UN Panel on Climate Change

Save the planet by cutting down on meat? That’s just a load of bull.

Look, I hate to be rude to the UN. I don’t want to seem churlish in the face of advice from a body as august and well-meaning as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. But if they seriously believe that I am going to give up eating meat – in the hope of reducing the temperature of the planet – then they must be totally barmy.

We are going to have carnivorous festivals of chops and sausages.

No, Dr Rajendra Pachauri, distinguished chairman of the panel, I am not going to have one meat-free day per week. No, I am not going to become a gradual vegetarian. In fact, the whole proposition is so irritating that I am almost minded to eat more meat in response.

Every weekend, rain or shine, I suggest that we flaunt our defiance of UN dietary recommendations with a series of vast Homeric barbecues.

We are going to have carnivorous festivals of chops and sausages and burgers and chitterlings and chine and offal, and the fat will run down our chins, and the dripping will blaze on the charcoal, and the smoky vapours will rise to the heavens.

We will call these meat feasts Pachauri days, in satirical homage to the tofu-chomping UN man who told the human race to go veggie.

And the reason I respond so intemperately to his suggestion is that he completely misses the point. Everybody knows the reality, and everybody – every environmentalist, every Guardian columnist – pussyfoots around it.

The problem is not the cows; the problem is the people eating the cows. The problem is us. Oh, Dr Pachauri is quite right to be concerned at the emissions of noxious vapours from farm animals.

As the UN revealed in 2006, livestock make a bigger contribution to the greenhouse effect – to global warming – than every motor vehicle on the planet.

Cows are spreading remorselessly over the earth, as jungle is turned into pasture, and pasture is turned into cud, and cud is turned into the terrible ruminant efflatus that rises from the fields and the farms and swaddles the globe in a tea cosy of methane, 23 times as damaging as CO2.

Livestock now use 30 per cent of the earth’s surface, and farming now produces 37 per cent of the methane created by human activity, and every extra cow means thousands of extra cowpats, each cowpat seemingly innocent enough, but together capable of emitting enough steaming gas to change the composition of the upper air.

Yes, Dr Pachauri is spot on in his analysis. It is his prescription that is absurd. He is quite right that if you want to buy a gas-guzzler 4×4 Range Rover and you want to offset your greenhouse emissions, you just have to pop into the nearest field and assassinate a cow. And he is quite right that if we were to kill all the cows in the world, and all the sheep, we would greatly reduce our methane output.

What he neglects in his argument are the 1.3 billion people whose livelihoods depend on agriculture, and above all he forgets the global population of human beings. It is our appetite for meat that supports those farmers, and it is our insatiable desire for burgers that has called those poor cows into existence.

Why, oh why will the modern UN say nothing about the real issue, the prior issue, the unspeakable truth that is at the heart of deforestation, global warming, the depletion of the seas, the destruction of species and just about every environmental problem that afflicts us?

The biggest threat to the planet is not the lowing of the cows as they take over the Latin American savannah.

It is the dizzying increase in the numbers of people driving those cows and then eating them. The world’s population is up to 6.72 billion, and set to rise to 9 billion by 2050.

Now let me tell you something about the year 2050. It is not that far off. I fully intend to see it in, since I will be a mere 84, and I must say that I do not look with enthusiasm at the prospect of sharing the planet with another 2.3 billion people.

I am sure that they will all each be individually charming and they will all have much to contribute to the intellectual and spiritual life of our species. But they will also make life that much more crowded, sweaty and exhausting than it already is. They will accelerate the urbanisation of the world and the turning of rural south-east England into a gigantic suburbia.

And whatever Dr Pachauri may say, I do not think they will be persuaded to eat nut cutlets. Millions of years of evolution are not to be reversed by a spot of preaching from the UN. Man is an omnivore, culturally and probably biologically programmed to take protein from meat; and those meat animals must be farmed.

We cannot all eat moose, like Sarah Palin. We need cows. Not so long ago I stood in the vast canteen in the Beijing Olympic village and on one side were long salad bars, with virtually no one in the queue.

On the other side, of course, was McDonald’s, where Olympic athletes were lining up to take nourishment from the burgers reviled by right-thinking environmentalists.

Before Dr Pachauri preaches any more sermons against meat, I suggest he gets down to the UN canteen and sees what his staff are eating. Is he really going to snatch that schnitzel from their lips? Of course not.

It is time the United Nations remembered its historic role in campaigning against global overpopulation. There was a time when the UN used to champion female emancipation, education, family planning and all the real solutions to the world’s excessive and intolerable population boom.

It is time the world’s leaders had the wisdom and courage once again to talk the fundamental issue, rather than babbling about our diet. It’s not eating meat that does the damage. It’s the huge and remorselessly growing number of people who want to eat it.

[Ed: This article was first published in the Daily Telegraph on 09 September 2008 under the heading, “Save the planet by cutting down on meat? That’s just a load of bull.”]

123 thoughts on “UN Panel on Climate Change”

  1. Boris, what a brilliant article! Spot on!!

    And I’m glad someone said it. Some blogs are dealing with the idea of paying countries with rainforests to leave them alone, some are dealing with mass immigration, some are dealing with this country having the largest teenage pregnancy rate in the western world. And the Labour party bleats on about offsetting carbon payload of their conference with a donation of money (when they could just cull a cow, that would be right up their street). All of these problems could be solved by managing global population effectively.

    Effectively? How? Well obviously you can’t go around castrating all the men, though it’s a nice thought and I have a list. What you can do is stuff like restricting the expansion of human population into rural areas. With the availability of birth control and the encouragement of civil societies with sensible governments then population will inevitable reduce to fit.

    (Oh and don’t buy teak and mahogany, obviously)

  2. Boris,
    Excellent atricle but surely you are missing the revenue opportunity here. What you need to do is introduce a central London meat-charging zone and charge for the privilege of eating the produce of these cud-chewing quadroped environmental terrorists.

    But wait, how to determine the rate of the penalty applied? Is a juicy fillet at the Ivy to set one back the same as a Quarterpounder with cheese from McBurgerKing? Ah well, I suppose as with that planet-killer the car it is not so much how far you drive it but simply the fact that you do.

    Obviously weekends could be excluded from the charging to allow tourists the privilege of dining on their choice of flesh in our great capital.

    To be honest I cannot remove the image of trendy urbanite environmentalists driving out to the countryside in their Range Rovers to shoot cattle as a means of offsetting their ‘carbon footprint’. Perhaps they could dress in red jackets and jodhpurs and ride on horseback?

    NL, Herts

  3. “In fact, the whole proposition is so irritating that I am almost minded to eat more meat in response.” (Boris)

    Well now you know how we smokers felt on the announcement of the ban.

  4. I don’t agree Boris! I do think we should all eat less meat!!! Note: I’m saying LESS meat, NOT NO meat. It’s not as important for your diet as people make out. Good vegetarian food is delicious. However NON-GM soya plantations in South America for European consumption are also responsible for reducing our precious rainforests! So people don’t eat organic soya! The governments of the world must stop the rainforests being cut down NOW. That surely is the first biggest single thing that must be done IMMEDIATELY to eleviate global warming and to offset greenhouse gasses.

