Blog: Dean BestSir Paul takes a day trip to Brussels

Dean Best | 3 December 2009

Former Beatle Sir Paul McCartney has taken the long and winding road to Brussels today (3 December) to push his controversial message to eat less meat.

Sir Paul addressed a conference at the European Parliament and claimed that his 'Meat-Free Monday' campaign would have a significant effect on cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

Macca claimed the livestock industry produces more emissions than the "transport industry put together", which he claimed, had been the former "villians of the piece".

Not everyone is coming together (please stop - pun editor) to back Sir Paul's call for, um, help.

One meat industry group has demanded European polticians give more time to "independent scientists" rather than the views of "prejudicial lobbyists and activists".

David Rutledge, head of Northern Ireland's Livestock & Meat Commission, said he had "severe concerns" that the European Parliament was "pandering to the voice of populism" by inviting Sir Paul to the conference.

Green issues are sure to dominate the headlines over the next week or so, with the climate change conference in Copenhagen looming on the horizon.

The fall-out from the public leak of emails between UK scientists discussing climate change, as well as the defeat suffered earlier today by the Australian government over its plans to cut emissions, shows just how controversial the issues have become.

And, crucially, just how confusing the topic of climate change is becoming to the general public.

Broadly speaking, there is widespread belief that the planet is warming - and that man's actions is a key factor.

What the public wants is clear guidance on how to change their behaviour to alleviate climate change.

Just what impact giving up meat for one day has on emissions is a point of huge debate but it remains a simple message for consumers to digest - and one that, with the support of one of the planet's great cultural icons, could very easily gain traction.


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