Five Sustainable Stories from around the world
A plastic-free July and ocean clean-ups and earth friendly picnics.
Our latest eco-friendly and reusable home-wares collection is inspired by the ocean, in particular the plight of our Great Barrier Reef and humanities huge impact in destroying and saving the precious underwater universe.
It is something we all to often shelve to the back of our minds. Unfortunately though, the shocking reality is that we are currently balancing on a knife-edge. Our planet is sick. And, if we carry on as we are, its unlikely the ocean will ever recover. Great blooms of CO2 (amongst other green house gasses) are released into the atmosphere every day. The result; an accelerated global climate change causing rising sea temps, acidification of the water and unprecedented changes to weather patterns. Combined, these threaten the very foundation of the ocean eco-system, (thus our food supply too).
Of course, a huge part of this is the burning of fossil fuels. Finding solutions in alternative energy sources are more important than ever. And it has to happen quickly. Studies on the reef have predicted that if the rate of climate change and warming continues as it is, the reef would last only another 100 years before all the coral dies off. (a side note - we recommend Tim Flannery, “Atmosphere of Hope” as an amazing introductory book on climate change).
We must start to look for our own ways to change energy consumption and put pressure on governments to keep up with their proposed initiatives. But also, there are little things we can do in our day-to-day lives. And there are policies making way that are helping to reduce our over consumption and protect and save the precious and delicate ocean environment.
In celebration of this we are starting a new blog series, each month we will endeavour to share 5 inspiring creative movements or initiatives that are making a difference. Together lets talk about this and find more ways to spark ‘wonder without waste’.
This month we are all about the plastics (more specifically, choosing to refuse). They are just one small piece of the sorry looking and complex climate change mess that we have created. But the oceans are being imperilled by plastic. In fact, it is estimated that ‘roughly 40% of the now more than 448 million tons of plastic produced every year is disposable, much of it used as plastic intended to be discarded within minutes after purchase.’ Estimates from the University of Georgia suggest around 5.3million to 14million tons end up in the ‘worlds last sinks’ – not recycled but in the precious oceans (National Geographic).
Yes, we know they seem pretty unavoidable in some cases (being a Mumma, Emilie tells me, ‘it’s really hard to go totally plastic free’) but we can say no to single use more easily than a really good (insert your favourite treat here) which could see less polluting the oceans and being washed up on the shores.
Part of plastics’ pesky nature is that over time and with exposure to the elements, it does break down into smaller particles. These ‘micro’ plastics cause horrific damage to the creatures of the sea that mistakenly take them as a good snack. Unable to digest, the micro plastics block digestive tracts of inspecting marine life. This alters feeding behaviour and even reproductive rates. Unfortunately, this is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to plastics’ harmful effects; not only are scientists in the early stages of understanding the extent of harm they cause by ingesting but simultaneously, many creatures are harmed and even killed by getting themselves caught in plastic objects. The news that Australia is banning single use plastic bags is a welcome step and will make a difference to the plastic waste problem. However, more pressure is needed to make sure that the ban is taken up in all states - and large companies don't wriggle out of it. So, it's still in our hands. Don’t forget your reusable bag next time you pop out to the shops! Better still, pick up some hessian sacks for your veggies too (or any other little reusable bags you can get your hands on so you don't have to buy food wrapped in plastic too, simples!)!
From your takeaway coffee cup to your picnic set; finding plastic alternatives has actually never been easier. This amazing social media movement is broadcasting and inspiring the switch from single use to re-cycle, all kick started by ‘choosing to refuse’ plastic for this month. Excitingly their vision for a plastic free world is gathering momentum, now a recognised NGO with over 46.1k followers on Instagram and a fab website with top tips to help you say no to single use. Find out more click here.
Did you know Norway recycles 97% of their plastic bottles?
How, I hear you ask?
Customers pay a small additional charge when they make a plastic bottle purchase. This deposit is refunded (or option given to donate) when the bottle is returned to the shop or deposited to a recycling machine. Shops are given subsidies by the government to help promote the scheme and for the amount of bottles they collect. It is funded by unclaimed deposits and by the drinks manufacturers themselves. It seems to be working and even inspiring other European countries to follow suit.
The Great Pacific Garbage Patch contains an estimated 1.8 trillion pieces of plastic. It kills thousands of marine life each year. It’s shocking that it is only been tackled now but thanks to a young Dutch inventor Boyon Slad and his team a giant clean up effort is underway involving his ‘clean-up contraption’ which collects up plastic debris on the shore and floating in the ocean whist avoiding fish and other marine life. As Slad has said ‘We as humanity created this problem so I think its our responsibility to help solve it’.
We’d love to inspire totally sustainable picnics. Local, fresh produce from farmers market, our eco-friendly, reusable cups and plates and a glorious spot in nature with your littlies sounds dreamy.
But what about transporting the food?
Well, inspiring duo, Fran and Carly, at Beeswax Wraps Co. have got it covered. Their amazing ‘Beeswax wrap ’ is made from 100% cotton, Pine Resin, Jojoba Oil and local Beeswax. There are a lovely range of patterns to choose from. Like our inside outside tableware the wraps are washable, reusable and compostable. Say bye to sweaty sandwiches and hello to eco-friendly, stylish picnics!
Yay! Here’s to making new plastic free family adventures!
**As a completely new brand we are committed becoming totally plastic free ourselves. We are working to find a more earth friendly solution to our packaging. Please to let us know if you have any suggestions.**