The City Council of Berkeley, CA unanimously approved a resolution last week that will require all city-owned facilities and programs to provide only vegan food one day each week. To set an example, City Council itself will now only serve vegan food at its meetings. The “Green Monday” resolution—introduced by City Council members Kate Harrison, Cheryl Davila, and Sophie Hahn—is an effort to further address the city’s plan to combat climate change and to become carbon neutral by 2030. Working in conjunction with environmental advocacy group Green Monday US, the City of Berkeley also intends to educate residents on the impact of their food choices on the environment by implementing educational programs at libraries and community centers, and giving incentives to local restaurants to include vegan items on their menus. “Scientific analyses have shown that one of the most effective ways for a person to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions is to reduce or eliminate their consumption of meat and dairy,” the resolution said. “By systematically reducing meat and dairy consumption, the citizens of Berkeley can accomplish two objectives: substantially reducing our collective greenhouse gas emissions and serving as a model for other municipalities across the country and around the world.” Last year, the University of California, Berkeley launched the world’s first university-level, semester-long course that challenges students to create plant-based meat alternatives, and also created an Alternative Meats Lab on campus to help entrepreneurs and researchers displace the United States’ $1 trillion meat industry.
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