By UK News Group (Originally in English)
On November 3, Golden Year 7 (2010), a conference entitled “Leaders Preserving Our Future: Pace and Priorities on Climate Change” was held at the Central Hall, Westminster in London, United Kingdom. The whole-day event was hosted by UK non-profit organisation World Preservation Foundation to raise awareness and to address the top priority in tackling climate change—reducing short-lived, non-CO2 climate forcers such as methane gas.
Distinguished guests and speakers from government, scientific, media and advocacy groups presented and discussed the increasingly evident effects of climate change and its important connections to food production and consumption. Among these guests were the Ambassador of Venezuela; the Ambassador of Bolivia; the Deputy High Commissioner of Jamaica; Counsellor Beatriz Garcés de Marcilla for the Environment and Rural and Marine Affairs Embassy of Spain; First Secretary Ms. Simona Spinaru from the Embassy of Romania; the Counsellor of the South African Embassy; Council members of the UK Overseas Territories Conservation Forum; students and professors from Oxford University, Brunel University and the University of East Anglia; the broadband company UK Online; the Eco Action Partnership; plus energy and insurance company representatives. During panel discussions, the audience had the opportunity to raise questions and to engage in discussions with speakers from diverse sectors.
Mr. Geoff Tansey, Trustee of Food Ethics Council in UK, presented findings from their combined research efforts with the WWF on the environmental impact of meat and dairy consumption, which contribute a significant part of the greenhouse gases in the UK.
Dr. Pat Brown, a biochemist from Stanford University, USA and vegan himself said, “Most of the developed world in the northern hemisphere’s crop cultivation isn’t crops to feed humans, it’s to feed that huge population of animals that we bring along with us.”
Mr. Anthony Kleanthous, Senior policy advisor on Sustainable Business and Economics from the WWF, illustrated with striking statistics that if the rapid decrease of biodiversity continues, we will not have anything to eat, or to fuel our economy. “Food is one of the three greatest impacts on our environment. And as we’ve heard today, you know that meat and dairy really are the primary concern here,” he stressed.
American CNN TV news network legal analyst Ms. Lisa Bloom flew all the way from Los Angles to this event and urged as a citizen representative that “diet can no longer be a matter of private choice, when the choice to buy meat and dairy products causes unspeakable cruelty to sentient beings and when the choice is destroying our planet.”
Swedish Member of Parliament Mr. Jens Holm proposed that the European Union direct the €3 billion annual meat subsidies instead to production of vegetarian food. Mr. Wally Fry, who inspired people with his personal success of his company - Fry’s Vegetarian, said “Let us awaken the intellect in industry and by using it as our master instructor, start the environmental revolution which will go down in history as a far greater thing than the industrial revolution ever was.”
Invited as the special guest of honour, Supreme Master Ching Hai greeted participants via video message, encouraging leaders and citizens alike to make courageous, Earth-saving changes. With the most thorough and recent scientific data available, Master examined six major “civilization busters,” namely climate change, water scarcity, the food crisis, deforestation, world ocean collapse and biodiversity loss, and brought to light how each of them is driven by meat consumption. In the end, She beseeched all the leaders to assist in the noble mission of restoring our Earth as She said, “Please help our world; please save our planet. I would like very much to not lose my hope and everyone else’s hope, because humans are caring, are clever, are courageous and are the children of God. I can only add my heartfelt prayers to yours that together we will do everything possible and truly effective to save our planet for our children’s sake. Thank you so much for your trust and attentive spirit.” Master’s urgent messages and heartfelt plea were well received and appreciated by the audience.
Among the few speakers who sent video messages to the conference were Mr. Philippe Cousteau, Jr., Founder and CEO of EarthEcho International and grandson of Captain Jacques-Yves Cousteau, plus internationally renowned surgeon, researcher, and clinician, Dr. Esselstyn, whose medical advice helped former US President Clinton lose 24 pounds and improve his heart function by following a plant-based diet. Other video speakers included Dr. Greger who proudly serves as the Director of Public Health and Animal Agriculture at the Humane Society of the United States, as well as Mr. Balthazar, Deputy Mayor of Ghent City, Belgium.
For many guests, it was the first time they were exposed to the appalling facts of a meat diet, as well as terms such as methane, ground level ozone and black carbon. It was also the first time they heard that reducing these short-lived pollutants caused by the animal diet actually can bring immediate climate benefits. Many of them were astounded, alarmed and motivated to help spread the urgent message. The Ambassador of Fiji asked for Master’s talk on DVD, Georgina Fitzalan-Howard, Duchess of Norfolk, UK, with tears in her eyes, expressed her wish to help promote Supreme Master Television. Dr. Karl Roberts, High Commissioner for Antigua and Barbuda, encouraged people to move away from meat-based, or animal-based consumption. Kerry McCarthy, a member of the British Parliament, pointed out during the conference that people also should be lobbying Parliament members about the livestock sector.
An eco exhibition was also held at the venue, attracting guests and attendees to an array of green lifestyle displays by health food companies such as Fry’s Vegetarian and Beanie’s Health Foods, environmental campaigners like PETA, Meat Free Monday initiated by Sir Paul McCartney, as well as green technologies including the Ecotricity and the Nitrous Oxide Focus Group.
Vegan food and refreshments were provided at the conference. Attendees enjoyed the taste and presentation of the food very much. The non-vegetarians among them were amazed at how versatile vegan food can be! The head chef from the parliamentary catering company said, “This is the first time we were asked to provide vegan food on such a large scale and we completely enjoyed doing it.”
To keep the momentum going, a press launch was also held at the British Houses of Parliament to bring the issue of global warming and the livestock industry to the attention of a larger audience. The press launch was attended by experts and dignitaries such as the Duchess of Norfolk; the High Commissioner for Antigua and Barbuda, Dr. Karl Roberts; Dr. Ester van der Voet, a representative from the United Nations Environment Programme; and ambassadors from such countries as Russia, Bolivia, Nepal and others.
We thank all dignitaries, distinguished speakers and participants of this conference on planetary priorities and extend deep appreciation to Supreme Master Ching Hai for sharing Her timely thoughts for this discussion. May we all recognize the organic, vegan lifestyle as the rational, effective way to save our only home, the Earth.
To watch Supreme Master Televisionís coverage of this
Climate Change Conference, please visit: