This month plays host to World Environment Day, so we got in touch with some of our favourite eco experts to ask them a few questions!
At Evolve we have become Climate Positive. By becoming Climate Positive, we are able to offset 110% of the emissions we have measured so far. This means that we are helping to remove more carbon than we are producing as a business.
We will be working with Earthly to help fund the BAM REDD+ Brazil Nut Concessions project in Peru, which focuses on rainforest conservation, and aims to reduce deforestation in over 300,000 hectares of Peruvian Amazon and reduce millions of tonnes of carbon dioxide entering the atmosphere due to illegal deforestation. So we knew straight away who to ask some eco expert questions - Olivia Crowe, Head of Research at Earthly.
There has been a call for us to set a global goal and become ‘nature positive’ by 2030. Achieving this would mean reversing nature loss over the next decade and setting it on the path to recovery.
A big change I hope to see is businesses reducing and internalising the negative impacts they have on nature - similar to how they are reducing and removing their carbon footprints to curb climate change. The main challenge is to find ways to measure biodiversity, the variety of plant and animal life, so that businesses can set targets to become nature positive.
As a starting point, large businesses could set up a biodiversity taskforce and collaborate with other organisations to better understand the impact they have on nature and calculate their biodiversity footprint.
Definitely the Pleistocene Park in Chersky, Siberia. I had the opportunity to meet the son of founder Sergey Zimov, an Arctic ecologist, during my Masters. The idea of the family-run project is to return the ecosystem to the way it was 10,000 years ago, when many large animals like mammoths used to roam the landscape. Large plant-eating mammals make nature more productive, which means it is easier for plants to grow, so the Zimov’s have been putting them back into the landscape.
One of the most exciting aspects of the project for me is the possibility that putting animals back in the landscape will slow down the melting of the permafrost - one of the largest reserves of carbon in the world. To find out more check out the website: https://pleistocenepark.org/
The easiest choice for me has been walking, biking or using public transport to get around where I live as opposed to using a car. If I’m going to the shops, I usually bring a backpack so I can carry my shopping home.
My favourite switch is making sure my savings (and pension) are in sustainable funds that contribute to society and help the environment - as opposed to fossil fuels.
You can find out more about Earthly and what they do here!
Another project that we are working with at Evolve is taking out twice the amount of plastic waste from the environment as we introduce to it. To do this we have a partnership with rePurpose Global, which also made us the first Plastic Negative beauty brand in the UK!
We will be helping to fund our rePurpose Global partner, CARPE India and impacting on a project that is focussing on multi-layer plastic packaging recovery in Aurangabad, India with the goal of removing as much multi-layer plastic packaging from the environment as possible. So, we also got in touch with our second experts - the team at rePurpose Global!
Here at rePurpose Global, we believe that restoration efforts start with system building which requires finance naturally.
Over the next decade, we hope to be able to scale up efforts in restoration by focusing our attention increasingly on being able to finance and establish self-sustaining systems. For example, the creation of multiple Material Recovery Facilities that can go forth and generate income from being able to sell the recovered waste that comes through means that the payoff from a project will be across years to come.
Sustainability as a sector, and we here at rePurpose Global, are trending towards scoping more circular systems like this.
A really cool restoration project we have seen has been Clearbot - a swarm of trash collecting robots that use AI-Vision to detect and collect trash from water bodies. These robots are fully autonomous, solar-powered and work as a team to remove trash. You can check out more about this interesting project here.
A great project we have been involved with has been with our Impact Project based out of Aurangabad, India which focuses on Solid Waste Management solutions. Before establishing any new project, they follow a process called BOTRAM in order to enable urban local bodies to provide effective SWM services by optimizing existing resources following the BOTRAM process.
As far as possible, always opt for a reusable bottle. But sometimes buying a bottle is just unavoidable. In that case, try to only purchase clear PET bottles because they are the most readily recyclable. You can also turn that occasional cheat bottle into an eco brick. An ecobrick is where you take any plastic bottle and fill it with non-recyclable, dry goods such as wrappers and plastic bags. Forming the habit of EcoBricking your waste is a giant step towards a zero-waste lifestyle. You can learn more about EcoBricking here.
Here are a few tips for sustainable switches:
- Instead of shampoos and conditioners packaged in plastic bottles, go to the bar instead! Many hair care companies sell shampoo and conditioner bars. Shampoo and conditioner bars typically use more eco-friendly products, fewer ingredients, and less harmful additives. Plus they cost less and still leave your hair looking fabulous. If you can’t part the bottle, there are companies that offer refillable shampoo, conditioner, and shower gel products in stainless steel bottles.
- Making coffee at home? Consider reusing your old coffee grounds! In the garden, you can use it as a pest repellent, fertilizer, or even compost it for later. At home, you could use it to absorb food odour in the fridge, as an abrasive to scrub away stuck-on food, make homemade candles, or even to exfoliate your body by making it a scrub.
- Instead of buying store-bought sodas in a plastic bottle, consider making your own! For example, you can make ginger beer at home with just three ingredients. You can make homemade ice tea, lemonade, and even hibiscus soda!
You can find out more about rePurpose Global and what they do here!