With the latest scientific evidence showing the devastating effects of industrial livestock on our planet and the environment, 40 MEPs have declared their support for the Million Dollar Vegan Campaign. The campaign calls for the public to eat vegan food during the 40-day Lent to combat climate change, species extinction, pollution and the suffering of livestock. The declaration was signed by MEPs from 17 EU Member States and seven of the eight political groups in the European Parliament, coordinated by German MEP Stefan Eck.
Million Dollar Vegan has made headlines worldwide. The campaign offers Pope Francis $ 1 million for a good cause of his choice if he lives vegan during Lent to signal climate change. The face of the campaign is the 12-year-old Genesis Butler. She turned to the Pope in an open letter and received support from scholars and celebrities such as Paul McCartney, Woody Harrelson, Dr. Ing. Joseph Poore, Nena and Moby. The campaign encourages people around the world to reduce their CO2 emissions during Lent by switching to plant-based nutrition. Lent starts on March 6th and traditionally lasts 40 days.
Forgoing animal feed is the single most effective measure anyone can take to reduce its environmental footprint. According to researcher Joseph Poore of Oxford University, every person who lives vegan for 40 days saves emissions equivalent to those on a flight from London to Berlin.
MEP Stefan Eck, who co-ordinated the joint statement with Million Dollar Vegan, says: “To mitigate at least some of the climate change that awaits us, we need to use every opportunity to reduce emissions that are damaging to the environment Million Dollar Vegans are doing a great job in raising awareness of this important issue, and I sincerely hope that hundreds of thousands of people will follow the campaign’s call for a vegan diet, not just to protect the planet, but also for the welfare of the animals and a fairer and safer food system. ”
Members of the European Parliament who support the campaign represent different parties and come from 17 European countries but are united in their mission to combat climate change.
In its statement, “We, the undersigned Members of the European Parliament, express our concern about the dangers of climate change and the destruction of the environment, so we support Million Dollar Vegan and Genesis Butler in their efforts to increase awareness of this issue to tackle climate change through a change in diet. ”
The parliamentarians advocate the choice of Lent as a period to try a vegan diet. The statement also states, “During 40 days of Lent, or for any other reason, to dispense with animal products makes a difference: to the planet and the ecological footprint that each of us leaves on Earth.”