPIBl7fGD @ForksOverKnives @TheVeganSociety @YourDailyVegan— EcoWatch (@EcoWatch)1515538509.0
Each product featured here has been independently selected by the writer. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.
The bright patterns and recognizable designs of Waterlust's activewear aren't just for show. In fact, they're meant to promote the conversation around sustainability and give back to the ocean science and conservation community.
Each design is paired with a research lab, nonprofit, or education organization that has high intellectual merit and the potential to move the needle in its respective field. For each product sold, Waterlust donates 10% of profits to these conservation partners.
Eye-Catching Designs Made from Recycled Plastic Bottles
waterlust.com / @abamabam
The company sells a range of eco-friendly items like leggings, rash guards, and board shorts that are made using recycled post-consumer plastic bottles. There are currently 16 causes represented by distinct marine-life patterns, from whale shark research and invasive lionfish removal to sockeye salmon monitoring and abalone restoration.
One such organization is Get Inspired, a nonprofit that specializes in ocean restoration and environmental education. Get Inspired founder, marine biologist Nancy Caruso, says supporting on-the-ground efforts is one thing that sets Waterlust apart, like their apparel line that supports Get Inspired abalone restoration programs.
"All of us [conservation partners] are doing something," Caruso said. "We're not putting up exhibits and talking about it — although that is important — we're in the field."
Waterlust not only helps its conservation partners financially so they can continue their important work. It also helps them get the word out about what they're doing, whether that's through social media spotlights, photo and video projects, or the informative note card that comes with each piece of apparel.
"They're doing their part for sure, pushing the information out across all of their channels, and I think that's what makes them so interesting," Caruso said.
And then there are the clothes, which speak for themselves.
Advocate Apparel to Start Conversations About Conservation
waterlust.com / @oceanraysphotography
Waterlust's concept of "advocate apparel" encourages people to see getting dressed every day as an opportunity to not only express their individuality and style, but also to advance the conversation around marine science. By infusing science into clothing, people can visually represent species and ecosystems in need of advocacy — something that, more often than not, leads to a teaching moment.
"When people wear Waterlust gear, it's just a matter of time before somebody asks them about the bright, funky designs," said Waterlust's CEO, Patrick Rynne. "That moment is incredibly special, because it creates an intimate opportunity for the wearer to share what they've learned with another."
The idea for the company came to Rynne when he was a Ph.D. student in marine science.
"I was surrounded by incredible people that were discovering fascinating things but noticed that often their work wasn't reaching the general public in creative and engaging ways," he said. "That seemed like a missed opportunity with big implications."
Waterlust initially focused on conventional media, like film and photography, to promote ocean science, but the team quickly realized engagement on social media didn't translate to action or even knowledge sharing offscreen.
Rynne also saw the "in one ear, out the other" issue in the classroom — if students didn't repeatedly engage with the topics they learned, they'd quickly forget them.
"We decided that if we truly wanted to achieve our goal of bringing science into people's lives and have it stick, it would need to be through a process that is frequently repeated, fun, and functional," Rynne said. "That's when we thought about clothing."
Support Marine Research and Sustainability in Style
To date, Waterlust has sold tens of thousands of pieces of apparel in over 100 countries, and the interactions its products have sparked have had clear implications for furthering science communication.
For Caruso alone, it's led to opportunities to share her abalone restoration methods with communities far and wide.
"It moves my small little world of what I'm doing here in Orange County, California, across the entire globe," she said. "That's one of the beautiful things about our partnership."
Check out all of the different eco-conscious apparel options available from Waterlust to help promote ocean conservation.
Melissa Smith is an avid writer, scuba diver, backpacker, and all-around outdoor enthusiast. She graduated from the University of Florida with degrees in journalism and sustainable studies. Before joining EcoWatch, Melissa worked as the managing editor of Scuba Diving magazine and the communications manager of The Ocean Agency, a non-profit that's featured in the Emmy award-winning documentary Chasing Coral.