Greenpeace Australia Pacific BLOG

Kids Care: Dear Greenpeace

Posted on August 31, 2014 at 11:34 by Rashini Suriyaarachchi

Greenpeace is working towards creating a green and peaceful world for the children of today and tomorrow, so we love receiving letters from kids who are passionate about the work we do.

Recently, we received some beautiful illustrations from 8-year-old Samuel Kelso, advocating for saving trees and a switch from fossil fuels to renewable energy. With the pictures came an impassioned letter from Samuel about the effects of deforestation and global warming.

We loved it so much, we thought we’d share it with all our supporters! Here’s what Samuel sent us:

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No trees. No future.

img-825152301-0001Solar and wind – future. Coal and oil is a no-no no!

I would love it if you could put my pictures on your blog or website! Also we really appreciate your goals. Now my point on “No trees no future” is that if we destroy about half of the Amazon rainforest we would also destroy the habitat of 45% of all known animal species! And it’s not just that! That also means we would have removed most of the trees. Making the world much more vulnerable to global warming. Guess what? Thermohaline circulation shutdown! Side effect include. Desert oceans, Coastal wastelands, Rising Sea levels, Poison air and reduced ozone layer. And where well on the way to this happening. Also we can stop this now.

Kind Regards.

Samuel Kelso.

PS:  I have ideas for a heat power plant which uses the heat from the Earth’s core to power a turbine which conducts electricity! The same can be done with the energy produced as the Earth’s crust moves.

PPS: I really like your organisation.

PPPS: I have an idea for a Frozen advertisement to get young girls to join the movement “Save the Arctic”.

Greenpeace is working to make the world a better place for the children of the present and the future. The aim of this blog is to give children a voice in the struggle for a greener planet – it’s their world too. If you’d like to submit something to Kids Care, send us a message at webteam.au@greenpeace.org

13 ways to green your wardrobe

Posted on August 29, 2014 at 11:24 by Rashini Suriyaarachchi

Say what you will about jeggings – more often than not, the real fashion victims are the environment, climate, and people making your clothes.

Green your wardrobe

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Alongside supporting petitions and telling brands they need to change, there are lots of other things you can do to help reduce your fashion footprint. Here are 13 ways you can change your shopping habits, your wardrobe and the world around you.

1. Buy second-hand

Why buy new when you can go second-hand? Charity shops, vintage stores, flea markets and online marketplaces are packed full of great clothes and style bargains.

2. Make your own style© Tammy Strobel

There is nothing cooler than wearing something you made yourself! Why not take a knitting or sewing class or watch some tutorials online. You can find wool or fabric shops in most cities and to make sure your wooly hats are green, look for organic fabrics or alternative yarns like milk, corn or even recycled jeans! In need of some inspiration? Check it out.

3. Buy green

Look out for brands that make clothing from recycled materials or use only environmentally friendly fabrics and natural dyes. Though there is not yet the perfect toxics-free brand, many designers are making clothes in a much more greener way. You can find specialised eco-fashion stores in many cities today and online. Here are a few places to check out.

© Greenpeace / Bas Beentjes4. Organise a clothes swap

Clothes swapping is one of the most environmentally friendly ways to reduce waste and upgrade your wardrobe without spending a penny! Check out our 10 steps to clothes swapping heaven for some tips and tricks to making your own swap.

5. Buy classics and focus on quality

Invest in well-made, quality classics or things that you love. If they go ‘out of fashion’, hold on to them – you’ll be surprised how quickly styles come round again! Check the seams, zippers and buttons, which are well known breaking points. This also applies to shoes, for example, look at how well the sole is attached.

6. Fix things up© Chris Edward Morgan

If you’ve got clothes you’re not wearing because they need a new zip or need taking up, then dive in and give it a go. Failing that, why not take them to the local tailors. You can also re-fashion your clothes by changing buttons, turning dresses into skirts, jeans into shorts and more. Check out blogs like Refashionista for tips and tricks.

7. Spring clean your wardrobe

If there’s anything in your wardrobe you’re not using then liberate it! Pass it on to a friend, donate it to charity, put it in a clothes donation box or advertise things on your country’s equivalent online market like Freecycle, eBay or even recycling fashion companies like Thread Up!

