December 19, 2009

12/10/2009 JVNA Online Newsletter

Shalom everyone,

This update/Jewish Vegetarians of North America (JVNA) Online Newsletter has the following items:

1. Happy Chanukah

2. Update on “Turning Copenhagen Into CopenVegan”

3. Promoting Our Award-Winning Documentary “A Sacred Duty”

4. Strategy to Promote Vegetarianism

5. My Message to UK Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks Urging Him to Promote Vegetarianism

6. Top Ten Vegetarian-Related Recent Developments

7. Increasing Temperatures Causing More Wildfires

8. Talk By World Watch “51%” Author at FAO Meeting

9. Connecting Chanukah to Copenhagen

10. Paul McCartney and Dr. Rajendra Pachauri Promote Plant-Based Diets

11. Great Interview of Jonathan Safran Foer by Ellen Degeneres

12. Relating Chanukah to Climate Change Responses

13. “Restoring Eden” Helps Religious Institution Serve Sustainable, Healthy Food

14. Poll: Vast Majority of Israelis Against Fur Industry

15. Call for Interfaith Responses to Climate Change

16. Martin Rowe, Lantern Book Publisher Discusses My Book ”Judaism and Global Survival”

17. Update From “Responsible Policies for Animals”

18. Haaretz Editorial on Israel and Climate Change

19. Foer Book Claims that Hitler Was a Vegetarian

20. NY Times Article: Global Warming is Not Slowing Down

21. Climate Change Activists Should Build Ties With Health Professionals

22. Awesome Comprehensive, Scientific Analysis of Global Warming


Some material has been deferred to a later update/newsletter to keep this one from being even longer.

[Materials in brackets like this [ ] within an article or forwarded message are my editorial notes/comments.]

Opinions expressed do not necessarily represent the views of the JVNA, unless otherwise indicated, but may be presented to increase awareness and/or to encourage respectful dialogue. Also, material re conferences, retreats, forums, trips, and other events does not necessarily imply endorsement by JVNA or endorsement of the kashrut, Shabbat observances, or any other Jewish observances, but may be presented for informational purposes. Please use e-mail addresses, telephone numbers, and web sites to get further information about any event that you are interested in. Also, JVNA does not necessarily agree with all positions of groups whose views are included or whose events are announced in this newsletter.

As always, your comments and suggestions are very welcome.

Thanks,

Richard


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1. Happy Chanukah

Chanukah starts at sundown this Friday. Amid the joy and meaning of each holiday, we always try to promote vegetarianism by relating the holiday’s values to vegetarian values. So, please use points in my article “Chanukah and Vegetarianism” (in the festivals section at JewishVeg.com/Schwartz) to help spread the Jewish Vegetarian message. And enjoy the holiday!

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2. Update on “Turning Copenhagen Into CopenVegan”

Although I am not going to Copenhagen, I have been working with some very dedicated people trying to “turn Copenhagen into CopenVegan.”

a. Below is a link to today’s COP15 Post, a publication that is widely read by people in Copenhagen for the climate conference. It includes an article by me and an ad arguing that a shift to plant-based diets is essential to avoid an unprecedented global climate catastrophe.
http://cop15post.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/12/ISSUE-4.pdf

b. Below is a press release that will be sent to many media outlets right after midnight.

http://www.evana.org/index.php?id=51216&lang=en

TO AVERT CLIMATE CATASTROPHE, COALITION URGES WORLD LEADERS TO PUT DIETARY CHANGES ONTO COPENHAGEN CLIMATE CONFERENCE AGENDA

GROUP AIMS TO “TURN COPENHAGEN INTO COPENVEGAN.”

Contact person: Richard H. Schwartz, Director, Veg Climate Alliance

Director@VegClimateAlliance.org

Phone: (718) 761-5876 Mobile: (917) 576-0344

New York, December 8, 2009: A major societal shift to plant-based diets is essential to avoid an unprecedented global climate catastrophe! This is the message that Veg Climate Alliance, a broad coalition of environmental, vegetarian, animal rights, health and other groups, is stressing in conjunction with the major global climate change conference in Copenhagen from December 7 -18.

In an attempt to “turn Copenhagen into CopenVegan,” the alliance is organizing a forum on “Vegetarianism: Essential to Save the Planet?” on Sunday, December 13, 2009. The event, to be held at Mogens Dahl Koncertsal, Snorresgade 22, DK 2300 KĂžbenhavn S, will have talks, videos, panel discussions, questions and answers and a sampling of vegan foods. In addition to the forum, the group has place an ad in the December 8 issue of the Copenhagen Post, a publication that will be widely distributed to people in Copenhagen for the conference, and will take part in demonstrations and use flyers, posters, banners and stickers to get their essential message out. The group is also sending letters to conference delegates and to key governmental officials stressing the urgency of dietary changes. A link to the letter and the supporting groups and one to a flyer that the group is distributing in Copenhagen are at the end of this release.

“We feel that the fate of humanity and all of Creation is at stake,” stated Richard H. Schwartz, VCA director, “and it is essential that the urgency of dietary changes to avoid a climate disaster be part of the message resulting from the Copenhagen climate conference.”

Veg Climate Alliance is urging consideration of recent reports that show the significant role that animal-based agriculture plays in causing global warming:

· Livestock production is responsible for more GHGs than all the world’s transport combined. (18 percent vs. 13.5 percent, in CO2 equivalents) (Livestock’s Long

Shadow, United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization)

· According to the Worldwatch Institute the livestock sector contributes at least 51 percent of global human-caused greenhouse gas emissions.

(Former World Bank Environmental Advisor Robert Goodland and World Bank Environmental Specialist Jeff Anhang, “Livestock and Climate Change”, World Watch magazine, Nov/Dec 2009)

· The world’s population of farmed animals will double in 50 years if current trends continue. (Livestock’s Long Shadow) The resulting increase in GHGs would largely negate emission reductions from all other sectors.

Veg Climate Alliance is also pointing out that climate change is occurring faster than even in worst-case projections, and they are quoting leading climate scientists and economists calling for a reduction in meat consumption:

“The picture is quite grim – if the human race does not do anything, climate change will have serious impacts (...) Please eat less meat – meat is a very carbon intensive commodity.”

~ Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, head of the IPCC

“(...) I think cutting back and substituting more fruit and vegetables is a responsible alternative.”

~ Al Gore, author of An Inconvenient Truth

“(...) in terms of individual action changing your diet is the best thing you can do.”

~ Dr. James Hansen, Director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies

“Meat is a wasteful use of water and creates a lot of greenhouse gases. It puts enormous pressure on the world’s resources. A vegetarian diet is better.”

~ Lord Stern of Bradford, former World Bank Chief Economist

The alliance is also stressing that a major switch to plant-based diets would have many additional positive benefits, including reducing: heart disease, cancer and other chronic, degenerative diseases; water pollution, deforestation, soil erosion, species extinction, desertification and other environmental problems; the wasteful use of land, water, energy and other resources; and the massive mistreatment and slaughter of billions of farmed animals annually.

Veg Climate Alliance’s mission is to increase awareness and facilitate communication on the benefits of plant-based diets and related issues. Our mission statement: http://vegclimatealliance.org/about/

Further info: www.VegClimateAlliance.org
http://www.Copenvegan.com
http://www.PlanetDiet.org

--------------

Text of Letter Being Sent to the Delegates to the December Copenhagen Climate Crisis Conference Urging They Support Shifts to Plant-Based Diets

vegclimatealliance.org/veg-climate-alliance-letter-to-copenhagen-delegates/

Flyer being distributed widely in Copenhagen

http://copenvegan.com/banners-and-signs/

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3. Promoting Our Award-Winning Documentary “A Sacred Duty”

Thanks to long-time vegetarian and environmental activist Jeff Tucker for sending us the following message and for having it sent to about 3,000 people. Please share this or a similar message with others and please help make many more people aware of “A Sacred Duty.” Thanks.

Please watch the FREE video, A Sacred Duty - one of the most important documentary films of this decade is available for free viewing online, or arrange to have it embedded in a website you know, or request a free DVD. I have shown it at Temple Beth Or, spoken proudly of it at various Shabbat services, a temple men’s group, etc. but now as America starts to take responsibility for Global Warming at Copenhagen, treat yourself to this high quality, entertaining piece of social and eco- justice and become more aware of this awesome and momentous issue, Pretty Please.

The great Theodore Bikel (Tevya as you may know him from Fiddler) provides key narration, It contains segments with TWO Chief Rabbis, Prominent Israeli Scientists, and stunning visuals of the US, Israel, terra firma- what more can you ask for at such a bargain price?

If you see the entire film I promise you will be enlightened...

Jeff Tucker,

Eco-Judaism rep.

Watch Video >>> www.asacredduty.com <<<

A SACRED DUTY: Applying Jewish Values To Help Heal The World

A Major Documentary on Current Environmental Threats and How Jewish Teachings Can Be Applied in Responding to These Threats

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4. Strategy to Promote Vegetarianism

Thanks to author and JVNA advisor Dan Brook fir the following very valuable suggestion. This is an idea that I have also been promoting for a very long time.

I recommend that whenever you see a story online about food, that you post something about vegetarianism/veganism; when about health, post something about the health benefits of veg; when about animals, post something about animals and veg compassion; when about the environment, and especially deforestation and global warming, post something about the unsustainability of meat/poultry/fish/animal products and the many eco-benefits of going veg.

We should also write to TV stations, call in to radio stations, contact local, state, and national politicians, lobby corporations, and so on.

For some background info (aka talking points), please visit (and share):

Eco-Eating at www.brook.com/veg

GoVeg.com

FactoryFarming.org

51percent.org

We need to step up our game. Please help spread the word and get veg onto the agenda and into the public consciousness.

Thanks!

Peace,

Dan

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5. My Message to UK Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks Urging Him to Promote Vegetarianism

KOL hakavod, Chief Rabbi Sacks on your eloquent statement urging Jews to respond in view of global warming threats.

But, very respectfully, I urge you to speak out far more strongly at a time when the world is rapidly approaching an unprecedented global climate catastrophe, and some climate experts are telling us that we may have only a few years to avoid a tipping point when global warming spirals out of control.

As you are very aware, there have been many recent indications that global warming is already causing severe droughts, floods, storms, wild fires and heat waves an the very rapid melting of glaciers and polar ice caps.

Chief Rabbi Sacks, you are a position to make a major difference by urging that responding to climate change must become a major focus in Jewish life today. I urge you also to point out that a shift to plant-based diets is essential if we are to be able to reduce GHGs enough to be able to shift our imperiled world to a sustainable path.

