A new fictional “news” video shows world leaders being tricked into eating kitten soup by a climate scientist.
In the video, which aims to draw attention to “the irrational mentality of meat,” a news anchor discusses attendees of the “Eco27 summit” being given kitten soup by “renowned climate scientist” Dr. Jay Kumari.” He told them it was chicken.
Kumari is then seen jumping onto the podium and telling the truth. Attendees are shown to be visually furious and disgusted.
The climate footprint of meat
The point of the new clip, released by US-based organization Beyond Carnism on Zero Emissions Day, is to “expose” the psychology around why climate advocates are often reluctant to address animal agriculture when it comes to climate mitigation.
Animal agriculture contributes to at least 14.5 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions. That’s more than the entire transportation sector combined.
It is also a leading cause of water pollution. Plus, it’s thought to have been responsible for around 91 percent of the Amazon’s deforestation.
Despite this, animal agriculture’s climate impact is rarely discussed by world leaders. It was barely mentioned at last year’s COP26.
In the video, Dr. Melanie Joy, an author, social psychologist, and the founder of Beyond Carnism, is interviewed. She is also the creator of the term “carnism,” which is defined as the belief system that conditions people to eat certain animals but not others.
The news anchor asks Dr. Joy why a world-leading scientist would feed “poor, unsuspecting people” kittens. She replies: “Well I don’t think it’s actually about the kitten. Kittens are probably easier for Dr. Kumari to obtain. He could have also served puppies or ponies.”
Dr. Joy then points out that climate activists, scientists, and policymakers are being prevented from “thinking rationally” when it comes to animal agriculture and the climate crisis, before adding that plant-based protein emits fewer greenhouse gasses than any type of meat.
Plant-based for the planet
Several studies have urged countries to reduce their meat consumption for the planet. In April, research from the University of Bonn in Germany suggested that rich countries should cut meat consumption by at least 75 percent.
“If all humans consumed as much meat as Europeans or North Americans, we would certainly miss the international climate targets and many ecosystems would collapse,” said lead researcher Dr. Matin Qaim.
This year’s COP27 will for the first time, however, include a pavilion from an NGO called ProVeg, which campaigns for a plant-based future.
ProVeg has expressed hope that its pavilion will shine a light on animal agriculture’s impact on the environment.
You can find out more about Beyond Carnism here.