© Alex Stoneman / Greenpeace8. Wash green

A lot of the environmental impact of clothes actually comes from washing them. Minimize this by making sure you wash a full load and by using the eco setting, if your machine has one. Did you know most of the electricity used in washing comes from heating the machine, so why not try turning it down. Normal laundry will wash well at 30 degrees.

9. Say yes to fair-fashion

Fairtrade products are booming. In addition to coffee, tea, bananas and chocolate you can also buy a whole range of Fairtrade fashion. For the latest news on labour standards in the textile industry check out the Clean Clothes Campaign.

10. Go organic with your cotton© Peter Caton / Greenpeace

According to the Water Footprint Network, just one 250g cotton shirt is estimated to use 150g of pesticides and up to 2,720 litres of water. Why not try to switch to organic cotton where possible? Find out more about organic cotton here.

11. Speak to your favourite brand!

Visit your favourite brand’s website and see if they’ve implemented any environmental policies, especially for chemical management. If not – or if their policies aren’t good enough – let them know that you love their clothes but want them to improve! If we have learnt something from the Detox campaign it is that brands listen to their customers!

© Will Rose / Greenpeace?12. Look at the label

It is not easy to get along in the label jungle. But you can inform yourself about the different eco-labels and what they really mean by visiting the Eco Label Index.

13. Spread the word

Tell your friends about the real story behind our clothes. Get them inspired about swapping, hold a refashioning evening, go second hand shopping together, tell them about the Detox campaign!

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Greenpeace is currently campaigning for toxic-free fashion. Learn more about the campaign and see which companies have switched over here.

Sydney University’s Report Card

Posted on August 28, 2014 at 16:35 by Rashini Suriyaarachchi

From the national headlines to the private board rooms of Sydney Uni, people are talking about us. Do you know why?

Sydney University, it's time to dump Whitehaven! (more…)

Let’s stop feeling so guilty about global warming

Posted on August 25, 2014 at 11:30 by Emma Thompson

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Emma Thompson recently went to the Arctic aboard the Greenpeace ship Esperanza. She wrote these words after walking out onto the fragile sea ice for the first time alongside her 14 year old daughter Gaia.

We’re told that it is all our fault, global warming — we want the fuel, we want our cars, and that the oil industry is merely responding to the needs of a greedy public. But that’s simply not fair. Most of us want to live cleaner lives, but our governments don’t make these things easily available. (more…)

16 Stunning Images of the Arctic Sunrise Taking Peaceful Action

Posted on August 21, 2014 at 13:35 by Greenpeace Australia Pacific

Arctic Sunrise moored to Ice Floe


Great news – after being held for nearly 10 months, our Arctic Sunrise is home! To celebrate this news, we’ve put together 16 stunning images of the Arctic Sunrise in peaceful action.

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How much trash do you produce in a week?

Posted on August 20, 2014 at 11:38 by Rashini Suriyaarachchi

If you could see all the waste you produce, would it change the way you consume? This photographer is hoping so.

Australians produce a lot of waste. According to Clean Up Australia, the amount of waste that hits landfill in Australia every year is enough to cover the entire state of Victoria.

The average Australian produces 1.5 tonnes of waste in a year. Much of this household waste is avoidable – like plastic packaging and food waste. But according to the ABC, Australians still let $8 billion worth of edible food hit the bin each year.

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Being environmentally conscious on recycling day and sorting your rubbish into compost, recycling and general waste bins is fantastic – but it’s important to think about producing less rubbish to begin with. That’s why photographer Gregg Segal created 7 Days of Garbage – a series of portraits of Americans surrounded by a week’s worth of household rubbish. Gregg says:

“7 Days of Garbage is a series of portraits of friends, neighbors, and other acquaintances with the garbage they accumulate in the course of a week. Subjects are photographed surrounded by their trash in a setting that is part nest, part archeological record. We’ve made our bed and in it we lie.”

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5 things you need to know about Sydney University

Posted on August 19, 2014 at 14:58 by Rashini Suriyaarachchi

There’s something about Australia’s sandstone universities – they’re grand, prestigious, and a little mysterious. But the University of Sydney’s million dollar investment in Whitehaven Coal and their destructive Maules Creek Coal Mine isn’t just mysterious – it’s downright dodgy.