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Clean2Antarctica: A quest for change
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nlspeed
Grenadier


Joined: 26 Dec 2016

PostPosted: Fri Jun 29, 2018 2:40 pm    Post subject:  Clean2Antarctica: A quest for change Reply with quote

Hey people! I'll be going on a 'quest for change': https://www.clean2antarctica.nl/en/explore/challenging-companies-and-millenials

That is, a sailing trip with a tallship ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Morgenster_(ship) ) from the Netherlands to the Canary Islands, from the 24th of August to the 20th of September. The ship will sail on to Antarctica, where it will drop off a couple that made a vehicle completely out of plastic and other reusable / sustainable things (e.g. solar panels for energy); the Solar Voyager ( https://www.clean2antarctica.nl/en/explore/building-solar-voyager ). This couple will drive the Solar Voyager to the geographical South Pole, where it will conduct some research.

Why? Because one day this entirely ordinary couple - could be you! - turned over their trash bin, saw a lot of 'useless' plastic, and wanted to change this. So they took their plastic, and despite everyone saying how impossible it is, they now have this whole journey planned out. The sailing voyage consists of six parts (e.g. from the Netherlands to the Canary Islands) and on each part 20 students from all over the world (amongst which myself) will work on sustainability projects for certain companies.

But it's not only about multi-national corporate chemical industries or such - it's also about you. They hope to inspire people to look at their own actions; you can shower a minute shorter, or a degree colder, or eat less meat, or not throw plastic away into nature... They are engaging with parties ranging from huge multi-nationals to little children in Africa. Imagine yourself entering a company like Royal Dutch Shell - what could you possibly achieve there? But they have done things like that, with success! And I, and other students, are doing so too, with success!

In order to fully utilise their reach, to truly inspire each and everyone to work towards a sustainable world, they need more than just the two of them and all the amazing things they have achieved so far. I truly think they and their can-do mentality is one of the best ways to get these huge companies to change and to inspire the whole planet. I mean, you can see the results already - they are in National Geography, they are weekly on (Dutch) television, they have these huge companies that have committed themselves to change, it's quite amazing. Therefore, I would like you to ask to donate here, if you wish: https://www.sublimedoing.nl/projects/21/payments/select_reward (obviously, if this is against a rule, I can remove it - I just think it is a very important thing for the world, as everyone can change a tiny thing to better the world, and aside from that, it is an interesting and inspiring idea, which is why I thought I'd make this post)

Working towards a sustainable future does not mean 'decreasing living standards' or 'having a less convenient life' or anything like that. It is not a negative. What if seven billion people made one tiny tiny change? That adds up! So finally, above all, take a look at your own lifestyle - what tiny tiny change can you make to improve the world?

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G-E
General


Joined: 09 Feb 2015

PostPosted: Fri Jun 29, 2018 10:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Unfortunately it's not the convenient lifestype that's the issue, it's the consumerist lifestyle where things are made to go bad or break and have to be replaced by new things. There's no reason for a scissor handle to break after a year, no reason for a toaster spring to stop working after 1200 toasts, but we tolerate it, and we are mollified with newer designs with even shinier surfaces everytime we have to get a new one.

Likewise all those recent reports and movies about the 3 trash islands floating in our oceans are encouraging people not to use plastic, without actually considering where the plastic in the oceans actually came from. If you throw a used 2L soda bottle into a landfill in Michigan, it doesn't end up in the ocean. If you have a tsunami that wrecks a dozen coastal cities, almost everything they have will end up in the ocean. Truthfully most of the plastic pollution comes from natural disasters and shitholes where people dump their garbage into rivers like Haiti, Bangladesh etc, and not from the places the anti-plastic environmentalists want people to change.

Environmentalism as an ideology is so screwed up and detached from reality now, I've even come to the conclusion that Greenpeace is nothing more than the eco equivalent of a feminist outrage cult railing against modernity.

But.... have fun! Smile
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FurryQueen
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Joined: 24 Jul 2010

PostPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2018 8:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I hate to admit when I have to at least partially agree with g-e, but this time I do. Unfortunately, this was the wrong place to do it and only makes him look like a dick. Well, can't ask for everything.
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nlspeed
Grenadier


Joined: 26 Dec 2016

PostPosted: Sun Jul 01, 2018 5:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mhm? No, I don't think G-E looks like a dick? He is giving his own input, which I appreciate!

I agree with the part about consumerism. Similarly, there is no need to get a new phone every year, and ever so on.

