TAG: Sustainability

Quality Partner Program

QPP Farming

The Quality Partner Program, also known as QPP, is a unique cocoa sustainability program developed by Barry Callebaut, the world’s largest cocoa and chocolate manufacturer, and our subsidiary Societé Africaine de Cacao (SACO) in Ivory Coast. QPP supports cooperatives in their efforts to serve the needs of their cocoa farmer members. It enables and encourages farmers to grow and produce cocoa in a sustainable, responsible way. Farmer Field Schools are used to help train the modern cocoa farmer. Farmers learn how to increase the productivity of their farms and how to improve the quality of their cocoa. They learn about… read more

Sustainable Liquor

Rum distillery

The Serralles Rum Distillery in Ponce, Puerto Rico, which has been owned by the family for 147 years, produces DonQ, Palo Viejo, and Caliche rums. They knew their challenges of disposing of millions of gallons of wastewater. While its competitor in Puerto Rico, Bacardi, dumps in the sea, the Serralles distillery has long routed its by-product to nearby fields. This was fine, until the rainy season swept in. During that May-to-November stretch, the fields would often get saturated, causing the waste to run off. Run off can cause dead zones in the ocean. Fearful of rousing the EPA, the distillery… read more

A Collaborative Effort

shutterstock_116418430

We all live, work, play, learn and heal in buildings…and pray and dance and, well, you get the idea. We also govern in buildings, and NY State government has been working very hard since 2001 to green state operations. There are several executive orders from the Governor’s office requiring green purchasing, reduction of energy use, and sustainability planning. Laws are now hitting the books requiring state buildings to report on water use, air quality and energy efficiency measures and improvements. What is the key element of support for all of this work?  Training through GPRO!! The NY Upstate Chapter, as… read more

Overfishing with FishLove

Fishing boat

An organization in the UK that is attempting to make a bold statement against over fishing has taken to celebrities posing naked with dead fish. If they wanted everyone’s attention I think they received it that’s for sure! Should the point be not to kill fish rather than kill them to pose naked with them? According to FishLove’s website, Scientists predict that all marine life will effectively disappear from our oceans by the middle of this century if nothing is done about over-fishing. The people in these photographs want over-fishing to stop. Of course, with over fishing you also have… read more

Sustainable Schools

School children playing

Sustainability in schools encompasses six key areas: water conservation, waste reduction, energy efficiency, green spaces, environmentally friendly transportation, and sustainability education. The first step to making a school more sustainable is to establish a sustainability team that includes students, teachers, other staff and, ideally, parent volunteers. This team must evaluate the school’s environmental friendliness, determine which issues can be feasibly addressed, create both short- and long-term goals, and develop an action plan. It’s also beneficial to consult with other sustainable schools and organizations to learn about best practices and to celebrate successes in meeting sustainability targets. The following are specific… read more

Solar Powered Toys

Solar Powered Toys

There are many items that teach solar power along with promoting fun. Kids of all ages can learn about science, green energy and how solar power really works by seeing it firsthand. The following are a few ideas for play where solar power’s fun side definitely shows up. There are an ever increasing assortment of solar powered robots, remote control cars and even kits that allow you to build your own solar propelled designs. The OWI 6 In 1 Solar Kit from Edmund Scientifics is a miniature solar building set with interesting combinations. It can be turned into six different small-scale… read more

Gardens By The Bay

Photo by Darren Chin

In June, one of the first phases of Singapore’s dramatic Gardens by the Bay project opened to the public following the completion of the 133 acre Bay South Garden. Gardens by the Bay is one of the largest garden projects of its kind in the world.  Ultimately, the site will total 250 acres which comprise of three distinct gardens. Those are the Bay South, Bay East and Bay Central. Gardens by the Bay is located in Singapore’s new downtown at Marina Bay. Taking inspiration from the form of an orchid, Grant Associates’ planned an affluent fusion of nature, technology and environmental… read more

Tricks of the Trade – 4

Social change marketing

See Part 1 of this article See Part 2 of this article See Part 3 of this article There’s a lot of talk about changing people’s behaviour.Talk about recycling and waste management. Talk about local economies and food production. Talk about public transport and greening community spaces. Talk, talk talk. For some reason, a great many social change programs have relied on information as the principle weapon for mass distraction – distraction from the everyday activities that otherwise keep people glued to existing and typically unsustainable behaviours.  The problem, however, is that information alone is not a particularly effective weapon…. read more

Tricks of the Trade – 3

Social change marketing

See Part 1 of this article See Part 2 of this article  Some people describe themselves as “commitment-phobic”. Others rush headlong toward commitment as if their life depended on it. What’s curious in human behaviour is – irrespective of how we feel about commitment in personal relationships – when an individual (even better a group) commits to a small request it almost always invariably leads to the likelihood of them agreeing to something bigger and better. Get someone to sign a petition and you’ve got their love for life. That’s the theory anyway. As McKenzie-Mohr & Smith outline in their… read more

Tricks of the Trade – 2

Social change marketing

See Part 1 of this article “Don’t let us forget that the causes of human actions are usually immeasurably more complex than our subsequent explanations of them.” (Fyodor Dostoevsky) Ever wondered why people litter? Ever wondered why people buy pre-packaged microwave meals? Ever wondered why people buy oversized fuel-guzzling SUVs?  Chances are you’ve had a hunch or two as to why people do the weird things they do. When it comes to developing public programs for social change, however, gut feelings are not quite enough. This is not least because human beings are infinitely more complex than we often give… read more