Tag Archives: Environmental Justice

What Your Clothes Say About You

Picture yourself.

Fashionably sporty and ready to join some friends for a picnic. Thrilled you have a new shirt that shows your sense of style and good taste. What else does it say about you?

This particular stone-washed shirt shows a surfer at sunset. You like the ocean. You like to surf. You’re romantic. You wear it proudly. The brand is prominently displayed. PATAGONIA!

Jay Coen Gilbert BLAZON LAURELSYou chose this brand intentionally because you commend their values. You like what they stand for. You want to support businesses doing well AND doing good. You loved their newsworthy and revolutionary campaign, “Don’t Buy This Jacket.” Their owner, Yvon Chouinard, wrote a book called “Let My People Go Surfing” and trusted his employees to manage their own schedules. You admire his commitment to being a good boss. He started 1% for the Planet where Patagonia, and other companies, pledge to give 1% of their total income to help NGO’s working toward environmental and conservation solutions.  You are proud to wear Patagonia because you TRUST the brand, their business ethics and their values. Wearing this brand makes you a good citizen for all the world to admire.

Patagonia

Patagonia is one example of an honorable and sustainable business. They clearly care about people, planet and profits. Their company’s mission statement is “Build the best product, do no unnecessary harm, use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis.” Read more about their philosophy on Becoming A Responsible Company.

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Another company is H&M who are leading the pack in fair living wages for garment workers. They also care about animal welfare by a public commitment stating “We care about animal welfare and endangered species. We’ve banned the use of real fur in our products for years, and don’t test any of our own brand cosmetics on animals.” For a full list of their corporate social responsibility commitments, check out these Conscious Actions.

TOMS

TOMS is one of the first to launch a buy one, give one model. One for you and one for a child in need. Blake Mycoskie wrote an inspirational book, “Start Something That Matters,” that outlined his transformation into retail as a social entrepreneur. He wanted to do something to help children worldwide after he saw the poor conditions in which they lived. He thought, I could open a non-profit and get donations. Then, he thought some more and found a way to help 3rd world economies, their children in need and create a viable business model. “I’ve learned that the keys to poverty alleviation are education and jobs. And we now have the resources to put investment behind this,” says Blake Mycoskie. (Source: TOMS Sets Out To Sell A Lifestyle, Not Just Shoes in Fast Company)

Vote with your Dollar$

~ Every time you purchase from Patagonia, you are helping our planet.

~ Every time you shop at H&M, you are ensuring fair wages for people employed worldwide.

~ Every pair of shoes you buy at TOMS will also supply a pair of shoes to a child in need.

What other companies do you support that are “doing good and doing well?”

Consider, not buying at all

Or only buy what you need. Not making a purchase is also a statement about your values and how you choose to live your life. If you do decide to buy something new, why not buy clothing you are proud to wear AND support a company you trust?

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10 Global Trends for a Better World [PART 1]

PART 1: Green Cities, States and Countries

We have such busy lives, we’ve forgotten how refreshing nature can be and how some fresh air can replenish our souls. The hustle and bustle of crowded walkways and roadways can clutter our minds. The stress of deadlines hinders our self-preservation and obstructs our healthy habits. We tend to drive instead of walk or bike. We skip lunch or worse, vacations, because the office cannot do without us. We don’t exercise because of the time commitment away from our many responsibilities. Sometimes, it’s a choice between convenience or exasperation. Other times, our location doesn’t offer amenable resources or inspiration. We are blinded by a concrete jungle and lose sight of what’s important.
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We need a safe and healthy environment at home, at work, and in leisure. The importance of integrating nature, conservation and recreation into our cities cannot be emphasized enough. After all, the cities are our hub. The integration of career, recreation and nature leads to more productivity at work and generally more satisfaction in life, not less. It’s a relief that many future-forward cities agree!

Cities around the world have been making the move toward more sustainable living and working spaces, both indoors and outdoors. States are striving to be the greenest. Some countries are leading the way with innovative policies and legislation. The trends show more focus on energy efficiency, increasing green spaces, offering more activity opportunities, zero carbon goals and greenhouse gas emission reduction goals, LEED certified buildings, eco rooftops, public transportation overhauls, waste reduction programs, water purification and conservation, and tree planting projects. Below highlights a few of these trends with corresponding locations.

Biophilic Cities

United States:

San Francisco, California; Portland, Oregon; Phoenix, Arizona; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; New York, New York; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Worldwide:

Birmingham, England; Wellington, England; Oslo, Norway; Singapore; Brisbane, Australia; Perth, Australia; Vitoria-Gasteiz, Spain; Seoul, Korea

Businessman relaxing in a park

"We need nature in our lives more than ever today, and as more of us are living in cities it must be urban nature. Biophilic Cities are cities that contain abundant nature; they are cities that care about, seek to protect, restore and grow this nature, and that strive to foster deep connections and daily contact with the natural world. Nature is not something optional, but absolutely essential to living a happy, healthy and meaningful life."

— Biophilic Cities Project

For more information on Biophilic Cities, click here.

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Tribute Circle | NGO | 1to1 Movement

 1to1 Movement is making an impact

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Let’s count the ways:

1) COLLABORATIVE CONFERENCE

A Place At The Table Conference in San Diego is uniting “a business leader, a policy maker, an educator, a non-profit professional, and a youth activist” at each table to discuss how to change the world for the better. GENIUS! You can participate for only $11 for two days of collaboration, inspiration and action. Register NOW!

2) CHILD EDUCATION

"Our goal is to start the conversation and inspire students to innovate ways they can participate in preserving the environment."

— 1to1 Movement website

There are programs offered for students in Kindergarten through 12th grades:

  • Intro to Sustainability
  • The Away Project
  • Powerful Program
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Tribute Circle | PEOPLE | Jane Goodall

Happy Birthday Jane Goodall!

"Every individual matters. Every individual has a role to play. Every individual makes a difference."

— Jane Goodall

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This photo and her 80th birthday brought me joy today. Photo credit: Rainforest Action Network

A historical view of  Jane Goodall’s life work

"Chimpanzees … have been living for hundreds of thousands of years in their forest…never overpopulating, never destroying the forest. I would say that they have been in a way more successful than us as far as being in harmony with the environment."

— Jane Goodall

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Landfillharmonic: Mindboggling Beauty

Beauty is in the eye (or ear) of the beholder.

"We filmed some of the children who learned to play violin, flute, drums, cello, string bass, and more – all made from recycled metal drums, tin cans, and plastic pipes."

— Creative Vision Foundation about their documentary Landfillharmonic

Please enjoy this short video.

The compelling story of transformation

In Paraguay and other third-world countries, children are born and live their entire lives in a dump. Surrounded by other people’s trash. Most of this trash is even sent to these landfills from more prosperous countries. Imagine, wealthy countries cannot even dispose of their own trash, they must send it away, out of their site and smell.

The families, living on this landfill, then sort through this trash daily to sell anything of value. They eat, sleep, play, learn and live entirely in the dump. This is an unsafe and unsanitary environment and, as you can imagine, emanates a horrible odor. Certainly, a story that needed to be told about injustice and exploitation of the poor. How could we stand by and watch people live under these conditions?

Then, the story gets better. Cola, a garbage picker, and Favio Chavez, musician, helped to transform this trash into hope and beauty for these impoverished children. They made instruments and learned how to play.  Now, known as the “The Recycled Orchestra of Cateura.” Perhaps, they won’t have to live their entire life in the landfill. Perhaps, there is hope. Perhaps, this will bring humanity closer to these impoverished families and portray them as skillful, talented and viable world citizens.

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