If you would like more information on these issues or if I might be able to help i any other way, please let me know.

Many thanks!

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6. Top Ten Vegetarian-Related Recent Developments

This is a truly outstanding article embedded with much valuable information and links. Please read and share!

Peace,

Dan Brook

Top 10 (Recent) Developments On Factory Farming And Vegetarianism

On Thanksgiving, I spent some time taking stock of my life and the world around me and, as we're supposed to do over the holiday, giving thanks for all the joys -- little and big -- in my life. One of the larger joys for which I am giving thanks is all of the recent attention that has been lavished on a topic that is near and dear to my heart -- the cruelty and environmental harm involved in raising animals for food.

I struggled to cohesively construct an article about some of the many recent and important developments on this topic, but there is just too much. Instead, I decided on a top 10 list (a tip of the hat to David Letterman) -- the 10 most interesting articles on the farmed animal welfare front.

So without further ado:

a. World Bank scientists conclude that eating meat causes more than half of global warming (conservatively).

World Bank agricultural scientists Robert Goodland, who spent 23 years as the Bank's lead environmental advisor, and Jeff Anhang, a research officer and environmental specialist for the Bank, argue convincingly that more than half of all greenhouse gas emissions are attributable to our desire to eat chicken, pigs, and other farmed animals. That's right: Add up all the causes of climate change, and you find that eating meat causes more than everything else combined.

Honestly, this was the biggest point for me: How can I possibly take the environment seriously if I'm still participating in what is -- by far -- the biggest contributor to warming?

Which might explain:

1. Prominent Stanford biochemist pledges to focus all his energy on promoting veganism.

Most of us have heard of Nobel Peace Prize winner Dr. RK Pachauri from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, and his lectures all over the world promoting vegetarianism. Now along comes Dr. Patrick O. Brown who, as reported in (of all places) Forbes, will spend the next 18 months focused on "put[ting] an end to animal farming." Explains Dr. Brown, "There's absolutely no possibility that 50 years from now this system will be operating as it does now... I want to approach this as a solvable problem. Solution: 'Eliminate animal farming on planet Earth.'"

1) Al Gore is taking notice.

Although Gore's Global Warming Survival Handbook noted that "refusing meat" is the "single most effective thing you can do to reduce your carbon footprint" (emphasis in original), Gore had not spoken publically about the issue. Now he has -- repeatedly. For example, on Larry King recently, Gore explained that "the impact of meat-intensive diet is a significant factor" in warming the planet, that "the growing meat intensity of diets around the world is bad for the planet," and that "the more meals I've substituted with more fruits and vegetables, the better I feel about it..." The truth is becoming less inconvenient, thankfully.

1. Celebrated author of Everything is Illuminated and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close publishes Eating Animals a riveting book based on a three-year investigation of factory farming.

Jonathan Safran Foer has been widely hailed as one of the greatest novelists of his generation, was one of Rolling Stone's "People of the Year," and Esquire's "Best and Brightest" -- and after just two extraordinary works. As Nobel Prize-winning novelist J.M. Coetzee puts it about Foer's latest work, "The everyday horrors of factory farming are evoked so vividly, and the case against the people who run the system presented so convincingly, that anyone who, after reading Foer's book, continues to consume the industry's products must be without a heart, or impervious to reason, or both."

In his interview with Mother Jones Magazine (the entire interview is worth reading), Foer points out that Americans "now eat 150 times as much chicken as we did 80 years ago," and that it "takes between 6 and 26 calories to make one calorie of meat. It is an incredibly inefficient protein because we are cycling through all of these other grains that humans could eat."

· Actor Alicia Silverstone and Chef Tal Ronnen on the New York Times bestseller list.

For some weeks now, Chef Tal Ronnen's Conscious Cook and actress Alicia Silverstone's Kind Diet have joined Foer and former model agent Rory Freedman (whose book convinced home run slugger Prince Fielder to adopt a vegan diet) on the list with books that make the case for vegetarian eating. You may recall Ronnen from his appearances on Oprah, which caused Oprah to exclaim, "Wow, wow, wow! I never imagined meatless meals could be so satisfying."

- Martha Stewart promotes a vegetarian Thanksgiving.

As my friends at Ecorazzi put it, "Martha Stewart has proved once again why she's a pioneer in the kitchen. Having someone with as much sway as the famous host show people that the big feast doesn't have to include meat to be successful is huge. Even better, she took the opportunity to educate her audience on factory farming industry -- with help from author Jonathan Safran Foer (of Eating Animals) and filmmaker Robert Kenner (Food, INC.)."

4. Egyptian mummy heart disease in LA Times

I'm not sure it belongs in my top 10 list, but I found it extremely interesting that "CT scans of Egyptian mummies, some as much as 3,500 years old, show evidence of atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries, which is normally thought of as a disease caused by modern lifestyles..." What on earth could have caused it? I think I know: "The high-status Egyptians ate a diet high in meat from cattle, ducks and geese, all fatty." If only the ancient Egyptians had the wisdom of Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn!

A. Honesty at the Turkey Pardoning

First Obama talks about factory farming and animal rights as a candidate. Then he puts in a garden at the White House. Now he's adding some honesty to the annual turkey pardoning -- talking about the fate of other birds, the fact that it's a fairly new ceremony, etc.

