Esther’s Blog: Let’s act now for honest and green policies around the world!

4 november 2021

A very successful month
Once again, October was a month marked by various successes for our international political movement for animals, nature and the environment. In the Netherlands, our Party for the Animals team got a majority of the House of Representatives to vote in favour of our proposal to stop using pesticides by 2035 at the latest. This forces the Dutch government to work out concrete steps and to help farmers in transitioning to an agriculture free from pesticides. An important step, as pesticides seriously pollute the environment and pose a huge threat to both human and animal health.

I am also incredibly proud of the awesome achievements of our team in the European Parliament, led by MEP Anja Hazekamp. They were able to definitively rally a majority of the EP behind the proposals of the Party for the Animals for a healthier, more sustainable and more animal-friendly food system as a part of the European “Farm to Fork Strategy”. A majority now wants, for example, to heighten the share of organic produce, to lower the amount of animals in the agricultural industry, and to stimulate a more plant-based diet. An important step into the right direction. But we are not there yet: away with the outdated agricultural policy: it is time for a truely honest, green and animal-friendly food system that benefits us all!

Owing to her clever efforts, Anja was named one of the five most influential Members of the European Parliament. That shows once again how a small party can make a huge difference.

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MEP Anja Hazekamp during the last debate on her report on the Farm to Fork Strategy.

Meanwhile the political movement for animal rights and our planet keeps on achieving success after success elsewhere in the world as well. Our German sister party Partei Mensch Umwelt Tierschutz and our Portuguese sister party PAN – Pessoas-Animais-Natureza have gotten larger yet again during the recent local and regional elections. Congratulations!

The coming weeks will be dominated by the United Nations’ International Climate Summit (COP26) in Glasgow. Climate actions are held around the world because of this. These actions are highly needed, as there is a lot that still needs to be changed. We are still dealing with a worldwide climate and nature crisis that threatens the continued existence of us all. In the nearer future, the victims will mostly be people that are already vulnerable and at risk. If we do not act now, we will be too late. Unfortunately governments, including the Dutch government, continue to delay any real action.

That’s why we have submitted an enhanced Climate Law, called Climate Law 1.5, to force the government towards climate policies that limit global warming to 1.5 °C and seriously restrain big polluters. The Climate Law 1.5 states that the Netherlands has to be carbon neutral by 2030. That is ambitious, but highly necessary. The COVID-19 pandemic has shown that we are able to implement changes rapidly. We will get a safer, healthier and more social world in return. And the sooner we do this, the cheaper it will be.

Esther during a climate demonstration.

A lot of people support that message. On November 6th, there will be large-scale climate actions all across the world. Together with the Party for the Animals team, I will be participating in the Climate March in Amsterdam. Another part of our team will head to the climate summit in Glasgow to wake up world leaders. In Glasgow, there will be an enormous Climate March on November 6th as well, which we will be joining to draw attention to the need to invest in an honest, green, and more plant-based food system. Because even though scientists confirm that we can only truly tackle the climate crisis if we also limit the animal agricultural industry, the impact of this industry currently remains ignored at the UN climate summit. We will be changing that! We have already called on the organizers of the climate conference to set the right example and serve plant-based food by default during the conference.

On November 7th, we will be organizing our own COP26-event in Glasgow, during which we will shed a light on experts and inspiring initiatives from over the entire world: from Ghana and Lebanon to Serbia and Scotland! You can follow this event digitally through the Party for the Animals’ YouTube livestream, or you can watch it on Facebook. Set your attendance to “Going” on this Facebook event to stay in touch. And should you be in Glasgow, by any chance: use this link to register for our live event, which includes delicious vegan snacks.

The climate and nature crisis hits all of us. Because of that, let’s demand powerful action from our governments together, both online and offline, no matter where we are in the world.

Good luck and till next time!

Esther Ouwehand
Party leader Dutch Party for the Animals