PETA Urges Texas Professor Living in Dumpster to Go Vegan
For Immediate Release:
February 10, 2014
David Perle 202-483-7382
Austin, Texas – This morning, PETA sent a letter to Jeff Wilson, Ph.D., associate professor of biological sciences at Huston-Tillotson University in Austin, Texas, who has recently been dubbed “Professor Dumpster,” urging him to add going vegan to his decision to live in the dumpster that he has decided to call home for a year. Wilson—who earned his doctorate at Harvard—has taken the extreme measure to demonstrate the need for people to adopt more sustainable lifestyles or run the risk of using up the Earth’s resources.
In its letter, PETA points out that prestigious institutions—including the United Nations and the Stockholm International Water Institute—have determined that a shift to a plant-based diet is vital for everything from slowing climate change to feeding the world’s growing population. As an example, cattle consume 17 times more calories in grain than they produce as meat.
“With so many delicious and Earth-friendly meat-, dairy-, and egg-free foods available, no one has to live in a dumpster to help save the planet,” says PETA Special Projects Manager Alicia Woempner. “And because meat-eaters are more prone to life-threatening conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, and obesity, Dr. Wilson can help ensure his own sustainability simply by going vegan.”
For more information, please visit PETA.org.
PETA’s letter to Dr. Jeff Wilson follows.
February 10, 2014
Dr. Jeff Wilson
The Dumpster Project
Dear Dr. Wilson:
I’m writing on behalf of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) and our more than 3 million members and supporters, including thousands across Texas. As an organization that works hard to raise awareness of the devastating impact of the animal-agriculture industry on our environment, we applaud your efforts to promote sustainable living. I’d also like to urge you to go vegan and encourage your students to do the same, since cutting out resource-intensive meat, egg, and dairy foods is the best thing that we can all do to protect the planet and animals.
Raising and killing animals for food is simply unsustainable. The United Nations has stated that a global shift to a vegan diet is vital in order to combat the worst effects of climate change, and the Stockholm International Water Institute warns that transitioning to a plant-based diet is the only way to feed the world’s growing population. Eating meat wastes valuable resources. It takes up to 13 pounds of grain and 2,500 gallons of water to produce just a pound of meat. And it takes 18 times more land to produce 1 pound of chicken than it does to produce 1 pound of high-protein, cholesterol-free vegan “chicken.”
In addition to trashing the planet, the meat, dairy, and egg industries cause untold amounts of animal suffering. Chickens, for example, are crammed into filthy, ammonia-filled sheds for the majority of their short lives before they are packed into trucks for transport through all weather extremes to slaughter, during which they have their throats cut while they’re still conscious and are often scalded to death in defeathering tanks.
All of us can help the environment without giving up our comfortable homes or favorite foods, simply by going vegan. Major grocery stores are stocked with delicious vegan foods—from meat-free sausages to plant-based milks made from almonds, rice, or soy—that can be stored safely, without any need for energy-intensive refrigeration.
Thank you for your consideration.
Director of Youth Outreach