Monthly Archives: July 2010

A long time away!

So this blog was a bit quiet for a month! And now I’m back.

I’ve been really, really busy – and it’s been great. Sleep deprivation was worth it!

For starters, the exciting news is that I now am officially employed at the consultancy where I was interning! That deserves another two exclamation marks at least, it’s so exciting: !!  I started there three weeks ago, and am continuing in basically the same role as I have been.

I’ve gone to Melbourne to help with a workshop held for a communication project run for farmers to talk to other farmers about climate change and adapting to wider climate variability.

I attended the NCCARF Climate Adaptation Futures conference on the Gold Coast, as a member of the media team with CSIRO. We found scientists when they needed interviewing, wrote the conference newsletter each day, and tried to go to some of the sessions. Very busy time, and great experience in understanding how a conference goes behind the scenes.

I’ve also just got back from a trip to Canberra and surrounds (well, more ‘the surrounds’ bit), interviewing farmers for the aforementioned climate program. This was useful experience in long interviews, in photography and videoing, in finding a good balance of music when road-tripping with a colleague. Luckily, we hit on some great tunes.

While I was on the road, I heard from my partner that he has been offered his dream-job in Melbourne, finally! We will be moving there in November. It’s all GO, now.

So that’s me! If you’re a reader – tell me what you’ve been up to. I’d love to hear it!

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The next step on.

The next step on from my blog about Human Responsibility is how can everyday ‘you’s and ‘me’s find out how we are faring, carbon-wise, and how in the world do we find ways to combat waste and emissions in our own little ways?

This is of course, assuming that we have decided that each of our small steps CAN make that difference, and aren’t overwhelmed by the seeming magnitude of it.

Like Michelle, I was going to post about the email about the CSIRO’s book on saving energy (http://www.csiro.au/resources/Energy-Saving-Handbook.html), with simple tips on the website (and in the book) as follows:

•    1. Insulate your home
•    2. Install solar hot water
•    3. Use a radiant heat lamp in the bathroom
•    4. Update halogen downlights
•    5. Carpool
•    6. Check your washing machine

Each of the ideas is linked to strategies and information – and also don’t seem so unmanageable.

Other examples of small differences that I’ve thought of recently:

My favourite vegetarian restaurant (Kuan Yin in the Valley) offers a discount for takeaway customers that bring their own containers to put their food in. I think that this is an incredible move – a small (one-off) business willing to take a direct hit to be more conscientious. The other part of that is the tasty, tasty vegetarianism (I promise this isn’t me preaching) that they indirectly promote, and how this is so much better for the environment!

Other things I have been noticing lately are the Big Issue’s (mag to help support homeless people, http://www.bigissue.org.au/) own green stamp, and HarperCollins’ (publishers of a book I’m reading at the moment) efforts to be ‘green’: http://www.harpercollins.co.uk/about-harpercollins/corporate-social-responsibility/environment/Pages/environment.aspx. It’s funny, I think, the cognitive dissonance that goes on in my head about the beauty of books and the feel of pages in my hands – and the fact that it’s not good for us to keep printing books (or manufacturing like wild things).

Ironically, I had to laugh when I saw this a couple of months ago, though: toilet paper as an environmentally damaging concept (making it from virgin wood, not recycled, and the emissions and chemicals put out in the process of making it). Link here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/feb/26/toilet-roll-america. Let me say, though, I wasn’t laughing because I couldn’t stomach the thought of recycled toilet paper. I use a DivaCup (http://www.divacup.com/) and it’s the best thing since sliced bread, electricity, and computers put together!