Might he have celebrated a vegetarian Thanksgiving? The White House isn't saying, according to Gail Collins of the New York Times in her delightful Thanksgiving Day contemplation of the turkey pardoning. Okay, I'm kidding a bit (could he really get away with having a veggie Thanksgiving, given the power of Agribusiness -- as documented in this sad piece on FoodConsumer.org), as was Collins of course, but the honesty at the event is refreshing, and we do have the first president who understands the harms of factory farming and who is taking global warming seriously.

I. Cargill launches dairy-free cheese!

The largest privately held company in the United States (six times the size of McDonald's) has just launched "a 100 percent non-dairy cheese analogue for pizza and other prepared food applications" that "replicates the functionality of dairy protein and replaces it fully at an outstanding cost advantage for the manufacturer." According to Cargill, "its appearance, taste and texture perfectly match those of processed cheese" and it "also offers health advantages as it contains reduced calories (less fat and no saturated fats) and... a unique opportunity for vegans to enjoy a product that has the characteristics and taste of cheese but without any animal-derived ingredients." It's also Halal and Kosher.

1. Yet another study is exposing the horrid treatment of workers by the all-powerful meat industry.

A recent six-part piece in the Lincoln Journal-Star documents the horrid conditions endured by slaughterhouse workers. Sadly, nothing has changed since Human Rights Watch released their report on the industry, "Blood, Sweat, and Fear," six years ago. Then and now, researchers have documented "systematic human rights violations embedded in meat and poultry industry employment." It's becoming all too obvious that if we care about worker rights, it makes sense to go vegan.

For information on making the switch to vegetarianism, please check out my previous post, "A Beginner's Guide to Conscious Eating."

Also visit Eco-Eating at www.brook.com/veg

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7. Increasing Temperatures Causing More Wildfires

Inferno on Earth: Wildfires Spreading as Temperatures Rise

19 November 2009

Future firefighters have their work cut out for them. Perhaps nowhere does this hit home harder than in Australia, where in early 2009 a persistent drought, high winds, and record high temperatures set the stage for the worst wildfire in the country’s history. On February 9th, now known as “Black Saturday,” the mercury in Melbourne topped 115 degrees Fahrenheit (46.4 degrees Celsius) as fires burned over 1 million acres in the state of Victoria—destroying more than 2,000 homes and killing more than 170 people, tens of thousands of cattle and sheep, and 1 million native animals.

Even as more people move into fire-prone wildlands around the world, the intense droughts and higher temperatures that come with global warming are likely to make fires more frequent and severe in many areas......

Source: Inferno on Earth: Wildfires Spreading as Temperatures Rise

Date: 2009-12-03

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8. Talk By World Watch “51%” Author at FAO Meeting

Robert Goodland: 'Forests, Fisheries, Agriculture: A Vision for Sustainability'

.. emissions attributable to livestock should be considered as impacts managed or owned by the industry or sector that emits them..

Expert consultation on greenhouse gas emissions and mitigation potentials

FAO 2-4 December 2009

Excerpts:

--If livestock are responsible for at least 51% of anthropogenic GHG emissions, then mitigation measures no longer suffice, and broadly avoiding emissions attributable to livestock becomes critical.

--The same crops used to manufacture biofuels and feed livestock can be used instead to feed people. The number of hungry people in the world now exceeds 1 billion for the first time ever, with a 20% increase in malnutrition expected by 2050. Already 6 million children die of hunger each year.

--Besides GHG emissions attributable to livestock products, they are also highly inefficient in their use of water, when compared to better alternatives. For example, assessments have shown as much as 200,000 litres of water used in the production of each kilogram of beef, versus 2,000 litres of water per kilogram of soybeans.Besides the amount of water used for livestock products, they are responsible for high levels of feedlot runoff, pollution of rivers and coastal waters (red tides), and eutrophication, leading to decreases in populations of aquatic organisms, and diminished availability of clean water. Livestock across the world have also been implicated as key drivers of today’s depletion of water tables, decreased percolation rates of rain into soils, and desertification, all of which are intensifying on a worldwide basis..

--As with all other emissions in the world, the emissions attributable to livestock should be considered as impacts managed or owned by the industry or sector that emits them...

--Funding for the following should be reduced or dropped, to make more resources available for investments in sustainability and food security: All large-scale livestock and feed production; industrial logging of old-growth forest; crops produced in tropical industrial export plantations; food-based crops used to manufacture biofuels; most marine commercial fisheries, until they recover to exploitable levels....

Source: 'Forests, Fisheries, Agriculture: A Vision for Sustainability' Author: Robert Goodland

Link: Livestock and Climate Change - By Robert Goodland and Jeff Anhang

Date: 2009-12-03

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9. Connecting Chanukah to Copenhagen

From Hanukkah to Copenhagen: A Broad-Based Jewish Call to Action


By Rabbi Arthur Waskow | 12/2/2009

· Devoting Jewish Holidays to Peace/Global Scorching/ Hanukkah

Dear folks,

At the initiative of The Shalom Center, a broad spectrum of American Jewish leadership has issued the following statement about Hanukkah and Copenhagen:?

“Hanukkah for Humanity”

The traditions of rabbinic Judaism have long celebrated the Hanukkah miracle in which one day’s oil met eight days’ need. In that spirit, we join in urging the world community to include in our Hanukkah celebration this year a call to all the peoples of the earth. We encourage Jewish communities, wherever possible, to gather in public one Hanukkah evening to light their menorahs with this message:

That the human race deeply reduce our burning of fossil fuels as a step toward healing the climate crisis that threatens our future. The world’s governments are convened in the Copenhagen conference as we light the lights of Hanukkah at a time of the darkness of the moon and sun. We especially call out to them, that together all humanity light the lights of a sustainable future in the midst of a dark and difficult passage through history.

