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Playing for Change: connecting the world through music

August 25, 2014 – 6:12 pm |

On September 20th musicians and music lovers will gather on stages, street corners, and schools for a global day of action to bring music into the lives of children and to promote positive social change …

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Environment »

World wide trend to ban the plastic bag: interactive map

August 25, 2014 – 6:15 pm | One Comment

By Tami Wyness

World wide plastic bag use is being discouraged and banned.  The devastating environmental impact that plastic bags use has is being taken seriously in governments all over the world from Uganda to Australia.

As with anything, the banning of plastic bags isn’t the be all and end all solution to the behaviour of overconsumption: there needs to be a underlying mindset shift.  It’s not just about using paper bags instead (which has it’s own environmental impact) but looking at our relationship to ‘stuff’ and the world that we have the honour of living in.  However, banning the plastic bag is, in my book, a good start!

There are a few websites that have world maps tracking the bans and law changes around plastic bag use, here is one that you might find interesting (noting that there aren’t any in New Zealand?!):

Track the Movement

Screenshot from 2014-08-11 12:39:11

screenshot from: http://www.chicobag.com/track-movement

and here are a couple good stories to back it up.

Plastic Bags Banned in Fremantle

The Guardian reported that a West Australian council will become the first in Australia to enforce a law banning single-use, non-biodegradable plastic bags.  The city of Fremantle will introduce a new law banning retailers from providing shoppers with single-use, non-biodegradable plastic bags.  Shop owners who ignore the ban will intially face a fine of $150 but reoffenders may face fines up to $2,500!

So what will banning single use plastic bags do you wonder?  Well, it’s about changing underlying consumer behaviour and creating mindset shifts in people.  Western Australian Greens MP, Lynn MacLaren, said

“Evidence from SA shows that banning plastic bags helps shift community attitudes to become more environmentally aware. Consumers bringing reusable bags jumped from around six in 10 to more than nine in 10 once the ban was implemented.”

To read the original story click here


France bans single-use plastic bags in supermarkets

It has been said by environmental campaigners that shoppers use plastic bags for just 20 minutes on average but they take up to 1,000 years to degrade.  With this in mind, in June this year French MPs voted to ban single-use plastic bags in supermarkets by 2016 to help protect the environment.

This is not just the plastic bags at the counter, but also the use of plastic bags in the fruit and vege section of the supermarket.

This trend in banning plastic bags is vital to begin to counter the massive plastic waste ‘continent’ that covers 1,000 km x 2,000 km of the Pacific and Indian oceans.

(to read original story click here)


My vote is for New Zealand to do the same.

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Blog: holding a flame of hope in the face of Gaza

August 12, 2014 – 9:59 am | One Comment

Tami Wyness talks about reclaiming her optmism despite following the news on Gaza.
The other day a friend stated she wanted to hear the news because she thought it would be a good idea to know …

Experience art in the dark in Auckland

August 11, 2014 – 4:35 pm |


Celery Productions present
13 – 16 November.
Celebrating its fifth year and now widely regarded as an arts-institution within Auckland, ART IN THE DARK 2014 returns to illuminate every nook …

Swedish waste: 99% recycled

August 11, 2014 – 4:33 pm |

99% Recycled!
Ka pai Sweden, love Happyzine.
The official Swedish website, https://sweden.se/, proudly states that:
“Less than one per cent of Sweden’s household waste ends up in a rubbish dump. The rest is recycled in different ways.”
They are …

Dance at dawn to a super-duper full moon this Monday

August 8, 2014 – 8:44 am | 3 Comments

Super-duper-moon expected Monday morning
University of Canterbury
August 8, 2014
A super-duper-moon which is bigger and brighter than any other full moon visible this year will appear on Monday (August 11) morning when the full moon reaches its closest point to Earth.
When …

Rare footage captured of tuatara hatching

August 4, 2014 – 10:43 am |

Victoria University
4 August 2014
Rare footage captured of tuatara hatching
Extremely rare footage of a tuatara hatching has been filmed at Victoria University of Wellington. Last to hatch, the egg was one of 23 being incubated in captivity …

