“We want to push people out of their comfort zone as these are extraordinary times.”
We caught up with our friends at Greenpeace, and had a chat with them about their current campaigns, and their thoughts on the future of their organisation.
How would you say that Greenpeace has changed over the years? Has its overarching focus changed at all? Is it more climate change focused in the past few years?
Greenpeace’s core values have always stayed the same, we always challenge the biggest threats to climate change. As time runs out, I would say that we have had to shift into a more emergency status. We want to add our Greenpeace voice to all the voices that are calling a climate emergency in order to grow support for radical climate action already, whilst making sure the right governments and corporates are brought into the frame and held accountable. We want to push people out of their comfort zone as these are extraordinary times.
What is Greenpeace currently doing to raise awareness for the Amazon fires?
The forest team have been fast moving and are constantly having new plans and developments.
At the moment, we are demanding that the biggest fast food companies KFC, Mcdonalds and Burger King stop sourcing their soy and meat from the Amazon.
This is a wake-up call on the deliberate push of certain governments and organisations to destroy our natural resources for profit and we must act upon it.
What do you think is one of the environmental issues that needs to be spoken about more?
Fast fashion. The fast fashion industry has quite deliberately developed a consumption model that is very similar to that of single-use plastic. The relentless insistence on novelty has created a constantly running conveyor belt producing items intended to be discarded after one or two uses, with the vast majority ending up in landfills or an incinerator. The industry’s extraordinary wastefulness is at the centre of its problems.
In the last 15 years, production of clothing has doubled – and at the same time, between 2000 and 2015 the number of times a garment was worn before it was thrown out decreased by 36%. £140 million worth of clothing is sent to landfill every year in the UK, and more than half of clothing given to charity shops or textile recyclers ends up in landfills or is incinerated.
Clearly the industry has a lot of work to do to clean up its act. Our planet can no longer afford lavish celebrations, like London Fashion Week, of an industry that recycles so little and wastes so much.
“The industry’s textile production has a bigger carbon footprint than all international flights and shipping combined. ”
Do you think charities like Greenpeace will cease to exist in the distant future? Or do you think that humanity will always need that extra push to care for the planet?
In an ideal world, environmental NGOs and charities wouldn’t exist. I don’t like to say ‘always’ or ‘forever’ because everything is so fast moving and evolving we can never predict what will happen. Perhaps humanity will change its ways. All I know is right now there is a huge need for organisations like Greenpeace to prevent climate breakdown as industries continue to threaten our forests, oceans and air, and we should do everything we can right now to protect the natural world.
“I would say that you have a fantastically open and non-judgemental approach to informing people the benefits of a plant-based diet.”
All of us at Vevolution have been huge Greenpeace supporters since FOREVER (obviously). We love the way your organisation approaches important topics in a non-judgmental way, and how you are basically the voice of reason for any environmental issues. What is one thing that you love about Vevolution?
First of all… Thank you for your continued support! On a similar note, I would say that you have a fantastically open and non-judgemental approach to informing people the benefits of a plant-based diet. In that, you link veganism with wider environmental issues and make is accessible for everyone. I believe that long-term change will come from positively inspiring people rather than scaring people.
“The Global Oceans treaty is an opportunity for all international waters to become sanctuaries where none of these destructive methods can take place and marine life can thrive again.”
What campaigns are you currently working on that you'd like our readers to know about?
We are currently on an 11 month pole-to-pole expedition from the Arctic to the Antarctic with the aim of protecting 30% of our oceans under a Global Oceans Treaty. Oceans cover more space on our planet than all the continents combined. These vast blue worlds are home to a greater biodiversity of creatures than tropical rainforests.
Yet carbon emissions are changing the very chemistry of our oceans. Companies pumping out single-use plastic are happy for oceans to be the dumping ground. Monster fishing boats are plundering the oceans using destructive fishing methods. Oil companies are willing to risk catastrophic oil spills and some of our most valued eco-systems are currently being eyed up by mining companies with the intent of ploughing the seabed for profit.
The Global Oceans treaty is an opportunity for all international waters to become sanctuaries where none of these destructive methods can take place and marine life can thrive again. But it will only happen if millions of us rise up to protect our blue planet.
THE FESTIVAL INSPIRING PLANT-POWERED POSITIVE CHANGE
Just over a month to go until the UK’s biggest celebration of the plant-powered movement! If you consider yourself as a person working to create positive change in the world - you will not want to miss out on this one! We have put together our biggest line-up EVER, and we’ve got lots more planned for you all.