Everyday is Earth day!

23 04 2013

I saw a lot of people commenting about Earth Day on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and personal blogs. It’s good, but does everyone incorporate sustainability in their daily lives? I really hope that people get more conscious about sustainability and use it in their day to day life. I know it’s hard, but we can do it slowly, step by step…

Reducing the time in the shower, closing the tap when brushing your teeth, recycling as much as you can, driving less and walking more… all these small things are easy to do. I can do it, you can do it! So let’s make Earth day EVERYDAY!

 

Everyday is Earth day!

Everyday is Earth day!

 





From plot to plate, from terrace to table

24 03 2013

On Thursday 14th March 2013 I went with one of my best friends to a conference held at the State Library of Victoria in Melbourne. The event was called “From plot to plate, from terrace to table”.

Indira Naidoo

The Edible Balcony

An amazing discussion with some great and well-known food writers! The TV presenter, journalist and food writer Indira Naidoo moderated the talk with Stephanie Alexander, Rohan Anderson and Max Allen.

Indira Naidoo’s book “The Edible Balcony” gives valuable advice on how to grow herbs, vegetables and fruits on your balcony. She claims that you don’t need to have a big garden to have your own fresh organic produce.

Stephanie Alexander

Kitchen Garden Cooking with Kids

Stephanie Alexander is known for the remarkable work that she undertakes with kids at the “Kitchen Garden Foundation”. She explained how rewarding it is to teach kids where vegies and fruits come from, to teach them how to plant and grow delicious tomatoes. She said that some parents say: “My son doesn’t eat vegetables”. But then when they actually grow their own vegetable and taste it they appreciate it and completely change their food habits. I think that it must be very exciting for a child to say: “Mum I grew this zucchini”! I remember myself when I was kid and we had to grow a bean by putting it in wet cotton. I remember that I was really excited when I first saw the little green plant growing from these beans!

Rohan Aderson Whole Larder Love

Whole Larder Love

Rohan Anderson is the author of the book “The Whole Larder Love”. He is a controversial food writer who lives in Ballarat and basically eats what he has in his garden. And when he wants some meat, he takes his gun and shoots a rabbit in the bush. He shared with us his experience and explained that before he used to eat a lot of fast food, and what made him change his food habits so drastically. His book looks amazing! It gives great recipes and tips on fresh organic country produce and skills for the simpler life.

Max Allen The history of Australian Wine

The History of Australian Wine

Max Allen writes about wine in Australia. He is the wine columnist for “The Weekend Australian Magazine” and G (Australia’s first ‘green lifestyle’ magazine) but also wine editor for Australian Gourmet Traveller magazine. During the talk he criticized the alcohol lobbying and compared it to the cigarette lobbying few years ago. I have heard that some people are trying to introduce unbranded packaging with pictures of car crashes on alcohol bottles the same way as we now have pictures of people dying from cancer on the cigarettes packs.

Personally I think that this is quite hypocritical, people get used to seeing those pictures and are not buying less cigarettes because of it. I think that people in Australia are buying fewer cigarettes because it’s very expensive and also some people are becoming more conscious of the bad effects of it. However I know a lot of people who are still smoking for pleasure and just got used to those horrible pictures on the packaging.

To summarise, the discussion was really interesting, lively and all the speakers were remarkably inspiring! I absolutely enjoyed being part of the audience. And at the end I got to talk to some of them and congratulate them on their wonderful work.

If you want to know more about the speakers here are the links to their blogs:

http://saucyonion.blogspot.com.au/

http://www.stephaniealexander.com.au/

http://wholelarderlove.com/

http://www.maxallen.com.au/index.html





Watch the play, eat the stage!

23 03 2013

The other day I went with a friend to ‘Earthly Activation’, an informal talk about sustainability presented by Melbourne’s architectural and design community. The event was held at the Section 8 pub in Melbourne.

Earthly Activation

A nice hot day, where some fantastic speakers gave great insight on relevant topics such as the current food system, ethical food, organic food certifications and sustainability in all its forms! It was a really good discussion and I learned a few things about traditional and organic food systems in Australia. But what I really loved was Tanja Beer’s presentation about “The Living Stage”.

This presentation was really surprising! I’ve never heard about this concept of “Green Theatre” or “Living Stage”. The “Green Theatre” offers sustainable solutions for theatrical design to support the ethic of ‘ecological design’ in the Performing Arts. The main idea is to demonstrate to the community that we can create exciting artistic projects and ideas with minimal effect on the environment.

The Living Stage

The Living Stage

Tanja shared her experience with the audience and explained how she started integrating sustainability into her work. She presented the concept of “Living Stage” which is an eco-scenographic concept that combines stage design, permaculture and community engagement to create a recyclable, biodegradable and edible performance space. She uses plants, vegetables, fruits, salads or even soil.

