UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak Appoints Vegan As Head Of Environmental Policy

The appointment comes after Rishi Sunak was criticized for yo-yoing on his decision to attend COP27

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2 Minutes Read

UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak giving a speech Rishi Sunak has reportedly hired a vegan as head of environmental policy - Media Credit: Allstar Picture Library Ltd / Alamy Stock Photo

Rishi Sunak has reportedly hired a vegan named Meera Vadher as his head of environmental policy. 

The UK prime minister, who took on the role in October of this year, is said to have made the decision to improve his green credentials.

The Guardian reports that Vadher’s social media bio stated that she is a vegan with a “strong desire to smash the jargon and simplify politics and current affairs.” It appears, however, that Vadher has since changed her bio to remove details about her veganism.

Vadher, who is a former special advisor, will reportedly take on the role next year. She began her political career in 2011 as a parliamentary assistant to Edward Garnier, who was then a Conservative MP. He now sits in the House of Lords. Vadher subsequently worked in regional politics, before working on the NHS test-and-trace system during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

10 Downing Street has not commented on the report. And, the Guardian stated that Vadher has not yet signed a contract. 

Rishi Sunak’s COP27 controversy

This appointment comes soon after Sunak was criticized for yo-yoing over his decision to attend the UN climate summit COP27. The annual conference took place in Egypt earlier this month. 

The prime minister initially stated that he wasn’t planning to go, despite the fact that the summit sees world leaders gather to discuss action plans to tackle the climate crisis. 

After a great deal of backlash from the public, Sunak announced that he had changed his mind. 

A vegan future?

While we don’t know what the appointment of Vadher means for the future of UK green policy, it will likely be welcomed by many environmentalists. 

Animal agriculture is responsible for at least 14.5 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions. It’s also a leading cause of deforestation and biodiversity loss

Despite this, there has been a tendency for world leaders and the general public to leave it out of the climate conversation. This year’s COP once again sparked controversy for serving beef on its menus, and livestock farming was barely mentioned throughout. 

Before becoming prime minister, Sunak himself told Sky News that he “wasn’t telling people to eat less meat.” He made the comments while standing in a meat market. He was said to have been responding to claims by the government’s chief scientific advisor – Patrick Vallance – that eating less meat is “part of the solution” to tackling the climate emergency.

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