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Marine Stewardship Council Announces Sustainability Fund Recipients

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No escape by Derek Keats via Flickr

Funding has been awarded to six organisations by the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC). This enables the organisations to delivery projects to support small scale and developing world fisheries to achieve MSC certification.

Blue Ventures, Anchud Mud Crab Productivity Committee, WWF Japan, Masyarakat Dan Perikanan Indonesia Foundation, WWF Guianas, and WWF Coral Triangle Program will receive a total of £212,500.

The six projects will deliver critical scientific research addressing information, technology and management gaps and build capacity of personnel to assist small scale and developing world fisheries. 33 applications were received, out of which six were chosen to receive funding.

Announcing the funding award, the MSC’s Science & Standards Director, David Agnew, said: “We had some excellent proposals for funding. The winning projects particularly fit in with the objective of the fund– to deliver critical scientific research that addresses information, technology and management gaps and barriers that fisheries encounter in achieving the MSC Standard.”

For many small scale and developing world fisheries, achieving the high standard required for MSC certification can be a significant challenge.

Recognising this challenge, two years ago (in March 2014), the MSC Board proposed the need for an official fund to support critical fisheries science and to assist small scale or developing world fisheries. The Global Fisheries Sustainability Fund (GFSF) was launched in July 2015 with an initial £400,000, split over two years.

Momo Kochen Director of Programs and Science at Masyarakat Dan Perikanan Indonesia Foundation said: “Indonesia is one of the leading producers of wild capture fish in the world. We are passionate about sustainable fishing because we know that many people depend on it for their livelihoods. This money will make a real difference in assessing the risks associated with tuna supply chains in this country.”

Alasdair Harris, CEO of Blue ventures said:

“We’ve been working with the MSC to implement a Fishery Improvement Project (FIP) in Madagascar. We hope this grant goes a long way to build the octopus fishery’s capacity to enter the MSC program.”

I am delighted to receive this funding from the MSC.

Geoffrey Muldoon, Senior Manager with WWF’s Coral Triangle Program said: “WWF in the Coral Triangle is committed to working with the MSC to make the program more accessible to fisheries in the developing world. With this funding from the MSC, we are excited to be able to build in-country expertise to deliver cost-effective and robustly designed fishery improvement projects to achieve that goal.”

About the recipients

WWF Coral Triangle Program will use its grant for a capacity building programme to train in-country experts so they can carry out FIP assessments and MSC pre-assessments in Vietnam and Indonesia.

Masyarakat Dan Perikanan Indonesia Foundation will prepare a risk assessment of tuna supply chains in Indonesia which will provide much-needed information on supply chain structure in that region.

WWF Guianas will apply data limited assessment and management methodologies to the Suriname coastal artisanal fishery, and will contribute to the MSC’s wider initiative that will allow data limited fisheries to demonstrate that their sustainability meets the MSC requirements.

The Anchud Mud Crab fishery will use its grant to understand the likely barriers to certification of this developing world artisanal fishery, in a region which has many such fisheries.

WWF Japan will investigate the potential for improvements in the small scale Manila clam fisheries in the Yellow Sea Ecoregion, which could lead to major environmental benefits in this globally important wetland.

Blue Ventures will implement FIP improvement activities in the Madagascar octopus fishery, and explore application of data limited assessment and management methods to these types of fisheries.

Applications for 2017/18 will be announced later this year (2016). The fund is open to academic institutions, independent researchers, fisheries, governments and non-governmental organisations. The MSC would like to encourage contributions from organisations to enhance the overall scale and reach of the fund.

Environment

4 Common Items That Can be Reused Again and Again

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reuse reduce recycle plastic bottles etc
Shutterstock Licensed Photo - By Vanatchanan | https://www.shutterstock.com/g/vanatchanan%20buahom

As a society we are getting much better at taking our obligations to the world and environment around us more seriously. This is undoubtedly a good thing! The effects of climate change are beginning to manifest across the world, and this is turning the issue from an abstract threat into a very real danger. Trying to introduce some greener, more eco-friendly practices into your life isn’t just a great way of doing something beneficial for society and the world around you. It is a wonderful way of engaging positively with the world and carries with it numerous psychological benefits.

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Being a greener, more ecologically friendly person doesn’t require any dramatic life changes. Breaking or making a few small habits is all it takes to make your life a greener one. In this article we look at one of the easiest, yet most effective green practices to get into: reusing everyday items.

Jars and Containers

Glass and metal are widely recycled, and recycling is a good thing! However, consider whether any containers you buy, whether it’s a tub of ice cream or a jar of coffee, can be washed out and reused for something else. Mason jars, for example, can be used to store homemade pasta sauce and can be washed for future use. Once you start thinking about it, you will find endless opportunities to reuse your old containers.