The list of individual signers of the “Hanukkah for Humanity” statement continues to grow; a full list of signers can be found below. Among the nationally known signers are: Rabbi Dennis Beck-Berman, past president, Ohalah; Ellen Bernstein, Founder, Shomrei Adamah; Evan Eisenberg, author, The Ecology of Eden; Rabbi Steve Gutow, Director, Jewish Council on Public Affairs; Debra Kolodny, Executive Director, ALEPH: Alliance for Jewish Renewal; Vivian Lehrer, Co-founder/Director, Eden Village Camp; Rabbi Mordechai Liebling, Recon. Rabb. Coll.; Rabbi David Saperstein, Director, Relig Action Ctr of Reform Judaism; Nigel Savage, Executive Director, Hazon; Richard H. Schwartz, President, Jewish Vegetarians of North America; Rabbi David Shneyer, past president, Ohalah; Nili Simhai, director, Teva Learning Center ; Rabbi Margot Stein, New Legends; Rabbi Warren Stone, Chair, Environment Comm, CCAR; Rabbi Lawrence Troster, Greenfaith; Rabbi Arthur Waskow, director, The Shalom Center ; Rabbi Sheila Peltz Weinberg, Inst for Jewish Spirituality; Rabbi Shawn Zevit, Jewish Reconstructionist Federation

Among organizations, The Shalom Center, Hazon, the Teva Learning Center, and ALEPH: Alliance for Jewish Renewal, have so far joined in endorsing it.

Please share this letter with your friends and coworkers and take the initiative to organize a “Hanukkah for Humanity” event in your own community. For one example, see below.

One example of carrying “Hanukkah for Humanity” into action: The Shalom Center, with support from a wide variety of Philadelphia synagogues, other Jewish organizations, and several interfaith groups and activists, is sponsoring a vigil for action to heal our endangered climate from “global scorching” — on the night of December 12 at 6:15, the second night of Hanukkah, near Independence Hall — at People’s Plaza, between 5th & 6th close to Market Street. ? ?That vigil will be connecting with hundreds of candle light vigils around the globe on the weekend of December 11-13, calling on the negotiators in Copenhagen to take the actions needed to save our eco-system. The call to that action came from Bill McKibben. Excerpts follow, below.

Shalom, salaam, shantih — Peace! Arthur

Here are excerpts from Bill McKibben’s letter:

”There’s a global mobilization coming together for the weekend in the middle of the Copenhagen conference—Dec. 11-13. Our collective message? “The World Wants a Real Deal” — people all over the planet are demanding a binding global climate agreement guided by the latest science and built upon principles of justice and equity.

”Our main hope is that you will help organize a candlelight vigil at some iconic or strategic place near you on Friday or Saturday night, December 11th or 12th. Around the world people will gather to light lanterns or candles, in solemn solidarity with the citizens of those nations who will be first to face the challenges to their very survival.?

“Click here for details about staging a local vigil and to register one in your community: 350.org/vigil? ? ?

“The short-term survival of many nations, and the long-term health of the whole planet, rests in the hands of Obama and the United States Senate. Their positions, along with the level of leadership provided by the European Union, China and a few other nations, can make or break a global climate treaty. The decisions made by this small group of people will, in large part, determine whether or not the world forges a real deal—not just any deal, but one that is strong enough to pull us back from the brink of climate catastrophe and put the planet on a path to 350. Their courage—or lack of it—will help set the future of the planet for geologic time.

“The candles we will light are candles of hope.”

The Shalom Center / web: http://www.theshalomcenter.org / email: office@theshalomcenter.org?mail: 6711 Lincoln Drive, Philadelphia, PA 19119, USA / tel: (215) 844-8494

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10. Paul McCartney and Dr. Rajendra Pachauri Promote Plant-Based Diets

Belgium: Paul McCartney and Dr Pachauri in EU parliament for climate change hearing:

Less Meat = Less Heat

3 December 2009

This morning the vegetarians Paul McCartney and Dr Pachauri spoke at a hearing on climate change.

Sir Paul recommended the introduction of a meatless day per week to help cut CO2 emissions.

It was evident that the advice to go vegetarian, or at least reduce meat consumption, made the representatives of the meat industry and some politicians quite hot under their collars.

The comparison of tobacco and meat may have frustrated them even further.

But the times, they are changing....

----------------------

Quote: "By making a simple change in the way you eat, you are taking part in a world changing campaign"

---------->Paul McCartney

More (incl. link for downloads): http://www.evana.org/index.php?id=51050&lang=en

FoEI Climate Capsule - add your message to delegates in Copenhagen and to the world: http://www.foei.org/en/what-we-do/un-climate-talks/global/2009/climate-capsule

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11. Great Interview of Jonathan Safran Foer by Ellen Degeneres

Thanks to Jeff Tucker

Did you see this interview on Ellen?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YYZ7IlWo3BM

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12. Relating Chanukah to Climate Change Responses

At the initiative of The Shalom Center, a broad spectrum of American Jewish leadership has issued the following statement about Hanukkah and Copenhagen:

“Hanukkah for Humanity"

The traditions of rabbinic Judaism have long celebrated the Hanukkah miracle in which one day's oil met eight days' need. In that spirit, we join in urging the world community to include in our Hanukkah celebration this year a call to all the peoples of the earth. We encourage Jewish communities, wherever possible, to gather in public one Hanukkah evening to light their

menorahs with this message:

That the human race deeply reduce our burning of fossil fuels as a steptoward healing the climate crisis that threatens our future. The world's governments are convened in the Copenhagen conference as we light the lights of Hanukkah at a time of the darkness of the moon and sun. We especially call out to them, that together all humanity light the lights ofa sustainable future in the midst of a dark and difficult passage through history.

