Worldlog Week 03 – 2013

14 January 2013

The new year is always a time for resolutions. My own new year’s resolution is clear: continue the fight for animals, nature and the environment! At the same time, we would like to see an end to all the banging and explosions around the new year’s celebrations. In December we again argued for a ban on consumer fireworks. Each year hundreds of people, including many children, are injured by fireworks. Moreover, the racket causes stress to millions of animals and fireworks are bad for the environment. It is high time to put a stop to the practice.

The vast majority in Dutch members of parliament seem to have no trouble whatsoever with the fact that the Dutch government is failing to meet its international climate obligations. This sad fact was made clear during the vote on my motion before the parliamentary recess. In the motion, I asked the government to take the measures necessary for the Netherlands to meet its climate objectives under the UN Climate Treaty to which it is a signatory. The Netherlands has officially stated that the earth must not be allowed to warm any more that two degrees. Moreover, the government has promised that the Netherlands would take measures necessary to prevent any further warming of the planet. This means that Dutch emissions of greenhouse gases must be reduced by 40 percent in 2020 relative to 1990.

It is shameful that the Netherlands refuses to take its responsibility. We are among the world’s worst polluters and we must immediately end the continued warming up of the planet. Only a radical change of policy offers the perspective of a more sustainable future.

Interested in finding out more about how meat products are produced in the United States? Then check out this video from Jamie Oliver.

Oliver refers to the ‘meat’ that is produced from the inedible parts of the cow as ‘pink slime’. His efforts to get people aware of ‘pink slime’ has already borne fruit: Jamie Oliver has been sued in a row surrounding ‘pink slime’.

And the people in the next film had incredibe good luck on their trip to spot dolphins: they saw ‘super pod’ of dolphins, a very rare phenomenon indeed.

And this animation you have just got to see! The problems the world faces compressed into three minutes.

The percentage of people in the Netherlands that are vegetarians or forego meat on a regular basis is growing. Unfortunately the opposite trend can be observed in India. The growing middle class in India is increasingly exchanging its vegetarian lifestyle for a meat-filled menu. This trend will increase the pressure on the climate, our natural resources, nature, animal welfare and biodiversity. We need to tackle the food problem as a planet. One of the solutions can be offered by the European Union: over the next few years, the UN agriculture budget must be used to help farmers switch to biological agriculture.

Parliament is back in session. On the agenda for next week is the discussion of the budget of the Ministry of Economic Affairs. Economic Affairs includes all the portfolios dealing with intensive livestock raising, animal welfare and nature. So I will be pretty busy as you can imagine!

Till next week, Marianne