A Record 250,000 People Participated in Veganuary
Organizers behind Veganuary, the UK-based charity that started the month-long pledge, reported 250,000 sign-ups for their 2019 campaign. That's more pledges in the previous four years combined, the group cheered.
🎉 250,000 SIGN-UPS! 🎉 We have ended our #Veganuary January campaign with a HUGE quarter of a million people who hav… https://t.co/DWYjtMQBdp— Veganuary (@Veganuary)1548936058.0
"I think Veganuary has reached critical mass now—vegan living is growing, it's here to stay, it's part of the national conversation, and it has credibility," head campaigner Rich Hardy said in a blog post. "That's great news for people, animals, and the planet."
This year's initiatve grew globally thanks to 13 new overseas partnerships in India, Sweden, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Peru, Singapore, Malaysia, Australia, South Africa, Japan, Iceland and Russia.
A number of celebrities also helped spread the word, including BBC wildlife expert Chris Packham, Spanish international footballer Hector Bellerin and Harry Potter actress Evanna Lynch.
The travel industry publication TTG recently reported that airlines such as Norwegian and Emirates recorded noticeable spikes in vegan meal orders in January, up 7 percent and 40 percent respectively.
All together, some 500,000 people around the world have taken part in Veganuary since it first launched in 2014 and many participants remain plant-based. The organizers say that six out of every 10 participants stay plant-based after the first month.
Some omnivores might think a vegan diet can be too limiting or dull, but there are plenty of delicious recipes that prove otherwise. Even famously cranky chef Gordon Ramsey—who once joked about being allergic to vegans—gave his signature Beef Wellington a meat-free spin for Veganuary.
First a beet wellington, now a celeriac wellington.... oh lord, I think I'm turning Veggie !!! Gx #veganuary… https://t.co/stBKL0cS8i— Gordon Ramsay (@Gordon Ramsay)1548418739.0
A vegan diet obviously saves the lives of countless animals, but it can also be good for your health and the planet's health. Scientists behind a recent study determined that the best thing you can do for the planet is go vegan.
"A vegan diet is probably the single biggest way to reduce your impact on planet Earth, not just greenhouse gases, but global acidification, eutrophication, land use and water use," study leader and University of Oxford professor Joseph Poore told the Guardian. "It is far bigger than cutting down on your flights or buying an electric car," he said.
If that doesn't convince you to extend Veganuary for another month, maybe Jay-Z and Beyonce can. The famous couple will give you free concert tickets for life if you forgo meat—such as Meatless Mondays or plant-based breakfasts—for a month.
Beyonce announced the contest to her 123 million Instagram followers on Wednesday in support of the Greenprint Project that aims to improve the environment by encouraging people to switch to plant-based meals.
By Jake Johnson
Amid reports that oil industry-friendly former Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz remains under consideration to return to his old post in the incoming Biden administration, a diverse coalition of environmental groups is mobilizing for an "all-out push" to keep Moniz away from the White House and demand a cabinet willing to boldly confront the corporations responsible for the climate emergency.
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Anger, anxiety, overwhelm … climate change can evoke intense feelings.
"It's easy to feel dwarfed in the context of such a global systemic issue," says psychologist Renée Lertzman.
She says that when people experience these feelings, they often shut down and push information away. So to encourage climate action, she advises not bombarding people with frightening facts.
"When we lead with information, we are actually unwittingly walking right into a situation that is set up to undermine our efforts," she says.
She says if you want to engage people on the topic, take a compassionate approach. Ask people what they know and want to learn. Then have a conversation.
This conversational approach may seem at odds with the urgency of the issue, but Lertzman says it can get results faster.
"When we take a compassion-based approach, we are actively disarming defenses so that people are actually more willing and able to respond and engage quicker," she says. "And we don't have time right now to mess around, and so I do actually come to this topic with a sense of urgency… We do not have time to not take this approach."
Reporting credit: ChavoBart Digital Media
Reposted with permission from Yale Climate Connections.
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