    As to overpopulation: preaching birth control especially in third world countries might help a bit! But not quickly enough! The birth rate in “developed” countries is already down anyway. What might help even more is: preaching and practicing some serious GREED CONTROL.

  5. Oh Lord, I have to disagree with the deity. (THIS IS A JOKE, NO DISRESPECT.) I don’t really agree with this article. You will know better than me, but look at the results of too much meat on Henry VIII. Huge flabby tummy, massive legs, big fat face, played havoc with his love life, not a good look was it? They didn’t eat salads in those days, did they,and hardly any vegetables. and he was very active, hunting, playing tennis, jousting,until he hurt his leg, but still got hugely fat. He got fat before his injury. Wasn’t it meat for breakfast, lunch and a huge banquet at night when all it was was different types of game, beef, venison, and different types of sweetmeats? No veg. and hardly any fruit? Didn’t they have dreadful digestive difficulties, or you got to be blunt, chronic constipation?

    The world is overpopulated, but shouldn’t we be sharing more of our food instead of scoffing ourselves silly? it’s wrong that obesity is a problem, but so is starvation. Maybe I have got the wrong end of the stick here.

  6. You are getting a bit dramatic because the alternative to meat is not always tofu or nut cutlets. How about pasta with spinach and pine nuts and parmesan,or greek risotto, or pasta with artichokes, or even baked potatoes with butter and baked beans, to be prosaic? ONE DAY A WEEK? it’s not torture, is it?

  7. What do you think about this Palin dame, since you mention mooses and the nation awaits your views breathlessly?

  8. What does boris think of Palin? The bible-bashing creationist that doesn’t know her own country’s history. Hmm, i would guess that if his life depended on it he would do the gentlemanly thing and shag the pants off her, like any other chap in Westminster. but apart from that Boris is really rather good at history and doesn’t need to wave a Bible to get votes.

    It really is rather sad when a politician is there to mop up the ‘low information voter’ as described in this rather good comment, here: http://fray.slate.com/discuss/forums/thread/1770635.aspx?ArticleID=2199568

  9. Jaq, she so is going to be a disaster, how can they even think of electing her, when they know so little about her, except that she wants to drill, drill, drill, at the expense of the environment, but even worse, is anti abortion even in cases of rape and incest! I am utterly appalled. I know that people are shocked at Russell Brand, but it is not that he is smutty. He is attacking the hypocrisy that is rife in America, they are very hypocritical and lag behind us as far as womens’ rights are concerned. And she sounds quite bellicose, as i have said before, she is George W. Bush in a skirt. Didn’t they learn the first time? Hilary Clinton should speak against her but she is just hoping Obama comes unstuck. It is really worrying.

  10. Boris, it is really not a good idea to eat meat seven days a week. You are often saying you want to diet, and protein is a good way of doing that, in reasonable quantities, balanced with good portions of healthy vegetables. One meat free day would do you the world of good, never mind the environment, and there are lots of nice recipes you can try.

    I know you are right about the world being overpopulated, but what are we going to do, chuck a few off? They are here now and we have to deal with things as they are. If you suggested a day we all fasted and sent the money for the food to the starving poor, that would be a good idea for a more peaceful world, and on a personal level, portion control is a key to good health.

  11. ps. Also, you know you don’t hate to be rude to the UN, you enjoy it, because you enjoy cheeking people and you know that is true.

  12. In some parts of the third world,traditional sustainable pastoralism will have to give way to unsustainable arable farming.In drier climates,crops will need irrigation,which leads the salination of the topsoil,causing soil erosion and desertification.You see,cattle farming is enviromentally friendly!

    Angela,try the Atkins diet and you’ll find that meat doesn’t make you fat.

  13. Tom, I know about the Atkins diet and it does work very well, better than carbo. and veggie based diets. However I don’t believe it is a good idea as a way of eating for life, and don’t you have to avoid alcohol and carbs. except they are strictly monitored. Doesn’t the diet depend on the dieter getting sick of meat without loads of veg. and some carbs, so automatically they restrict their portions? and once again, constipation is a problem without adequate fibre.

    I do adore sausages, but hardly ever eat them except as a treat. My baby nickname was Tuppy, Dutch for Little Chubby One. I love cheese, mmmmmm! I enjoy fruit and veg. though, so manage to keep a reasonable weight.

    The Atkins diet is the best way to diet really.

  14. Doctors recommend only 3-5 small servings of red meat a week. Too much saturated fat is bad for health, and raises cholesterol. Processed meats are the most unhealthy and research shows they lead to many diseases. Hungary has the highest consumption of processed meats and the incidence of certain diseases is much higher there than here.

  15. I do find it interesting that you think that there is zero chance of the world’s population eating less meat (when we clearly evolved in to a species that only needs to eat a fraction of the meat us Westerners do at present)…

    However you then think that it is far more likely that the entire population of the world will be convinced to stop having children?

    I’m not sure that “Population control so Boris can eat more steak” is a great campaign slogan for the UN to adopt.

  16. A meat-free day a week by order of the UN sounds awful – but I bet many people do have meat-free days without really noticing. What they may not have is animal-product free days. Cheese takes a lot of milk and comes from…? Large-scale vegetable-growing can reduce biodiversity and, often needs a lot of chemical fertilisers to keep land productive. Boris is right that there are no simple solutions. The UN has been saying so clearly since at least November 2006 (http://www.fao.org/newsroom/en/news/2006/1000448/index.html). Perhaps silvopastoralism and improving animals’ diets do not grab the headlines and raise discussions quite as well as sounding prescriptive about meat.

  17. When I saw the headline, I was all set to dive in here and give Boris a hard time. I find myself ground to a halt.

    Thanks, Boris, just this once, for demonstrating the ability to think a thing through.

    Having said that, as a carnivore living with a vegetarian, I have to report that going without meat several days a week has no deleterious effect whatsoever. On the contrary, you’ll feel better for it, as our not-so-distant ancestors doubtless did. Let’s not forget that even 50 or 60 years ago, most people simply couldn’t afford meat or fish every day. And they managed.

  18. Speaking of UN nightmares…
    It’s not the First World that needs population control– it’s the Third World. Exactly how does one go bout forcing an idea like that on a culture without it being equated to genocide? How would “we” the enlightened, (tongue-in-cheek) decide which couples among them are allowed to reproduce? Issue a license? Have them take a test and only the best-in-show are permitted conjugal visits? We’d have to keep male and female separated 24/7.

    Sounding ridiculous, yet?

    Sorry, Boris. While I still adore you, I think you’re missing the boat on this one.

    I went veg three years ago, and never felt better in my life. I’m bursting with energy and that tight feeling I used to have in my chest (in my early 30’s, mind you!) is GONE.

    I can’t justify popping a rotting carcass in my mouth, when there are lusciously living foods that nourish better…

  19. Jaq

    I like the sound of Palin and can’t wait to hear her in debate against Senator Joe Biden. Should be rivetting.

