Greta Thunberg, A Vegan, Is PETA’s Youth Role Model of the Year

Young Firebrand Nabs 2019 Award for Delivering the Message That Meat and Dairy Consumption Is Setting Our World Ablaze

For Immediate Release:
December 9, 2019

Contact:
Moira Colley 202-483-7382

New York – For reaching millions with an urgent vegan message in the face of the global climate crisis, Greta Thunberg has been named PETA’s Youth Role Model of the Year, part of PETA’s 14th annual Libby Awards (“Libby” is short for “liberation”—as in animal liberation), which recognize the most powerful young people advancing the pro-animal cause.

As the founder of the Fridays for Future school strike movement, Thunberg never misses an opportunity to address the link between animal agriculture and global climate change and to urge others to go vegan. Through television appearances, #GoVegan tweets, and empathy-inspiring posts about animals, she’s persuaded countless people—starting with her own parents and classmates—to shift away from a meat- and dairy-based diet. She describes herself as a vegan for “ethical, environmental, and climate reasons” and speaks passionately about her love for animals, even taking time out from a hectic tour to visit Esther the Wonder Pig in Toronto. Thunberg is no shrinking violet and is known for her frank assessments and her take-no-prisoners approach, things that resonates with PETA. She called out climate scientists and green politicians for “flying around the world, eating meat and dairy,” urged the pope to help fight climate change, and demanded immediate action, saying, “I don’t want you to be hopeful. I want you to panic. I want you to feel the fear I feel every day. And then I want you to act.”

“Whether she’s leading a strike, gramming, or eating a meal, PETA salutes Greta Thunberg, who refuses to sit by and watch as the planet is destroyed and its animal citizens die for a fleeting taste of chicken nuggets or a slice of cheese,” says PETA Senior Director of Youth Programs Marta Holmberg. “PETA is recognizing Greta for speaking truth and inspiring passionate young activists to reject anything stolen from an animal.”

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat”—notes that more than 80% of the Amazon rainforest that’s been cleared since 1970 is used for meat production, either for grazing or for growing food for cattle, including those in the U.S. market. The United Nations states that animal agriculture is responsible for nearly a fifth of human-induced greenhouse-gas emissions—and echoes Thunberg’s rallying cry for a global shift to vegan eating. Each person who goes vegan spares the lives of nearly 200 animals every year.

PETA opposes speciesism, which is a human-supremacist worldview that fosters violence toward other animals. The group offers a free vegan starter kit full of recipes, tips, and more. For more information, please visit PETA.org or click here.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind