WORLD ENVIRONMENT MAGAZINE
ACT BEFORE IT’S TOO LATE
On Climate Change No 06 / October 2010
ENGAGING THE FOREST PEOPLE OF CAMEROON
Manage the Rainforest LEADING THE WAY FORWARD
The U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED Program
Making the World a Better Place to Live
o make the world a better place for life, a comprehensive effort must be initiated by environmental world bodies, supported by governments, and carried out by companies and individuals alike to ensure that a decade from now there would be a significant change for the better in an earth that has given us a lot, the only earth we know. At the opening of the meeting in Tianjin, UNFCC Secretary, Cristiana Figares declared that, “Governments have restored their own trust in the process but they must ensure that the rest of the world believes in an ever-increasing government commitment to combat climate change...” To combat Climate Change, the world not only needs to trust government commitment, but it also needs greater dedication on the individual level. This issue of World Environment Magazine is about hope. It is about human rights, and the right to freedom of expression. It is about finding solutions to improve peoples’ lives. It is about the genius idea of one single man who has changed the lives of thousands of people in Bangladesh, by using the power of the sun as a sustainable energy source. It is about ensuring a safer and healthier environment for our children, it’s about helping the forest people of Cameroon manage their land... Put in a nutshell, this issue is about each one of us as individuals, corporations and governments working hand in hand to make the world a better place to live by protecting our natural resources, our climate and our biodiversity. As a final note, the sixteenth Conference of the Parties (COP) serving as the meeting of the parties to the Kyoto protocol (CMP) will be held in Mexico from November 20 until December 10, 2010.
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WORLD ENVIRONMENT MAGAZINE WORLD ENVIRONMENT
Number 06 | October 2010
CHAIRMAN Andrea Tucci firstname.lastname@example.org EDITORIAL DIRECTOR Cathy Chami Tyan email@example.com
Waste Management >120
EDITORIAL PROJECT COORDINATOR Marc Wiliam Lowe firstname.lastname@example.org CONTRIBUTORS Dipal C. Barua, Elton Bocandi, Alya Kebiri, Mimo Khair, Hala Kilani, Francesco Kovaric, T.M. Lawrence, Marlene Mazraani, Robert Mosrie, Jason Perry, Gabriella Porilli, Steffen Lehmann.
Global Warming >14
CONCEPT & DESIGN
PHOTOGRAPHY Aero Sekur, Dipal C. Barua, Poggio Foco, Christian Ghammachi, Mimo Khair, Hala Kilani, Steffen Lehmann, LEED, Helveta Limited, Victor Van Gaasbeek. EDITING: Red Uncut Media Consulting SALES AND ADVERTISEMENTS email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org SUBSCRIPTIONS: Subscription@worldenvironment.tv P.O.Box 1396 Beit Mery, Lebanon PRINTING RAIDY | www.raidy.com PUBLISHED BY World Environment Group COPYRIGHT The articles become part of the magazine’s archive. Further publishings on other issues must be authorized by the editor following the author’s consent. ISSN 17379229
Making the World a Better Place to Live
Global Warming: > 14 Cancun Summit on Climate Change Mexico and the World Prepares
> 18 Freedom of Expression and Freedom of Information Can Play a Vital Role on Combating Climate Change > 24 Leading the Way Forward: The U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED Program
Energy: > 34 Tapping the Power of the Sun for the Energy Starved People of Bangladesh
Sustainable Development: > 46 Going Beyond Green Building Entering the Ecological Age
Eco-Living >82 > 56 World’s Specialists Agree AgroSpace Strategy
> 64 The Price of Dubai’s Artificial Islands
Biodiversity: > 68 Engaging the Forest People of Cameroon Manage the Rainforest
Eco-living: > 82 Protecting the Cedar Tree of Lebanon a Patriotic Cause
> 88 Corporate Social Responsibility: BankMed Encourages Healthier Environment Through Schools > 92 Poggio Foco’s Farm True Respect for Nature >108 Time Machine
Waste Management: >120 Dubai’s Waste Management, Challenges and Initiatives
WORLD ENVIRONMENT MAGAZINE’s policy is to use papers that are natural, renewable, recyclable and made from wood grown in sustainable forests. This item has helped slow down global deforestation, which amounts to 15 million hectares annually. In addition, all waste is sent for recycling.
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BOOK REVIEW MAGAZINE
The Positive Deviant
Out of the Mainstream Water Rights, Politics and Identity Edited By Rutgerd Boelens, David Getches and Armando Guevara Gil 'This book is an extraordinary intellectual and political tour de force. For the first time, the complex power-laden processes that shape the relationships between water rights, politics and identity are explored in ways that are academically stimulating, intellectually enriching and politically significant…an indispensible guide for all those who seek both to better understand how water rights and social, cultural or political power intertwine and to formulate and engage in socially empowering and politically liberating strategies of resistance and transformation.' Erik Swyngedouw, Professor of Geography, University of Manchester, UK
Sustainability Leadership in a Perverse World By Sara Parkin 'We are going to need the best possible leaders to guide us out of this mess and start us on the path to a sustainable future. In this fascinating book, Sara Parkin condenses her years of teaching experience into the definitive 'how-to' guide to sustainability leadership. Should be compulsory reading for everyone over 16.' Tim Jackson, Economics Commissioner, UK Sustainable Development Commission and author of Prosperity without Growth
The Renewable Revolution How We Can Fight Climate Change, Prevent Energy Wars, Revitalize the Economy and Transition to a Sustainable Future By Sajed Kamal 'In this book, Sajed Kamal reminds us what we intuitively know-that we must make the transition toward renewable energy as soon as is humanly possible, that continuing to rely on fossil fuel poisons our world with every hour that passes. Even more powerfully, though, he reminds us how possible that transition is. Equally competent with a spreadsheet and a bank of batteries, Kamal is the navigator we need to sail with confidence into this new century.' Bill McKibben, Author of The End of Nature, The Age of Missing Information and Fight Global Warming Now: The Handbook for Taking Action in Your Community
100 Per Cent Renewable Energy Autonomy in Action Edited By Peter Droege 'This inspiring book has been long overdue. It tackles an essential question for human survival in the 21st century: will we be able to transform our lives, businesses, buildings, settlements and the transport networks connecting them from unsustainable, oil-based and greenhouse gas emitting into sustainable, fossil fuel-free, zero-carbon metabolisms? This important volume and its two dozen contributors show that this path is necessary, practical and affordable. Read this book: its exciting, fresh insights will show you how to move from promise to practice.' Marco Keiner, Director, Environment, Housing and Land Management Division United Nations Economic Commission for Europe
Green Economics An Introduction to Theory, Policy and Practice By Molly Scott Cato 'An excellent introduction to a rapidly developing branch of political economics ... the scope for debate is one of the things that makes this pioneering book so exciting.' Richard Douthwaite, Feasta, the Foundation for the Economics of Sustainability
Confronting Biopiracy Challenges, Cases and International Debates By Daniel F. Robinson 'Biopiracy has emerged as a powerful concept inspiring critical perspectives on the commercial use of biodiversity and traditional knowledge. But what does it really mean? This well-researched and thoughtful book provides a thorough investigation of the theory and practice of biopiracy that scholars and policymakers alike will find illuminating.' Graham Dutfield, Professor of International Governance, University of Leeds, UK
Nature and Culture Rebuilding Lost Connections Edited By Sarah Pilgrim and Jules Pretty 'This richly textured book tells vitally important stories about how indigenous cultures are closely tied to the ecosystems they inhabit. As their societies are harassed by encroaching and usually hostile forces, those close links are being stretched and broken. Quite apart from their right to continue to live as they choose, there is much we can learn from them about how to live in harmony with nature. Indeed, our very existence may depend upon our recognizing this.' Robin Hanbury-Tenison OBE, President, Survival International.
All books can be bought online at www.worldenvironment.tv (WE BOOK REVIEWS section). 5
DID YOU KNOW
BIOFUELS are a wide range of fuels which are somehow derived from biomass. The term covers solid
biomass, liquid fuels and various biogases. Biofuels are gaining increased public and scientific attention, driven by factors such as oil price spikes and the need for increased energy security. Bioethanol is an alcohol made by fermenting the sugar components of plant materials and it is made mostly from sugar and starch crops. With advanced technology being developed, cellulosic biomass, such as trees and grasses, are also used as feedstocks for ethanol production. Ethanol can be used as a fuel for vehicles in its pure form, but it is usually used as a gasoline additive to increase octane and improve vehicle emissions. Bioethanol is widely used in the USA and in Brazil. Biodiesel is made from vegetable oils, animal fats or recycled greases. Biodiesel can be used as a fuel for vehicles in its pure form, but it is usually used as a diesel additive to reduce levels of particulates, carbon monoxide, and hydrocarbons from diesel-powered vehicles. Biodiesel is produced from oils or fats using transesterification and is the most common biofuel in Europe. First-generation biofuels are biofuels made from sugar, starch, vegetable oil, or animal fats using conventional technology. The basic feedstocks for the production of first generation biofuels are often seeds or grains such as wheat, which yields starch that is fermented into bioethanol, or sunflower seeds, which are pressed to yield vegetable oil that can be used in biodiesel. These feedstocks could instead enter the animal or human food chain, and as the global population has risen their use in producing biofuels has been criticised for diverting food away from the human food chain, leading to food shortages and price rises. Biofuels provided 1.8% of the world's transport fuel in 2008. Investment into biofuels production capacity exceeded $4 billion worldwide in 2007 and is growing. Supporters of biofuels claim that a more viable solution is to increase political and industrial support for, and rapidity of, second-generation biofuel implementation from non-food crops. These include waste biomass, the stalks of wheat, corn, wood, and special-energy-or-biomass crops (e.g. Miscanthus). Second generation biofuels use biomass to liquid technology, including cellulosic biofuels. Many second generation biofuels are under development such as biohydrogen, biomethanol, DMF, Bio-DME, Fischer-Tropsch diesel, biohydrogen diesel, mixed alcohols and wood diesel.
BIODIVERSITY is the variation of life forms within a
given ecosystem, biome, or on the entire Earth. Biodiversity is often used as a measure of the health of biological systems. The biodiversity found on Earth today consists of many millions of distinct biological species. The year 2010 has been declared as the International Year of Biodiversity. Biodiversity is not distributed evenly on Earth, but is consistently richer in the tropics and in specific localized regions such as the Cape Floristic Province; it is less rich in polar regions where fewer species are found. Rapid environmental changes typically cause extinctions. Of all species that have existed on Earth, 99.9 percent are now extinct. Since life began on Earth, five major mass extinctions have led to large and sudden drops in the biodiversity of species. ThePhanerozoic eon (the last 540 million years) marked a rapid growth in biodiversity in theCambrian explosiona period during which nearly every phylum of multicellular organismsfirst appeared. The next 400 million years was distinguished by periodic, massive losses of biodiversity classified as mass extinction events. The most recent, the Cretaceousâ€“Tertiary extinction event, occurred 65 million years ago, and has attracted more attention than all others because it killed the dinosaurs. Today there is concern that the period since the emergence of humans is part of a mass reduction in biodiversity, the Holocene extinction, caused primarily by the impact humans are having on the environment, particularly the destruction of plant and animal habitats. In addition, human practices have caused a loss of genetic biodiversity. The relevance of biodiversity to human health is becoming a major international issue, as scientific evidence is gathered on the global health implications of biodiversity loss
EFFICIENT ENERGY USE, sometimes simply called energy efficiency, is using less energy to provide the same level of energy service. For example, insulating a home allows a building to use less heating and cooling energy to achieve and maintain a comfortable temperature. Another example would be installing fluorescent lights and/or skylights instead of incandescent lights to attain the same level of illumination. A 13 watt fluorescent light bulb outputs the same amount of visible light as a 60 watt incandescent bulb, so you are getting more light for less energy. Efficient energy use is achieved primarily by means of a more efficient technology or process rather than by changes in individual behaviour. Energy efficient buildings, industrial processes and transportation could reduce the world's energy needs in 2050 by one third, and help controlling global emissions of greenhouse gases, according to the International Energy Agency. Energy efficiency and renewable energy are said to be the twin pillars of sustainable energy policy.
CARBON FOOTPRINT is
a measure of the impact our activities have on the environment, and in particular climate change. It relates to the amount of greenhouse gases produced in our day-to-day lives through burning fossil fuels for electricity, heating and transportation etc. The carbon footprint is a measurement of all greenhouse gases we individually produce and has units of tonnes (or kg) of carbon dioxide equivalent. The pie chart above shows the main elements which make up the total of a typical person's carbon footprint in the developed world. A carbon footprint is made up of the sum of two parts, the primary footprint (shown by the green slices of the pie chart) and the secondary footprint (shown as the yellow slices). 1. The primary footprint is a measure of our direct emissions of CO2 from the burning of fossil fuels including domestic energy consumption and transportation (e.g. car and plane). We have direct control of these. 2. The secondary footprint is a measure of the indirect CO2 emissions from the whole lifecycle of products we use - those associated with their manufacture and eventual breakdown. To put it very simply â€“ the more we buy the more emissions will be caused on our behalf. 7
RENEWABLE ENERGY is energy which comes from natural resources such as sunlight, wind, rain,tides, and geothermal heat, which are renewable (naturally replenished). In 2006, about 18% of global final energy consumption came from renewables, with 13% coming from traditional biomass, which is mainly used for heating, and 3% from hydroelectricity. New renewables (small hydro, modern biomass, wind, solar, geothermal, and biofuels) accounted for another 2.4% and are growing very rapidly. The share of renewables in electricity generation is around 18%, with 15% of global electricity coming from hydroelectricity and 3.4% from new renewables. Wind power is growing at the rate of 30% annually, with a worldwide installed capacity of 157,900 megawatts (MW) in 2009, and is widely used in Europe, Asia, and the United States. The annual manufacturing output of the photovoltaics industry reached 6,900 MW in 2008, andphotovoltaic (PV) power stations are popular in Germany and Spain. Solar thermal power stations operate in the USA and Spain, and the largest of these is the 354 MW SEGS power plant in theMojave Desert. The world's largest geothermal power installation is The Geysers in California, with a rated capacity of 750 MW. Brazil has one of the largest renewable energy programs in the world, involving production of ethanol fuel from sugar cane, and ethanol now provides 18% of the country's automotive fuel. Ethanol fuel is also widely available in the USA. While most renewable energy projects and production is large-scale, renewable technologies are also suited to small off-grid applications, sometimes in rural and remote areas, where energy is often crucial in human development. Kenya has the world's highest household solar ownership rate with roughly 30,000 small (20â€“100 watt) solar power systems sold per year. Some renewable energy technologies are criticized for being intermittent or unsightly, yet the renewable energy market continues to grow. Climate change concerns, coupled with high oil prices,peak oil, and increasing government support, are driving increasing renewable energy legislation, incentives and commercialization. New government spending, regulation and policies helped the industry weather the 2009 economic crisis better than many other sectors.
also known as ecological tourism is responsible travel to fragile, pristine, and usually protected areas that strives to be low impact and (often) small scale. It purports to educate the traveller; provide funds for conservation; directly benefit the economic development and political empowerment of local communities; and foster respect for different cultures and for human rights. Eco tourism is held as important by those who participate in it so that future generations may experience aspects of the environment relatively untouched by human intervention. Most serious studies of ecotourism including several university programs now use this as the working definition. Ecotourism appeals to ecologically and socially conscious individuals. Generally speaking, it focuses on volunteering, personal growth and environmental responsibility. It typically involves travel to destinations where flora, fauna, and cultural heritage are the primary attractions. One of the goals of ecotourism is to offer tourists insight into the impact of human beings on the environment, and to foster a greater appreciation of our natural habitats. Responsible ecotourism includes programs that minimize the negative aspects of conventional tourism on the environment and enhance the cultural integrity of local people. Therefore, in addition to evaluating environmental and cultural factors, an integral part of ecotourism is the promotion of recycling, energy efficiency, water conservation, and creation of economic opportunities for local communities.
ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION (EE) refers to organized efforts to teach about how natural envi-
ronments function and, particularly, how human beings can manage their behavior and ecosystems in order to live sustainably. The term is often used to imply education within the school system, from primary to post-secondary. However, it is sometimes used more broadly to include all efforts to educate the public and other audiences, including print materials, websites, media campaigns, etc. Related disciplines include outdoor education and experiential education. Environmental education is a learning process that increases people's knowledge and awareness about the environment and associated challenges, develops the necessary skills and expertise to address the challenges, and fosters attitudes, motivations, and commitments to make informed decisions and take responsible action (UNESCO, Tbilisi Declaration, 1978). Environmental Education focuses on: Awareness and sensitivity about the environment and environmental challenges Knowledge and understanding about the environment and environmental challenges Attitude concern for the environment and help to maintain environmental quality Skills to mitigate the environmental problems Participation for exercising existing knowledge and environmental related programmes.
GREEN BUILDING also known as green construction or sustainable building, is the practice of creating structures and using processes that are environmentally responsible and resource-efficient throughout a building's life-cycle: from siting to design, construction, operation, maintenance, renovation, and deconstruction. This practice expands and complements the classical building design concerns of economy, utility, durability, and comfort. Although new technologies are constantly being developed to complement current practices in creating greener structures, the common objective is that green buildings are designed to reduce the overall impact of the built environment on human health and the natural environment by: Effectively using energy, water, and other resources Protecting occupant health and improving employee productivity Reducing waste, pollution and environmental degradation. A similar concept is natural building, which is usually on a smaller scale and tends to focus on the use of natural materials that are available locally. Other related topics include sustainable design and green architecture.
DIODE, in electronic a diode is a two-terminal elec-
tronic component that conducts electric current in only one direction. The term usually refers to a semiconductor diode, the most common type today, which is a crystal of semiconductor connected to two electrical terminals, a P-N junction. Avacuum tube diode, now little used, is a vacuum tube with two electrodes; a plate and a cathode. The most common function of a diode is to allow an electric current in one direction (called the diode's forward direction) while blocking current in the opposite direction (the reverse direction). Thus, the diode can be thought of as an electronic version of a check valve. This unidirectional behavior is called rectification, and is used to convert alternating current to direct current, and extract modulation from radio signals in radio receivers. However, diodes can have more complicated behavior than this simple on-off action, due to their complex nonlinear electrical characteristics, which can be tailored by varying the construction of their P-N junction. These are exploited in special purpose diodes that perform many different functions. Diodes are used to regulate voltage (Zener diodes), electronically tune radio and TV receivers (varactor diodes), generate radio frequency oscillations (tunnel diodes), and produce light (light emitting diodes). Diodes were the first semiconductor electronic devices. The discovery of crystals' rectifying abilities was made by German physicist Ferdinand Braun in 1874. The first semiconductor diodes, calledcat's whisker diodes were made of crystals of minerals such as galena. Today most diodes are made of silicon, but other semiconductors such as germanium are sometimes used. 9
PROTECTED AREA the term protected area describes a wide array of land and water desig-
nations, of which some of the best known are national park, nature reserve, wilderness area, wildlife management area and landscape protected area but can also include such approaches as community conserved areas. More importantly, the term embraces a wide range of different management approaches, from highly protected sites where few if any people are allowed to enter, through parks where the emphasis is on conservation but visitors are welcome, to much less restrictive approaches where conservation is integrated into the traditional human lifestyles or even takes place alongside limited sustainable resource extraction. The term protected area includes Marine Protected Areas, which refers to protected areas whose boundaries include some area of ocean. Protected areas are essential for biodiversity conservation. They are the cornerstones of virtually all national and international conservation strategies. They are areas set aside to maintain functioning natural ecosystems, to act as refuges for species and to maintain ecological processes that cannot survive in most intensely managed landscapes and seascapes. Protected areas act as benchmarks against which we understand human interactions with the natural world. Today they are often the only hope we have of stopping many threatened or endemic species from becoming extinct. Protected areas also have direct human benefits. People – both those living in or near protected areas and others from further away – gain from the opportunities for recreation and renewal available in national parks and wilderness areas, from the genetic potential of wild species and the environmental services provided by natural ecosystems, such as provision of water. Many protected areas are also essential for vulnerable human societies and conserve places of value such as sacred natural sites. Although many protected areas are set up by governments, others are increasingly established by local communities, indigenous peoples, environmental charities, private individuals, companies and others. There are currently over 120,000 protected areas covering 12.2 per cent of the Earth’s land area, 5.9 per cent of the territorial seas and only 0.5 per cent of the extraterritorial seas (territorial seas extend from the shore to 12 nautical miles offshore; extraterritorial seas are those marine areas beyond the territorial seas; they extend from 12 nautical miles offshore and include the exclusive economic zones and high seas). Details of this global network of protected areas can be found on the World Database on Protected Areas managed by UNEP-WCMC. The vast majority of protected areas were identified and gazetted during the twentieth century, in what is almost certainly the largest and fastest conscious change of land management in history (although not as large as the mainly unplanned land degradation that has taken place over the same period). The success of protected areas as a tool for conservation is based around the assumption that they are managed to protect the values that they contain. Unfortunately, the commitment to setting aside land and water has yet to be always matched with similar commitments of resources for management. In other cases, even though management systems are in place, the pressures on protected areas are so great that their values continue to degrade. The recognition of the critical role that management needs to play to secure biodiversity within protected area networks has created much interest in the assessment of management effectiveness using more rigorous approaches. Information on the framework for management effectiveness assessments, methodologies and the results of thousands of assessment worldwide can be found on the World Database on Protected Areas.
