The United Nations Climate Change Conference, COP 26, will be kicking off in a week´s time, where world leaders will meet to discuss how they plan to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees, an ambitious target which the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has said will require drastic action. The stakes couldn’t be higher.
In Memory of Lost Species: An Interview with Mya Rose-Craig
*Originally published 29 November 2020* November 30th: a day to commemorate and keep in our thoughts the hundreds of animal species that we have lost. This year’s theme is looking at anti-racism in the environmental movement. Living Planet, a WWF report, stated that between 1970 and 2010 the population sizes of all amphibians, fish, mammals, birds, and reptiles fell by half on average. Some of our favourite and loved animals are down to their last hundreds and we are the major cause for it. From all land used for agriculture, 77% is used directly and indirectly for animal agriculture. Rearing livestock and growing their food is the largest contributor to deforestation and the largest cause for endangered, near-extinct, and lost species. I spoke with 18[…]
6 Haunting Facts About UK Wildlife
*Originally published 31 October 2020* Since the 1970s we’ve been slowly exterminating wildlife around us. Here are five facts about UK wildlife which are plain spooky. 1. 41% of the UK’s biodiversity has declined. The main contributors are (1) agricultural practices, (2) climate change, (3) pollution, (4) woodland management, and (5) invasive non-native species introduction for shooting. In the UK, 72% of the land is managed for agriculture — devastating natural habitats everywhere. Climate change has caused the Kittiwake (gull) population to reduce by 70% and the Department for Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has been releasing and is due to release 50 million non-native birds to British natural sites each year. This is purely for fun — shooting as a sport — but the impacts are[…]
Why Animal Rebellion Shut Down a Slaughterhouse
*Originally published 9 September 2020* In solidarity with SMASH Speciesism, Animal Rebellion shut down a Pilgrim’s Pride pig slaughterhouse in Manchester for a full day. Over two hours prior to opening, rebels arrived at the slaughterhouse and obstructed the gateway by locking onto concrete-filled coffins. Two rebels entered the site and climbed bravely to the top of the gassing chambers. On their arrival, Animal Rebellion informed the slaughterhouse to call their suppliers and cancel lorry arrivals for the day – these lorries would be filled with pigs arriving at their final moments of breath. Managers from Pilgrim’s Pride agreed to this condition, confirming there would be no lorries coming on-site that day. Unfortunately, later in the day, as the police began[…]
Who Is Animal Rebellion? The Worldwide Movement.
*Update 8 November 2021* *Originally published 14 August 2020* Animal Rebellion is active in over 30 countries, including France, Spain, Mexico, New Zealand, Poland, Guatemala, South Africa, Israel, South America, North America and Australia. We continue to start new communities in all corners of the world that fight for a just and sustainable future for all: humans, animals, and the planet. In 2019, a small group of Extinction Rebellion members recognised an omission in climate activism: no one was seriously addressing the relationship between people, animals, and the planet. And so, they formed Animal Rebellion to raise awareness about this gap and expose the impact animal agriculture has on the climate and all animals involved, human and non-human. They came together[…]
Fiona Oakes: The World Record Plant-Based Runner
*Originally published 18 June 2020* Fiona Oakes is nothing short of true inspiration. As a teenager, a knee condition left Fiona without a kneecap. In and out of doctor appointments and surgeries, Fiona was told that she would not be able to walk soon. Without coaches who believed in her ability to run because of her plant-based lifestyle; without any professional knowledge of marathon running; and whilst caring for hundreds of animals, Fiona became a world-class runner with marathon records in every continent. Why does Fiona keep running? Her drive to run marathons does not stem from a desire for running. It comes from a deep-rooted passion to show that a plant-based lifestyle is enough to do anything. In 2002, television and[…]
The Rebellion Has Brought the Climate Crisis to the Forefront… Now It Is Time to Address Speciesism
So far Extinction Rebellion and Animal Rebellion have had so much to celebrate. They have achieved great things. Before Extinction Rebellion, the existential threat climate change poses wasn’t widely discussed in popular culture or taken seriously. In the space of a few months XR changed the tone of that conversation forever. This is a massive shift and a great achievement that we can take pride in. We can also celebrate its effectiveness Talk must produce results, and as I write this there is an election coming and climate change is now an election issue even for mainstream parties. Also, the UK government plans a citizens’ assembly to look at the climate emergency (albeit watered down from what has been demanded). This is a result![…]
Are We All Being Milked?
*Originally published 28 November 2019* At a ‘Women in Dairy’ conference earlier this year, Dr Jude Capper, an ‘independent livestock sustainability consultant’ who also runs the ‘Februdairy’ campaign which attempts to promote animal milk, showed a slide during her presentation which featured two young children drinking what appears to be cows’ milk products. The message on the slide read, ‘Our biggest challenge is to keep dairy in the diets of future food purchasers’. This targeting of children by the dairy industry is not new, even if, evolutionarily speaking, drinking the bodily secretions of another species is. Set against the 300,000 year history of our species, drinking milk is a relatively new habit. Before about 10,000 years ago, hardly anybody drank milk,[…]
What Anti-speciesist Rewilding Looks Like — and How to Get There
*Originally published 10 September 2019* Okay, imagine it is year X, when animal products are almost universally seen as unnecessary, unhealthy and a product of a particularly cruel period in our relationship with the planet and its other inhabitants. This is the year when most people shudder in disgust at what only recently was accepted as the norm. The food production system is being completely restructured, with fishers continuing their transition from killing marine animals to planting and harvesting kelp, while farmers are now producing plants for human consumption only. We no longer breed animals in their billions, we no longer subject them to a life of enslavement, and we no longer sentence them to death on the grounds that[…]
Red Tractor: Assuring Animal Cruelty
*Originally published 19 October 2019* Rather than ensuring farm standards, Red Tractor fools the unaware consumer into supporting animal cruelty. ‘Facts are irrelevant. What matters is what the consumer believes’, said Seth Godin, American author and business executive. Animal agriculture and its representatives are well aware of this fact and consumers’ desire to be reassured that the products they purchase are ethical and of high quality. But how many are aware that labels, assurance schemes and terms such as ‘humane’ and ‘farm fresh’ mean very little for the 6.4 billion animals killed for food in the UK every single year? Animal Rebellion has been protesting at the headquarters of Red Tractor, a product certification programme that is made up of a[…]