    Angela – on overpopulation: should Boris be advocating a lower population when he has four lovely kids? I think education and investment in Africa should be the focus.

    I agree with Mark Gamon on vegetarianism – it’s just as easy to adapt as having no sugar with coffee: you do feel better for it.

  20. Jaq, no of course not. I am probably just dim, because I am not sure exactly what point Boris is making. I understand some of it, but if the world is overpopulated, surely the answer is not for us to eat a lot of meat, and certainly not to take away the livelihood of the farmers.

    But since so many people are starving, shouldn’t be be thinking of ways to share the food in the world so it is more evenly distributed, while encouraging the use of birth control?

    And I know that eating meat seven days a week is bad for you, it was the death of Henry VIII, and will be the death of anyone who follows that lifestyle now.

    YOU LIKE THE SOUND OF PALIN? How do you square with the fact that she is anti abortion, even in the cases of incest and rape? And that she has no qualms about the slaughter of polar bears or wolves in Alaska? She even wanted to pay a bounty to hunters if they produced the forelock of a wolf as evidence, but this measure was not passed, and condemned as barbaric. Even is she does not impose her views on abortion on the US in general, I could never in a million years vote for someone who believed that. And she believed the war against Iraq was God inspired, or something of that nature – don’t take that as gospel, because I have to check what she actually said.

    She is likeable as a feisty mom, packing her pistol under skirts like a frontier Ado Annie, but as VP, for me NO WAY NO HOW.

  21. Some of the jokes made by Russell Brand were apparently cut before the show and one of them was that he was going to joke that her daughter had to have her baby because of Sarah Palin’s views on abortion.

  22. And he made other totally outrageous jokes, making fun of American hypocrisy about sex and religion in general.

    Because of Russell the viewing figures for the MTV Awards were up by 20%, although many people were appalled, millions liked him and they have invited him back to compere the show next year.

  23. I’m not being silly, but would a solution be to start up a new job, (thus creating more employment)picking up cowpats as soon as they hit the deck? would this stop the methane harming the environment, and I am just asking?

  24. I love wolves, they are beautiful and savage and deeply spiritual and if anyone killed a wolf when I was there, I would cut off their ruddy forelock.

  25. Boris, you’ve been had.

    Dr Pachauri (assuming you are trotting out his figures) cannot be correct to say livestock use 30 per cent of the earth’s surface. On that basis every square inch of land would be occupied by farting cattle.

    If he’s talking about land mass only, I still cannot believe that 30 per cent is taken by livestock. When you consider the vast tracts given over to arable farming, the deserts, uninhabitable mountains, unproductive tundra and so on – not to mention conurbations – I’d be surprised if it came to more than 3 per cent.

    I realise you have to throw a sop to the old boy to maintain a veneer of correctness but please, please don’t ever become a junk scientist. We’ve got quite enough of those already.

  26. Supplementary question: Have you included my colleague Bob in the list of globally damaging methane producers?

  27. Could invent cow feed that does not cause so much flatulence? Mix in peppermint leaves, they’re good for digestion. Get dieticians in on the act, and help cows reduce their CO2 emissions.

    Crop farming as well as live stock grazing is all pretty unsustainable the way we’re going about it. We need to start implementing sustainable methods very sharply.

    Keep planting those trees in London, Boris! Though they’re a drop in the ocean, and we’re soon going to be drowning and starving due to climate change anyway, probably even if we stop making a desert of the rainforest and the rest of the world right now. However I reckon we’ve got a better chance if we clean our act up and use our common sense and STOP cutting down the rainforest NOW. I guess that’s beyond Boris’ power to see to that, even beyond Gordon’s power. But is there not more that could be done to that end?

  28. Alternatively mix in peppermint leaves to Boris’s feed, to alleviate all that meat?

    I just bought an orange tree and a lemon tree for my garden, and a blackberry bush, I am so excited!

    ps. I don’t want to be an utter p. in the a, but how does Boris’s suggestion of having the barbecues and scoffing loads of meat help anything, and I don’t get it.

  29. Melissa, don’t get me wrong – you are utterly fabulous but I have to echo angela and say ‘YOU LIKE THE SOUND OF PALIN?’ OMG have you looked her up? She was filmed (not just reported) to state that God endorsed the invasion of Iraq. And you think this fundie should be next in line to have her finger on the greatest nuclear power on Earth? Ohhhh myyyyyy goodness, no!

    Scary thought.

    She’d make the Archbish of canterbury look like a heretic. actually that may not be that difficult – she’d make Peter Hitchens look as devout as Christopher Hitchens. yep, that bad.

    And Christopher Hitchens seems to be defending her.

    The world has gone mad. mad, I tell you, MAD!

    *hysterical laughter*

  30. Mel, there are things about Palin that are very attractive, and I can understand why you find her appealing. If you don’t look at her though and forget her background, just concentrating on what she says, she is scary! But a lot of women ARE defending her and I don’t understand it either, if you listen to her words!

    I know that Boris and David Cameron can’t be partisan or comment on any of the US candidates. Gordon has once again shown himself to be a total plonker by speaking up for Obama although now this is being blamed on some junior aide.

    william Hague though has said this is a gaffe and Gordon has breached the neutrality required of No. 10.

    Mel, also if I am cheeky in this thread, you know I am only joking! Don’t you?

  31. Just to let you know that pinko treehugging commie faggots read this stuff as well.
    As a vegetarian of many years standing, I can attribute my mellowness to an absence of flesh in my diet. I have quelled my desire to drive a stake through the heart of Thatcher, and am quite happy to wait for someone else to do it.
    Love, peace and lentils.

  32. Vicus, will certainly agree with your last line, love and peace! Anyway, everybody here loves the sort of people you describe. You know, the commie faggots. (my fave movie is BROKEBACK MUNTAIN and never have I cried so hard.)

    In my experience, many gay men are extremely sensitive, and have much compassion and understanding, so they should be cherished in life

    Mel, Boris does indeed have the most gorgeous kids and I have never seen such charistmatic, endearing children in my life. He could certainly make a fortune using them in advertising were it not that he protected them so fiercely. (which is lovely).

    If ever I offend anyone, you can tell me off really hard and I won’t mind a bit!

  33. Vegetarians believe “you are what you eat”. So the ideal cure for overpopulation – eat a vegetarian. Wholesome and nutritious, especially if they fed themselves on organic.

  34. Paul you are a very bad man!

    I must say, Gillian McKeith, how much meat is there on her, (bless her) it would be like eating a bicycle.

    Fresh veggies are lovely though Paul, look what the Italians do with their fresh vegetables. MMmmmmm!

    I do love cooking, and I do enjoy food, so I study healthy eating to avoid putting on weight. Also, I love lying on my fat tummy reading a good book or tons of newspapers, that doesn’t help a bit.

  35. My favourite movie is BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN!!! (Typo.) this film is the most touching, sensitive, beautifully made film i have ever seen in my life.

  36. Your fave movie is Brokeback Mountain? Two straight guys pretending they’re gay. bit like eating vegetarian sausages.

