Meatless Monday Sri Lanka took its outreach campaign to Chilaw on the 17th of November 2018 to create awareness on the importance of shifting to meatless and sustainable lifestyles to mitigate climate change impacts among other environmental and health benefits. The campaign collaborated with ‘Harita lanka’ and conducted an awareness session during a tree planting event that took place along the Chilaw main road.
Meatless Monday was able to distribute knowledge and promotional material in the form of leaflets and speak to the gathered audience, which consisted of more than 70 volunteers from around the Chilaw area, on the importance of leading humane lifestyles as it brings about many environmental and health benefits. The importance of shifting to a plant based diet was highlighted because one of the main benefits is that it helps reduce the carbon footprint of each person. The audience was enlightened about the growing livestock industry and how it has been recognized as one of the main contributors towards GHG emissions because animal farming consumes an undue amount of natural resources and contribute to deforestation while harming the air and water quality. Ms. Iyanthi Kulatilaka from the Meatless Monday Sri Lanka team noted that, “livestock including poultry, accounts for about 14.5 percent of global anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions. So it is important to ensure that our food production is sustainable, eco-friendly, and uses a minimum of resources without overburdening or exploiting the resources of the planet.”
To highlight the possibility of shifting to sustainable and meatless consumption, the Meatless Monday program also provided the volunteers with a cruelty-free, vegetarian lunch which was enjoyed by all, and the audience unanimously accepted that it is possible to enjoy a hearty delicious meal without any meat components.