Univ. BANS BURGERS to combat climate change. Where could it happen next?
- The University of London is banning hamburgers in order to try to combat climate change.
- Amid global warming talks, like the proposed Green New Deal, could this movement come to the U.S., as well?
A university has banned the sale of hamburgers in an attempt to combat climate change.
University of London, Goldsmiths blocked the sale of any beef product, increased taxes for water bottles and disposable cups, and installed solar panels across campus as part of an initiative to decrease carbon emissions and fight global warming, according to BBC News.
According to some scientists, the article states, beef could damage the environment because cows produce methane gas.
"The growing global call for organizations to take seriously their responsibilities for halting climate change is impossible to ignore,” Frances Corner, the university’s new head, told BBC News. “Declaring a climate emergency cannot be empty words. I truly believe we face a defining moment in global history and Goldsmiths now stands shoulder to shoulder with other organizations willing to call the alarm and take urgent action to cut carbon use."
"Our house is on fire,” Joe Leam, Goldsmiths Students' Union president, said. "I believe Frances Corner and the university management are realizing this and making these changes to put their part of the house fire out.”
"From energy use, to food sales and plastic pollution - all universities and organizations with campus sites can make changes across their facilities that are better for our planet,” he continued. "We call on others to urgently follow suit and to include cutting all ties from fossil fuel funding in their climate-emergency response."
With ongoing talks about ways to combat climate change in America, Democrat Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s controversial Green New Deal has been a hotly debated issue. Among the ideas originally listed in Ocasio Cortez’s plan were to completely get rid of energy production from oil, coal, and natural gas within ten years, renovating every home in the U.S. and creating a high-speed railway to eliminate travel by air. Since the Green New Deal also sets limits on greenhouse gas emissions, of which methane is one, the U.S. beef industry could be negatively impacted.
But could an American college or university ever ban beef? Two students with whom Campus Reform spoke said that could very well happen.
"Burgers are an American staple. I'm afraid that this ban might come to the U.S. Politics is crazy these days, so you never know what might happen," Natalie Kim, a student at Swarthmore College, told Campus Reform.
Jamie Bruno, a student at Villanova University, said, "I think that because Britain is a country very similar to the US (similar government and people) that it could very well spread to the U.S. However, I feel that the U.S possesses a larger conservative population that is loyal to the traditions of America, whereas Britain's seems to have a more liberal population that appears to be growing."
"I think that this would help with climate change, but there are definitely more efficient ways to help climate change than banning burgers, like powering homes through solar panels and wind turbines instead of oil or gas," Bruno added.
Campus Reform reached out to AOC for comment but did not receive a response in time for publication.
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