I do not agree with your next point, insofar that you make that point to discredit this initiative? That seems like the golden mean fallacy to me.
I wouldn't know about tsunamis, and I haven't searched to see whether natural disasters are indeed the largest source of plastic pollution, but I will take your word for it. However, it is rather impossible to stop such natural disasters, not?
You can go to Haiti or Bangladesh and educate people there, of course (though, how feasible is it for the individuals to change, given the products they can buy and the money they have?). But you can do many things, and doing one does not exclude the other (indeed, the car that will be on Antarctica is made out of plastic gathered by children in Africa, which is vaguely similar to what you say).
Finally, it is not really anti-plastic. I mean, the whole thing started from 'why do we have so much plastic - and why do we think this is worthless? It's not worthless, let's make a car out of it!'.

And I agree with you there - and even the WWF agrees with you - Greenpeace's radical anti-corporation attitude is doing way more harm than help, because you've got to work with them. And, well, there are so many scandals you can think of, like them damaging the Nazca Lines...

So thank you for your input! It's interesting! Smile

And it'll definitely be the experience of a lifetime! I actually saw the tallship yesterday, as I was in Scheveningen with some friends to see the in-port race of the Volvo Ocean Race (and to swim, of course)!

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Crimsonum
Seth


Joined: 14 Jul 2005
Location: Fineland

PostPosted: Sun Jul 01, 2018 6:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

G-E wrote:
Unfortunately it's not the convenient lifestype that's the issue, it's the consumerist lifestyle where things are made to go bad or break and have to be replaced by new things. There's no reason for a scissor handle to break after a year, no reason for a toaster spring to stop working after 1200 toasts, but we tolerate it, and we are mollified with newer designs with even shinier surfaces everytime we have to get a new one.


While planned obsolescence is indeed a major issue, I would still argue that our desire for convenience is part of the problem. After all, consumerism abuses just that, the natural principle of least effort. In most cases, maintaining and repairing goods takes requires more effort from the user than getting a new one, so we choose the latter, even if it costs us more. It applies to everyday behaviour. People tend to use escalators and elevators instead of stairs, despite stairs often being the faster option, ironically enough.

G-E wrote:
Likewise all those recent reports and movies about the 3 trash islands floating in our oceans are encouraging people not to use plastic, without actually considering where the plastic in the oceans actually came from. If you throw a used 2L soda bottle into a landfill in Michigan, it doesn't end up in the ocean. If you have a tsunami that wrecks a dozen coastal cities, almost everything they have will end up in the ocean. Truthfully most of the plastic pollution comes from natural disasters and shitholes where people dump their garbage into rivers like Haiti, Bangladesh etc, and not from the places the anti-plastic environmentalists want people to change.


I don't think the message they're trying to give is that we are responsible for those plastic gyres, but rather that we see the dangers of loose plastic. Everywhere around the world plastic is accumulating in the ecosystem, not just in the major oceans. Our soils, lakes and even atmosphere have more and more microplastic particles in them. They're already found in humans, too, but we are only beginning to discover their effects. Honestly, it's scary.

G-E wrote:
Environmentalism as an ideology is so screwed up and detached from reality now


In some cases, that is sadly true, but the same can be said of any movement. Environmentalism is needed now more than ever. Our institutions are filled with data and knowledge, but far too little of it is ever applied in economics or legislation, as businesses and governments are obsessed with short-term gains.
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4StarGeneral
General


Joined: 14 Sep 2006
Location: Constant Flux

PostPosted: Sun Jul 01, 2018 7:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sadly, not to be pessimistic, but big companies can't be swayed from doing what they're currently doing without it benefiting them immensely and there's too many companies that would, for obvious reasons, be totally against this. We've had plenty of people tell us about the pollution problem and global warming, but no one is going to do anything about it because we're also told that checks are being put in place for big companies and that it'll be fine now. Humanity has become too stupid as a whole to stop our own destruction, our only real hope is to get sustainability in space and other planets. We've already ruined our home planet and the damage is far too great to repair for the small percent of people that CAN do something about it.
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Crimsonum
Seth


Joined: 14 Jul 2005
Location: Fineland

PostPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2018 7:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

With our current technology and knowledge, setting up life in space or other planets is utopia. We are far too dependent on terrestrial conditions and ecosystems to viably detach ourselves from them. Even if we could live outside the Earth, what prevents us from simply repeating our errors? If we don't change our political and economic system, those problems will only follow us into space.

Despite the current bleak outlook, fixing up the Earth still seems like a far more practical solution. Either that or we're going to down with the rest of it. Guess that would only be fair Razz
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