    PaulD – hilarious, thanks 😉

  37. Oh Jaq, Jaq, and I had you down as a total soul mate! The short story by Annie Proux of BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN on which the film was based is a masterpiece and better than the film. But the film was incredibly beautiful, from the raw power of the outdoor landscape to the drab realism of the town of their ordinary lives. OK it was about two gay guys, but gay or straight was nothing to do with it. It was about denying what you feel and the consequences of that, and it was about really caring about someone.

    What is your favourite film?

  38. Talking of films, in the new mag. TOTAL POLITICS, they asked Boris for the name of his favourite film.

    Guess what? The Mayor’s fave movie is JAWS! That is because he told us just as he started his campaign to be Mayor of London that his hero is the Mayor of Amity. This is, in my view, the funniest joke OF ALL TIME.

    And his favourite dinner partner is Scarlett Johanssen, Scarlett Johanssen and um, Scarlet Johanssen! I didn’t know she was interested in Greek and Latin. But she must be!

  39. There are too many people in the world…. says father of five, Boris Johnson.
    Other than that, very true.

  40. Angela I think Jaws is an excellent movie, one of the best. I’m enjoying the david Lean season at the moment with a handful of all time faves like ‘A Matter of Life and Death’ (‘peter, oh peter darling’) and ‘Blithe Spirit’ (in which everyone is called ‘darling’ and smoking was very chic). I think my favourite Hitchcock (another Director I like) is ‘The 39 Steps’ with Robert Donat. I’m also a Ronald Colman fan and ‘Lost Horizon’, though not my favourite, is interesting, but I won’t bore you further with my appreciation of cinema which includes foreign favourites too. I enjoy modern films like ‘Airplane’ too and recently found ‘Love in the Time of Cholera’ interesting.

    It’s difficult to name one favourite. My favourite film of all time used to be ‘The Thief of Bagdad’ (Hollywood spelling) with Dougles Fairbanks. It’s a 1924 silent movie running around 150 mins with, if memory serves me well, Scheherazade by Rimsky-Korsakov as the score. Haven’t seen it for ages though 🙁

    (I preferred ‘A knight’s tale’ to Brokeback Mountain, sorry. )

    Now throw another vegetarian on the barbie, Boris, and pass me a tinny, mate 😉

  41. What nutritious crops can be grown,in place of sheep,on Welsh hillsides andin Australian deserts?

  42. Overpopulation is definitely the issue and the UN should be supporting family planning and making contraception more readily available. Consider Africa, the average women has 5 children and the population is set to double to 1.5 or even 2 billion by 2050. That will result in even greater poverty than they currently experience.

    Without contraception women particularly are condemned to a life of poverty.

  43. Mr Johnson is basically right. Although I believe he is too critical of the UN proposal and underestimates the benefits of eating less meat, he is right that this is just another diversion from the fundamental source of environmental degradation, resource depletion, conflicts etc: size of the population and its continued expansion.

    We all know that the poorest and most underdeveloped countries have the highest birthrates but a big taboo is how much industrialized countries are addicted to population growth.

    Countries like the US, Australia, New Zealand and my own country Canada are pursuing agressive mass immigration policies to accelerate their population growth at a time when the reduction of births would lead them to population size stability in the next 10-15 years if net immigration were zero.

    In spite of what is usually conveyed, European countries, including the UK, are still trying to have enough immigration to have some population growth.

    Unfortunately, any population growth accelerates resource depletion and environmental decay.

    As far as the argument that the population is aging and will need younger workers to pay pensions goes, this is a pyramidal scheme argument. It condemns any society to perpetual growth. In a world where our basic resource, oil, is about to decline (see peak oil), perpetual population growth policies are disastrous and self-defeating solutions in the mid-long term.

    Industrialized countries have to learn to live with slightly declining populations just like Japan, Germany, Italy, Russia,the Czech Republic,Hungary, Rumania, Bulgaria, the Baltic countries etc have already started to do.

    Given their high populations European countries like France, Britain, the Netherlands and Spain could still reduce their immigration rates to reach zero population growth sooner.

    The environment and ultimately people pay for high population growth rates.

    Countries like Australia, Canada and the US have even more drastic reductions in their high immigration levels to do to achieve zero population growth but it is still unfortunately widely believed and conveyed in those countries that the higher the growth the better.

  44. Boris,

    I repeat after you:

    “It is time the world’s leaders had the wisdom and courage once again to talk the fundamental issue, rather than babbling about our diet. It’s not eating meat that does the damage. It’s the huge and remorselessly growing number of people who want to eat it.”

    And may I add:

    Stop abusing China for her ONE-CHILD-POLICY people. With ONE CHILD POLICY they are still having 1.4 billion. They could have 2-3 time as that many by now if not for that policy.

  45. Jaq, I love foreign films too, particularly French films, so will just ask you have you seen any of the films of Romain Duris? Particularly MOLIERE or ARSENE LUPIN, you can get both of them on DVD. MOLIERE is sublime, deeply moving and Romain Duris is just a fabulous actor, he is short, dark, very Gallic, tres chic! Arsene Lupin is based on a famous series of books about a pick pocket, visually stunning and brilliantly acted.

    JAWS is a brilliant film. If you remember, the Mayor of Amity wanted the beaches to be left unguarded so he could rake in the money from tourism, even though he was endangering the lives of the population of Amity. Boris joked that his hero was the Mayor of Amity and he said this when he was running for Mayor.

    In my view, this is one of the best jokes of all time.

  46. Maybe Boris could solve the problem of having so many kids by loaning them out as slaves to pick up after people and do their cleaning. I am looking for someone (JOKE)

  47. The ads. on this site are taking on a life of their own, they leap out at you in the most alarming but artistic way, so it is reasuring they are all for such worthy causes.

  48. If we’ve moved onto Sarah Palin, I can’t resist.

    Pro-life. OK. A great and weighty matter of conscience. Wouldn’t dream of faulting her on that.

    Hunts moose. So does everybody in Alaska, right?

    Life member of the NRA. No comment. Just because you hunt doesn’t mean you have to act like an idiot.

    Forced (or got someone else to force) the daughter’s boyfriend to take down his Facebook site. Because it had expletives in it. We’re getting stupider here. Some might say downright ugly.

    Has only travelled abroad twice – once to a US military base and the other time to Canada. Therefore utterly unqualified to hold high office in the government of the world’s most powerful nation, let alone sit a hairsbreadth from the presidency.

    Sorry. I know a lot of people would like a woman in office. Let’s just make it the right woman, not one who was chosen because she’s prettier than all the rest.

  49. Angela – thanks so much for your recommendations, I will follow them up as today I feel sadness rising as surely as the water table has recently.

    I’d like to highlight a couple of comments I agreed with:

    Comment by Ol’ Tom the Gardener on September 10: “What nutritious crops can be grown,in place of sheep,on Welsh hillsides andin Australian deserts?”


    Comment by Ben R on September 10: “Without contraception women particularly are condemned to a life of poverty.”

    may I add law and order play a part, particularly in places such as Africa where rape is reported to be seen as a perk by the authorities ostensibly keeping law and order. With such a rising population, fed by outside aid and therefore not constrained by natural forces, emigration WILL be sought. In order to exercise some control a stringent immigration policy by ALL countries should be debated and enforced. Mass migration of peoples should be stopped and each population should solve it’s own problems.

