This speech comes from an assignment that I recently did which was based around the world ‘adaptation’ and my interpretation of it. The speech is aimed at a varied audience with intent to shed light a different light on veganism, so grab yourself a cuppa and have a look…
Our future is like a plane leaving Melbourne airport heading north, a slight change in direction by the pilot can be the difference in you arriving in Heathrow or Madrid. A slight change in what we do now might end up in a very different outcome.
We are living amongst a dynamic, ever changing planet. The population is grown exponentially at a rate…times faster than ever before. We have enough food for 14 billion people yet many people are living famished. The changing climate is disrupting our ecosystems. Something has to change. But, what? And more importantly, why?
Without using any oil, gas, fuel from this day forward still exceed maximum green house gas emission by year 2030 simply by eating and raising livestock. Over this “safe level” things begin to deteriorate and become damaged.
So we have special bins for special things and buy hybrid cars and look for ‘sustainable energy sources’, that would do it yep?
You simply need to make peace with your plate and adapt.
That’s right, your plate.
Every meal you have is affecting the planet. Every meal you have is contributing to climate change.
Eating a plant-based diet reduces your carbon footprint by 50%.
The meat and dairy industry use 1/3 of the planet’s fresh water – leaving only 2/3 remaining. Whilst this seems like enough, there are copious amounts of people living without fresh water and thus experiencing the effects of water borne disease. To put it into perspective that one Macca’s burger requires an average of 3000L of water to raise, which is the equivalent to 2 months of 4 minute showers.
Do you know where the food on your plate has come from? How far it’s travelled to graciously sit atop your grandma’s crockery. How far the little chicken who didn’t want to be a pie has come to your local Coles to accompany your mashed potato and beans? Why do we need to know?
Because your food mileage is contributing to poverty. You can reverse this – make peace with your plate and adapt.
The carbon emissions that are a result of the thousands and thousands of miles that the ingredients for a meal have to travel and are worsening the situation of our changing climate. Al Gore one said that climate change was ‘An Inconvenient Truth’ and it is. People tip-toe around the fact that is happening, attempting to avoid the necessity that they have to change and adapt too. Climate change is detrimental to the poorer people on the planet – they cannot simply turn up their air conditioning or heater.
Like Apa the Nepalese Sherpa who was son to a family of yak-herders. Apa began mountaineering at the age of 7 and in 2008 broke the world record for the most Mt Everest climbs undertaken. Apa is a WWF climate change witness. Apa tells the story of the mountains, the story of the drastic change in weather patterns. The increasing number of hot days. The mosquitos and flies that are appearing at Everest Base Camp for the first time threatening to bring disease. The story of the adaptations the Sherpa’s have had to make because of the melting snow. Your meal choices don’t only affect you.
Now is the time to adapt yourself, so that others are not forced to.
We simply need to make peace with our plate.
And the easiest way to do this; eat a plant based diet.
Now I know that the whole world isn’t going to revert to a plant based diet over night because HOW COULD YOU GIVE UP CHEESE?!?
The world doesn’t work like that. But you can make a difference. That one vegan meal you have saves 1136 L of water, 7 kg of grain that could have been used to feed malnourished children, it’ll also save your money and your health. Adaptation; that’s what a change in diet is. You aren’t giving anything up – you can still have coffee/cake/sausages/burgers/etc – it just doesn’t have such a negative impact on the world. YOU can start with your next meal. Swap that cheese in your sandwich for dip, that dairy milk in your coffee to soy. Go to Wholefoods and pick yourself up a $3 meal.
We live in a phenomenal city for plant based eaters. Get out there and experience the revolution. Open your eyes and your hearts to new food experiences. Be willing to try new things and look for opportunities to adapt.
Use the resources at your fingertips – my blog for instance 😉
When you generally hear the word vegan – you think of a henna wearing, dreadlocked, pot smoking hippie. But if you care about the future of the planet, and the people on then you should go vegan.
For the animals, for me, for the planet – make peace with your plate.