THE KYOTO PROTOCOL is an international agreement linked to the United Nations Framework
Convention on Climate Change. The major feature of the Kyoto Protocol is that it sets binding targets for 37 industrialized countries and the European community for reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions .These amount to an average of five per cent against 1990 levels over the five-year period 20082012. The major distinction between the Protocol and the Convention is that while the Convention encouragedindustrialised countries to stabilize GHG emissions, the Protocol commits them to do so. Recognizing that developed countries are principally responsible for the current high levels of GHG emissions in the atmosphere as a result of more than 150 years of industrial activity, the Protocol places a heavier burden on developed nations under the principle of “common but differentiated responsibilities.” The Kyoto Protocol was adopted in Kyoto, Japan, on 11 December 1997 and entered into force on 16 February 2005. 184 Parties of the Convention have ratified its Protocol to date. The detailed rules for the implementation of the Protocol were adopted at COP 7 in Marrakesh in 2001, and are called the “Marrakesh Accord”.
WATER SCARCITY Water is an essential re-
source for life and good health. A lack of water to meet daily needs is a reality today for one in three people around the world. Globally, the problem is getting worse as cities and populations grow, and the needs for water increase in agriculture, industry and households. This fact file highlights the health consequences of water scarcity, its impact on daily life and how it could impede international development. It urges everyone to be part of efforts to conserve and protect the resource.
A HYBRID VEHICLE
is a vehicle that uses two or more distinct power sources to move the vehicle. The term most commonly refers to hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs), which combine an internal combustion engine and one or more electric motors.
CARBON OFFSET The carbon offset is a financial instrument aimed at a reduction
in greenhouse gas emissions. Carbon offsets are measured in metric tons of carbon dioxideequivalent (CO2e) and may represent six primary categories of greenhouse gases. One carbon offset represents the reduction of one metric ton of carbon dioxide or its equivalent in other greenhouse gases. There are two markets for carbon offsets. In the larger, compliance market, companies, governments, or other entities buy carbon offsets in order to comply with caps on the total amount of carbon dioxide they are allowed to emit. In 2006, about $5.5 billion of carbon offsets were purchased in the compliance market, representing about 1.6 billion metric tons of CO2e reductions. In the much smaller, voluntary market, individuals, companies, or governments purchase carbon offsets to mitigate their own greenhouse gas emissions from transportation, electricity use, and other sources. For example, an individual might purchase carbon offsets to compensate for the greenhouse gas emissions caused by personal air travel. Many companies (see list offer carbon offsets as an up-sell during the sales process so that customers can mitigate the emissions related with their product or service purchase (such as offsetting emissions related to a vacation flight, car rental, hotel stay, consumer good, etc). In 2008, about $705 million of carbon offsets were purchased in the voluntary market, representing about 123.4 million metric tons of CO2e reductions. Offsets are typically achieved through financial support of projects that reduce the emission of greenhouse gases in the short- or long-term. The most common project type is renewable energy, such as wind farms, biomass energy, or hydroelectric dams. Others include energy efficiency projects, the destruction of industrial pollutants or agricultural byproducts, destruction of landfill methane, and forestry projects. Some of the most popular carbon offset projects from a corporate perspective are energy efficiency and wind turbine projects. Carbon offsetting has gained some appeal and momentum mainly among consumers in western countries who have become aware and concerned about the potentially negative environmental effects of energyintensive lifestyles and economies. The Kyoto Protocol has sanctioned offsets as a way for governments and private companies to earn carbon credits which can be traded on a marketplace. The protocol established the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), which validates and measures projects to ensure they produce authentic benefits and are genuinely "additional" activities that would not otherwise have been undertaken. Organizations that are unable to meet their emissions quota can offset their emissions by buying CDM-approved Certified Emissions Reductions. Offsets may be cheaper or more convenient alternatives to reducing one's own fossil-fuel consumption. However, some critics object to carbon offsets, and question the benefits of certain types of offsets. Offsets are viewed as an important policy tool to maintain stable economies. One of the hidden dangers of climate change policy is unequal prices of carbon in the economy, which can cause economic collateral damage if production flows to regions or industries that have a lower price of carbon - unless carbon can be purchased from that area, which offsets effectively permit, equalizing the price. 11
RECYCLING involves processing used materials into new products to prevent waste of potentially useful materials, reduce the consumption of fresh raw materials, reduce energy usage, reduce air pollution (fromincineration) and water pollution (from landfilling) by reducing the need for "conventional" waste disposal, and lower greenhouse gas emissions as compared to virgin production. Recycling is a key component of modern waste reduction and is the third component of the "Reduce, Reuse, Recycle" waste hierarchy. Recyclable materials include many kindsof glass, paper, metal, plastic, tex tiles, and electronics. Although similar in effect, the composting or other reuse of biodegradable waste – such as food or garden waste – is not typically considered recycling. Materials to be recycled are either brought to a collection center or picked up from the curbside, then sorted, cleaned, and reprocessed into new materials bound for manufacturing. In a strict sense, recycling of a material would produce a fresh supply of the same material, for example used office paper to more office paper, or used foamed polystyrene to more polystyrene. However, this is often difficult or too expensive (compared with producing the same product from raw materials or other sources), so "recycling" of many products or materials involves their reuse in producing different materials (e.g.,paperboard) instead. Another form of recycling is the salvage of certain materials from complex products, either due to their intrinsic value (e.g., lead from car batteries, or gold from computer components), or due to their hazardous nature (e.g., removal and reuse of mercury from various items).
SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT is a pattern of resource use that aims to meet human needs while preserving the environment so that these needs can be met not only in the present, but also for future generations. The term was used by the Brundtland Commission which coined what has become the most oftenquoted definition of sustainable development as development that "meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs." Sustainable development ties together concern for the carrying capacity of natural systems with the social challenges facing humanity. As early as the 1970s "sustainability" was employed to describe an economy "in equilibrium with basic ecological support systems." Ecologists have pointed to The Limits to Growth, and presented the alternative of a “steady state economy” in order to address environmental concerns. The field of sustainable development can be conceptually broken into three constituent parts:environmental sustainability, economic sustainability and sociopolitical sustainability. he concept has included notions of weak sustainability, strong sustainability and deep ecology. Sustainable development does not focus solely on environmental issues. In 1987, the United Nations released the Brundtland Report, which defines sustainable development as 'development which meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.' The United Nations 2005 World Summit Outcome Document refers to the "interdependent and mutually reinforcing pillars" of sustainable development as economic development, social development, and environmental protection.
