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News and Views

Sharing ideas, creating discussion.

Ideas, opinions and stories that inform, inspire and create discussion around wasting less and living more. Become a guest blogger.

Colleagues at Farm Machinery Locator Online invite us to think about consumption

When we think about global warming many of us immediately think about cars and industry ruining the planet, but does this tell the whole story? While transportation, including travel by road, sea and air, contributes over 13% of our annual CO2 emissions there is another factor, which we may not initially consider, but which has a bigger impact.

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Colleagues at Brushtec invite us to think about waste in the agricultural industry

When we’re looking at the biggest areas of waste here in the UK, it’s hard to look past the vast amounts of food that goes to waste each year. According to Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP), over 10 million tonnes of perfectly edible food is thrown away every year. This inefficiency is not only bad for the environment, but also the economy. While a lot of the blame lies with the consumer, with 7 million tonnes of food ending up as household waste each year, the agricultural industry is also a major source of food waste.

In this post, we look at the inefficiencies within the agricultural sector to give you an idea of the issues the industry faces. We also give you some ideas about how you can make more conscious decisions when it comes to buying your fruit and veg.

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Cycling- we go at various paces, but it gets us to places with sweaty faces. We should be opting for the two wheels rather than driving our petrol-eating cars, so that we decrease our harmful emissions on the roads. We all know it’s good for the environment, but how’s it good for us? For commutes within the city, there are numerous benefits for us too.

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In collaboration with The Junk Food Project – Manchester they used intercepted food that would otherwise have gone to waste from supermarkets to create a wonderful array of tasty dishes for 80 people. It was a Pay-As-You-Feel concept with a very important message.

The extremely talented Mary Ellen Mc Tague (with fabulous credentials including working for five years with Heston Blumenthal) and her small team created delicious results. Fulshaw’s members were waitresses for the evening.

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We now live in a world of mixed messages, we are encouraged to recycle, to reduce the rubbish going to landfill but then we also live in an increasingly throwaway society.

Shops over-package things, as we are more interested in what an item looks like on the outside then the product inside. What do we then do to use the product? We throw away the packaging that made it look so outwardly pretty.

We use cotton wool and face wipes to clean our face, we mop up spills with kitchen roll, we clean our house with throwaway cleaning wipes. All this goes into our bin and onto a hole in the ground.

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Walking – through doors, alongside walls and around malls – we seem to only move our legs to reach destinations in and out of buildings. We also walk with our heads down at our smart phones, and whether we’re texting or just following directions, the battery-drain is always going to win. So what happened to strolling for pleasure? We justify our walks with purpose and aimless ganders have taken the boot in favour of stationary activities with our technology, which slot into our schedules with secure predictability. The fear of leaving the comfort of the indoors leads to numerous psychological risk assessments: will we be too tired, or get lost?  Will it rain?

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For the past month I have been interning with Keep Britain Tidy to assist with Waste less Live more week. I’ve really enjoyed being part of Waste less Live more, seeing the thousands that have signed up and all the great activities you’ve been doing, however today is sadly my last day in the office before I return back to university. To commemorate my time here I thought I would write a blog post on the 7 Waste less Live more challenges that I will be attempting to carry on into daily life.

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Building the future environment – is this a task for evolution or our immediate challenge to actively process?  We don’t have time to depend on societal willingness to shift at its geologically slow pace and we must dynamically construct the future that protects the planet for all future living beings. As a cultural organisation with a wide-reaching audience, we at Cape Farewell feel that there are steps we can make to influence change from the creative sector. We are at Julie’s Bicycle’s conference, ‘Fit for the Future’ at Lyric Hammersmith today, attending panel discussions on the topics of greening the infrastructures of cultural organisations in urban areas for a more sustainable creative future. It highlights the situation that “In both tangible and intangible ways, our built cultural estate outlines the creative industries’ relationship to the environment”.

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The coffee cup – our buy one-a-day, drink straightaway and throwaway partner in crime against the morning struggle into work – has entered into a strange and conflicting relationship with us. There’s no denial that we love and need coffee, we yearn for it as soon as we wake up. Yet we rush and gulp it and it’s unthinkable that we would want to hang onto them past 10am, chucking it out before it even dares to go cold. With the extortionate number of coffee cups that end up in landfill (5000 each minute, in fact), the planet certainly does not approve of these reoccurring affairs. So why can’t we slow down with our coffee, let something brew between us instead of rushing to the inevitable frosty and bitter aftertaste under a mountain of waste? There must be a way to make our relationship with coffee harmonious for our enjoyment as well as the planet’s wellbeing.

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