Tag Archives: sustainability

Find your tribe and save the planet

Ok. I recognise this is a rather bold statement, and perhaps more than a little hasty. But before you judge, let me explain…. Continue reading Find your tribe and save the planet

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How to remedy the environmental disaster that is Planned Obsolescence

We’ve all, at some time or another, rolled our eyes at our elders as they claim in dismay that “things just aren’t made to last the way they used to”. Clutching on to the same moth ridden coat they’ve worn since the 40s, or fervently plodding down the road at 20mph in their trusty Morris minors; our grandparents are the kings and queens of frugal living. Their dusty and unchanging homes are living museums of the “golden Years”; where purchases were made for longevity, and are generously cared for as though they were the last of their kind left on Earth. Continue reading How to remedy the environmental disaster that is Planned Obsolescence

Is Cornwall a new hub for ethical fashion?

I think we’ve all experienced that feeling of excitement, which quickly turns to anxiety, when a special invitation leaves us freaking out about what to wear. It’s one of the oldest and most unavoidable situations, no matter how comfortable and confident you feel within yourself. Whether it’s a party, wedding, conference, or simply meeting someone new for the first time, we all want to make a good impression and visually represent who we think we are inside.

So, when I was recently invited to attend the Observer Ethical Awards, with the scary sounding dress code of “Sustainable style”, I experienced this vain but natural freak out. If I could even claim to have some form of style in the first place, I would feel a little less nervous. But unfortunately, my outfits usually consist of charity shop hauls and friends hand-me downs. Naturally due to my “make do and mend” approach not simply  that I’m a complete fashion-phobe!

However , determined to at least attempt some kind of eco sophistication, I did some digging to see if I could find my own unique sustainable style, without spending more money on one outfit than I would normally spend in a year at the Cats Protection charity shop!

The good news is, my search was easier and closer to home than I thought. It turns out Cornwall is already a bit of a hub for eco fashion, so I don’t have to roam too far to kit myself all green and shiny!

cornwallmap

Like many counties across the UK, Cornwall has always been extremely proud of its own home-grown produce; not least because down here we see ourselves as a county within itself! From clotted cream and pasties, to tin mining and the iconic surf culture; Cornwall naturally and seamlessly balances both its historic and modern identities. So it shouldn’t really be any surprise that 5 of the best ethical fashion brands happen to be Cornish… Continue reading Is Cornwall a new hub for ethical fashion?

Book Review: The Sustainable Design Book

Ok, I’m just going to go ahead and put it out there. I’m a bit of design geek. Well, specifically an architecture and furniture design geek (and yes, I do include my love of Ikea and Grand Designs in this description…); though I also  have respect for anything that is a little quirky, practical, and more importantly, sustainable. 

But don’t assume this geek love equates to intellectual prowess, no Sir! Not to be confused with someone who actually knows something of substance about a particular subject,  a geek is in fact characterized as someone who is (I quote the Oxford dictionary…) “extremely excited or enthusiastic about a subject, typically one of specialist or minority interest” and that’s me with design. I love it with a creepy, stalker-like passion, but am rarely invited to it’s parties. 

It is because of this interest, but lack of knowledge, that I jumped at the chance to take a look at a brand new book on this very subject: The Sustainable Design Book by Rebecca Proctor.

First impressions suggested that this was a dream book for arty, designer types with a profound knowledge of design. For those who would pretentiously ponder techniques, or simply leave around for friends and acquaintances to admire. A coffee table book if you will. But a curious thing happened. As I begun to flick through its beautifully laid out pages, I realised first impressions can be very deceptive indeed…

Continue reading Book Review: The Sustainable Design Book

Creating human warming for the love of communities

As Most of you know, in my day job I work at a very inspiring environmental charity –  the Eden Project – on a community campaign called The Big Lunch.  I’m very passionate about the project, which is all about connecting people and creating a sense of community spirit locally.

I try not to harp on about my job too much, but this weekend I’m working on a very exciting collaboration between The Big Lunch and the awesome Climate Coalition on their For The Love of campaign which I think you lazy green beans might be interested in. All weekend on Twitter we want to get people talking about what they love in their communities, and seek to protect from the effects of climate change. All you need to do is share a photo of what you love about where you live, with the hashtag #fortheloveof.

But what do street parties have to do with sustainability? 

The Big Lunch –the UK’s annual get-together for neighbors – encourages people to sit down together on the first Sunday every June to share food and conversation, as a means to promote community spirit. But it’s more than just a street party full of trifles, trestle tables and bunting. People are the key ingredient. Those taking part begin to create friendlier communities in which they share more; from conversation and ideas, to skills and resources.

BIG LUNCH, SPLOTT, CARDIFF, 01/06/2014The UK’s award winning environmental charity and tourist attraction, the Eden project, seeded the idea of The Big Lunch in 2009  with the hope of creating stronger, more sustainable communities. It’s about recognising that, whilst individual responses to environmental issues – such as household recycling and conscious purchasing – are important factors in tackling climate change, the power of collective action cannot be underestimated. When people come together to share ideas, resources and skills, they are in effect becoming more sustainable. The Big Lunch calls it human warming, and last year 4.83 million people got involved to enjoy a taste of it! Continue reading Creating human warming for the love of communities

Understanding: Fracking

I’ve been seeing an increase of stories in the news recently about ordinary people rising up, and standing up against plans for fracking in their local area. Using assertive, yet relatively peaceful, campaigning method; I’ve seen everyone from passionate, student activists to concerned, middle-aged housewives taking to the streets with placards, or writing forceful letters of objection to their MPs. This subject is a hot bed for debate in the UK right now, and everyone’s in on it.

But I must admit, until not long ago, I had largely been oblivious to what fracking actually was; simply relaxing into the view that it was something that was bad for the environment but too technical for me to understand. I’m guessing I’m not the only one to shy away from the more industrial side of sustainability, so I thought a “Fracking in a nutshell” post might be helpful! (plus I’m a massive Battlestar Gallactica fan so have been dying to over use the word Frack for years!)

Continue reading Understanding: Fracking

My New Year’s Green Resolutions

Hello my lovely lazy green people, I hope you all had lovely Christmas breaks and not feeling too full and lethargic! My break has been so relaxed that I completely switched off from my every day life. Now I’m slowly trying to get back into the swing of things and beginning to think about how I can get next year off to a positive start.

It’s been 8 months now since I decided to change some of my lazy, or procrastinating, habits into green actions. There have been many things I’ve found relatively easy to do – such as switching to organic food and buying less “stuff” – and some things I have gradually learnt to do over time; like going plastic free, and cutting out ingredients like palm oil.

But going green hasn’t always been easy for me, and I thought it might be useful to share some of the things I have yet to transform into more sustainable practices; if only to assure you that these things don’t always happen overnight! Continue reading My New Year’s Green Resolutions

Your Green Life: Gordon Seabright (Eden project)

This weeks interview has a more personal touch to it, as it happens to be the Director of my own wonderful place of work; the Eden Project! When I began working here, over 3 years ago, I had little knowledge of the world of sustainability, and even less awareness of just how much our life depends on the plants and animals we share this planet with. 

But over the years I have learnt so much, and this stunning place – in the heart of Cornwall – continues to inspire me. I know it’s had a effect on the way I see the world and how I live to respect it; so I was intrigued to how other employees feel about sustainability as a result. Well, who better to ask than a key figure behind one of the UKs most popular tourist attractions and  educational charities?!

Here, Director Gordon Seabright tells me all about his journey to eden, his personal motivations for greener living, and why cycling through London is just too fun to give up…. Continue reading Your Green Life: Gordon Seabright (Eden project)