WASTE MANAGEMENT is the collection, transport, processing, recycling or disposal, and monitoring of waste materials. The term usually relates to materials produced by human activity, and is generally undertaken to reduce their effect on health, the environment or aesthetics. Waste management is also carried out to recover resources from it. Waste management can involve solid,liquid, gaseous or radioactive substances, with different methods and fields of expertise for each. Waste management practices differ for developed and developing nations, for urban and rural areas, and for residential and industrial producers. Management for non-hazardous residential and institutional waste in metropolitan areas is usually the responsibility of local government authorities, while management for non-hazardous commercial and industrial waste is usually the responsibility of the generator. FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: WIKIPEDIA www.wikipedia.com
By Alya KEBIRI
CANCUN SUMMIT ON CLIMATE CHANGE Mexico and the World Prepares
ith a few months left before a United Nations Climate Summit in Cancun, Mexico, the spade work ahead of the meeting seems to be turning up more boulders than a New England plow. During the first week of August, negotiators from 194 countries met in Bonn, Germany, and made little progress in any of six broad areas covered by a join-if-you-like plan that emerged from last December's climate negotiations in Copenhagen. Instead, it appears that the most significant progress on some issues will take place outside the UN process, where key countries are working to set up a "quick-start" adaptation fund for developing countries and approaches to increase efforts to combat deforestation. Ironically, some specialists say, UN
negotiations are becoming the venue for smaller sets of countries to work on these outside efforts. If the size of the current UN negotiating text is any indication, the process to have been thrown into reverse â€“ at least for now. "The frustrating thing about the
meeting in Bonn is that the text doubled in size again," says Andrew Deutz, senior policy advisor for UN affairs at the Nature Conservancy. "If you want to get an agreement on the text by Cancun, we should be narrowing, rather than expanding."
Global Warming Echoes of Copenhagen and Bonn The December 2009 Copenhagen Summit fell short of convincing countries to commit to a strong globally binding agreement, because both rich and poor countries alike had their own independent aspirations and refused to work together. The process was in a similar position this time last year, specialists say. One result: Negotiators and UN officials increased their effort to downplay the likelihood that Copenhagen would result in a formal legal document. In the end, the climate conference ended up with a Copenhagen accord. Delegates failed to adopt the accord as an official "decision”. Instead, they merely left it as something countries could follow or not as they pleased. Even then, only the presence of heads of state led to the accord. Unlike Copenhagen, however, no heads of state are coming to November's talks in Mexico. Moreover, the US Congress has abandoned for now climate legislation – a bill that was expected to define Washington's parameters at the global talks. After a week of haggling in Bonn, international negotiators made little progress on several key issues such as transparency and guidelines for developing countries. "Unfortunately, what we have seen over and over is that some countries are walking back from the progress made in Copenhagen and what was agreed there," said Jonathan Pershing, who lead the US negotiating team, at a post-meeting briefing. For instance, he said, some developing countries continue to press for binding emissions controls only for industrial countries. Yet the Copenhagen accord
and the previous Bali agreement on climate change anticipate that developing countries would attempt to at least reduce the rate of increase in their emission as their economies grow. "Nobody's really expecting at this point that Cancun is going to reach a comprehensive agreement," said Dr. Deutz. "People are starting to look ahead to South Africa already, or even beyond" for that, which means no sooner than the end of 2011. Unfortunately, almost eight months later, the Bonn conference in Germany has shown slow progress on finding a consensus for action on climate change.
BEFORE THE OUTCOME OF COP 15 HAD EVEN EMERGED, LATIN AMERICAN SOCIAL ORGANIZATIONS WERE ALREADY DISCUSSING THEIR STRATEGIES FOR THE NEXT CLIMATE SUMMIT, TO BE HELD IN A YEAR'S TIME IN MEXICO “What we have seen over and over again is that some countries are walking back from the progress made in Copenhagen and what was agreed to there,” Jonathan Pershing, head of the U.S. delegation to Bonn,
warned, at the 6 August 2010 UN Climate Change Conference. Connie Hedegaard, European Commissioner for Climate Action also said in a statement 6 August 2010 that, "These negotiations have if anything gone backwards." She said that while new commitments for Parties to the Kyoto Protocol had been made during the Bonn conference, progress had not been made in terms of negotiations regarding long-term cooperation concerning all nations, particularly those not party to the Protocol. "I urge all Parties to recognize their responsibilities and make additional efforts to get the talks back on track and moving in the right direction," urged the EC Commissioner. Despite the hurdles, Hedegaard hopes that the meeting in Tianjin, China, 4–9 October 2010, will deliver greater progress.
Getting Ready for Mexico On 16 August 2010, Mexican Foreign Relations Secretary Patricia Espinoso Cantellano told the IndoMexico Dialogue Towards Cancun that she is enormously concerned that there is very little time to overcome unresolved issues in the led up to the November/December Cancun Summit. Meanwhile, a series of preparatory conferences, featuring Bonn and Tianjin meetings, have been recognized as essential components in potentially delivering a cooperative result at Cancun. Before the outcome of COP 15 had even emerged, Latin American social organizations were already discussing their strategies for the next climate summit, to be held in a year's time in Mexico. The primary challenge is to broaden and strengthen the links between the
Copyright ÂŠ Victor Van Gaasbeek
different civil society movements and networks in the region. Activists concur that the international movement for climate justice has grown stronger over the past year. One of its main achievements was the first hearing of the International Court of Climate Justice, celebrated in October in the eastern Bolivian city of Cochabamba by NGOs from all over the world. Seven cases, claiming environmental harm contributing to climate change, were presented by Latin American communities and civil society organizations. A people's tribunal independent of formal justice systems, the aim of the Court is to pass ethical and moral judgment on transnational corporations and complicit states in order to raise the visibility of environmental crimes and the changes needed to coexist in balance with nature. "The invitation is to begin the journey towards Mexico 2010. This time COP is coming to our house (Latin America), and we must start mobilizing," said Lyda Fernanda
Forero, of the secretariat of the Hemispheric Social Alliance (HSA), an umbrella group for over 60 social networks in the Americas. Nicola Bullard, of Climate Justice Now (CJN), a global network of organizations and movements said, "climate change provided an opportunity to forge stronger links between the struggles of civil society against the World Trade Organization and other multilateral institutions." "The destruction of the environment goes hand-in-hand with social inequality," she added. The issue of climate change must become a political problem, one that challenges the capitalist model of development, and that does not allow governments and transnational corporations to take a short cut to "green capitalism," with low greenhouse gas emissions but the same financial architecture, activists argue.
Climate Change Hopes Riding on Cancun Summit Two bright spots, however, involve
work on deforestation and adaptation aid, observers have said. "There's work that a lot of committed countries are doing" in these areas, said Pipa Elias, a climate-policy analyst with the Union of Concerned Scientists in Washington. In Copenhagen, negotiators made significant progress on these issues. And they were key elements in the Copenhagen Accord. Developed and developing countries that account for some 80 percent of global carbondioxide emissions reportedly have signed on to the non-binding political agreement. Many of these are working to set up the mechanisms to parcel out adaptation money and to govern antideforestation, or REDD, efforts without any formal UN agreement. "Political promises are on the table for the world to see; to cut and limit the growth in their emissions and to provide finance for developing country action," said Figueres. "Governments have said these promises will be honored and their best chance to do this will be in Cancun."
