Impossible Foods, maker of the ImpossibleTM Burger, received the 2019 United Nations Global Climate Action Award. The awards are given to 15 organizations around the world, and are intended to shine a light on some of the most practical examples of what people across the globe are doing to combat climate change.
The announcement of the award winners comes shortly after the UN Climate Summit in New York and Impossible Foods’ worldwide debut in grocery stores in both New York and Southern California. Creating a more sustainable food system is core to the international architecture of progress on climate change. Impossible Foods is adding a powerful tool for climate action.
Dietary shifts have long been recognized as a necessary component of climate strategy yet one of the most difficult strategies for member states to implement. The Impossible Burger is made from plants, yet tastes, smells, looks, and cooks, just like ground beef from an animal--and so it is a climate tool that can be deployed at a global scale while requiring no behavior change or compromise. Each pound of Impossible Burger substituted for beef from a cow spares about 30 pounds of carbon equivalents and nearly 300 less square feet of land--land that could be used for carbon capture by trees and grasslands.
The 2019 United Nations Global Climate Action Awards are part of the wider effort to mobilize action and ambition as national governments work toward implementing the goals of the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals. Impossible Foods won its award in the “Planetary Health” category, which recognizes novel solutions that balance the need for human health and a healthy planet.
“Announced amongst the backdrop of nations signalling their renewed determination to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement, these awards shine a light on 15 incredible examples of scalable climate action around the world,” said Patricia Espinosa, Executive Secretary of UN Climate Change. “These inspiring examples of climate action serve as beacons, guiding us towards a more resilient, more sustainable and more prosperous future for all.”
Impossible Foods’ mission is to transform the global food system to support the planet and growing human population. The company’s goal is to replace animals as a food production technology by 2035, and provide consumers with meat, fish, and dairy foods that are good for both people and the planet. Already, Impossible Foods has made significant progress towards its goals — as outlined in its 2019 Impact Report.
“This award is a great honor and highlights the importance of Impossible Foods’ mission to restore biodiversity, spare natural resources and reverse climate change by providing a nutritionally and functionally equivalent to the most inefficient part of the food system,” says Jessica Appelgren, Vice President of Communications at Impossible Foods. “We are thrilled to be given the opportunity to connect that mission to the implementation of the Paris Agreement and the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals, alongside the impressive list of fellow award recipients at the upcoming COP summit in Chile.”
The 2019 Lighthouse Activities were selected by an international Advisory Panel as part of the UN Climate Change’s Momentum for Change initiative, which is implemented with the support of The Rockefeller Foundation, and operates in partnership with the World Economic Forum, donors supporting the implementation of the UNFCCC’s Gender Action Plan and Climate Neutral Now.
The 15 award-winning projects fall within four focus areas: Planetary Health, Climate Neutral Now, Women for Results, and Financing for Climate Friendly Investment. All activities will be showcased at a series of special events during the second week of the UN Climate Change Conference (COP25) in Santiago, Chile (2-13 December 2018).