Lin Tsong-ming, Taiwan’s deputy minister of education, was given the Sustainable Development World Pilot Hero Award by members of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.
This is the first year of the awards, given to individuals and organisations who are pursuing low-cost and easily replicable schemes to cut carbon emissions.
Lin should have received the award during climate talks in Durban in December, but had been unable to attend. The presentation was made to him this weekend in the Taiwanese capital Taipei.
Since 2008, Lin has been giving speeches at schools and colleges across Taiwan to educate pupils in the role of meat-free eating in cutting carbon emissions.
Last year 93 per cent of schools in the country prepared a weekly or monthly vegetarian lunch for pupils, students and staff. All schools in five counties and cities had a completely meat-free day once a week.
Taiwan’s equivalent of Meat Free Monday – THN – received the same award for its good work spreading the message that cutting down on meat consumption is one of the best ways to reduce carbon emissions.