HAYWARDS Heath has become the first European town to sign a treaty which aims to use plant-based methods to tackle the climate crisis.

The Mid-Sussex town has endorsed the plant-based treaty, which includes measures such as promoting vegan food.

Sir Paul McCartney and Joaquin Phoenix are among a group of celebrities who have also backed the treaty, with the city of Buenos Aires in Argentina also promoting the measures.

Dr Richard Nicholson, Green Party town councillor for Haywards Heath, said: “The south east of England has endured the highest ever summer temperatures in history and people’s properties have been destroyed by fire and flood.

“We cannot wait for governments – we must all act immediately – and moving to a plant-based diet is the most impactful thing any individual can do to help address the grave situation we face.”

First set up as a companion to the international Paris Agreement, the treaty aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and stop the destruction of critical ecosystems.

The treaty is based on three main principles: stopping degradation such as deforestation, redirect people to plant-based food sources and actively restoring key ecosystems.

Nicola Harris, the plant-based treaty's communications director, said: “Record-breaking 40C+ temperatures this summer are a bleak reminder that cuts to emissions from fossil fuels and animal agriculture can’t come soon enough.

“We need local, national and international cooperation to reduce food-related emissions through a shift to plant-based diets, boosted by action on food waste.

“Haywards Heath’s decision to call for urgent global action on plant-based solutions to the climate crisis demonstrates true leadership. It will be welcomed by those experiencing the devastating impacts of climate change.”

The Argus: Haywards Heath is the first town in the UK to back the treaty Haywards Heath is the first town in the UK to back the treaty

The treat says animal farming is linked to a third of human-caused methane, a greenhouse gas.

Through the council’s endorsement of measures such as encouraging plant-based diets and reducing food waste, it is hoped that this will help to tackle the global climate crisis.

While the town council has signed the treaty, they are keen to stress that they are not directing residents to follow its suggestions but educating people on its existence.

More information on the treaty can be found at www.plantbasedtreaty.org