    I’d also like to say good comment mark gammon: “I know a lot of people would like a woman in office. Let’s just make it the right woman, not one who was chosen because she’s prettier than all the rest.” What amazed me about Palin, mark, is that she obviously doesn’t know her own country’s history. She seems to operate from attitudes based on such a very narrow reality, and most of that reality concerns hunting moose. Not sure how relevant that is to intelligent world leadership?

  50. More good stuff Boris. And I agree with some of the comments we probably all do have meat free days without realising.

    Buy good meat, buy local and remember to ASK where and how it has been produced. Quality meat is value for money.

    The farmers with their livestock have shaped the countryside of Britain from one end of the country to the other: the hills of the Lake District are a brilliant example and there are so many others. Just look araound and see how the farmers and animals have impacted on our landscapes… do we want to return to native scrub?

  51. I have been thinking about Mellisa’s comments regarding Sarah Palin. I think I jumped in too quickly and made up my mind before there is enough evidence to definitely know where she stands.

    It is true it would be good to see how the debate goes between Joe Biden and Sarah Palin.

    I can’t help thinking…… suppose Joe Biden made the remark that Hilary would have made a better VP for Obama because he has made a secret deal with Hilary to scupper Obama? And Hilary won’t come out and help Obama and fight Palin, will she? I am probably worrying unduly. The thing that is really worrying me is that Hilary has an astrological aspect meaning she could take power in 2012. But you all needed worry about that……

  52. If John McCain beats Obama, that will mean there will be a Republican government back in power and American leaning to the left. Also, McCain is not a well man. He might only last one term.

    What would that mean for this country, if he (or Palin) pursues a bellicose foreign policy, and our country being so closely allied, we are forced to bear the burden of more wars and we do not even know the reason?

    David Cameron is going to need all his strength and all his intelligence to guide our country through testing times, and it is not the job for a weaker man.

    However, we should wait for the debates and give them all a chance.

  53. My fear is suppose that John McCain pursued the same foreign policy that George Bush did. Suppose Sarah Palin does that? How much support will they want from our armed forces and you can bet your mortgage payments that France and Germany and all the others will not be rushing to join the party.

  54. How can Harriet Harperson wish to revive the class war when her uncle is the Earl of Longford? Arrant hypocrisy.

  55. Sorry I meant, if John McCain becomes President, America will once again lean to the right, and we will be dragged to the far RIGHT.

    It was a silly remark for Harriet Harman to say David Cameron is only interested in one thing as far as women are concerned and that is their vote. Of course he is interested in our votes, because any politician wants to persuade the electorate that their policies are best for the country. David Cameron is dedicated and committed and decisive, honest, no underhand agenda at all, so obviously the Labour Party don’t understand him and think he is talking in code.

    All credit to her though for trying to make a joke to take our minds of that dreadful outfit.

  56. Still nobody ever dragged David Cameron anywhere against his will, so I will quit worrying. He will think things out and make the right decision and I have total faith.

    I have absolute total faith in David Cameron to do the best thing for us and I am absolute total faith in Boris Johnson to do the best for London.

    (And Mr. Johnson and Mr. Cameron, it is not that i expect perfection, because you are both only human, but if youmake mistakes, which anyone would in hard jobs, you will honestly acknwledge that and immediately put them right. But there will be no bull shit.)

  57. McCain might not be so bad. He has suffered terribly as a soldier and prison of war and is strongly anti-torture. Maybe because of that he will not drag the US and us into unnecessary wars. And we should give Sarah Palin a chance to show us what she is made of.

  58. I am so glad you are displaying an ad. in support of men who died and fought for this country. The government attitude to our armed forces is a disgrace.

  59. Ooops. Seems I was wrong about Sarah Palin. She’s been abroad FOUR times, not two. Three times to visit the troops, and once to Canada.

    She also ‘knows’ Russia. Because ‘you can see it from Alaska’.

    That’s the kind of international experience that makes for a really informed presidency.

    (Yes, I know she’s not running for President. But does McCain look in peak physical condition to you?)

  60. David, Boris’s article is funny, like all his articles, but don’t encourage all this chomping on greasy great sausages and massive hunks of meat. During the campaign, there were loads of pictures of him eating a huge fry up with sausages lurching at suggestive angles. We want Boris fighting fit, still if you ban him from doing something, he only wants to do it more to be provoking, so ok. carry on chomping,Boris.

  61. As this world getting more and more people, the problems these people created will be in the same proportion. As human being become more creative, the problems as the byproducts of their creativity will also growth in astronomical rate along with the main products they dump out. We are all doomed. The fast human being create, the fast human race come to the end. The green light of EXIT is blinking instead of what I don’t see yet – like the light of salvation.

    No matter how smart we can be, we still live under the mercy of the nature.

    The only forever truth is that we are all going to die.

    The doubt is remain forever: will we be born again?

  62. Dawn wrote:

    “And we should give Sarah Palin a chance to show us what she is made of.”

    I would like everyone to have chance too.. only if we have the luxury and time is good. But we are living in a critical time many good countries are in financial, political, and social mess. We must single out the leaders with the best meat quality from the people jungle:

    Meat quality we are looking for in our world leaders as the followings:

    – talented, intelligent, courageous, experienced, dynamic, with good judgment.

    – flexible, able to adoptable, to change quickly, able to do quick thinking,

    – understand human nature and human characters, know how to use the right people to solve the right problem at the right time.

    – good at diplomacy, able to deal with different group of people and interests – on national international level. Not someone merely good at small town and provincial affair politics. It will not do if a world leader stars certain groups but piss off the rest. (Well, may piss off some are inevitable and necessary as long as the leader knows how to piss them off rightly skillfully. And know how to make it up later on. )

    – please add on the list.

    I’m afraid when imagine the Old McCain has a accident and the local provincial Mrs. Palin become the President of the world’s superpower. But of course it will be a dream for those who are making the real decisions and you know what I mean. The U.S president is just a character in the theatre of the world politics. There are directors and producers are behind.

  63. During Mayors Question Time, Boris was asked if he was going to withdraw funding from the London Fashion Council because of the prevalence of anorexia and size 0, as well as drug taking, among models.

    No, but maybe he will invite them all to one of his meaty, fatty barbecues?

    (he is looking at the danger of the anorexia problem, GOOD MAN.)

    If Ken had got back in, don’t forget he allied with the Green Party who advocated Dutch style coffee houses selling cannabis and the legalisation of ecstacy. That would have improved the situation (NOT) Still, I suppose the nation would have had to be high as kites to endure another 4 years of Ken’s adenoidal tones and appalling decisions.

  64. Angela, the Dutch coffee houses have become a farce. Since the Dutch government has slavishly – and shamefully -implemented smoking bans under a Euro directive, you are now obliged to smoke pure cannabis in these bars since “diluting” it with tobacco becomes an offence.

    I’m hard pushed to find a better example of the mad, mad world these dictators have built around us.