Alya Kebiri Is a Freelance Journalist, contributor to World Environment Magazine and Editor for the Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company. Alya was born in Tunisia, and raised around the world.
By Sejal PARMAR
FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION AND FREEDOM OF INFORMATION CAN PLAY A VITAL ROLE IN COMBATING CLIMATE CHANGE Populations most affected by climate change are in dire need of receiving accurate information to strengthen their ability to deal with climate change effects. Information is needed to ensure that people take action in response to the new conditions brought about by climate change, including action that mitigates these effects. Responses to climate change will not be effective unless there is transparency in their development and implementation and respect for freedom of expression. 18
esearch carried out by ARTICLE 19, and other human rights and environmental organisations across the world, demonstrates that populations are being denied access to essential information about climate change and the environment. This lack of transparency on climate change effects stems from three key factors: a marked absence of Freedom of Information (FOI) legislation in many states; negative legislation which actively prevents access to information; and state secrecy. Often, any information that survives these processes is presented in a manner that completely marginalises the ability of individuals and groups, including minority populations and indigenous communities, to participate effectively in democratic decision making processes on climate change policies.
Climate Science Censorship Despite the huge scientific evidence in support of climate change, scientists – particularly officials or government researchers – have felt under pressure to downplay the effects of climate change and the threats of global warming. This has had an impact upon, not only the right to freedom of expression of individual scientists, but also on the national and international public’s right to know the latest, unbiased and scientific opinion on climate change. Instances of “climate science censorship” have taken place most notably in the US, a leading player on climate change issues but also, ironically, a state with a strong constitutional protection of free speech as well as longestablished freedom of information legislation. A report released in January 2007 by two non-governmental organisations, the Union of Concerned Scientists (“UCS”) and the Govern-
climate change issues, including one that was completed in 2007 by officials that concluded, based upon scientific evidence, that the US government should begin regulating greenhouse gas emissions because global warming poses a serious threat to the country. More positively, the Obama Administration has recently released that report and has revised its stated policy on editing the conclusions and policy advice of scientists. Even though the situation in the US has improved, other states which also have the resources to produce high quality climate science – notably Australia and Canada – have been exposed recently for gagging their climate scientists. At the same time, climate change “sceptics” have also alleged that the climate science community has colluded to withhold scientific information in order to make the case for global warming appear stronger. Most notably, following leaks of emails and documents in November 2009, the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit was criticised for a culture of “withholding information”. Climate change information, whether it supports the already overwhelming scientific body of evidence on global warming or indicates a complex unDr Agnes Callamard, ARTICLE 19 Executive Director derstanding of climate fluctuations, should be publicly available and not manipulated or suppressed. Only ment Accountability Project (“GAP”), then can the trust in the credibility of found that nearly half of 279 federal climate information – which is essenclimate scientists who responded to tial for effective measures on climate a survey reported being pressured to change – be properly built. delete references to “global warming” or “climate change” from scien- Activists Under Attack tific papers or reports, while many Journalists and campaigners who said they were prevented from talk- have attempted to expose environing to the media or had their work on mental degradation and risks to human security and health have the topic edited. The George W Bush administration found themselves being prosecuted also suppressed entire reports on by the authorities. Those that dare to
ACROSS THE GLOBE, WE HAVE FOUND INSTANCES OF MEDIA REPORTING ON CLIMATE CHANGE BEING SILENCED; SCIENTISTS BEING CENSORED; CLIMATE CHANGE PROTESTS REPRESSED; ACTIVISTS INVESTIGATING ENVIRONMENTAL DISASTERS INTIMIDATED, ARRESTED OR EVEN KILLED. EVEN THE AMOUNT, ORIGIN AND USE OF CLIMATE CHANGE FUNDS ARE SHROUDED IN SECRECY
investigate environmental wrongdoings, critique government officials or expose corruption, face punitive measures such as detainment, financial punishments and other forms of unjust repression. In July 2009, the French journalist Cyril Payen was arrested by security guards and handed over to the police while investigating illegal logging by a leading Indonesian industrial group in Sumatra. In November 2009, Kumkum Dasgupta, senior assistant editor with the Delhi-based Hindustan Times and Raimondo Bultrini, reporter for the Italian newspaper L’Espresso were arrested while covering a Greenpeace protest against uncontrolled deforestation in Pelalawan district in the province of Riau, on Sumatra. In Brazil, Vilmar Berna, the editor of the Niterói-based environmentalist daily Jornal do Meio Ambiente, which exposes clandestine overfishing and threats to protected marine life in Rio
de Janeiro Bay, has been a constant target of threats and intimidation attempts since May 2006. Notable examples of attempts to curtail the rights of climate change activists include aggressions against climate demonstrators at G20 gatherings and so-called “Climate Camps,” across the world from Canada to Denmark, France and the UK. The use of excessive force by police officers and containment tactics such as “kettling”, a practice currently being challenged before the European Court of Human Rights have clear chilling effects upon those exercising their right to freedom of expression with genuine concerns about issues of climate change. There is also growing concern in a number of countries that existing legislation, including anti-terrorism legislation, is being used by the state to intimidate, arrest, detain and even prevent climate change protests. This included preventing activists
ARTICLE 19 is an independent human rights organisation that works around the world to protect and promote the right to freedom of expression. It takes its name from Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which guarantees free speech. ARTICLE 19’s report Changing the Climate for Freedom of Expression and Freedom of Information which was published in advance of the Copenhagen Conference demonstrates that climate change debates and initiatives at the international, regional and national levels have failed so far to fully integrate a human rights approach that recognises the relevance of freedom of expression and freedom of information to this field. The report discusses the key role played by these rights in the development and effective implementation of climate change strategies, and in doing so highlights instances of journalists, scientists, civil society activists and others being threatened, harassed or prosecuted by authorities for seeking access to climate change information or expressing their views on climate change policies. The report indicates that too often, individuals around the world are denied vital information to help prepare them for the effects of climate change, and are left without any formal avenues to access information, or raise their concerns, complaints and fears about the phenomenon. For more information visit: www.article19.org 20
from convening at the climate change talks in Copenhagen. These strong-arm tactics of state aggression are forecast to increase, undermining peoples’ fundamental right to exercise freedom of expression on climate change issues.
Role of the Media The media plays a central role in providing key information to people most likely to be affected by the worst effects of climate change. A free and independent media can monitor national and international mitigation and adaptation efforts, and strengthen the transparent and accountable delivery of funds. The media can also serve to relay back key messages from those affected to officials and others trying to respond to the effects of climate change. Furthermore, the media plays a key role in an effective advanced warning system, in particular in relation to the dissemination of warning and disaster mitigation messages. Indeed, in many areas affected by natural or other disasters, the mass media are the only means by which messages can be disseminated quickly and widely. This aspect was emphasised in the Yokohama Strategy and Plan of Action for a Safer World, adopted at the 1994 World Conference on Natural Disaster Reduction, which specifically highlighted that early warnings of impending disasters and their effective dissemination using telecommunications, including broadcast services, are key factors to successful disaster prevention and preparation. There is little doubt that the same principle ought to apply to adaptation to climate change as well. Effective telecommunication, including through mass media, constitutes a key factor to successful adaptation and mitigation strategies.