Disability no limit for youth on Queenstown adventure

July 30, 2014 – 9:43 am |

Blog by: Matt Alpe
Over four action-packed days in one of New Zealand’s most stunning locations in Queenstown, nine youth with disabilities from Auckland and Christchurch truly pushed their limits and overcame their fears. This journey proved that an …

City of Sydney to lead global climate network

July 11, 2014 – 8:12 am |

The City of Sydney’s leading credentials on climate change action have been boosted by news that it will now head an international network of global cities looking at energy efficiency.
The City is a founding member …

Project Twin Streams Glen Eden | Matariki Planting Day

June 30, 2014 – 8:11 am |

When the Matariki star cluster rises into the skies of New Zealand, it signals a month-long celebration across the country of the Māori New Year.
Matariki is the Māori name for the small cluster of stars …

Taking the light road to a cooler future

June 19, 2014 – 1:34 pm |

Pale surfaces may pave the way to a cooler future for our cities, with a new City of Sydney trial exploring the potential for light-coloured pavement to reduce temperatures in surrounding areas.
The ‘urban heat island …

EPA rejects application for mining off southern Taranaki coast

June 19, 2014 – 1:11 pm |

A small victory is being celebrated by environmental groups this week with the news that the Environment Protection Authority have rejected an application to mine ironsands from the ocean floor off the coast of southern …

Student Volunteer Army planning next major campaign to help the community

June 17, 2014 – 8:08 am | 4 Comments

June 15, 2014
University of Canterbury’s Student Volunteer Army has begun planning its next major campaign to help the community.
Next week is National Volunteer Week and Canterbury’s Student Volunteer Army are preparing for their Random Act …

Project NZ: #theBIGshift conference to launch global business innovation campaign in NZ

June 16, 2014 – 12:29 pm |

13 June 2014
Project NZ: #theBIGshift conference to launch global business innovation campaign in New Zealand
Leading international business innovators and entrepreneurs will gather in Auckland in September for the launch of a new global business …


June 16, 2014 – 12:07 pm | One Comment

Okareka Dance Company presents
Having already proven themselves as one of New Zealand’s most dynamic companies on a national level through their critically acclaimed tours of Tama Ma (2009), Nga Hau E Wha (2011) and …

‘Geoff Sewell’s music miracle’

June 13, 2014 – 9:39 am |

From the originally published article in Women’s Weekly ‘Geoff Sewell’s music miracle‘ by Donna Fleming 7 June
The ‘Amici Forever’ founder Geoff Sewell was once told that his daughter Sienna might need to be institutionalised and …

Trial scheme to stop organic waste going to landfill

June 12, 2014 – 11:08 am | 4 Comments

This article originally published on the NZ Herald website ‘Rubbish trial is food for thought‘ by Morgan Tait


A North Shore family of three produced 20 litres of food waste last week, and cut their rubbish …

Permablitz: seeding a resilience revolution

June 12, 2014 – 10:31 am | 4 Comments

John Allan, an Auckland Permaculture Workshop consultant and Landscape Architect spent last weekend getting his hands dirty in an Auckland urban garden for free and for the fun of it, participating in what is known …

Speed dating for a brighter, greener future

June 10, 2014 – 2:24 pm | 4 Comments

Fancy dating your local landscape architect or horticulturist?  I know I have a soft spot for knowledgeable green warriors.  This City of Sydney inspired event below could be a tantalising concept to replicate in your …

Amnesty International celebrates Auckland Girls’ Grammar School – 2014 Dove Award winners

June 10, 2014 – 2:04 pm | 3 Comments

6 June 2014
Amnesty International celebrates Auckland Girls’ Grammar School – 2014 Dove Award winners
An Auckland Girls’ Grammar School (AGGS) group has been awarded one of Amnesty International’s most prestigious accolades, the 2014 Dove …

The Value of the Māori Language: Te Hua o Te Reo Māori

June 6, 2014 – 12:28 pm | 3 Comments

Why is language important?… Like this article points out – it allows us to access different bodies of knowledge, wisdom, ways of being and doing; a different perspective and new expression.  Bringing together a deeper …

Sustainability program is making Sydney greener and cleaner – and saving money

June 6, 2014 – 11:55 am | 4 Comments

Sydney is inspiring!  According to this article 90% of sydneysiders said they wanted action on climate change; and their Mayor listened and action is what is happening.  How can this be emulated in New Zealand? …