The list of individual signers of the "Hanukkah for Humanity" statement continues to grow; a full list of signers can be found on our website. Among the nationally known signers are: Rabbi Dennis Beck-Berman, past president, Ohalah; Ellen Bernstein, Founder, Shomrei Adamah; Evan Eisenberg, author, The Ecology of Eden; Rabbi Steve Gutow, Director, Jewish Council on Public

Affairs; Debra Kolodny, Executive Director, ALEPH: Alliance for Jewish Renewal; Vivian Lehrer, Co-founder/Director, Eden Village Camp; Rabbi Mordechai Liebling, Recon. Rabb. Coll.; Rabbi David Saperstein, Director, Relig Action Ctr of Reform Judaism; Nigel Savage, Executive Director, Hazon;

Richard H. Schwartz, President, Jewish Vegetarians of North America; Rabbi David Shneyer, past president, Ohalah; Nili Simhai, director, Teva Learning Center ; Rabbi Margot Stein, New Legends; Rabbi Warren Stone, Chair, Environment Comm, CCAR; Rabbi Lawrence Troster, Greenfaith; Rabbi Arthur

Waskow, director, The Shalom Center ; Rabbi Sheila Peltz Weinberg, Inst for Jewish Spirituality; Rabbi Shawn Zevit, Jewish Reconstructionist Federation

Among organizations, The Shalom Center, Hazon, the Teva Learning Center, and ALEPH: Alliance for Jewish Renewal, have so far joined in endorsing it.

Please share this letter with your friends and coworkers and take the initiative to organize a "Hanukkah for Humanity" event in your own community.

One example of carrying "Hanukkah for Humanity" into action: The Shalom Center, with support from a wide variety of Philadelphia synagogues, other Jewish organizations, and several interfaith groups and activists, is sponsoring a vigil for action to heal our endangered climate from "global scorching" -- on the night of December 12 at 6:15, the second night of

Hanukkah, near Independence Hall -- at People's Plaza, between 5th & 6th close to Market Street.

That vigil will be connecting with hundreds of candle light vigils around the globe on the weekend of December 11-13, calling on the negotiators in Copenhagen to take the actions needed to save our eco-system. The call to that action came from Bill McKibben. Excerpts follow, below.

Shalom, salaam, shantih -- Peace!

Arthur

SNIP

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13. “Restoring Eden” Helps Religious Institution Serve Sustainable, Healthy Food

Forwarded message:

The world's religions all share in common one fundamental and important idea: food nourishes us, and is integral to our rituals and celebrations. At a time when billions of people are engaged in an increasingly global food system, our food choices represent one of the most important environmental decisions we can make. In response, GreenFaith has created Restoring Eden, to identify the most effective opportunities for Houses of Worship and religious schools to serve sustainable, healthy food.

“Restoring Eden is a one-stop shop: it outlines recommended steps, inspires with success stories, helps to clear confusion with definitions, and furthers your learning and action through an extensive list of resources,” said Stacey Kennealy, Restoring Eden’s author.

Please visit www.greenfaith.org and click on the link to access Restoring Eden.

You can also jumpstart your Restoring Eden efforts by screening the documentary , which celebrates the farmers, thinkers, and business people across America that are re-inventing our food system. Seen by over 25,000 people in communities throughout the United States, FRESH it is an uplifting movie that showcases inspiring projects and solutions. Michael Pollan, author of Omnivore’s Dilemma, states: “FRESH is a bracing, even exhilarating look at the whole range of efforts underway to renovate the way we grow food and feed ourselves.” Read an interview with filmmaker Ana Joanes.

For a limited time, FRESH is offering GreenFaith supporters a 20% discount on their screening licenses. You can purchase a screening license on their website at www.FRESHthemovie.com (click on the ‘Host a Screening’ button on the sidebar). Once you receive the receipt for your purchase, reply with the subject line "GREENFAITH REBATE" to receive your 20% off. FRESH will mail you your 20% discount right away.

Rabbi Lawrence Troster

Director, Fellowship Program,

GreenFaith: Interfaith Partners for the Environment

201 833-5166

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14. Poll: Vast Majority of Israelis Against Fur Industry

http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3812115,00.html

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15. Call for Interfaith Responses to Climate Change

Forwarded message:

Dear Jewish Colleagues and Friends,

Thank you for your work to prevent runaway global warming and the “collapse of civilization” (as warned by the U.N., U.S. Army, World Bank,… see: ).

We would be so grateful if you might be able to share these requests with synogagues and Jewish organizations:

· Sign the Interfaith Call for 350 www.350.org/interfaithcall -- Faith communities call for justice and preventing harm to all people

· Ask congregations and organizations to participate in the Worldwide Candlelight Vigil on Dec. 11-12: www.350.org/vigil

· Ask congregations and organizations to participate with the World Council of Churches in the sounding of religious instruments: Dec. 13 – Faith communities sound 350 www.350.org/faith

Please advise us if there are congregations or organizations you think we should personally contact.