Copyright ÂŠ Victor Van Gaasbeek
Transparency and Accountability The role of freedom of expression and of information in promoting transparency, accountability and good governance has been well documented. Two different aspects of accountability are particularly relevant to climate change. First, there is financial accountability for the expenditure of adaptation or mitigation funds, in the sense of these meeting reporting rules, owed to the public as a whole in the case of official funding and to those who have donated money in the case of private funds. Second, there is the broader question of accountability for the impact of the activities funded and the way in which they were carried out. This accountability is owed, among others, to the affected communities. Disagreements and controversies over the extent of the funds required for adaptation have largely dominated the debates on climate change. Similarly important is the nature of the accountability mechanisms put in place, both “upwards” to the donors, and “downwards” to the populations, particularly those affected by the adaptation measures. The nature and extent of the funds therefore raise legitimate concerns regarding accountability, good management of monies donated, corruption and the effective use of the funds. An important policy focus should thus be on providing access to information about both sources and expenditure of funds. This should include information about the amount of money received, the type and amount of other donations, exact information on how funds were or are being distributed and to whom, audited accounts and reports on the progress of project implementation. Available technology, as well as the media and other dissemination systems, should be used to distribute this information.
THE HUMAN RIGHTS TO FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION AND FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ARE BEING SERIOUSLY UNDERMINED IN THE CONTEXT OF GLOBAL DISCUSSIONS ON CLIMATE CHANGE THROUGH ATTEMPTS BY STATES TO RESTRICT ACTIVISTS’ SPEECH LIMIT THEIR RIGHT TO PROTEST, AND STIFLE SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH AND EXCHANGE The Global Economy of Information Although considerable information already exists on the expected human impacts of climate change and this information is increasingly accepted by governments, there remains a very significant “information gap” around the world about the consequences of climate change because of a shortfall of resources and rights protections in many countries. The information gap is most often felt amongst poor populations both suffering the severest effects of climate change and needing information on climate impacts the most. Such populations are also less likely to have their human rights, including right to freedom of expression and free-
dom of information, protected. Governments of poor countries lack the resources and means to monitor and analyse climate patterns and make climate projections for the future, or at least lack the resources to gather such information and produce such pointed scientific analysis as that supplied by rich countries. An abundance of information, statistics and policy debates have been generated by wealthy states which have the necessary expertise and funding to enable them to develop climate monitoring mechanisms and produce reliable, high quality scientific information and forecasts on climate change. Consequently this allows them to have a fuller picture about likely climate change impacts on their lives and appropriate responses to it. The information gap is exaggerated amongst populations who have a weakly protected right to freedom of information. Although about 90 states have now adopted legislation on the right to access information, vast swathes of regions highly prone to climate change – the Middle East, Central Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa – have no such legislation or no such legislation operative. Moreover, governments of richer states have legal regimes on the “right to know” through policy measures on proactively supporting the right to environmental information, for example through the establishment of a system of public registers to affirmatively release climate change information. The European Commission and the European Environment Agency recently launched a comprehensive new European pollutant release and transfer register (E-PRTR). This register contains information about the quantity and location of pollutants released into the air, water
Global Warming and land – including greenhouse gases – by industrial facilities throughout Europe. The E-PRTR is expressly intended to “contribute to transparency and public participation in environmental decision-making” and in so doing “implement the European Community the UNECE (United Nations Economic Commission) PRTR Protocol to the Aarhus Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-Making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters”. It is not surprising that populations which are poorly informed about likely climate changes, their effects or the availability of adaptation funding are less likely to have a “sustained voice in, or influence over, policy-making, and so in times of crises the vulnerability of marginalised groups can increase dramatically” (ICHRP report). The disparities of accessibility of quality information obscure the actual impact of climate shifts. Enhancing resources for poor states to address the information gap and the strengthening of legal rights of freedom of information would redress that imbalance.
Recommendations to States and Intergovernmental Bodies: Climate change agreements and policies should recognise expressly that climate change has consequences for all human rights and that these rights, including the right to freedom of expression and freedom of information, are central to mitigation and adaptation strategies. Future climate change agreements should obligate all states to establish a legal and regulatory framework to protect the right to freedom of expression and freedom of information, including freedom of the media, in the development and implementation of responses to climate change, in particular those on adaptation, mitigation, funding and technology transfer. Climate change agreements should insist that states establish at the domestic level accountability mechanisms to properly enforce the right to freedom of expression and freedom of information on climate change issues. Such mechanisms should include access to administrative and judicial remedies in cases of human rights violations.
Legal Framework for Protection of Information and Expression Rights
Promoting Aarhus Principles in International Agreements
ARTICLE 19 argues that climate change responses, especially those agreed and promoted at the international level, should reflect human rights guarantees on the rights to freedom of information and freedom of expression as protected by international human rights law and the Aarhus Convention. They should expressly refer to and meaningfully reflect existing international standards on the right of freedom of information and participation, in the context of environmental decision-making.
ARTICLE 19 argues that states party to the Aarhus Convention should promote its principles in global agreements and processes on climate change. Recommendations to States and Intergovernmental Bodies: The provisions of the Aarhus Convention should be used as baseline standards in future international agreements on climate change. States party to the Aarhus Convention should make the case for an express reference to that international
legal text within climate change agreements. Recommendations to Civil Society Organisations: Civil society groups working on climate change issues should remind states of their obligations under the Aarhus Convention in their policy documents and advocacy initiatives.
About Sejal Parmar Sejal Parmar is Senior Legal Officer at ARTICLE 19, the Global Campaign for Free Expression, and Visiting Lecturer at Queen Mary, University of London where she is Course Convener for the LLM course on the International Protection of Human Rights. At ARTICLE 19, Parmar work has focused on issues involving freedom of expression and equality, including incitement and defamation of religions. Her current work also includes projects on speech-based exclusion policies and the right to information and climate change. Parmar has made representations on behalf of ARTICLE 19 at meetings of the UN (Human Rights Council and the Durban Review Conference), the Council of Europe, the UK Foreign Office and the UK Joint Committee on Human Rights. She has also presented analyses of draft national legislation on the right to information at government and civil society consultations in Sudan, Montenegro and Yemen.She was part of the International Media Mission to Nepal in January 2009. 23
By T.M. LAWRENCE & Jason PERRY
Leading the Way Forward:
THE U.S. GREEN BUILDING COUNCILâ€™S LEED PROGRAM The past 20 years have seen an explosive growth in green building programs in a number of countries across the globe. Starting first with voluntary rating programs and guidelines, these are also evolving now into more mandatory requirements. Most agree that the initiation of this trend began with the Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM) in the UK. Established in 1990, BREEAM has expanded outside the UK and Europe. A growing international awareness of environmental, energy and water concerns has encouraged groups in other countries to initiate their own programs. In the United States, the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) was formed in 1993. The USGBC began development of the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) program in the mid-1990â€™s, with the stated intent to help transform the U.S. marketplace.
