Due to the adverse effect of climate change, the Oxford University student’s union has voted in favour of banning beef and lamb. The motion raised by the students was a part of the university’s sustainability drive to reduce carbon emissions by 50 per cent by the year 2030. This motion was proposed and
written by Vihan Jain, Daniel Grimmer, and Agatha Edevane.
The motion was passed with thirty-one votes for the motion and nine votes against it. Wrest of the thirteen students abstained from voting. This does not affect the butteries of the college having their food policies, but will affect university catered outlets. Apart from this, this pledge will motivate other students as well and would reduce carbon emissions.
Generally, people look towards Oxford for leadership, as it is U.K.’s premier university. But Oxford has shown a lack of leadership in terms of climate change; the motion stated this.
To compensate and to reach the goal, they decided to ban the beef and lamb at all the university catered outlets and events. This is a feasible strategy to meet the goal of 2030. With this approach, they said that the change at the university level would surely open gates.
Similarly pathways for a similar type of changes and ways at the college level in the interest of safeguarding the climate.
Further, Ben Farmer, The SU Vice President of Charities and Communities at Oxford said that he welcomes the mandate to engage the students as well as teachers of the university on this critical issue; however, it is essential to recognize that not all students would be in converting themselves into a vegan or to rely on the food-based industry.
There would be some staff members as well as students who would not be able to transform themselves into vegan. So, food change is just a single change, he would like to see development furthermore in the university, which is feasible for all, and most importantly, it is done to tackle the climatic crisis.
A similar example was set in front of the world last year when the University of Cambridge slashed its food-related emissions by giving up on red meat.
The University of Cambridge, replaced beef and lamb by plant-based products. This slash leads to a reduction in carbon emission by thirty-three per cent, per kilogram of food, purchased. Not only this, they even saw a twenty-eight per cent reduction in the usage of land per kilogram of food purchased.
In an interview, they said that though it was not easy to give up on meat and beef and to make sacrifices, it was one of the best things they have ever done, and have made the right decision by cutting down the use of beef and alternating it with vegan products, as this saved the animals as well as the climate.
Head of the University Catering Service, Nick White, said that sustainability is fundamental to all our students as well as staff, and we wanted to ensure to do every possible thing. So they took this step and found this alternative.