WAV Comment: People across the world need to change their habits to purchasing locally produced food. This cuts down on Carbon footprint – simple !
We hope this move by the UK government will encourage farmers to get animals out of intensive systems and move them back to the land. If they are to be paid subsidies for going greener, then this is the route they must take.
Also, it will encourage ‘less Green’ nations such as Australia to step up to the plate and make their green credentials better, if they want to sell their exported meat in the UK. We will always and only support people moving to a vegan (plant based) diet, for many reasons; but we also accept that there will always be some who want to continue eating meat.
If this is the case, get the animals out of intensive systems and move them back on the land. Hopefully, if UK farmers will be given subsidies to do this, it will be a massive positive for future animal welfare.
Above – a free range pig farm in Suffolk, England.
Meat taxes will make British farmers go greener, says George Eustice
The farming minister has signalled his support for meat taxes, in an interview with The Telegraph.
On the eve of the Cop26 summit in Glasgow, George Eustice has said that the UK will need to “move into the realms of things like carbon taxes” when existing EU agricultural subsidies are finally phased out.
Mr Eustice, the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Secretary, disclosed that the Government was already working on a new tax system for parts of the food sector that contribute most to global warming, such as meat and dairy.
By placing levies on high polluters, such a move could help cut down emissions, and is also likely to help British farmers compete with post-Brexit imports.
Any new tax could, however, raise the price of red meat. Mr Eustice said that according to the Government’s own modelling, prices were already set to increase in real terms by 10 per cent over the next five years.
Mr Eustice told The Telegraph that a planned restructuring of the £3.5 billion EU agricultural subsidies would encourage farmers to produce higher-welfare and more environmentally friendly food over the next seven years.
But he added: “Beyond that, you then start to move into the realms of things like carbon taxes. But we need to do the thinking about it now.”
It comes as Boris Johnson warned that civilisation could fall once again like the Roman Empire if the world failed to make sufficient progress on curbing climate change.
Speaking on Friday night as he landed in Rome for the G20 summit, the Prime Minister said being in the Eternal City should serve as a “fantastic reminder” and a “memento mori” that societies could go “backwards as well as forwards”.
“You saw that with the decline and fall of the Roman Empire and I’m afraid to say it’s true today, that unless we get this right in tackling climate change we could see our civilisation, our world, also go backwards.”
Mr Johnson then deployed a football analogy to warn that humanity was currently “5-1 down” at half-time against the “formidable opponent” that is global warming.
The new carbon taxation system raised by Mr Eustice would be introduced after 2027, by which time the Brexit transition period for agricultural subsidies would have come to an end.
He said carbon border taxes would also be brought in and their purpose “would be to encourage countries like Australia, like New Zealand, to tackle their own greenhouse gas emissions”.
Mr Eustice said: “If there are other countries in the world that don’t pull their weight, and don’t do their share, you know, at some point you will have to find a way of reflecting that in international trade.”
He said: “The Treasury and BEIS [the business department] are doing a piece of work on this. Ideally for it to work obviously it would be agreed multilaterally.”
He added: “All of this is supposes that you would move in the direction of carbon emissions trading” first in the UK agriculture sector.
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