The British town of Haywards Heath recently became the first place in Europe to sign the Plant Based Treaty, a grassroots campaign “to put food systems at the forefront of combating the climate crisis.” The treaty requires pledgers to make their diets more environmentally sustainable, and has been endorsed by 60,000 individuals, including five Nobel laureates and IPCC scientists, 800 NGOs and community groups, 700 businesses, and more than 20 cities and states. “No single city or country can solve the issue of food emissions, but we believe that this ‘bottom up’ approach works,” says treaty co-founder Anita Krajnc. A global shift toward plant-based diets could sequester 332 to 547 gigatons of carbon by 2050 -- compared to total global emissions of around 35 gigatons a year. Haywards Heath is launching food waste reduction efforts and an Education and Business Environmental Awards Scheme to engage residents. Many said they were influenced by the Meatless Mondays campaign.

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