Veganuary 2019 Set To Break Records. By Ellie Chivers
Photo by Sam Carter
The Relentless Force of Veganism – and Why It Will Grow in 2019
In the past, veganism was sneered at – a concept perhaps deemed a feeble excuse for rebellion by the hippie millennials. So why is it that veganism is now an ever-growing force to be reckoned with?
The number of Veganuary pledgers – the charity that encourages people to make the vegan switch for the first 31 days of the year - has been rising ever since it started in 2014, with 2019 set to be no different. It is predicted that as many as 300,000 people will be trying veganism this January. This would mean pledges would have increased by nearly ten times over the charity’s 5-year lifespan.
Protecting our Planet and Ourselves
With the rise in public popularity and recognition, 2019 will see the movement going one step further: parliament. Parliament, at the moment, doesn’t seem all that concerned with the plant-based way of life. Claire Perry MP is the minster in charge of confronting climate change, and – unlike her counterparts in other countries – is not bolstering or even accepting the need for veganism, even when so many scientists have come forward to express its necessity if we want to keep the planet we know and love.
But why is veganism a necessity for the upkeep of planet Earth? Back in October it was announced that the UN believes we only have 12 precious years to lessen the calamitous effects of climate change. This means 12 years to save several animals from extinction, stop the ruining of ecosystems, keep our water fresh, and reduce the risk of extreme weather conditions and disasters. Animal agriculture has contributed a lot to climate change; according to the UN, farming is responsible for 18% of human-produced greenhouse gas emissions globally.
Saving the planet is not the only reason vegans make the transition. Another key factor is protecting the animals from the torture they are exposed to, while another is the health benefits – many studies have found going vegan lowers the risk of heart disease, diabetes and cancer. These advantages, alongside the recent climate change revelations, have been advertised much more than when Veganuary had a mere 3,300 pledgers in 2014.
Veganism on the World’s Stage
The charity now has big name endorsements, like Evanna Lynch of Harry Potter and Dancing with the Stars fame, and Arsenal footballer Hector Bellerin, not to mention social media stars like Ariana Grande and Miley Cyrus also swearing by the plant-based life. Activism, too, is more substantial and global than it has ever been – like Greta Thunberg naming and shaming world leaders for their lack of attempt to tackle climate change at the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP24) on December 16th, claiming they are “stealing their [children’s] future.”
It is estimated that there are over 3.5 million vegans in the UK today, with that number only due to swell in 2019. Everyone has their reasoning, but it is undeniable that its coverage and the desperate need for change has finally unveiled the true importance of veganism. | Tru.🌱
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