Exmouth has become the fifth UK council to endorse the call for a global Plant Based Treaty to address food impacts on the climate emergency.

Exmouth Town Council has reaffirmed its commitment to make Exmouth cleaner, greener, and healthier by adopting the demand for the Plant Based Treaty, joining climate leaders Edinburgh, Norwich, Lambeth, and Haywards Heath.

"This endorsement was made as part of their Climate Action Plan, which aims to combat the climate crisis and make the town a thriving, zero-carbon community,” the statement issued said

Louise Venables, an Exmouth resident and Town Councillor, highlighted her pleasure in the town's efforts to become a zero-carbon community and the necessity of embracing the Plant Based Treaty at this vital juncture.

According to Louise, transitioning to a more plant-based diet is the simplest and one of the most efficient ways for individuals to minimize their carbon footprint.

"Plant-based diets can also improve health, remedy biodiversity, improve animal welfare, and be financially beneficial. We want individuals to be fully informed regarding the impact of diet on the environment and for people to be able to make considered food choices and be supported in transitions to a more plant-focused diet."

According to Andrew Garner, a campaigner for the Plant Based Treaty UK, 2023 was the world's warmest year on record, and Exmouth has rightly recognized the importance of plant-based food solutions and rewilding to confront various planetary challenges.

"Their climate leadership in calling for a Plant Based Treaty offers hope that we can address food emissions which account for a third of greenhouse gas emissions. Adopting a plant-based diets can cut food emissions, water use and land use by 75% and we need to see more towns and cities joining them to rapidly shift away from our meat and dairy-intensive diets.”

Exmouth committed to a range of plant-based food and rewilding policies in the Plant Based Treaty resolution, which was passed at a full council meeting in December.

Campaigns/activities to encourage a switch to plant-based foods in the Climate Action Plan, design public information campaigns to raise awareness about the climate and the environmental advantages and health benefits of plant-based food, nutrition and cooking, and aim to reduce the public's consumption of animal-based food through education in schools, organizations, and local businesses are all examples of plant-based food promotion.

Exmouth is also committed to transitioning to plant-based meal plans when catering for climate-related meetings and events, assisting in the restoration of key ecosystems and reforesting the earth, supporting reforestation projects, and convening a tree forum to provide transparency and encourage collaboration among Exmouth stakeholders.

Another focus will be on nature-based solutions for climate change mitigation and adaptation (as part of ETC's consultative planning function). Cities should encourage programs to enhance the number of trees and wildflowers, expand green community projects, wildlife corridors, green rooftops, and local gardening schemes, and aim to increase biodiversity (via our consultative planning role and environmental policies).

The final objective is to improve food justice by funding projects that enable access to nutritious food for all, particularly low-income communities (for example, Mushroom, an Exmouth food community network).

The Plant Based Treaty is modeled after the Non-Proliferation Treaty on Fossil Fuels and is inspired by treaties that addressed the risks of ozone depletion and nuclear weapons.

It has received support from 24 municipalities throughout the world, including Edinburgh, Norwich, Lambeth, Exmouth, Haywards Heath, and Los Angeles.

Since its inception in August 2021, the initiative has garnered support from 130,000 individual supporters, 5 Nobel laureates, IPCC scientists, and over 3000 organizations and businesses, including Veganuary, Ecotricity, Linda McCartney Foods, Plant Based Health Professionals, UK Health Alliance on Climate Change, and chapters of Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth.

Celebrities have endorsed the Plant-Based Treaty, including Chris Packham and Paul, Mary, and Stella McCartney, who made a written statement urging legislators to approve the treaty.

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