If your workstation is part of a shared office space, or if you have seen the many ads on social media, you may know about WeWork, a company that creates and provides shared workspaces globally. WeWork has over 6,000 employees around the world, including in Mumbai, Bangalore, and Hyderabad. In the traffic-stricken cities of India, decentralised working locations are gaining popularity and WeWork has hit the market at the right time. While the company attracts folks with its unique approach to workplaces, WeWork is in the news for a different reason. The company has many compassionate and sustainable policies and has gone a step ahead in saving both the environment and farmed animals.
According to a report by Bloomberg, WeWork has categorically told its employees that the company would no longer reimburse expenses for meals containing red meat, poultry, or pork.
Co-founder Miguel McKelvey also said that, as part of the new company policy, the internal “summer camp” retreat for staff would not offer meat options for attendees, in an effort to protect the environment. McKelvey stated:
New research indicates that avoiding meat is one of the biggest things an individual can do to reduce their personal environmental impact, even more than switching to a hybrid car.
The meat-free policy affects the entire company, from travel expenses to food in the self-serve kiosks in some WeWork buildings. And with WeWork’s $20 billion net worth, this move sets high standards for other companies around the world.
WeWork isn’t alone in banning meat to end support for the environmental disaster that is the meat industry. In 2017 Barbara Hendricks, Germany’s federal minister for the environment, banned all meat from official government functions in an effort to combat climate change. The environment ministry said in a statement:
We’re not tell[ing] anyone what they should eat. But we want to set a good example for climate protection, because vegetarian food is more climate-friendly than meat and fish.
And in a leaked report in June, the United Nations urged countries to cut down on meat and dairy consumption to help reduce their carbon footprints. According to a draft of the report, global warming growth is on course to exceed 1.5° Celsius (2.7° Fahrenheit), which would exceed the most stringent goal set in the Paris agreement by around 2040. It also states that countries can keep warming below this dangerous level if “rapid and far-reaching” changes are made.
Animal agriculture is a major contributor to climate change. The meat and dairy industries consume so many resources that they’re responsible for nearly 91 percent of Amazon rainforest destruction, according to a World Bank study. Raising animals for food uses more than one-third of the planet’s landmass; produces more greenhouse gas than all cars, planes, and other forms of transportation combined; and has created more than 500 nitrogen-flooded dead zones around the globe.
A recent study from researchers at the University of Oxford found that ditching animal products could reduce one’s carbon footprint by 73 percent. In fact, researchers concluded that if everyone went vegan, global land use could be reduced by 75 percent. This reduction would be comparable to the size of the United States, China, Australia, and the whole European Union combined.
Going vegan is not only better for the environment; it spares countless animals a lifetime of suffering.
To start making a difference for the planet and for animals, click here.