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

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  • Drinking water nitrate: a ticking time-bomb for public health?

    Blogpost by atobert - October 25, 2017 at 9:33

    The new Government must put people’s health first, by addressing the growing problem of farm contaminants in our water supply.

    Just days before our new Government was announced, Canterbury’s Chief Medical Officer of Health warned that increased irrigation in Canterbury is putting newborns at risk from water contamination. Dr. Alistair Humphrey was talking about new data, which show that nitrate levels increased in a quarter of Canterbury’s monitored wells over the last 10 years.

    Growing numbers of dairy cows - and the irrigation schemes that drive this - have pushed NZ’s nitrate pollution to record levels.

    And it’s likely just the tip of the iceberg. Nitrate can take several decades to leach through to the deeper groundwater, which means the full effects of the last two decades of intens... Read more >

  • We have one year to create the largest ever protected area on Earth

    Blogpost by Greenpeace - October 16, 2017 at 12:31

    In the words of David Attenborough, “Our planet is a blue planet”. With over 70% of our world covered by water, our oceans can be seen from across the solar system.

    It wasn’t long ago that the oceans were still believed to be too vast for human activity to be able to cause them significant, lasting damage. But study after study is demonstrating how the effects of overfishing, oil drilling, deep sea mining, pollution & climate change prove that humans are more than up to the task of causing major harm to the oceans and the animals that live there.

    It’s not just wildlife that’s under threat: it’s us too. The health of our oceans supports the livelihoods of billions of people, and sustains our planet by tackling climate change. Our fate and the fate of our oceans are intimately connected.

    Penguins in the Antarctic

    ... Read more >

  • The Ocean Plastic Crisis

    Blogpost by Rex Weyler - October 15, 2017 at 15:29

    "Plastics!" This became one of the most famous film lines from the 1960s era. In the film The Graduate, young university graduate, Ben (Dustin Hoffman) appears annoyed and distracted when his wealthy American parents stage an elaborate party to show him off to their peers. A family friend approaches him and says, "Ben I have one word for you: Plastics." Ben nods and stares into space, oblivious to the career advice.

    This short scene foreshadowed the age that followed. Plastics were about to explode upon the world. Commercial organic polymers were first synthesized a century ago, used by armies in World War II. They first entered consumer production in the 1950s. Plastic packaging created a global shift from reusable containers to single-use, throw-away containers.

    According to a 2016 pl... Read more >

  • Capitalism's moral maze

    Blogpost by atobert - October 12, 2017 at 18:18



    Life as a consumer is very different to what we’re told.

    We’re told it’s easy, it’s effortless. That life flows better with Visa.

    We’re sold an image of smash avo on toast; of beautiful, thin, white women laughing at salads; of right-angled, rugged heroes cruising on highways in their brand-new Holdens.

    It looks so good, so inviting, so perfect.

    But we know that there’s another picture too. Of turtles dying after ingesting plastic. Of marine life being deafened by oil drilling. Of climate change.

    No one wants this. It doesn’t look good on Instagram. So the same people who sell you solutions for your ageing skin also sell you the solution to all sorts of environmental crises.

    If you want clean air, then stop buying the affordable petrol car we sell you and how about this snazzy, ma... Read more >

  • Activists around Europe #RiseUp for a cleaner future

    Blogpost by Cristiana De Lia - October 10, 2017 at 16:50

    It was only two years ago when, during the Paris Climate Conference, we displayed our first giant Sun in Paris to demand that our world leaders tackle climate change by replacing dirty fossil fuels with clean renewable energy.

    As the Paris climate conference enters the closing stretch, Greenpeace activists create a solar symbol around the world-famous Paris landmark, the Arc de Triomphe, by painting the roads yellow with a non-polluting water-based paint to reveal the image of a huge shining sun.  This action reminds politicians and governments that whatever they agree in Paris, the only credible way to beat climate change is to support and increase renewables energy systems.COP21: Arc de Triomphe Sun Action in Paris. 11 December, 2015

    With world leaders finally agreeing on historic steps to protect the climate, the sun became a symbol of those promises and the symbol of our battle for a healthy, renewable future.

    Last June, we marked the beginning of Summer with a sun in Barcelona to remind our leaders of their Paris promises. Another Sun also rose in Croatia to make sure the world remembered the potential of solar energy.

    On occasion of summer solstice twenty Greenpeace activists have painted a gigantic 50-meter-wide sun in Barcelona's Francesc Maciá square, in the heart of the city, to support renewable energies and demand access to clean energy for all citizens. The activists have used more than 2000 liters of ecological paint to trace the yellow sun surrounding the square.Sun Action in Barcelona. 21 June 2017.

    Last week, peaceful activists turned iconic public spaces in europe into... Read more >

  • How pioneering brands are slowing down fast fashion

    Blogpost by Gabriele Salari - October 9, 2017 at 15:36

    The fashion industry is considered to be one of the most polluting in the world. Its material-intensive business model relies heavily on our addiction to overconsumption and feeds the destruction of the planet.

    There is one way to solve the problem: slowing down fashion. We need a model that doesn’t compromise on ethical, social and environmental values and involves customers, rather than encouraging them to binge buy ever-changing trends.

    At Milan Fashion Week this year, Greenpeace Italy decided to give the podium to the pioneers of sustainable fashion, who are changing the way we wear our clothes. These are the companies behind some of the examples from the Greenpeace Germany report “Fashion at the Crossroads”.

    We chose to highlight the three most important ways to create clothes that ...

    Read more >
  • The superhero two year old who represents thousands affected by the air pollution crisis

    Blogpost by India Thorogood - September 26, 2017 at 12:06

    “It was really distressing to see her working so hard to breathe. She’s so small.”

    It’s a parents’ worst nightmare to see their child being rushed in and out of hospital. Yet Sephie’s parents - Bo and Amii - have all too often seen their daughter confined to a hospital ward, breathing through a toddler-sized breathing machine.

    Her body would become limp, she would become unable to eat or get up and was exhausted simply from trying to breathe in and out. Her parents would take her to hospital, go home-then it would happen again. They were terrified.

    What’s worse is that, as Bo and Amii waited in the hospital’s emergency department, they noticed it wasn’t just Sephie being rushed into hospital with chest problems – there were lots more children too. Doctors said they thought chest pr... Read more >

  • The beginning of the end for nuclear weapons

    Blogpost by Jen Maman - September 21, 2017 at 9:20

    Peace Doves - Hiroshima Atomic Bombing 60th Anniversary. Japan 2005

    "I have been waiting for this day for seven decades and I am overjoyed that it has finally arrived,” said Hiroshima survivor Setsuko Thurlow in July, when a new treaty banning nuclear weapons was agreed at the United Nations in New York. “This is the beginning of the end of nuclear weapons.

    However agreeing on a new treaty is only the first step towards a treaty becoming valid international law. As of Wednesday 20th September, governments can take the next step and officially sign the Treaty on the Prohibition on Nuclear Weapons (TPNW). Once a country signs, it needs to have it adopted as national law to ratify it. And 50 countries need to do this before this treaty becomes agreed international law. (New Zealand is amongst the first to sign).

    Governments that sign and ratify the treaty... Read more >

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