Meat-free menus are to be promoted in hospitals as part of a strategy to cut global warming emissions across the National Health Service.Nowhere to run to, baby, nowhere to hide.
The plan to offer patients menus that would have no meat option is part of a strategy to be published tomorrow that will cover proposals ranging from more phone-in GP surgeries to closing outpatient departments and instead asking surgeons to visit people at their local doctor's surgery. . . .
Among the most talked-about is likely to be the suggestion that hospitals could cut carbon emissions from food and drink by offering fewer meat and dairy products. Last year, the United Nations climate chief, Rajendra Pachauri, provoked a global debate when he said having a meat-free day every week was the biggest single contribution people could make to curbing climate change in their personal lives, because of the chemicals sprayed on feed crops and the methane emitted by cattle and sheep. Last week, the German federal environment agency went further, advising people to eat meat only on special occasions. Pencheon said the move would cut the relatively high carbon emissions from rearing animals and poultry, and improve health. . . .
The report will argue that reducing carbon emissions will cut bills for equipment, medicines, energy, water and waste services, and improve health - in the short-term for example by encouraging people to walk, in the long-term by helping to reduce the impacts of climate change.
"Unless we all take effective action now, millions of people around the world will suffer hunger, water shortages and coastal flooding as the climate changes," it says.
Update: I know what they mean, but doesn't it sound weird to American ears: "phone-in GP surgeries." How'd the surgery go, doctor? Oh, I just phoned it in. Gotta quit going to the pub for lunch every day.
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