Daily blogs from the frontlines of the Greenpeace planet down under. 

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  • Barbie & Mattel’s deforestation habit goes ‘viral’

    Blogpost by Laura K. - June 16, 2011 at 18:34

    Breaking up in public isn’t easy. But Ken and Barbie, who split last week over Barbie’s rainforest wrecking, have done so in a very, very public way. Ken’s video interview that broke the scandal has now been seen over one million times! And over 200,000 of you have written to Mattel asking that they stop packing their toys in rainforest destruction.

    But, despite this huge interest, it looks like the toy cupboard’s most famous on-off relationship will remain off for a little while longer – Barbie and Ken are still spending time apart, as Mattel hasn’t yet made a clear commitment to removing forest destruction completely from its supply chains.  

    Instead they turned off the comments on Barbie’s Facebook page. But that hasn’t stopped people speculating on when Barbie will finally get help for ... Read more >

  • Berlusconi's Italy is a strange place and amidst the madness today comes a little no nukes sanity. The people were asked and the people have spoken: Italy should have a nuclear power free future. This is great news and I cannot help singing the old Patty Smith's song: this is a great day and it's time to celebrate.

    In the past weekend Italians' were called to cast their vote on four referendums, one of which was about the production of nuclear energy in Italy. The answer has come loud and clear: almost 57%  Italians went to vote and the vast majority of them, almost 95%, have chosen for a future free of nuclear energy.

    25 years after the Chernobyl nuclear disaster and just three months since the earthquake and Tsunami wreaked havoc at the Fukushima nuclear complex, Italy, regardless the rec... Read more >

  • Polar bear to starboard

    Blogpost by Nick Young - June 14, 2011 at 11:51

    We were trying to put two people ashore in Iqaluit - a small and isolated settlement on the East Coast of Canada. Why we were doing that is a story for another day but while we were there, something unforgettable happend.

    We  were drifting amongst the ice floes waiting for a break in the weather. The engines were silent and the fog was thickening around us when the cry went up - POLAR BEAR!

    As rare as they are, we’d actually seen one the previous day too. But it was in the distance,  between us and our navy escort, eating a seal. It may have been the same bear but this time came much closer.

    It was a few hundred meters away when we first spotted it coming steadily towards us through the maze of ice and water. It jumped the gaps where the ice floes weren’t touching in big splashing le...

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  • Companies like Mattel are still pushing Sumatran tigers to the brink

    Blogpost by Phil Radford - June 14, 2011 at 11:50

    Mattel's paper purchasing polices are weaker than Ken’s plastic handshake.

    Poor Barbie. She’s survived fifty years of bad outfits, sudden beheadings at the hands of younger brothers and the wrath of feminists everywhere. Underneath that fixed smile is a steely determination that has pushed this character to the front of American popular culture and kept her there for generations. It’s one hell of a fairytale, but right now she’s caught in a scandal that threatens to shake the Dream House to its foundations.

    On Tuesday Greenpeace released a dossier of new evidence showing how Mattel is wrapping the world’s most famous toy in rainforest destruction. Activists dressed as Ken and Barbiearrived in Los Angeles to send a clear message to Mattel’s employees: it’s time to cut deforestation out of ...

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  • I have a small boat that I use for fishing and exploring where I live in the Manukau Harbour. It’s beautiful out there and it can get a bit wild but it didn’t prepare me for the fury of the North Atlantic or the serenity of the frozen seas of the Arctic. Read more >

    I’m on the Arctic Sunrise, one of the two ice-class Greenpeace vessels here in the frozen north campaiging against deep sea oil drilling. I’m writing this from my cabin as we crash through the ice on our way West across the Davis Strait. It’s a two-berth cabin but I have it to myself because eight of our crew are now in a Greenlandic jail.

    Three weeks ago we left Amsterdam at about the same time our fellow ship the Esperanza left England. We took slightly different routes but shared the same objective: to find and engage the Leiv Erik...

  • How Barbie Broke Ken’s Heart: Her Indonesian Deforestation Habit

    Blogpost by Bustar Maitar - June 9, 2011 at 13:53

    Yes it’s true, Ken has dumped Barbie – he’s upset since he discovered that she’s intent on trashing rainforests and pushing critically-endangered wildlife, like tigers, towards extinction.

    Heartbroken Ken decided to take dramatic action to let Barbie know just how he feels.  With some help from Greenpeace activists, a huge banner was hung from the roof of Mattel’s HQ that read  “Barbie: It’s Over. I Don’t Date Girls That Are Into Deforestation”.

    The rainforests of Indonesia might seem a long way from the offices of toymaker Mattel, in El Segundo, Los Angeles. Yet, Greenpeace forensic research into the packaging used for Barbie,  the world’s most famous toy, found timber fibres from  Indonesian rainforests. We also carried out an extensive investigation in Indonesia, mapping data and t... Read more >

  • Happy world oceans day!

    Blogpost by Karli Thomas - June 8, 2011 at 11:42

    We have a very happy school of sharks here in Wellington today, happy to hear the news from local retailer Foodstuffs (New World, Pak'n'Save and Four Square supermarkets) that they are shifting to more sustainable sources across most of their 'Pams' canned tuna range! Read more >

    This is fantastic news to celebrate on world oceans day, as the fishing method most commonly used to fill tuna cans has been wreaking havoc on Pacific tuna stocks and other ocean life. The method is the combination of fish aggregation devices (FADs) – floating objects that lure in tuna and many other species – and purse seines – huge nets that indiscriminately scoop up everything in the vicinity. As you can imagine, this deadly combination causes a grim toll of bycatch: sharks, turtles, juvenile tuna and other ocean life. ...

  • Today an Amsterdam court judge turned the tables on Cairn Energy. Rather than granting an injunction against Greenpeace, he instead suggested that the oil company might actually like to consider releasing its secret Arctic Oil Spill Response Plan!

    Cairn’s lawyers looked dumbfounded and stuttered about not knowing why their client won't release it.

    The judge went on to say that BP's skimping on a second valve cost the world billions as a result of the Deepwater Horizon disaster.  He said BP must regret that they didn't have their plans scrutinized in the first place because someone would have noticed the lack of a second valve.  Safety is in everyone’s interest - by being transparent perhaps there is an opportunity to make the spill plan stronger.  In fact, he asked Cairn, why they won't...

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