Imagine a stage that you can literally eat after the play! How crazy is that?! I have never seen this before and I really love the idea of being able to eat the stage! Such a cool idea!

Instead of using traditional construction materials to build the stage, they use recycled materials, plants and a veggie garden that is cultivated by the community. She said that the actors also play with the elements on the stage interacting with the audience. Those plays are for sure an exceptional experience for the public.

She brought some salads from one of her “Living Stages” for us to try and of course I didn’t miss the opportunity to scoff the salad! The taste was so good and healthy! I have just one thing to say! Great job Tanja! It’s a beautiful and creative way to integrate sustainability with design and performing arts. Well done!

photo

If you want to know more about Tanja’s creations and her extraordinary work, visit http://tanjabeer.com/

http://www.theage.com.au/entertainment/-2gb5z.html





PROJECT DROP OF WATER +10

5 11 2012

This video must me seen, shared and please help signing the petition.

This video was created as part of the Gota D’água (Drop of Water) Movement leaded by Brazilian celebrities. The campaign aims to stimulate the discussion on the energy development plan of Brazil. It also calls civil society to stand up against the Belo Monte dam, signing into a petition that the Movement did addressed to President Dilma asking for halting the dam’s construction.
Let’s be a drop of water in this wave of goodness in name of true sustainable development, and protection of human rights, indigenous rights and the forest!





5 simple Tips to make your daily life more eco-friendly

16 09 2012

Since I launched this blog, many people from around the world ask me what they can do in their everyday life to help to reduce their impact on the environment. So I decided to post a short list of 5 simple tips that we can do to be more eco-friendly. These are just some simple things that we can do in our daily lives that don’t require  much effort, but there are thousands of other things we can do to help the environment. You probably  know all that, but it’s always good to have a reminder…

1. When brushing your teeth don’t let the water run unnecessarily. Try to do the same when you’re in the shower turn off the tap when soaping up or shampooing your hair. There is a massive amount of energy required to process and pump tap water. You’ll also be reducing your water bill!

2. Get your bike and ride to go to work. Take the opportunity to exercise and stay fit! If you have to drive, what about carpooling? Besides saving fuel, it can also be more social and less boring than driving alone. Public transport can be also an affordable alternative. You can save money on fuel and car parking.

3. Avoid using plastic bags when you go shopping. Take your bag with you. Eco bag

You can also use green bags with designs that are very trendy and fashionable.

4. When disposing of furniture, clothes, shoes why not donate to charity or recycling? Check out for donation spots near your house and make someone happy.

5. Reduce, reuse, recycle all you can, PET bottles, glass, cans, paper, cardboard, batteries, aluminium, coffee capsules, used oil … all these objects can be transformed and reused. Use your creativity!

These simple gestures are easy to integrate into our daily lives and will surely make a big difference to the environment.





Looking for environmentally friendly clothing? Check this out!

4 09 2012

Greenlight Apparel is a Canadian brand that supplies running and fitness apparel. They supply clothes that you can use for running, walking, yoga and other physical activities. I came across them in an article in the magazine “Runners World”.

Greenlight Apparel has created a business model that aims to do business in an environmentally friendly and ethical way. The famous quote: “Give a person a fish and they will eat for a day, teach them how to fish and they will eat for a lifetime.”  This is how they sum up their business model. They have committed to donating 25% of their profits to organisations like the Women’s Microfinance initiative, which provides individuals around the world access to financial services and education.

Well done Greenlight Apparel!





New environmentally friendly packaging made from bamboo and mushrooms

3 08 2012

Dell is among companies that are investing in environmentally friendly solutions. The Dell sustainability team has come up with an innovation for packaging material. It is a compostable material made from bamboo and mushroom. The team has worked in collaboration with Chinese suppliers and recyclers.

It was important for the Dell not using bamboo forests that are natural habitats for pandas in China. For this reason the firm worked in collaboration with FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) to make sure that the bamboo forests from which they were sourcing the raw material were not panda habitats. FSC is a global, non-profit organisation dedicated to the promotion of responsible forest management worldwide.

John Pflueger, the Principal Environmental Strategist from Dell was interviewed by Nina Kruschwitz, editor and special projects manager for the magazine “MIT Sloan Management Review”. In the interview, John talks about their sustainable packaging materials.

Image courtesy of Dell, Inc.

He explains how sustainability is structured at Dell, but also how the company has changed in their strategy and how Dell is transforming sustainability into new business opportunities.

I am always happy to see those good examples. In my view, we don’t need to become totally hippies to embrace the living green idea. We can integrate it in our everyday life and companies can perfectly integrate it in their business strategy and still making profit.

The full interview is available on the MIT Sloan Management Review website.








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