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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

How to be More eco-Responsible in 2018

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eco-responsible
Shutterstock / By KENG MERRY Paper Art | https://www.shutterstock.com/g/kengmerrymikeymelody

Nowadays, more and more people are talking about being more eco-responsible. There is a constant growth of information regarding the importance of being aware of ecological issues and the methods of using eco-friendly necessities on daily basis.

Have you been considering becoming more eco-responsible after the New Year? If so, here are some useful tips that could help you make the difference in the following year:

1. Energy – produce it, save it

If you’re building a house or planning to expand your living space, think before deciding on the final square footage. Maybe you don’t really need that much space. Unnecessary square footage will force you to spend more building materials, but it will also result in having to use extra heating, air-conditioning, and electricity in it.

It’s even better if you seek professional help to reduce energy consumption. An energy audit can provide you some great piece of advice on how to save on your energy bills.

While buying appliances such as a refrigerator or a dishwasher, make sure they have “Energy Star” label on, as it means they are energy-efficient.

energy efficient

Shutterstock Licensed Photo – By My Life Graphic

Regarding the production of energy, you can power your home with renewable energy. The most common way is to install rooftop solar panels. They can be used for producing electricity, as well as heat for the house. If powering the whole home is a big step for you, try with solar oven then – they trap the sunlight in order to heat food! Solar air conditioning is another interesting thing to try out – instead of providing you with heat, it cools your house!

2. Don’t be just another tourist

Think about the environment, as well your own enjoyment – try not to travel too far, as most forms of transport contribute to the climate change. Choose the most environmentally friendly means of transport that you can, as well as environmentally friendly accommodation. If you can go to a destination that is being recommended as an eco-travel destination – even better! Interesting countries such as Zambia, Vietnam or Nicaragua are among these destinations that are famous for its sustainability efforts.

3. Let your beauty be also eco-friendly

eco-friendly

Shutterstock / By Khakimullin Aleksandr

We all want to look beautiful. Unfortunately, sometimes (or very often) it comes with a price. Cruelty-free cosmetics are making its way on the world market but be careful with the labels – just because it says a product hasn’t been tested on animals, it doesn’t  mean that some of the product’s ingredients haven’t been tested on some poor animal.

To be sure which companies definitely stay away from the cruel testing on animals, check PETA Bunny list of cosmetic companies just to make sure which ones are truly and completely cruelty-free.

It’s also important if a brand uses toxic ingredients. Brands such as Tata Harper Skincare or Dr Bronner’s use only organic ingredients and biodegradable packaging, as well as being cruelty-free. Of course, this list is longer, so you’ll have to do some online research.

4. Know thy recycling

People often make mistakes while wanting to do something good for the environment. For example, plastic grocery bags, take-out containers, paper coffee cups and shredded paper cannot be recycled in your curb for many reasons, so don’t throw them into recycling bins. The same applies to pizza boxes, household glass, ceramics, and pottery – whether they are contaminated by grease or difficult to recycle, they just can’t go through the usual recycling process.

People usually forget to do is to rinse plastic and metal containers – they always have some residue, so be thorough. Also, bottle caps are allowed, too, so don’t separate them from the bottles. However, yard waste isn’t recyclable, so any yard waste or junk you are unsure of – just contact rubbish removal services instead of piling it up in public containers or in your own yard.

5. Fashion can be both eco-friendly and cool

Believe it or not, there are actually places where you can buy clothes that are eco-friendly, sustainable, as well as ethical. And they look cool, too! Companies like Everlane are very transparent about where their clothes are manufactured and how the price is set. PACT is another great company that uses non-GMO, organic cotton and non-toxic dyes for their clothing, while simultaneously using renewable energy factories. Soko is a company that uses natural and recycled materials in making their clothes and jewelry.

All in all

The truth is – being eco-responsible can be done in many ways. There are tons of small things we could change when it comes to our habits that would make a positive influence on the environment. The point is to start doing research on things that can be done by every person and it can start with the only thing that person has the control of – their own household.

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Environment

5 Tips for Making Your Bakery Greener

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green bakery
Shutterstock Licensed Photo - By Noppadon stocker | https://www.shutterstock.com/g/noppadon

Bakeries are staple businesses in small towns and urban areas alike. Much like diners and cafes, bakeries are the heartbeat of American society. It’s where people drink their morning coffee and grab a slice of pie after a dinner. But from the perspective of sustainability, what are they doing to stay green?

5 Ways to Make Your Bakery a Little Greener

You might think “green” and “bakery” don’t belong in the same sentence unless St. Patrick’s Day is around the corner, but things are changing and there’s actually a huge market for bakeries that use green products and practices. From New York City to Los Angeles and every small town and big city in between, there are bakeries embracing the green movement. Could yours be the next?

As you look to redefine your bakery, here are some green tips you might find helpful:

1. Work With Green Suppliers

Being green isn’t just about making sure the practices inside of your bakery are sustainable and energy efficient. You also need to be sure you’re working with other green companies in your supply chain. Otherwise, you’re not really having much of an impact.

While it used to be a challenge when Rubin first started out, today it’s fairly easy to locate green suppliers. Do some research and reevaluate your current partnerships if they appear to be inefficient.

2. Reduce Packaging Waste

If most of your bakery goods are sold to-go, you probably go through a lot of packaging. One of your primary focuses should be on reducing packaging waste and using more sustainable materials.

“Many of our clients own bakeries and we’ve seen them experience a major shift over the past few years,” Plastic Container City explains. “Whereas they used to be pretty frivolous with how they packaged and served food, they’re now thinking really strategically about how they can curb waste and embrace sustainability. It’s great to see.”

3. Curb Food Waste

Food waste is a big issue in any food-related business. Try to be really cognizant of your biggest causes of food waste and look for solutions that allow you to maximize ingredients and resources. This may look like making bigger batches, moving to smaller batches, donating food to local kitchens, or getting into food composting.

4. Conserve Water

The average bakery uses a lot of water. From making different food items to cleaning pots and dishes, water is always running. One practical step you can take is to use more water-efficient practices in the kitchen. Observe how things are currently being done and look for areas where you can improve – such as with washing dishes.

5. Use More Efficient Appliances

Finally, if you’re willing and able to make an upfront investment, swapping out old appliances with newer energy efficient models can make a big difference in your bakery’s total energy consumption. It’ll cost you something on the front end, but you’ll slowly recoup the money and rest easy knowing your carbon footprint is much lower.

Sustainability in the Heartland

Small town bakeries represent the heartland of the country. And if we’re going to get serious about sustainability at a core societal level, it’s imperative that we begin with the fabric that binds America together. By prioritizing eco-friendly decision making in key American businesses, such as bakeries, we can begin to make noticeable progress. Are you prepared to do your part?

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