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Greenpeace

  • Planet or Plastic? Reduce your Reliance.

    This amazing picture that was featured on the cover of National Geographic is as poignant as it is effective. Not only did it speak volumes, but the fact that the  actual magazine was plastic wrapped is indicative of the conundrum we find ourselves in - we want to make a change, but do we?

    Dedicate this year to breaking free from Plastic

    Plastic has become so much a part of our lives that it almost seems impossible to break free completely. Sometimes it feels like plastic has been forced upon us by the consumer industry and that living plastic free is next to impossible. We at Sustainable.co.za feel that everybody
    should be able to at least make a start in reducing their reliance on plastic products.

    Shopping no longer needs to be a plastic affair

    15 years ago, thin plastic shopping bags came standard with grocery shopping at leading supermarkets. In 2003, a new law came into effect, namely that plastic bags be made thicker so that they could be easily recycled or reused. The problem with this was that this did not do much to deter consumers from treating them much the same as their thinner counterparts. Leaving rubbish dumps full of thick plastic bags.

    It is time to start making a concerted effort to using reusable bags. Not only does this save you approximately 50c a packet but perhaps leading retailers will stop offering plastic shopping packets as an option if the cost of stocking them outweighs what people (and the earth) will pay for them. We have a few great solutions to your grocery shopping requirements. The Hemp Circle Shopper is a truly environmentally friendly shopper bag made from sustainable, unbleached hemp fabric and can fit quite a lot of groceries in it. We also have the fantastic reusable Freshbag for your fruit and vegetable shopping. You will never have to resort to the small thin plastic packets used for fruit/ vegetable storage.

    Plastic Straws Suck!

    One of the biggest campaigns at the moment is the anti-straw campaign. Straws pose a huge threat to the environment and the animal life around us. These single-use plastic death traps are not necessary but are freely available at a number of retail outlets. We challenge you to give up on straws completely by using a glass for your drinks or if you love having the luxury of a straw, either invest in paper straws or reusable steel straws. Again, this comes down to supply and demand and the consumer sets the tone.

    Take home more for less

    Takeaway packaging is another culprit of single-use application with terrible results. In this day and age, fast food is a luxury that most people can afford. The health implications is a discussion for another blog as this blog is focused on the dire consequences of Styrofoam packaging and plastic packaging. Polystyrene is one of the most common forms of plastic used today. Although it can be recycled, the costs are high and due to the chemicals contained in it. It cannot be used for food packaging due to the health risks.

    We have noticed a significant upsurge in restaurants turning to compostable takeaway packaging. A wide range of this alternative packaging is now available and food distributors no longer have an excuse. Would you be willing to pay a small fee towards biodegradable takeaway packaging? We know we would.

    Remember that biodegradeable goods need to be composted and not thrown into a rubbish dump. We have a wide range of recycling bins and composters available so that very
    little waste has to go to the dump.

    At the end of the day, plastic reduction is about playing our part as a member of the larger eco-system of our planet, ensuring that we are not the reason for its deterioration. We are Earth-Keepers and have been sitting idle for too long in our role as perpetrators in the degradation of the earth and its animals. It is time to make a concerted effort to make a change, before it is no longer an option.

  • Joining hands with Greenpeace

    Sustainable.co.za is proud to be collaborating with Greenpeace Africa to bring you news, call to actions and events on the good work Greenpeace is doing to effecting Climate and Energy change on our Planet. We will be featuring articles from members of the Greenpeace staff, how you can help with raising awareness and exclusive promotions on renewable energy products and information. Please continue reading below on the action Greenpeace is taking and how you can help.

    Let’s not beat about the bush. All environmental threats are serious, but climate change might just be the biggest threat mankind has ever faced, particularly in Africa. Africans aren’t responsible for climate change; the industrial nations are the worst offenders. But it is Africans who will pay the steepest price.

    The energy sector is the worst offender, creating almost 66 percent of all greenhouse gases. Yet in South Africa, where the government is faced with a major energy supply problem, their answer seems to be the building of more coal-fired energy stations, a 'solution' which only serves to worsen the problem.

    Greenpeace is locked in a desperate struggle to change people’s minds, especially the minds of the country’s leaders. We need to change the view that nuclear power is a cheap and effective solution to our energy problems -- it's not. We want to start a revolution in the thinking around energy, promoting the use of renewable energy sources, and saving the continent and creating jobs in the process.


    How to donate

    By becoming a member you'll join Greenpeace in our work to protect our precious planet and find the solutions we need to our most important environmental issues. You'll enable us to investigate, campaign, and lobby for a sustainable balance between humans and the environment. With your help we'll expose environmental abuses, raising awareness to protect our oceans, forests, and our climate – the very life support systems of our planet.

    Ready to support us?

    We have two options for you! We are working with the Given Gain platform for secure donations. Just click here and follow the steps. Or, if you live in South Africa, you can use our secure form to make your online donation directly.

    Want to talk more? Leave your details here and we'll call you back

    It's the support of caring people like you that gives us the courage and the resources to take on the goliaths in our society -- those who would otherwise recklessly plunder our oceans, tear down forests, and pollute our precious rivers. Greenpeace relies on donations from generous individuals to carry out our work. In order to remain independent, we do not accept funding from governments, corporations or political parties. We can't do it without your help. Please support us today.

    Click here to read more about Greenpeace 'Walking the Talk' and turning their new offices in Randburg carbon neutral.

  • Walking the Talk - Renewables

    If we are going to create change and convince the people to move away from fossil fuels, we need to act locally. As a energy campaigner with Greenpeace, I have to make sure that We Walk the Talk.

    Right from my post graduation days, I have been a strong advocate of using and implementing Renewable Energy. In Greenpeace, we lobby with governments locally and globally to shift towards a 100 % renewable energy for the benefit of the planet and all of us.

    We recently moved our offices to Randburg and as part of the move we wanted to go carbon neutral on our energy consumption. Being the energy expert, I took lead on the project and one of very first step is monitoring your energy needs and consumption pattern. As an office space, most of our daytime energy needs come from workplace lighting, having close to 480 tube lights that is a lot of “$$$”. So the first investment we made was to retro fit all our existing light’s to LED’s. This saved close to 50% of our energy due to lighting. Not just the energy , we also had a good 40% jump in our light output (lux levels)

    These LED lights come with a 5 year warranty, as you can see from the images light intensity has gone up. From my perspective, the LED retrofit is definitely a rewarding investment which will give you returns right from day one both in terms of energy savings = $ saved and increased light output = happy employees. Who ever is looking to reduce your electricity bill I would recommend to start off LED retrofits both for  commercial and household purposes. So the first step, is now complete. To know more about what I did for “walking the talk” keeping watching this space.

    By Anand Prabu Pathanjali
    Climate and energy Campaigner
    Greenpeace Africa

     

     

     

     

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