Soda Bottles

An ice-cold soda is a wonderful treat on a hot day, but buying soda can get expensive, and the manufacturing and distribution of the drinks themselves isn’t great for the environment. However, by holding on to your old soda bottles and repurposing them as water bottles, you can save money on drinks, or use them to measure out water for your garden.

Plastic Bags

Most of the time groceries come in paper bags, which are better for the environment than the plastic alternatives, but they are less durable and thus harder to reuse. Whenever the store places your items in a plastic bag, hang onto it so you can reuse the bags again. If you want to take it one step further, consider looking into buying some personalized recycled bags. These bags are designed to last for a long time and are made of recycled materials. They look striking and unique, they’ll turn heads, and maybe even attitudes!

Seeds

If you’re a keen gardener, then you will already probably know how to reseed your plants in order to ensure a fresh crop after each plant’s lifecycle. If you have space in your garden, or haven’t yet tried your hand at gardening, then consider planting a small vegetable plot. Growing your own veggies means that you’ll be helping to cut back on the emissions generated by their transport and production. The best part about growing your own food in this way is that, by harvesting properly and saving the seeds, you can be set up with fresh vegetables for life!

Reusing and recycling common household items is an easy way to make your world a little bit greener. Once you start looking for these opportunities you’ll realize that they’re everywhere!

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Environment

These 5 Green Office Mistakes Are Costing You Money

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eco-friendly green offices
Shutterstock Licensed Photo - By Stokkete | https://www.shutterstock.com/g/cyano

The sudden interest in green business is very encouraging. According to recent reports, 42% of all companies have rated sustainability as an important element of their business. Unfortunately, the focus on sustainability will only last if companies can find ways to use it to boost their ROI.

Many businesses get so caught up in being socially conscious that they hope the financial aspect of it takes care of itself. The good news is that there are plenty of ways to go green and boost your net income at the same time.

Here are some important mistakes that you will want to avoid.

Only implementing sustainability on micro-scale

The biggest reason that brands are going green is to improve their optics with their customers. Too many businesses are making very minor changes, such as processing paperwork online and calling themselves green.

Customers have become wary of these types of companies. If you want to earn their business, you are going to need to go all the way. Bring in a green business consultant and make every feasible change to demonstrate that you are a green organization from top to bottom.

Not prioritizing investments by long-term ROI

It isn’t realistic to build an entirely green organization overnight. You will need to allocate your capital wisely.

Before investing in any green assets or services, you should always conduct a long-term cost benefit analysis. The initial investment for some green services may be over $20,000. If they don’t shave your cost by at least $3,000 a year, they probably aren’t worth the investment.

Determine which green investments will have the best pay off over the next 10 years. Make these investments before anything else. Then compare your options within each of those categories.

Implementing green changes without a plan

Effective, long-term planning is the key to business success. This principle needs to be applied to green organizations as well.

Before implementing a green strategy, you must answer the following questions:

  • How will I communicate my green business philosophy to my customers?
  • How will running a green business affect my revenue stream?
  • How will adopting green business strategies change my monthly expenses? Will they increase or decrease them?
  • How will my company finance green upgrades and other investments?

The biggest mistake that too many green businesses make is being overly optimistic with these forecasts. Take the time to collect objective data and make your decisions accordingly. This will help you run a much more profitable green business.

Not considering the benefits of green printing

Too many companies believe that going paperless is the only way to run a green organization. Unfortunately, going 100% paperless it’s not feasible for most companies.

Rather than aim for an unrealistic goal, consider the option of using a more environmentally friendly printer. It won’t be perfect, but it will be better than the alternative.

According to experts from Doranix, environmental printers have several benefits:

  • They can process paper that has been completely recycled.
  • They consume less energy than traditional printers.
  • They use ink that is more environmentally friendly.

You want to take a look at different green printers and compare them. You’ll find that some will meet your needs as a green business.

Poorly communicating your green business strategy to customers

Brand positioning doesn’t happen on its own. If you want to run a successful green business, you must communicate your message to customers as clearly as possible. You must also avoid the appearance that you are patronizing them.

The best approach is to be clear when you were first making the change. I’ll make an announcement about your company‘s commitment to sustainability.

You also want to reinforce this message overtime by using green labels on all of your products. You don’t have to be blatant with your messaging at this stage. Simply provide a small, daily reminder on your products and invoices.

Finally, it is a good idea to participate in green business seminars and other events. If your community has a local Green Chamber of Commerce, you should consider joining as well.

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