behaviour change

OCBC NParks Cycle-In Movie – Sat 20 Aug, 4 to 10 pm, Parkland Green

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The International Bicycle Film Festival x Singapore Eco Film Festival (SGEFF)  partnership will kick off this Aug 20 at the Ride Safe event. Drop by their booth to find out more about cycling, sustainability and the 1st SGEFF (10 to 13 Nov)!

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Announcement: 1st Singapore Eco Film Festival in Nov 2016

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Get excited .::. The 1st Singapore Eco Film Fest #SGEFF is taking place this year and Biodiversity Connections is one of the community partners!

The fest will showcase films on environmental issues relevant to Singaporeans and our regional neighbours e.g. haze, food and e-waste; just as importantly, there will be workshops, panels, children’s activities and more to engage and inspire participants. All activities held throughout the festival will aim to engage participants creatively on how they can contribute to sustainable changes locally and globally.

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Our mascot for SGEFF is (what else?!) a pangolin so here’s a little Friday doodle from Nikhita Venkateish, one of the lovely volunteers helping SGEFF get up and running.

Check out the website for more information and updates. Please get in touch if you would like to get involved!

 

Creative Responses to Sustainability Guide – Singapore edition launched

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Deforestation, climate change, corruption, mass extinction. Can we trust governments and corporations (particularly in Asia) to take the necessary steps to deal with these issues? Scientists are often unwilling/unable/ineffective in taking action outside of academia to create social changes needed to address these problems, particularly in Asia.

Creative Responses to Sustainability is part of a new series of guides for different countries in Asia and proposes that:

“Artists, however, have a unique ability to respond, often taking the role of pioneers, or even activists. They can also take a position of addressing issues in a (more) ‘free’ realm and may therefore have the ‘response-ability’ to react on what needs to change, or how we can change it. The word ‘response-ability’ is used here deliberately, as originated by philosopher Emmanuel Levinas, and refers to having a unique and creative ability to respond to something, this being the essence of the reasonable being [1]. Just as the European Renaissance exploded during the 14th century, artists can be at the forefront of igniting 21st century social and environmental transformations.”

“Many developing countries see technological innovations as the answer for shaping these new societies. ‘Technology is going to save us’, is a recurrent phrase. However, more and more artists are moving in exactly the opposite direction, focusing on projects related to craft, gardens and working with communities, taking a strong interest in our changing environment. These artists do not think that technology is the answer to all our problems, but that an important part of moving towards a sustainable future is related to social, cultural, human, low tech solutions. Developing alternative structures to our current system requires a change in the way we live, embracing low tech, human solutions, as well as high tech innovations?”

Research aims of the guide are:
1. To build the foundation for an Asian ‘knowledge alliance’, an informal network of artists,
curators and arts managers supporting each other and working in the field of sustainability.
2. To provide artists and arts professionals with an overview of potential partners to engage
with on these issues in other countries and regions.
3. To influence cultural policymaking to allow more opportunities for artists to collaborate
with each other on issues related to social and environmental responsibilities.
“Climate change and other environmental disruptions do not acknowledge borders. How do we, as nations, deal with a problem without borders? To instigate real change we need to be collaborating globally on as many levels as possible.”
The first in the series, the Singapore Guide maps cultural initiatives across Singapore engaging with social and environmental issues. This guide is not meant for scientists but this is an area of collaboration for every scientist to consider: we need new ways of communication/education to build communities that understand the consequences of their day-to-day actions. Citizens as scientists not just in the conventional sense of carrying out research but in critically thinking about how our  species impacts other species and the world we live in.

This series of guides builds on previous discussions at the Green Art Lab Alliance and ASEF’s Connect2Culture program.

 

 

From The Spectator: Rhinos Are Being Wiped Out For the Sake of Fairytales

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A great article by Simon Barnes about targeting the underlying problem with rhino demand – the belief that rhino horn cures a range of illnesses – and that new technology is not going to be the solution.

“Rhino-poaching for the Chinese medicine trade has been going on for years. The black rhino went nationally extinct in Zambia in the 1980s, though there’s now an excellent reintroduction programme. The trade in African rhinos has been increasing, not least because there are now many Chinese people working in Africa. Supply lines have been radically shortened, while the increasing prosperity in China put rhino horn within many more people’s range.

But now there is a further problem and it’s Vietnam. The place has gone nuts. Suddenly the country is full of wealthy middle-aged men and many of them require rhino horn to convince themselves that they’ve arrived. They use rhino horn to treat cancer; it’s also used to treat the after-effects of a night out. You can spend vast sums of money on a banquet and even more on your hangover: and the whole process shows just how far you’ve come in life. All this has led to the demented spike in rhino-poaching. This has been followed by complex and sometimes curious efforts to stop it — or at least cash in before they’ve all gone.”

According to a 2013 TRAFFIC factsheet on Rhino consumers, the main users of rhino horn tend to be men over the age of 40.

“Buyers and users of rhino horn form a powerful social network consisting of important individuals with whom it is crucial to maintain good relationships.”

Something to keep in mind in developing approaches to reducing consumer demand in Vietnam.

Javan rhino in a stream in Ujung Kulon National Park in Indonesia / ©: 2015 Stephen Belcher Photography All Rights Reserved

 

Green Drinks : Enabling Behaviour Change in Organisations and in Society

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Green Drinks Singapore

Bhavani Prakash, who is well known in local and regional sustainability circles (and rarely needs an introduction), recently spoke with 11 Singapore-based organisations and pieced together a sustainability toolkit which offers a framework in engaging employees in CSR. Join us this month to listen to her findings and observations. 

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Today is the 1st World Wildlife Day!

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Today is the 1st World Wildlife Day!

3 March is the anniversary of the adoption of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and recently designated as World Wildlife Day by the United Nations General Assembly.

How are you celebrating wildllife today?

Here are some ideas:
1. Take a few minutes and enjoy a wild animal going about its day. It could be a bird picking at the grass, or a squirrel dashing along a fence.

2. Become a member of a nature or wildlife group in Singapore.

3. Write or share a post online about a wild animal you love.

4. Support the rangers who protect our wildlife. Send a thank you note or donate to wildlife enforcement projects.

5. Say no to plastic bags. They often end up as marine debris, killing marine animals that mistake the bags for food.