Mark Ruffalo and Lily Cole back #MFMclimatepledge in NYC

Mark Ruffalo, Lily Cole, Greg Barker

Today the Rt Hon Greg Barker MP, Climate Advisor to David Cameron, Meat Free Monday, Meatless Monday and Beyond Meat hosted a brunch at the Ritz Carlton, Central Park, to highlight the positive environmental effect of choosing plant-based meats over animal protein and give the ‘Meat Free Monday Climate Pledge’ (#MFMclimatepledge) campaign a final push before the UN Climate Summit tomorrow.

Attended by Mark Ruffalo, Lily Cole as well as Amber Rudd, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department of Energy and Climate, the brunch was the culmination of two weeks of digital campaigning following the launch of #MFMclimatepledge by Greg Barker and Mary and Stella McCartney in London.

The campaign – which has reached millions through Facebook and Twitter, and has been backed by Mayim Bialik, Pamela Anderson, Sophie Dahl, Sharleen Spiteri, Victoria Pendleton plus NGOS including Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth and WWF – encourages people to pledge to go meat free for one day a week at pledge.meatfreemondays.com and share the idea with others.

Greg Barker will attend the UN Climate Summit tomorrow with the Prime Minister and will continue to highlight how eating more plants, and reducing reliance on animal protein, can take a significant bite out of climate change. It is hoped that the magnitude of support for Meat Free Monday shown in the last two weeks will encourage world leaders to take the idea forward.

Mark Ruffalo, who supports Meat Free Monday with his family said: “We’re not actually giving anything up, we’re actually gaining more diversity and a greater understanding of the world around us by trying many different kinds of food.” He added: ‘It’s not only good for the planet but it’s good for our health”.

Meat production is responsible for 14.5 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions, according to the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization, with some scientists saying the percentage is higher.

“Our focus is on taking the animal out of meat – without sacrificing the taste, chew or satisfaction,” said Beyond Meat CEO and Founder Ethan Brown. “The single most effective action that a consumer can take today to address climate change is to switch the protein at the centre of plate from animal to plant sources.  It is our goal to make that switch as delicious, satisfying, and nutritious as possible.”

Meat Free Monday founder Sir Paul McCartney said, “Going meat free one day a week is a simple way to contribute to a more sustainable future.”

See Paul McCartney’s newest video message here.

Visit pledge.meatfreemondays.com to add your voice to the campaign.