You may have heard about President Joe Biden’s plan to tackle climate change and how he wants Americans to stop eating red meat. One problem: what you may have heard isn’t true. In fact, Biden didn’t say anything about meat consumption.
At a virtual climate summit last week, President Biden discussed a goal: to get the U.S. to cut its greenhouse gas emissions in half by the year 2030. He discussed moving to clean energy jobs in his speech as a way to achieve this. He also discussed building more electric vehicles and rolling out more charging stations across the country.
Yet, Republican members of Congress and right wing media pundits pounced on the meat narrative.
Joe Biden’s climate plan includes cutting 90% of red meat from our diets by 2030. They want to limit us to about four pounds a year. Why doesn’t Joe stay out of my kitchen?
— Lauren Boebert (@laurenboebert) April 24, 2021
“Joe Biden’s climate plan includes cutting 90% of red meat from our diets by 2030,” GOP freshman Congresswoman Lauren Boebert. “They want to limit us to about four pounds a year. Why doesn’t Joe stay out of my kitchen?”
Donald Trump Jr., the oldest son of former President Trump, about eating 4 pounds of meat yesterday. Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene a Photoshopped photo sent to her on Twitter portraying Biden as the Hamburglar.
“Not gonna happen in Texas,” said Texas Governor Greg Abbott in a Twitter post which included a graphic from a Fox News segment.
The Fox News image provides bullet point information claiming “Biden’s climate requirements” include cutting “90% of red meat from diet” and a limit of “one burger per month.”
However, if you take a look at the bottom of the Fox News graphic, which claims Biden is “up in your grill,” you’ll find a citation listed as the University of Michigan.
That’s the source of where all this disinformation is coming from: a report from the University of Michigan Center for Sustainable Systems which was published in January 2020.
The report from more than a year ago simply looked at how dietary changes could affect greenhouse gas emissions and has nothing to do with Biden’s climate plans which he announced last week.
The UK tabloid the Daily Mail also seemed to use the University of Michigan report to spread the same falsehoods.
“How Biden’s climate plan could limit you to eat just one burger a MONTH,” begins its headline on the story. However, the article later concedes that “while Biden hasn’t released details, experts and recent studies have laid out what would need to change by 2030 to reach the goal.”
So, while you’ll undoubtedly continue to see this lie spread on Twitter, Facebook, and every other social media platform, just know that it’s not true. Biden didn’t mention red meat consumption at all when discussing his climate plan recently. And the source is a scientific report published a year before Biden was even inaugurated as president.
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