Earth Day & the Meatless Monday Connection
35 Countries, One Global Pledge: Go Plant-powered for the Planet
Tuesday, April 22, 2014 is Earth Day, an annual event (44 years strong) to honor the sanctity of the little blue planet we call home. If you’re wondering what you can do to participate, there’s an easy (and delicious!), way you can do something good for the environment this week, and every week of the year: join the Meatless Monday movement! You won’t be alone. This spring a global teleconference was held with representatives from over 30 countries all chiming in about their Meatless Monday campaign. On six continents, in 35 countries and 23 languages people all over the world have taken the pledge to go meatless on Monday – it’s incredible! Regardless of where you live, if it’s called Lundi Sans Viande (Quebec) or Veggie Mondays (Japan), going meatless on Monday is a small, simple step that can have a huge impact. You really can save the earth - one bite at a time!
With Earth Day upon us, please keep in mind that by moving towards a whole food plant-based diet we can have an incredible impact on the environment by choosing foods free from animal products. According to the United Nations and the Environmental Protection Agency:
· It requires an average of 6kg of plant protein to produce 1kg of animal protein.
· It takes 100 times more water to produce 1kg of animal protein than it does 1kg of plant protein.
· Animal agriculture is responsible for 18% - 25% of global warming emissions worldwide.
· Cattle ranches and feed production account for over 70% of deforestation in the Amazon.
· The livestock sector is quite probably the largest source of water pollution worldwide.
· A single dairy cow produces approximately 120 pounds of manure per day, which is equivalent to that of 20 to 40 humans.
· On average 990 litres of water are required to produce one litre of milk.
MEATLESS MONDAY IN CANADA
Meatless Monday Canada is a local chapter of global initiative, led by Earthsave Canada and several other groups interested in helping Canadians make one day a week meat-free day. The MeatlessMonday.ca site is maintained by Earthsave Canada and a handful of passionate volunteers, who want to make a difference by helping folks make the transition to a more sustainable and healthy diet. The City of Vancouver proclaimed Monday June 10th, 2013 as the city’s first official Meatless Monday. Vancouver is the first Canadian city to do so. A presentation to The Vancouver Food Policy Council by local author and Earthsave member Eleanor Boyle outlined scientific research showing the environmental problems of large-scale meat production and consumption.
Check out the Earthsave Canada campaign for tools and resources: http://www.MeatlessMonday.ca
Find us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MeatlessMondayCanada
Other Canadian initiatives include:
Lundi Sans Viande: http://www.lundisansviande.net/ Canada’s French-language partner in Quebec
Meatless Mondays: http://meatlessmondays.ca hosted by the Toronto Vegetarian Association
For more information about the countries participating in the incredible growing global movement that is Meatless Monday, go to http://www.meatlessmonday.com/the-global-movement/
MEATLESS MONDAY IN OUR SCHOOLS
Several Canadian universities and schools have proclaimed Meatless Monday, e.g. McGill and Queen’s Universities. We are currently working on compiling a honour list of participating schools (looking for volunteers to help with that). http://meatlessmonday.ca/schools/
HEALTHY PEOPLE HAPPY PLANET
At Earthsave Canada we are currently working on a special addition to our education literature by creating a Canadian-made plant-based food guide and presentation to take into schools and workplaces.
The Healthy People Happy Planet Food Guide is a Canadian-made veg starter kit booklet and colourful plant-based food guide, with corresponding power point presentation and interactive web site.
These days most Canadians receive the bulk of their nutritional information from advertisers. Industry is driving Canada's food guide recommendations and the planet, our health, and the animals are suffering for it. We need to take the focus away from processed animal products to whole food, plant-based options. Education is the key to a healthy and sustainable future.
Find out more about the Healthy People Happy Planet project here: http://earthsave.ca/healthypeoplehappyplanet
HOW CAN YOU HELP?
So glad you asked! Earthsave Canada will launch a crowd-funding campaign this Earth Day to help fund this much needed initiative. Help us spread the word! (link to go live on April 22, 2014): https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/earthsave-canada-plant-based-food-guide-school-presentation
You can donate to our programs at any time through CanadaHelps:
or directly through our web site: http://earthsave.ca/donate
EARTHSAVE CANADA LEADS THE WAY
EARTHSAVE CANADA is a Vancouver-based registered charity since 1992. We advocate the move towards a more whole food, plant-based diet for better health, environmental sustainability, and compassion toward animals. We also believe communities are stronger when they set a table that people from all cultures and beliefs can enjoy. By providing educational tools and helpful resources we strive to make a difference – with your help. YOU are Earthsave. http://www.earthsave.ca
NOTE: While sharing many of the same values, Earthsave Canada is completely independent of other international and US Earthsave initiatives.
Some Earthsave Canada Initiatives
Educational Brochures: 'How to get your Protein from a Plant-based Diet' & 'How to get your Calcium from a Plant-based Diet' Two of our most popular brochures provide compelling answers to common questions.
Our latest brochure - ready in time for Earth Day 2014:
THE POWER OF A PLANT-BASED DIET: Sustainable, Healthy, Kind. Already a popular request by schools and various Earth Day events, we look forward to distributing this handy, colourful resource to students all over the country.
Brochures, posters, social media images for sharing and more at: http://www.earthsave.ca/brochures
Media Outreach: We regularly publish articles on diet and how it relates to sustainability and better health, and have been reprinted in various publications as well as interviewed by local and national media, the BBC and others. Sharing information, supporting local businesses, contacting the media and government with informed feedback on current issues, connecting and building healthy communities - all part of what we do to make a difference in a world of indifference. http://earthsave.ca/articles
Plant-powered Speakers Series: Our very popular Plant-powered Speaker Series including experts such as Neal Barnard of the PCRM, watch for a very special guest in July 2014. http://www.earthsave.ca/events
MeatlessMonday.ca : Pledge to go meatless 1 day a week and join this growing global movement. Want to get your workplace or school involved? We will support you with menu ideas, posters and more. www.meatlessmonday.ca.