Taxing meat to simultaneously tackle climate change and improve global health would be far less unpalatable than governments think, according to new research.
The research, from the international affairs thinktank Chatham House and Glasgow University, involved surveys and focus groups in 12 countries and found that even measures restricting peoples’ behaviour could be accepted if seen as in the public interest, as was seen with smoking bans.
Ah. Of course.
Tell me again how the slippery slope is a figment of everyone’s imagination?
“Governments are ignoring what should be a hugely appealing, win-win policy,” said lead author Laura Wellesley, at Chatham House.
“The idea that interventions like this are too politically sensitive and too difficult to implement is unjustified. Our focus groups show people expect governments to lead action on issues that are for the global good. Our research indicates any backlash to unpopular policies would likely be short-lived as long as the rationale for action was strong.”
In short ‘Hurrah! We’ve finally bred all the intransigence and cussedness out of the population, and we’re left with docile sheep. Now we can stop them eating sheep…’
Prof Greg Philo, also at Glasgow University, said the key was “creating a new public understanding that industrial production of meat is not only dangerous to your own health but to human ecology as a whole.”
Otherwise known as ‘convincing the stupid public that my personal little bugbear is right’…
None of the report’s authors are vegetarians, but Rob Bailey, from Chatham House, said: “Having worked on this project, I have drastically reduced my meat consumption – I now eat it once a month.”
A statement you can make secure in the knowledge that no-one will ever ask you to prove it…