Reading Time: 2 minutes Phoenix attended a pro-vegan protest in London earlier this month (Photo: Animal Equality)
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Celebrity actor Joaquin Phoenix has joined a London protest urging members of the public to ‘go vegan’.

The Joker star, who recently scooped an award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture (Drama) at the Golden Globes, gathered with activists from Animal Equality on Tower Bridge.

The organization dropped a 390-square foot banner from the landmark which read: “Factory farming is destroying our planet. Go vegan.”

Other activists held signs stating: “Abandoned fishing gear is the biggest plastic polluter in the ocean,” and “Animal agriculture accounts for 14.5 percent of greenhouse emissions.”

‘Personal responsibility’

Speaking to Sky News reporter Lucy Cotter, Phoenix said: “People are not in a panic in the way they should be. These are very dire times and so I felt like I had to do something.

“We have a personal responsibility to take action right now. One way we can mitigate climate change is by adjusting our consumption and by going plant-based.

“I feel sometimes that’s not being talked about enough.”

‘Reduce our impact’

In a statement sent to Plant Based News, President of Animal Equality, Sharon Núñez, said: “Joaquin’s dedication to animals and the environmental cause is extraordinary, he sees the absolute need for us to have serious conversations around the devastation that factory farming is having on animals, our planet, and our health.

“Factory farming is a major contributor to water and air pollution as well as deforestation. At the same time, animal agriculture accounts for 14.5 percent of greenhouse emissions according to The Food and Agriculture Organisation of the UN.

“A vegan diet is one of the best ways to reduce our impact on the planet – by changing what we eat, we can change the course of our future.”

*This article was updated on February 2 to include Animal Equality’s comment

Liam Gilliver

Liam is the Deputy Editor and Social Media Coordinator for Plant Based News. He has written for a number of top publications including Gay Times, Attitude Magazine, Oh Comely, and The Huffington Post - and is the author of 'We're Worried About Him'.