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Plastic Pollution and Wildlife Facts: The Secret Continent

Posted on April 14, 2014 by Leave a comment


  • Each year approximately 18.8 billion plastic bottles end up on landfill; each bottle takes over 450 years to breakdown.
  • In the US alone, 60 million plastic bottles are used daily and, for every six of those used, only one will make it to the recycling bin.
  • The Great Pacific Garbage Patch, in the North Pacific Ocean, is made from just some of the 10 million tons of plastic pollution humans create each year.
  • Plastic pollution never completely biodegrades but instead breaks up into small particles, which are often consumed by seabirds, mammals and even fish.
  • Plastic is often mistaken by marine life for small fish, krill and plankton; plastic bags can be mistaken for jellyfish, especially by sea turtles. Ingestion of plastics can cause starvation, malnutrition, intestinal blockage and intake of toxins, which can be fatal.
  • Seabirds collect plastics on foraging trips during the nesting season, which they feed to their young. In the North Atlantic, over 80% of Cory’s shearwater fledglings contain plastics in their stomachs.
  • In the Western Mediterranean Sea, almost 80% of sea turtles contain plastic debris in their guts. Young turtles have the highest incidence of marine debris ingestion.
  • Approximately 35% of planktivorous fish in the North Pacific Central Gyre contain fragments and micro fragments of plastics in their guts.


To find out more about The Secret Continent and to view our viral video visit http://www.secretcontinent.com/uk and to sign the petition and help promote a bottle free planet visit http://www.change.org/petitions/leaders-of-the-world-recognize-the-great-pacific-garbage-patch-as-the-8th-continent-and-stop-ignoring-this-environmental-disaster

OuiShare Fest Paris, May 5-7

Posted on April 10, 2014 by Leave a comment

1000 collaborative economy visionaries coming to Paris for

the second edition of OuiShare Fest

The global network and think tank OuiShare has just released the program for its second edition

of OuiShare Fest, the largest global event about the collaborative economy held in Paris from

May 5 -7. The festival is dedicated to the theme The Age of Communities and will gather over

1000 international thought leaders, entrepreneurs, non-profit and company leaders, grassroots

activists and public officials for three days of conference, co-creation and connecting.

Unlike a traditional conference, the program is being co-created with the OuiShare community

based on over 150 submissions to an open call for proposals. It will offer everything from

keynote speeches by thought leaders such as Rachel Botsman (Collaborative Consumption),

Michel Bauwens (P2P Foundation) and Lisa Gansky (Meshlabs), workshops, artistic

performances, to participative, experimental formats on topics such as the sharing economy,

coworking, the peer production and maker movement, shared mobility and tourism, peer-to-peer

finance, open education, shareable cities, and many more. In addition to the program at the

Cabaret Sauvage, a number of satellite events, such as OuiShare Village at Foire de Paris and

the OuiShare Labs camp, will take place from May 1 – 5 and on the evenings of the 5th and 6th.

Special highlights this year are “the Factory”, a tent that will be turned into a FabLab for 3 days

to build a variety of open source structures such as windmills, furniture and bee hives, and the

“Sharing Fair” on the afternoon of May 7th, during which the public can meet Europe’s most

innovative collaborative economy projects. The last day will conclude with the announcement of

the 5 winners of the OuiShare Awards, live music and an all-night long party.

OuiShare Fest 2014 is made possible thanks to the support of its community and the generous

contributions from its festival partners Castorama, Orange, La Poste, La Fonderie, Google,

Danone for Entrepreneurs, Mangopay, BlablaCar, Airbnb and many more.

“OuiShare itself is constantly experimenting within its own community,” says Benjamin Tincq,

co-founder of OuiShare and co-chair of OuiShare Fest 2014. “That’s why we are raising the bar

for community involvement for the event itself. We want to explore what role communities have

in building the collaborative economy and reshaping society as a whole.”

“Last year’s OuiShare Fest demonstrated how much can be achieved when an engaged, active

community works towards a common goal”, says Francesca Pick, co-chair of OuiShare Fest

2014 and German Connector of the OuiShare network. “This year I look forward to taking this

experiment of collaborative event organization to the next level.”


More information: www.ouisharefest.com

Pushing at open doors

Posted on April 10, 2014 by Leave a comment

Pushing at open doors

In a wierd place in my head this last week having been on the road for over a month in Asia and Australia. It was fabulous, scary, inspiring, troubling, fun and tiring all rolled together I guess the ingredients of a great trip.

