McCartney is “muddled, misleading and wrong”

Conservative MEP Sir Robert Atkins warned Sir Paul McCartney not to forget the positive environmental benefits that livestock farming plays, as the ex Beatle brought his “Meat Free Monday” campaign to Brussels recently.

Sir Paul’s campaign calls for everyone to avoid eating meat one day every week in order to fight climate change. However, Sir Robert is concerned that the campaign is forgetting the positive contribution to the environment that grass fed livestock farming plays around the UK, while delivering an oversimplified message by highlighting a sector that contributes only seven percent of UK green house gas emissions.

Many of Britain’s green rolling hills would become overgrown wastelands without animals to graze them. Sir Robert also believes that the campaign ignores the fact that most non-meat diets include dairy products such as cheese or milk, which also rely on livestock production.

Sir Robert said:

“What Sir Paul seems to be forgetting is that farmers have created the “green and pleasant land” we live in and cheap gimmicks like this will harm our attempts to deal with the problem. Their industry is truly sustainable and could easily become carbon neutral in the near future. How many other industries can make that claim?

“I have every respect for vegetarians, that’s a matter of personal choice, but we all need a balanced diet which includes protein. The soya and other pulses that vegetarian diets demand do not grow in the wetter pastoral regions of the UK, where meat is produced, so an increase in soya imports would be very detrimental to the UK farming community.

“By his slogan “less meat = less heat” Sir Paul is deflecting public attention away from the really big issues on climate change and onto an issue that will have little to no impact. That’s why I say he is muddled, misleading and wrong.”

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