closing loops: growing food & local economies – james kagwe

I interviewed a most inspiring gentleman I met on my Permaculture Design Course in Laikipia for my 4th blogpost for the Transition Network. James Kagwe was both inspired and challenged by a question from the late Wangari Maathai, Nobel Peace Prize winner and badass activist from Kenya: who will do it tomorrow? Thus began his…

healthy environment, healthy people

I managed to attend two side sessions of the UN environment assembly last week thanks to my communications consultancy for the waste management company Takataka Solutions. I was duly impressed. The conference was focused on the environmental aspects of the sustainable development goals (which include goals like peace and justice and inequality). The format was…

UNEA2

I am looking forward to attending some sessions of the United Nations Environmental Assembly #2 which will be meeting in Nairobi next week from the 23rd to 27th of May. This infographic on food waste shows one of the topics on the table for country representatives to discuss. See more on the UNEA website

25 images of transition in brazil

I spent two and a half months working alongside various initiatives that were part of a larger Transition Brasilândia network while in São Paulo, Brazil. Brasilândia is located in the North East of the city, and a 2 hour and multiple bus ride away from the centre of São Paulo. It is also the only…

why make one?

“Why make one when you can buy one? Why bother with all this wood-hammer business, Wouldn’t it be easier to go to the shop and buy one?!” My host brother in Brazil, Dimas, and I made a shoe rack from pieces of discarded wood he found at a dump on his way home. While we…

design ingredients for sustainable waste management – ii

… So how should a city’s waste management options be designed?  Labels such as those of UCT’s campus receptacles and Hoan Kiem Lake’s bins would communicate the importance of both recycling and reducing one’s waste. The placement of these ideal designed options would consider where disposer traffic was likely to be highest and what waste would…

design ingredients for sustainable waste management – i

Urban areas concentrate not only economic and social production, but also waste production. Waste that is often addressed at the end of a long chain of actors- manufacturers, retailers, consumers, disposers, municipal councils, collectors, recyclers. And thus waste’s final destination and the impacts of the same are made invisible. The problem of what to do…

the goldman prize and the just beginning fight against lead poisoning

In late April the 6 regional winners of the Goldman Environmental Prize, also known as the ‘Green Nobel’, were announced. Phyllis Omido, a Kenyan single mother won the $175,000 prize in the Africa region for her 7 year effort to shut down a used lead acid battery (ULAB) recycling factory in the informal settlement of…

waste watching in são paulo

How do people at a public park in São Paulo interact with a waste bin and what do they do with their waste? I watched at a bin in the Ibirapuera Park for an hour to find out.

bartering for sustainability

A reflection on a culture of exchange as I experienced it in São Paulo, and on how bartering contributes to an alternative value system- featured on This Big City.