  65. I’m half Dutch, often go to Holland, and the Dutch are in other ways a liberal minded, warm and friendly race, with beautiful tulips, Dutch cheese, fabulous art and a great history.

    They are off their Dutch bonces on this one.

    WHAT WAS KEN THINKING? ps. of pulling a fast one over Boris, I guess.

  66. That alliance was Ken’s cynical attempt to beat Boris, whatever he really thought about the Green party policies.

  67. Pauld said:”under a Euro directive, you are now obliged to smoke pure cannabis in these bars since “diluting” it with tobacco becomes an offence.

    I’m hard pushed to find a better example of the mad, mad world these dictators have built around us.”

    Blimey Paul, that takes some beating and I’m not I can top that. But just for information here are the values of Red Ken: http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/mystic_meg/daily_stars/article1369426.ece?offset=6

    But my attempt to top the utterly unbelievable list – it’s rumoured that David Milliband has been intimate with a woman 😉 I know! Unbelievable isn’t it? I mean, would you even open your door and discuss morality with this man on a sunday morning? I don’t think Sergei Lavrov, the Russian foreign minister, would. Oh read this story, please, talk about being put in your place: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/politics/2825637/David-Miliband-subjected-to-F-word-tirade-from-Russian-foreign-minister-Lavrov.html

  68. Paul, I didn’t know that the Dutch had implemented smoking bans. Oh lord, now they smoke pure cannabis! The Dutch are liberal, but that is a bit stupid. There are a lot of messed up youngsters over there because of the drug policy.

    They do love their dairy products and meat though. All those fatty Dutch sausages! When I go over there, they are always scanning my behind, hardly my smallest feature, and pinching my flesh,squeaking oh you are so thin!!!! One thing they eat over there is date loaf, a very rich cake, sliced, then SPREAD THICKLY WITH LURPAK! Another treat is golden, crispy chips, with a thick dollop of mayonnaise.

    I tend to stick to the raw herring myself.

  69. Well what a surprise! You look like a big meat-eater, and there you go, you are. You obviously think the meat maketh the man. Well I just hope your cholesterol-stuffed arteries and antibiotic-sodden liver cause you immense suffering when they kill you. I mean, why give up meat when it would mean an end to the torture, cruelty and neglect inflicted on innocent farm animals, and an end to the disappearing rainforests. One couldn’t expect you to neglect your tastebuds for such a thing, tut-tut!!!!!!

  70. Hey, where’d my comment go? I’m sure I left it around here somewhere….?
    [Ed: I looked. Can’t find a stray. Try again?]

  71. It had two links in it, have you checked the spam filter? I’ve lost the link and it was a good one, hope you find it 🙂

  72. The Mayor probably needs his meat to keep his strength up for the tough job he is doing running London, so we may tease, but we mustn’t be too hard on him.

    One funny thing since Boris became Mayor. What is all this interest in his personal appearance? Does anyone remember one comment about what Ken wore, how he wore his hair or whether he was appropriately dressed? I guess the bar wasn’t set too high there though.

    Boris is getting such a sartorial going over, you would think he was auditioning to be the face of Yves St. Laurent! There is still time.

  73. Well said on population Boris!
    I cant agree on the meat eating though.
    It would be good for all meat eaters just to cut down on it. Nobody has to stop eating it altogether. That is overkill!
    Look -in CO2 emissions per capita terms, one average American = approx 25 average Africans. One average European = approx 12 average Africans. The figures for overall consumption are even worse!
    So, which country’s population needs reducing the most, since the planets resources are finite?
    If we were reclassified as wildlife I wonder what the WWF would advise we should do about this situation?
    Even if we could get the whole world to agree on a voluntary stop at two children policy(i.e replacement level, theoretically that would give us a stable population) starting tomorrow,the momentum of the existing practices would still carry the population on upwards for some considerable time to around 7.5 or 8 billion- but that would be a lot better than the 9.7 billion forecast by 2050!
    Should the decline in the earths limited resources ever force the issue upon us, we can always follow China’s stop at one policy. By doing this we could halve the world’s poluation in 80-100 years, but unfortunately the vast majority of people would be old, and the young would be rather put out by this,I feel.
    Being more drastic with birth control and calling for a stop at none policy would halve the population in about 40-50 years, but then everyone would be 40 or 50 years old wouldnt they?
    Talk is cheap Boris! Now thatyou have a better perspective on the population problem, and appreciate the difficulties in solving it, what do you suggest we do about it?
    Perhaps “Culling” the most intransigent meat eaters and a good number their herds of farting animals would be an alternative solution to stringent birth control measures That really would reduce greenhouse gas emissions!

  74. Festivals of Sausages and Chops on St.Georges Day, with flag waving please Boris? But not devil-dog-with-baby owners? I’d love to put a St.George (or even a Chelsea FC flag) in the window. I’m pretty tired of England not having an identity of its own anymore, that of course leaves us vulnerable. The thought of remembrance sunday is more horrible than usual to contemplate with this bunch of dictators terrorising some of us. All those good men and women paying for freedom with their lives, only for us to be so stupid as to allow these labour robbers of freedom and identity to rule us by stealth.

  75. That is actually a great idea – the Festival of Chops and Sausages idea. Should the wonderful dream of the reign of Boris ever come to pass and we hope it does, we could celebrate with medieval banquests of sausages,ansd mash, great hunks of beef and pork crackling could be roasted and sold in the streets.

    Boris somehow seems synonymous with everyone having a good time, and sausages don’t cost that much!

    He also likes samosas, so samosa stalls would be allowed. And piping hot curries. OK, he likes food.

  76. Dear Boris

    Last Thursday at around midnight we encountered the mother of traffic jams travelling north on the A12 at the Green Man roundabout in Leytonstone. The underpass was closed and the slip road bollarded down to two lanes – but this wasn’t the main reason. The snarl-up was caused by traffic lights phased to give EIGHT SECONDS (I counted) to a mile-long queue!

    At that time of night the roundabout was virtually empty. The light could have been phased green for at least a minute to clear the jam without causing problems elsewhere.

    Isn’t someone supposed to be in charge of these things? If it was me, I couldn’t sleep a wink knowing my neglect was causing so much irritation to so many people. What’s the point of all these CCTV cameras and computer control systems when we end up with a scene out of the Italian Job?

    Failings like this make people curse London as a place to visit, yet they are entirely unnecessary. Can you sort it out please?

  77. I wonder what the Mayor had for his breakfast this morning? I am betting a full English, with tea, buttered toast and Oxford marmalade. He needs to keep his strength up. I like people who enjoy their food, none of this soya milk, muesli rubbish. He gets plenty of exercise. What was this I read that he wanted to swin the Thames, or swim across somewhere, but his aides thought it would be too dangerous?

  78. exellent boris i enjoyed seeing that in my times sitting in starbucks still up to your “delors plan to rule europe” standard

  79. Regarding Boris’s comment about the year 2050 being crowded, if you can all recall the movie BLADE RUNNER, you will remember what Ridley Scott’s vision of the world in the future was in that film. Claustrophobic, dark, menacing, a myriad nationalities jostling each other…. also, strange man made replicants threatened society, and the Blade Runner himself (Harrison Ford) was emotionally cold and afraid of intimacy. (He said his ex wife called him sushi, or something like that, anyway, she meant “cold fish”.)