If you and others would like a briefing on the latest science and why 350 parts per million of carbon dioxide is now an urgent matter that requires strong action in the next few years, we have scientists available from the Sustainability Institute. The latest analysis is that we must reduce emissions by 40% to to save hundreds of millions of people, especially people in drier countries, poor countries, living on coastlines and islands (hundreds of millions of people), and people who depend upon meltwater from mountains for food and drinking water (1.3 billion people in the Middle East and Asia alone).

Many thanks,

Tina

Tina Clarke, tina@350.org, 413-863-5253

www.350.org

Invitation from the World Council of Churches:

SNIP

To support our work, donate securely online at 350.org/donate

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16.Martin Rowe, Lantern Book Publisher Discusses My Book ”Judaism and Global Survival”

http://lanternbooks.com/audio/1930051875.mp3

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17. Update From “Responsible Policies for Animals”

Forwarded message frim RPA Founder and Director David Cantor


Responsible Policies for Animals Members & Friends!

Thank you, all who have donated to Responsible Policies for Animals (RPA) in recent weeks! Through recent speaking trips and Thanksgiving (hope you had a good one!), I’ve looked forward to telling you about recent inspiring RPA events! Thin Ice due out soon will say more, and I will make my talks available upon request, but here are basics of presentations I gave at four colleges in three states early to mid-November:

Eat Like Life Matters.
Juniata College, Huntingdon, Pennsylvania, November 2nd

Toward Free and Informed Food Choices.
Penn State University, State College, Pennsylvania, November 3rd

Earth’s Best Hope: Rights of All Animals.
Grinnell College, Grinnell, Iowa, November 12th

Land of the Free – and of the Enslaved.
North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina, November 18th

At Grinnell, I also spoke to a political science class. My talk there was part of the symposium Rights and the Environment. I got to dine with other speakers and interested professors and students. My talks were very well received. And at all of the colleges, I enjoyed serious conversations with event organizers and members of their groups. I received superlative comments from some professors as well as students and local community residents!

I am very grateful to event organizers and hope that as RPA supporters you will share my gratitude. Many people attended thanks to organizers’ hard work! And many people stayed through lengthy question & answer sessions! My talks varied significantly, but in each I explained RPA’s 10,000 Years Is Enough campaign to end the land-grant university meat problem, and the political argument for animal rights. Briefly explaining the ethical argument – they experience life and have interests, therefore need basic rights for meaningful protection – I went far beyond:

There is no likely way to solve the big human problems – war, genocide, poverty, hunger, disease, soaring medical & insurance costs, global warming, pollution, ecosystem destruction, overpopulation, and more – without establishing equal basic rights of all animals regardless of species. Nonhuman animals’ lack of basic rights to live in healthy ecosystems and not to be used, owned, sexually abused or genetically manipulated is the root cause the big human problems share in common.

Since RPA works to improve human life by ending inhumane treatment of animals – all animal use and ecosystem disruption – and is promoting animal rights by methods that established basic rights for humans, not singling people out for blame, there is no talk of “animal rights violence,” “hating people,” and the like, despite the radical nature of animal rights as a political, social, and economic proposal.

The take-away message I received and most want to share with you: Many people are willing to consider animal rights when it is fully and truthfully explained. It is not necessary to substitute magical thinking that the animal-welfare system can protect animals or that vegetarianism can bring needed change through the ripple effect. Those approaches, though good for the few they help, do not address the institutions that lock people into inhumane practices and policies by promoting their own perceived interests over the public interest. People help and care about animals without significant prompting, and people are as likely to become vegetarian from grasping animal rights as from learning diet facts.

I plainly saw that people can grasp why only equal basic individual rights of all animals regardless of species can solve the big problems, including inhumane treatment of nonhuman animals.

On another note: Many thanks to all who have requested RPA land-grant university (LGU) fliers in response to recent offers! I thought of you all the other day when I spotted my first car with Penn State AND Cornell decals! Fortunately, I had both fliers on hand! Amazing numbers of Penn State cars in these parts! I rarely leave home without spotting some! Probably more than Obama and McCain cars combined – even adding “random kindness” and “impeach Bush”! So I always have fliers in my pocket! I'm sure it's the same in every state! In Raleigh I saw many N.C. State cars. Even in the small town of Grinnell, I saw a couple of Iowa State cars -- the university long ranked number one in serving the meat industry!

Right now in Florida, Hawai’i, Ohio, New York, and other states, RPA members and friends are using RPA fliers to urge LGU boosters to help end their institutions’ extremely inhumane, eco-destructive, health-devastating meat-industry programs! It’s easy & convenient! Request fliers anytime!

I hope you will donate to RPA today. Like me, you probably receive at least ten, maybe dozens, of e-mails each day, some items by mail, too, telling you what to do or support to “fight cruelty,” “cure disease,” “end hunger,” “fight global warming,” and the rest. Well into my second half-century of life, having lent support to many good causes and having achieved many victories for nonhuman animals with no rights, I now see popular, well-funded efforts, even when run by talented and dedicated people, as what Thoreau called “hacking at branches” rather than “striking at the root.”

