On Sunday 19 September, Emmanuel Prinet of One Earth is giving a workshop about Sustainable Consumption and Production with Stefanie Bowles of the Policy Research Initiative. It’s part of the 2010 Canadian Environmental Network conference taking place in Montreal this week. They ask participants what it would take to create a sustainable economy and society when it seems like we are often fighting brush fires. How do we get to transformative change that addresses the root causes of unsustainability? This workshop explores sustainable consumption and production as an organizing concept and holistic lens whose essence is to catalyze large-scale systemic change, both in Canada and globally. If you’re in Montreal, you can attend and discover how this approach can support your work, and share your ideas about what the effective leverage points are that will create the sustainable consumption and production patterns the world needs. More on the CEN website.
Cities are the place where we can magnify the impact of our sustainability choices. One Earth is an official partner of the October 4-7 Gaining Ground Conference on the theme EcoLogical: The Power of Green Cities to Shape the Future. The conference is targeted to practitioners and advocates across a range of fields working to advance and accelerate urban sustainability—in Vancouver and North America. Gaining Ground 2010 intends to promote Vancouver’s green economy, vision, culture, and achievements, and in all ways to assist Vancouver to become North America’s first ‘eco-logical’ city—making it a front-runner in green practice and economy much as it has been in urban design and city-making for two decades.
One Earth Director Bill Rees set the stage for an international panel on Eco-Footprints and Solid Waste at the United Nations, during a side event hosted by One Earth with UN-Habitat, Worldwatch Institute and UNEP. At least 65 delegates came to hear from the speakers during the UN’s 18th Commission on Sustainable Development. Erik Assadourian, Director of Worldwatch Institute’s 2010 report, launched it here: State of the World 2010: Transforming Cultures from Consumerism to Sustainability.
UN Habitat’s Nairobi-based programme manager Graham Alabaster showed how waste has a different context in developing countries, which was brought to bear by speakers Mwalim Ali Mwalim and Cesar Castaneda, from the governments of Zanzibar and Nicaragua respectively. In developing countries, consumer goods – including those being produced from or for foreign markets – are causing problems in their landfills, for instance because of toxics. Juliet Schor – co-Founder of the Center for a New American Dream – wrapped up the panel by talking about “conspicuous waste” where as products become cheaper and cheaper, there are rising levels of waste, as seen in the garment industry. The side event was called: Eco-Footprints and Solid Waste: Making Tracks to Achieve Sustainable Patterns of Production and Consumption. The pamphlet is here.
Emmanuel Prinet, Vanessa Timmer and Bill Rees are taking part in the UN Commission on Sustainable Development meeting (2-14 May 2010), which includes a focus on sustainable consumption and production (SCP). Emmanuel, selected by the Canadian Environmental Network (RCEN), is the official nongovernmental organization (NGO) representative on the Canadian delegation. He and Vanessa are engaged in shaping the NGO position on SCP, and Vanessa is presenting in the inter-governmental plenary on behalf of the NGOs in the Interlinkages dialogue. Bill Rees is part of a high-level expert workshop on the green economy and sustainability with the UN Division on Sustainable Development. Bill is also speaking at the United Nations as part of a side event which One Earth is co-hosting on “Eco-footprints and Solid Waste: Making tracks to achieve sustainable patterns of production and consumption” with the Worldwatch Institute, UN-Habitat and UNEP.
One Earth Director Vanessa Timmer is speaking at the De-Growth Conference in Vancouver on the 1st of May. The De-growth conference builds on similar conferences that have been held in Paris and Barcelona, and examine what a viable economic, social and ecological system will look like. ”The evidence is overwhelming that unlimited industrial growth is no longer possible. Our challenge now is to find ways to shrink the overall size of the economy without creating unemployment and poverty.” Vanessa’s presentation focuses on applying our knowledge of social change to inform the de-growth movement, and on sharing One Earth’s projects and United Nations activities.
One Earth is leading the theme, "Rethinking the Good Life", at this year’s Media That Matters conference (Hollyhock on Cortes Island, BC, May 19-23). MtM is one of North America’s most unique and intimate media gatherings for traditional and new media — four days of open dialogue, trend-spotting and transformative ideas. For One Earth’s theme: What if we reinvented how we consumed and produced things in a way that enriches all aspects of our lives—our ecologies, economies, and social life? What would this future reality look like? What would it take to make this happen? These are critical questions we must answer. How can we engage media to co-create and communicate this new story?
You can read the NGO and Youth reports for the CSD-18 (May 2010), CSD-19 Intergovernmental Preparatory Meeting (March 2011), the Second Preparatory Committee for Rio+20 (PrepCom 2), and CSD-19 (May 2011) here: http://rcen.ca/public-participation/engo-and-youth-delegates-to-the-un-commission-on-sustainable-development
For more information on the Commission on Sustainable Development, please visit http://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/csd.html.
In January 2009, the Government of Canada initiated the process of developing a Canadian Framework for Sustainable Consumption and Production. The latest draft of the Framework can be downloaded here. Emmanuel Prinet represents One Earth on Canada’s SCP Framework Advisory Committee.
One Earth is mapping the actors and networks in North America who are working on elements of sustainable consumption and production (SCP) issues, or on the system as a whole. This project is funded by Industry Canada and is an input to the upcoming 2nd North American meeting on SCP.
See sisters Vanessa and Dagmar on TV about sustainability issues in Greater Vancouver! The current show looks at the water cycle. They have also co-hosted shows about the region’s growth strategy and our “Zero Waste Challenge.” To watch these shows online, see Metro Vancouver’s The Sustainable Region or GVTV. For upcoming shows, email firstname.lastname@example.org with a blank subject line and in the message body: join gvtv email@example.com.
Find out what One Earth is doing to further its mission.