Animal welfare and air quality|GianFranco Belloli|KnowLedge World Network|Activities|KNOWLEDGE CAPITAL

  • 2021.11.25
  • Animal welfare and air quality
It was Queen Elizabeth during the traditional Queen's speech in Westminster, who announced that Britain will be committed to promoting higher standards of animal welfare.
The new regulations will also involve concrete changes for the animals used in farming and slaughterhouses.
In this plan drawn up by the Secretary for the Environment in fact a series of important measures are envisaged, including the improvement of conditions in British farms, but not only.
The new regulations involve: stopping the export abroad of live animals for slaughter, new rules to improve the conditions of animals during domestic transport, increased police powers to protect farm animals from dangerous situations, more checks on cage farms and incentives for farmers committed to respecting the rights of their animals.
Another fundamental point of this plan is the recognition of animals as understanding living beings.
It is a great progress achieved after a campaign carried out by many organizations in the United Kingdom which collected hundreds of thousands of signatures to ask the government to increase animal protection.
The efforts in support of animal rights by the British government will not be limited to the national territory, in fact, the plan also includes a series of new rules that aim to improve animal welfare abroad, among these is the idea to ban the sale of foie gras for instance.
In this matter, the Covid-19 pandemic has played a fundamental role, bringing mankind closer to nature, to living healthily and to reviewing nutrition towards a healthier style. Plus, all of this has us understand how wrong we've done so far. And, above all, there is still a chance to make up for it.
Another aspect we can count on in the UK now is Brexit.
In fact, it can now allow the luxury of being able to legislate freely regarding the import of goods, and therefore also of food and animals.
All this will lead the UK government to recognize, with the new laws, a common thread between animal welfare and the climate crisis.
Just think of the enormous quantities of carbon dioxide produced by livestock farming which, with the new laws aimed at the best treatment of animals, could suffer a drastic decrease.
On the other hand, these new laws will also mean the establishment of new figures able to control that the new government provisions will actually be implemented and above all respected.
In addition to this, of course, it will also be necessary to provide for an economic fund capable of supporting these offices.
Even pre-pandemic, the UK has been the first country to have officially declared a climate emergency. Dozens of local governments around the world have already done so and many more will follow.
The UK Parliament declared a climate and environmental emergency in 2019 and Greta Thunberg was invited to speak in London many times.
We also saw many young people participate in the demonstrations here in London.
This year, a young man named Jude, only 11 years old, walked over 200 kilometres from his home in Yorkshire (northern England) to London.
His aim was to persuade British politicians to approve something he cares a lot about: a carbon tax, a tax on carbon dioxide and fossil fuels.
The efforts made in favour of the environment are giving positive results.
The smog detectors around the city have certified that the air in London is today much better compared to 10 years ago. Also, thanks to the introduction of the Zones with low-emission buses and the daily tax for the most polluting vehicles circulating in the centre the smog situation is greatly improving.
However, there is still a lot to do.
Nitrogen dioxide, mainly originating from traffic, gas stoves and tobacco smoke, can cause eye, nasal or throat irritation, and impair respiratory function in children, asthmatics or people with chronic respiratory problems. The British capital in the past had exceeded the limits for nitrogen dioxide but, in this year's surveys, however, London's air quality is within the legal limits for the first time in a decade.

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  • GianFranco Belloli
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I moved to London over 2 years ago but only last year I started writing for a local newsletter for Expats in London telling about my experience in this big city and giving advice to newcomers. London is a very dynamic city and has a lot for everyone but it’s important to have a local point of view to navigate it without getting lost. Let me be your guide to hidden London!

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