The root cause of the intractable problems we all want to solve is not “cruelty” or “cruel factory farming” but inhumane treatment of animals – all animal use and ecosystem disruption. Only basic rights can begin to address that. Think of RPA as promoting “the mother of all causes”! By supporting an organization that exclusively promotes animal rights, you don’t just fund gimmicks like “change we can believe in” but the only likely meaningful change.

As RPA member Mike Grieco (Whitehorse, Yukon) put it in an e-mail the other day, “Hopefully those kind-hearted, humane-minded people who give millions to the "welfare" organizations will soon come to realize that they would be wise to give to Animal Rights instead. Otherwise there will never be meaningful protection for nonhumans, humans, and ecosystems (as you know).” Read about Mike’s sustained efforts for the animals in Thin Ice due out soon!

If you haven't visited RPA's three websites recently, have a look! They're listed below -- as is information for donating online or by mail.

RPA needs money to operate, yes – and these are dire times as many of our friends have been hit by the global economic squeeze. But RPA does not demand millions like animal-advocacy institutions. We recognize the difference between creating a meaningful rights movement and building an institution, and we choose the former. So your most generous possible gift is plenty! My working more-than-full-time for RPA for no pay is not due to independent wealth but the conviction that animal rights must happen or the massive institutionalized violence against nonhumans and the rapidly deteriorating quality of human life cannot be reversed. I hope to hear from you soon! Meanwhile, enjoy a rewarding holiday season – assured that you are part of the solution despite our all being, for now, locked into the problems.

Best wishes,

David Cantor

Founder & Director

Responsible Policies for Animals, Inc.
P.O. Box 891
Glenside, PA 19038

215-886-RPA1

RPA4all@aol.com

www.RPAforAll.org

www.ExpertsOfConscience.org

www.EatForSports.org

Responsible Policies for Animals, Inc., a 501(c)(3) educational nonprofit organization, shows people how to establish responsible policies for animals that are also responsible policies for people and ecosystems – meaningful, enforceable basic rights for nonhuman animals, the only means to humane treatment as public policy rather than personal choice.

RPA’s 10,000 Years Is Enough campaign aims to end our land-grant universities’ support of the meat industry -- see www.RPAforAll.org and www.ExpertsOfConscience.org.

RPA's This Land Is Their Land campaign aims to protect wildlife by ending armed assaults and destructive land-use practices. See Campaigns page at www.RPAforAll.org.

RPA's position statement opposing violence and other antisocial behavior in association with animal advocacy is available at www.RPAforAll.org or by request.

Donations to RPA are tax deductible as allowed by law and may be made at the above address or www.RPAforAll.org.

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18. Haaretz Editorial on Israel and Climate Change

Israel must do its part to stop global warming


http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1133321.html

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19. Foer Book Claims that Hitler Was a Vegetarian

Forwarded message to me from JVNA advisor Stewart Rose:

Thanks for your help in [trying to correct] this mistake. On page 258 of the new book, Eating Animals, by Jonathan Safran Foer, the author claims that Hitler was a vegetarian. This is especially upsetting since the author is Jewish and the book begins with the experience of the author's grandmother in the Holocaust. The relevant sentence at the top of the page is " Okay, we don't fight wars because we eat meat, and some wars should be fought-which is not to mention that Hitler was a vegetarian." Even more upsetting is the fact that in the notes section on page 329 the author states that he "has no idea if it's true" and that "it's especially doubtful" If that's the case then why did he say it? He makes no qualification in the text whatsoever. Even just Googling "Hitler Vegetarian" quickly results in the fact that this is a myth.

In my opinion, the greatest threat to the Jewish people is not global warming even though I would agree that it's still a very, very serious problem. I believe that the greatest threat to the Jewish people is another Holocaust. If Iran gets a nuclear weapon, half the world's Jews could be wiped out in an instant. Distorting the history of the last Holocaust is the surest way I know of for another Holocaust to happen.

I have been a vegan for thirty years. As a Jew committed to Tikun Olam I have been working to help a transition in the world's diet to take place. Within the Jewish community, I have tried to make the case for the vegan diet as a moral imperative for Judaism. While I will continue to share your book with as many members of the Jewish community as I can, I will not be able to share Foer's new book because of this mistake. Ironicaly, Foer is a professor of English at Columbia Univeristy where last I heard Ryn Berry, who wrote a book dispelling this myth, was also a professor.

I respectfully ask that you contact the author, and others who may be able to help, and inform them of this mistake and ask that a correction be made and also mention this mistake in the next JVNA newsletter as you think appropriate.

I would also like to take this opportunity to thank you for all the great work you have done on behalf of the JVNA for so many years.

Stewart Rose

Vice President

Vegetarians of Washington

www.vegofwa.org

[Please loin me in contacting Jonathan Safran Foer at EatingAnimals@gmail.com, to urge him to correct the misconception. Thanks.]

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20. NY Times Article: Global Warming is Not Slowing Down

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/09/science/earth/09climate.html?pagewanted=3&_r=1&hp

NY Times December 8, 2009

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21. Climate Change Activists Should Build Ties With Health Professionals

http://www.grist.org/article/2009-12-08-advocates-should-build-tieswith-public-health-community

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22. Awesome Comprehensive, Scientific Analysis of Global Warming

http://www.ccrc.unsw.edu.au/Copenhagen/Copenhagen_Diagnosis_LOW.pdf

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