    Everyone in the film is initially alienated. When the film first came out, Ridley Scott was slated because the audiences did not understand what he was trying to say, and the film initially was not a success. People could not stand the idea of such a grim, bleak view of the world.

    As the years have passed, this film is recognised for the masterpiece that it is, and probably the year 2050 will be exactly like the film.

    If I am alienating the audience who sign on to Boris’s website by these cinematic examples, please tell me and I will shut it. But his articles inspire me to such cinematic references, and as a mad movie fan, I want to tell you all. (sorry for being apain).

  80. ps. One of the female replicants has a hair do identical to Boris. if you recall, she jumped on Harrison Ford’s neck and tried to break it with her thighs.

    pps. OK I am just a nerd.

  81. Angela said: “the audiences did not understand what he was trying to say, and the film initially was not a success. People could not stand the idea of such a grim, bleak view of the world.”

    Sounds like Peter Hitchens (long standing readers of this blog will know that I read Peter Hitchens’ work and have turned many here onto his stuff, much like his brother thinks women are naturally funny – unintentionally [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I7izJggqCoA&feature=related] ) Peter’s large column on sunday told us “There is no such organisation as ‘Al Qaeda’” and if you also watch his response to David Miliband I really do think he has a point: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_cXH_72v1MU

    Such issues as terrorism will be the subject of the party conferences, now in session (Lib Dem). A subject and responsibility that must concern the London Mayor. Add to that global warming (see Gill’s link above) and thereto the inevitable tax re-arrangement.

    No party will consider the real and genuine issues concerning people today. It’s not fashionable. Not FASHIONABLE. They are not causes championed by the dead tree press. Such as genuine support for families. Medication for the sick. Real education and not social indoctrination for children. Liberty and justice.

    Peter is one of the few, IMHO, who speaks out as he finds. Mathew Parris is another and his latest column in the Times is interesting. Boris is another.

    I urge readers to consider the fashion of the day. One of those fashions, you MUST agree, is climate change. Balance your spending, your interest and your votes, with considered thought. Please.

  82. Personally I’m revisiting my youth on Youtube – listening to ‘Songs in The key Of Life’ and remembering the days i could dance all night. OK so I did the bump to ‘Superstition’ but I don’t think you’ll hold that against me… Paul? And on this peronal note I think we should have more pictures of Boris naked. Or in fact any. There’s a derth of pictures of Mayors naked. Probably a good thing in Ken’s case… !

  83. Jaq i do read Peter Hichen, and have seen him on that Dimbleby programme, but he is a bit cynical about politicians, isn’t he? He just seems to hate them, both LAbour and Tories, and really that is a bit negative, because it is easy to criticise, and we have to go with one of the available alternatives. He seems very very angry, but I will try again and read the links you kindly gave.

    I like Peter Oborne. i know Boris thinks the Mail is trash, but they do have some good articles sometimes.

    Mathew Parris is a very good writer, and Boris is a brilliant writer. Boris, as well as being witty, can write such poetic descriptions. He is very talented and if he chose to give up politics tomorrow, he could go straight to the top in two or three other careers. (Editor, writer, wit and humorist). Jaq there was such a sweet picture in the Standard tonight of Boris with what looked like a stripper. He has such a serious expression on his face!

  84. The problem is the cows farting 24/7. The problem is people eating Heinz baked beans then farting 24/7. God help us!

  85. What temperature would the environmentalists like the planet to be ? They’re not usually very clear on this.

  86. Gosh Hichen really went for Miliband. Why can’t the Labour Party get it through their thick heads it is all of them the country is fedup with, not just Gordon? When Tony Blair got kicked out, Gordon thought we would fall for the “the past 10 years of disasters are nothing to do with me” argument and said he needed time to show us “his vision!” where was he then, locked in a dark closet?

    As for the rest of the Labour Party, SAME THING.

  87. I did the bump to ‘Superstition’ but I don’t think you’ll hold that against me… Paul?

    Funny you should say that, Jaq. We saw Stevie Wonder at the O2 Dome last week – probably the best rock concert I’ve seen in my entire life. The kids said the same, and they seem to spend every other evening at gigs.

    The one thing I fear about going to watch old stagers like Stevie is that they might have gone off, reminding us of Father Time’s cruel streak. Not a bit of it. His extraordinary voice had more strength and freedom than ever. His backing band was pure class. And when it came to singing his old hits, he was wise enough to deliver them precisely as everyone knows them, every nuance intact.

    Stevie comes across as a gentle, modest man with not a hint of falseness or affectation. The audience said it all afterwards – 20,000 people emerged from the Dome grinning ear to ear. What a treat to see such rare talent at work.

  88. Stevie Wonder is a true artist. So many singers nowadays are just personalitites, not real singers.

  89. The cows eat grass then fart 24/7. People eat baked beans then fart 24/7. By switching their diets, the problem will solved.

    Around 28 0C. Paaaaaaaa……arp…

  90. Paul – thanks for that, you’re right I did wonder (arf arf) whether he was as good as ever. I’m glad to hear you had such a good time and that Stevie was canny enough to deliver the oldies as we cherish them. I saw him on TV on Johnathan Ross’s show but was trying to keep that quiet. The best concert I ever attended (concert not festival which is a different thing) was by Bill Withers. There were very few people there and so he came and sat with us in the stalls and sang there, it was like being with him in someone’s sitting room. It was fantastic and great fun. He encouraged us to sing and one black woman obviously had a good voice and we all looked. I mention her colour because of the sound associated with that – powerful rich soulful voice. He sang an impromtu duet with her that was fantastic – an evening I’m sure she’ll remember, as I do :-))

  91. Ah, Bill Withers. Another one with a rare gift. And a gift it certainly is – you cannot be coached to that level of artistry.

    What I didn’t tell you was we nearly didn’t make it to Stevie, having been ripped off by an internet scam. With the moderator’s permission I will name them: SOS Masterticket. Don’t worry, Mod – Google on that name and you will find the internet abuzz with people who lost out. I am filling out a credit card rebate form as we speak (thank heaven for credit cards).

    SOS Masterticket is bucket shop with a professional-looking website operated in Spain, as it turns out. They even had the nerve to charge me £14.34 as a “Euro conversion fee” on top of several hundred pounds for the tickets. These never arrived, their website disappeared and their phones went dead. Trading Standards told me they have been swamped with complaints.

    Moral: Only buy from reputable sources. Luckily, we managed to grab replacement tickets at the last minute from the Dome box office.

  92. Boris, do you not know how cows are treated in the slaughterhouses? Hung by their hind leg, bled dry while alive, kicked and beaten, day-old calves starving in tiny gestation crates where they cannot turn around as they are prepared to be slaughtered for veal?

    Boris, is cruelty your thing?

