Every Drop Is Vital

Water conservation

Water neutrality is a self explanatory, though misleading, concept. It basically refers to encouraging all water users to engage in normal day to day activity whilst using the least water as possible. This can be done by adopting water conservation measures that limit the use of water without compromising results attained by using water liberally. It is misleading in that water neutrality can never be achieved, not even theoretically. Unlike carbon emissions, water usage cannot be reduced to nil. Water neutrality can be achieved by developing and using technology that will minimize the use of water in human activity. It… read more

Recycle Your Leftover Paint

www.earth911.com

Paint projects often end before all of the paint in the can is used up. Improper storage, aging and waste contribute to excess leftover paints, which is where recycling operations come into play. Paint must be properly disposed of and it is unlawful to just throw it away due to its toxic compounds. It can be recycled, and paint is one of the main collected items at household hazardous waste facilities. As pointed out by Earth911, prior to 1978 paints were readily made with mercury, a neurological toxin. Oil-based paints produce volatile organic compounds (VOC’s) in the air, and are… read more

If You’re Stuck In An Office Read This

If You’re Stuck In An Office Read This

If you’ve been there – then you are with me on this one. Stuck behind a slab of concrete starkness or a carpeted cubicle, a drab working environment can completely drain you. If your surroundings are repeatedly uninspiring, chances are that over time you may feel a decrease in motivation and will be less productive. Architectural team Jose Selgas and Lucia Cano from Selgascano obviously thought of this with their open office space. Though the building may seem somewhat restricted in terms of size and shape, they have been able to create a sense of openness and availability to a beautiful… read more

The Aftermath Of Mining

Sasar Baia Mare Gold Mine Disaster

In 2000, a gold mine tailings dam in Baia Mare, Romania was breached. Soon thereafter, all the cyanide-rich waste it contained – some 100,000 cubic meters of it – flooded into the surrounding watershed. Aside from cutting off the water supply of 2.5 million people, it killed nearly all the aquatic life residing in the nearby water. This event is not unique as we continue destructive practices all over the world, meaning many mountains of once imposing grandeur have had their surroundings reduced to rubble, and their contents exploited. After grounds have been blasted and their contents extracted, mines tailings… read more

It’s A Career For Our Future

Environmental Communication

Having recently been asked what I do as an “environmental communicator”, I thought I’d pen a few words to help clarify the role for people who might be interested in this fascinating field. Basically, an environmental communicator puts excellent writing and speaking skills to use in the development and delivery of organisational or public-facing communication strategies. There is always a clear objective in our work, for example, we may be asked to develop a complex media campaign or simple communication tool that aims to garner community support to protect local waterways, lush rainforests or threatened ecosystems. We might be asked… read more

Bulk Importation of Booze Causes Concern

South African Wine Industry

South African wines are reknowned the world over. Wine makers particularly of the Western Cape region of South Africa export wines to numerous overseas territories. The way in which wine has been exported over the years is being challenged by the United Kingdom one of the biggest importers of South African wine, on environmental grounds. In past years, wines have primarily been exported by South Africa already bottled. The South African Fruit and Wine Industry Initiative reports that South Africa exports 412 million liters of wine every year, with 10% – 15% of that exported to the UK alone. In… read more

Plan Your Life and Then Live It

Plan Your Life

Someone once said that “life is what happens when you’re busy making plans”. In recent weeks, I’ve had the opportunity to think about this at a point in my own life when I need to make some pretty big decisions about where I work, where I live, what I put my energy into. Needless to say, as an environmentalist and aspiring sustainabilitarian, I’m doing some deep thinking about the implications of the choices I make. The trick, however, is to develop a strategy that responds to an appropriate level of planning and motivates the right action at the right time…. read more

Would You Buy Expired Food?

Would You Buy Expired Food?

It’s hard to believe how food waste, which is responsible for tons of tossed out money, can occur in even the most conscious of households. The Institute of Mechanical Engineers stated that as much as 30 to 50% of all food purchased is thrown out. Doug Rauch has made it one of his goals to help cut down some of this waste. Previously president of Trader Joe’s, a specialty retail grocer, he is opening a new kind of grocery store in Dorchester, Massachusetts. Called the Daily Table, the concept is to sale items that may be listed as past their expiration… read more

Step Forward Paper: A Step In The Right Direction

Step Forward Paper: A Step In The Right Direction

Prairie Paper Ventures, Inc. is a privately owned establishment initiated by environmental advocate and actor Woody Harrelson over 15 years ago. The paper company makes its product by using a sustainable mix of wheat straw and recycled fibers, which they call Step Forward Paper. 80% of the paper is made from the blend, and it does not use any portion of the food supply, nor does it use trees. It is also Forest Stewardship Council certified by the Rainforest Alliance. For now it is made in India at an ecomill that has shown to have the ability to sustainably produce… read more

How The Film Industry Will Save The Planet

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A couple of weeks ago, I attended The American Film Market in Santa Monica, California. I was there as a Co-Producer for a pre-production film slated to shoot in Montreal, Canada. It was my first year as an attendee, and the 8-day event completely changed my perspective of Hollywood, and gave me a few ideas. Approximately 99% of attendees I met while making my rounds were what I’ve started to call the “Minimum Wage of Hollywood”. From an outsiders point of view, these filmmakers are still making bank–roughly $50,000 – $500,000 per film. However, in a world where Robert Downey… read more