Along the journey I saw a lot of drought, a lot of urban decay, a lot of rural neglect,  a lot of people who were in search of something that modern life was not providing, a lot of places which were struggling to deal with change of temperature, work and economics and shifts of cultural focus.Unknown-1Alonside all of that I heard politicians describe recovery, breakthrough, negotiated settlements, progress. The narratives of one world didn’t really correlate with the everyday narratives which were evidently being experienced by people on the ground. It is this terrain which shapes our daily lives, a tension, an edge between different world stories.

So part of our work during the trip was to expose that story through the core of what makes our world tick, trade – and to see how ethical trade focused on trust, transparency and traceability might facilitate new insights and ways of living together.


To do this I have been exploring how to make the ethical coffee project a reality through simple links in the value chain which connect farmers we work with in Uganda with roasters and schools who in turn learn how to use the coffee to sell on to parents and make a good dollop for school funds.  Fine out more at www.happycoffeebean.com or just email me at hello@pop-up-foundation.org and more will be revealed.

In addition we are looking at selling it direct, so again, if you want great coffee get in touch.

The feeling I’m getting back is amazing, loads of interest, and whereas before it always seemed a struggle, suddenly we are finding things are clicking together and people are interested and engaged. I wonder if it is simply a numbers game, where the more people connected to something the more it begins to happen. Anhow, we create and we create the right things and then we create some more.

UnknownNext step of the journey is to begin to shape the ideas for an eco-pedagogy that refelct some of the reality of our time and construct a way of learning into that which can remain positive but realistic  - an evolving mode of learner engagement which can facilitate real new thinking about how we might deal with crisis. It is real, it is happening, it is everywhere, and I don’t yet believe the hype from big business that they have suddeny gone green. It is perhaps too far down the line for that, so lets get our heads together on the nature of the narrative, and begin to get real with the next steps we might be needing to take.image copy


Climate Change Report 2014: Climate Change 2014: Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability SUMMARY

Posted on March 31, 2014 by Comments are off

The IPCC report

Climate Change 2014: Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability

SUMMARY for Policymakers -


13,200 reception year students start school in South Australia

Posted on January 29, 2014 by Comments are off

A nice story from our friend Kerry White in Adelaide

FRIENDS: Iverson, Taihya, Shriya, and Axel  have the run of Holy Family Catholic School. Picture: DEAN MARTIN

FRIENDS: Iverson, Taihya, Shriya, and Axel have the run of Holy Family Catholic School. Picture: DEAN MARTIN Source: News Limited

IVERSON, Taihya, Shriya and Axel ruled the school on the first day of reception on Tuesday.

As part of a new initiative at the Holy Family Catholic School to coincide with the State Government’s new one-intake policy, the students were given free rein of the school before their older peers return to classrooms from Wednesday.

Principal Kerry White said just the school’s 250 Reception and Year 1 students attended yesterday, allowing them to ease into their new surroundings without fear.

“On their first day, the children tend to stay near the classroom area and as they are here longer they tend to venture further,” he said.

“We wanted them to have free rein over the school, so we’ve taken the other 650 students out of the equation so it’s not so daunting for them.”

He said the school chose the staggered start – the other students from Years 2 to 7 will return to school on Wednesday – because the new one-intake policy meant, for the first time, children were starting school before they turned five.

“Some children are starting before their fifth birthday, which is the first time this has happened … it also means next year students will be coming to school later than they ever have,” he said.

While public schools and some private schools have followed the State Government’s new one-intake policy, some private schools, including St Peters Girls, are still allowing students to begin school as they turn five later in the year.

Iverson’s mum, Vanna Pen, said while she was teary in the car on the way to school, her son was keen to begin his first day in the classroom. “He got up with a big smile on his face and he was just ready for it,” she said.

Axel’s mum, Clara Nguyen, said she was emotional when her son put on his uniform.

“It think it’s good for them to get to know the place without the bigger kids around,” Ms Nguyen.

“It will be a bit easier and better for him to adjust to everything.”

Both boys are aged just four and starting school ahead of the May 1 cut-off under the new single-intake policy.

“I think it will be good for him, it’s new stage and maybe a bit of an advantage for him,” Ms Pen said.

In SA, 169,000 students began attending public schools on Tuesday including 13,200 reception students.

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