  93. Panorama last week – Rain Forests, Brazil.

    A company called Canopy Capital, “We should pay Brazilian farmers NOT to deforest and raise cattle.” Rather like a compensatory tax for lost business in the interest of preserving the ‘lungs’ of the planet.

    Two questions to Canopy Capital by email (thus far ignored)

    What happens when you restrict the supply of any commodity ?

    In view of the answer to the first question, will we ever be able to pay the Brazilian land owners enough to stop logging ?

    A third question,

    What do Canopy Capital stand to make out of this ?

    And a fourth question,

    Why were the BBC so uncritical of Canopy Capital’s suggestions.

  94. I feel that an important aspect of meat production was left out:

    ‘The basic rule of thumb is that it takes 2kg of feed to produce every kilogram of chicken, 4kg for pork, and at least 7kg for beef. The more meat we eat, the more grain, soya and other feedstuffs we need. So when we hear that the total global meat demand is expected to grow from 209m tonnes in 1997 to around 327m tonnes in 2020, what we have to hold in our mind is all the extra hectares of land required, all the extra water consumed, the extra energy burned, and the extra chemicals applied to grow the requisite amount of feed to produce 327m tonnes of meat.’ – Jonathon Porritt

    That, rather than farting cows, is the main reason why the UN suggest eating less meat.

    As for population control, I wouldn’t beleive those 2050 projections, they don’t accurately take account of the fact that economic growth reduces the number of children per family, and this is something we should be seeing in LEDC’s around the globe over the next 50 years.

  95. In spite of all the chops and gorgeous greasy sausages, oozing juice, Boris looks as though he is losing weight.

  96. Boris has got it right. Its only partially to do with what people do, but much more the ever increasing number of people doing it. We humans are not immune from natural selection, and in the end, nature will have its way, and the population will drop, such that those left will be able to sustain themselves, with or without meat. Market forces in play their part as well.

    But what politition is going to suggest going back to the horse and cart. Not a vote winner?!?! Trouble is, we would need a huge number of horses—do they create methane?

    There are some pretty stupid people out there, who, from their job, really ought to think before opening their mouths, like that guy from UN. There are also a lot who say ‘do as I say, and not do as I do’. I wait with baited breath to watch our ridiculous PM ride around in a horse and cart or a tiny car, with a 1 litre engine and no A/C. I will be waiting a long time , I think.

    Keep it up Boris, we need irrevent people like you and Jeremy Clarkson to inject a bit of reality into life, instead of these politically correct people who ought to get a grip on reality.



  97. that the world is overpopulated is the biggest load of nonsense ever…

    otherwise right thinking people like boris really have to get a julian simon book to be cured of this myth…

    the whole world’s population could fit into the australian state of queensland, and not all on top of each other, they’d each have over 300 square metres each.

    the population density of the world is less than a fifth of the population density of the united kingdom, and you lot seem to be plodding along just fine…

    what a load of nuts!

  98. Wow.

    You guys seriously elected this man?
    Say what you want about us Americans, but at least we didn’t *actually* vote for George W. Bush the first time.


    – David from Ohio, USA

  99. Haha! That was a very stupid article. First Mr. Johnson claims people can’t change their meat eating habits because eating meet is part of human nature. Then he claims that the real problem is people reprodusing as if the urge for sex was NOT part of aur instincts.

  100. In fact, when is someone going to stand up to the enviromaniacs who don’t seem to be clear what they are campaigning against? The IPCC panel were pleased to be able to announce a 90% chance that global warming (itself a nonsense term) was due to man’s activities. 90% is statistical hogwash. The northern hemisphere has been warming at night in winter since about 1835, by about 1degC a century. Warming is happening as a result of natural cycles much bigger than the imaginations of climate ’scientists’. I guess you will be familiar with Karl Popper’s white swan/black swan proposal? So why don’t the BBC/Sunday Times look for evidence that doesn’t support the fairy tale (there’s lots of it)? Meanwhile I – and you – am paying £14 per energy bill towards a meaningless gesture supposed to stop the unstoppable. And after the expenditure of trillions of dollars over several decades we might slow warming down by about a week: but gosh, we’ll feel so holy. Meanwhile what remains of British (and American, if Obama crumbles to the PC argument) manufacturing will have gone offshore to countries who have no intention of cutting emissions, Gore’s carbon-broking company will have cleaned up, and our economy will be based entirely (as Rod Liddle suggests) on ectoplasm.

  101. Hi Boris, you’re talking bullshit! Remember any O-level Maths? It goes like this:
    Population x Personal Footprint = Environmental Impact
    Now Present Population won’t change unless you shoot people (not good for getting votes) but Personal Footprint drops drastically if you eat less meat. Any sensible politicial who wants to reduce Environmental Impact plays with the variables he has at hand, which comes down to eating less meat. So clean up your bullshit, kill your holy cows and you’ll win votes to get re-elected. Cheers, Paul

  102. So you’re encouraging people to eat more meat in defiance of the IPCCs evidence. What a big man you are. let’s hope you choke on a juicy piece of conservative-party-supported-brazilian beef before you see the worlds population hit 9bn. In fact the sooner the better! Of course it would be best if we all did turn vege, so that the rainforest were not to be exhausted, it would be best if no one drove or had children either, and yes, these notions are beyond reality. Im definately not going to give up meat and i wouldnt force anyone to either. Unfortunately, however, you are a leader and a role model and you should be encouraging us to eat at least a little less meat in response to the UN findings, if only for our health, rather than throw them back in their faces like the ignorant twat that you are. If only we could replace you with someone grown up enough to be doing what’s best for us, maybe getting more cars off the road, encouraging car sharing, improving public transport – yeah right – who am I kidding? Not even half a year in charge and our tube fares are rising. I dread to think how London will loook by the end of your foolish regime. Why did they vote for you!?

  103. Very droll Boris. But I don’t quite follow your logic. Cutting back on the bovine population is positively barmy and puts people out of work however cutting back on people is a much easier prospect.

    The reality is that the issue of human population is not ignored but is very complex and fraught with difficulty. So whilst we’re trying to get to grips with it and we must, it seems eminently sensible to suggest we cut back on meat and as a nice bonus lose a bit of weight and live a bit longer (which of course adds to the problem). Never know, you may make it to 2050 after all Boris!

  104. Boris, forget lentilburgers and knitted muesli – think dahl and chapattis, think matar panir (cheese cubes with mint and tomato, chickpeas and potato cubes in coconut sauce, cauliflower and potato with peas, broccoli and spinach puree, diced potatoes with tumeric and cumin, pumpkin foogath, yam curry, spinach eggplant and chickpeas, lemon rice, rice with peas and turmeric and chilli. Please try these things.

  105. Mumbai’s Daily News & Analysis sarcastically calls the recommendation “a new rule to abide by, for the virtuous earthling,” comparing it to a forthcoming big-brother style ban on smoking in public places.
    Brilliant. Yes, where is my ‘virtuous earthling’ badge?!

  106. “The biggest threat …is the dizzying increase in the numbers of people driving those cows and then eating them. The world’s population is up to 6.72 billion, and set to rise to 9 billion by 2050.”

    Let me suggest you link this blog to your site:

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