o encourage this market transformation, the USGBC worked to develop the LEED green building rating system. This program was created primarily through a coordinated volunteer effort of industry professionals across the nation. The USGBC used groups focused on specific technology areas, known as Technical Advisory Groups, or TAGs. While the specific requirements may differ, all green building programs, rating systems (like LEED) and standards cover five core areas of concern: the building site, water, energy, indoor environmental quality and the materials and resources
used. Some programs expand their focus to include aspects such as: the process for designing the building; building construction; and even how the building will be operated and maintained once occupancy begins. LEED accounts for these items to some extent, such as with the building commissioning process, as well as measurement and verification of the system operations. LEED encourages green design through a point based system. It defines key items of focus called LEED credit areas. The project design/management team chooses the individual credits on which to focus,
and attempt to earn points for each credit. Before any points are earned in a topical area (such as energy), the project must meet minimum prerequisites in that area. If the building project earns enough points, it can be awarded LEED certification. Meeting the criteria for additional points beyond the minimum level for LEED certification can, depending on the total number of points earned, allow the project to earn a LEED certified, silver, gold or platinum designation. Recognition for earning LEED certification is given (in one way) through a plaque that often is displayed in a prominent place in a
Global Warming public area of the new building. (Some buildings even have unveiling ceremonies for their plaques.) The LEED programs have evolved over the years beyond the ‘traditional’ aspect of a one-size-fits-all new building program. Newer LEED programs have been developed for specific building types (such as a school), operation and maintenance of existing buildings, core & shell development and neighborhood developments (see Figure 1). The Neighborhood Development program was formally launched in the spring of 2010.
Highlights of the LEED Credits for New Construction Following is a brief overview of some of the areas that are unique to LEED. Not all LEED credit areas or points are possible for any given project due to circumstances sometimes beyond the control of the project design team. An example of this would be a building project in a community with limited public transportation services. Within the Sustainable Sites area,
LEED includes credits for topics such as site selection and proximity to public transport, stormwater design, heat island mitigation and light pollution from the site. Water efficiency is addressed with respect to the building exterior (landscape irrigation), internal water use and innovative means to treat wastewater. The largest number of points possible is contained in the topical area of Energy and Atmosphere, with by far the largest number of those points possible in the energy optimization credit. Although other options exist, energy optimization is most commonly determined by building energy simulation modeling that compares the proposed building performance to a baseline reference building designed to meet the minimum criteria of ANSI/ASHRAE/IES Standard 90.1. Standard 90.1 is the basis for most of the energy codes used within the U.S. Renewable energy is addressed directly via a LEED credit covering onsite renewable energy installations, while a separate credit includes the purchase of “green power” under a
LEED addresses the complete lifecycle of buildings
2-year (minimum) renewable energy contract that provides at least 35% of the building’s electricity from renewable sources. Green power purchasing programs are somewhat unique to the U.S. and are growing in popularity as a means to help encourage, through third-party providers, the installation of renewable energy systems off-site through the payment of a premium cost above the standard electrical utility charge. Materials used in the construction process contribute to the embedded energy of the building project as well as have an impact through their production, harvesting or mining. LEED addresses these issues through encouraging construction waste recycling, the use of regionally obtained or manufactured materials, and the use of materials with a recycled or rapidly renewable content. Indoor environmental quality is addressed in areas such as outdoor air ventilation monitoring, low-emitting materials of construction, thermal comfort controllability and daylighting and views.
LEED CERTIFICATION IS ACHIEVED WHEN A MINIMUM NUMBER OF POINTS ARE EARNED, WITH THE NUMBER OF POINTS EARNED DETERMINING THE ACTUAL LEVEL ACHIEVED (CERTIFIED, SILVER, GOLD OR PLATINUM)
Figure 1 – LEED program options exist for many building types as well as new construction versus existing buildings 27
LEED certification is achieved when a minimum number of points are earned, with the number of points earned determining the actual level achieved (certified, silver, gold or platinum). Achieving a higher level of certification often requires innovation and integration of the building and site design, with one example shown in Figure 2.
Rainwater collected, stored in cistern Window shading combined with good daylighting inside
LEED Grows and Matures LEED was formally introduced and rolled out for public use in early 2000 as LEED version 2.0, after an initial pilot phase of approximately two years. As time moved on and experience was gained with the process, the lessons learned were applied to later revisions as LEED 2.1 and 2.2. In July of 2007, one of the more significant revisions made was the decision to require a minimum of two LEED points in the energy optimization credit. This was in response to the disappointing fact that some
Figure 5 â€“ Revision of the point system for on-site renewable energy with LEED 2009
Green roof over parking garage
Figure 2 â€“ Green roof over parking deck, LEED Gold certified building, University of Georgia, USA
LEED projects were obtaining certification without any (or any significant) reductions in energy consumption compared to non-certified buildings. The LEED program as a whole underwent a major revision in 2009. Working toward this revision, the USGBC conducted a thorough review
LEED-2009 Modified Renewble Energy Credit Points (EA Credit 2)
of how the points were determined and the overall weighting between the points. A life cycle analysis and credit re-weighting study was conducted with the assistance of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), using the Building for Environmental and Economic
Figure 4 â€“ Breakdown of LEED 2009 credit categories
Sustainability (BEES) life-cycle analysis software package as a tool in this evaluation. Using guidelines on the relative weighting that should be assigned to each of the key critical areas, such as climate change and indoor environmental quality, this study provided guidance for a means
to reweight the LEED points. Figures 3 and 4, respectively, show the resulting LEED point emphasis by category and percentage breakdown by topical area for LEED 2009 for New Construction. One major innovation in this most recent revision to LEED was the intro-
Impact of Weightings
duction of regional priority credits. These are not new credit areas, but rather a method to provide incentives to earn credits that address specific needs of the particular region in which the project is located. In the U.S., the regions are identified through postal code designation. Each area is assigned a list of six credits that are considered priority for that region, and if the project meets the requirements to earn points for that credit, an additional bonus point is awarded. For example, in an area with known water supply shortages, a regional priority credit might be assigned to the Water Efficiency credit number 3 (Water Use Reduction). One bonus point can be achieved per regional priority credit, with a limit of four in total. Another change introduced with the 2009 revisions included a modification to the credits given for on-site renewable energy systems. To encourage more projects to include at
Thomas Lawrence and Jason Perry Thomas M. Lawrence is a Public Service Associate with the University of Georgia, and has over 25 years of professional experience in engineering and environmentally related fields. Dr. Lawrence is also a consultant for Commissioning and Green Building Solutions in the Atlanta. He is an active volunteer with Habitat for Humanity, working to introduce sustainable design practices.
Relative weighting of LEED 2009 points to address the key environmental concerns
Jason Perry is a research engineer at Engineering Outreach Services at the Faculty of Engineering of the University of Georgia. 29
least some on-site renewable energy with the project, the minimum threshold for earning a point was lowered to 1% and opportunities given for more points in this area. The points earned for a given percentage of building energy costs, and compared to the older versions of LEED, are shown in Figure 5. USGBC has now put into place a program for a predicable development cycle for regular revisions and updates to the LEED programs, as illustrated in Figure 6.
Predictable Development Cycle
LEED Goes International In 2005, India became the first country outside the U.S. to initiate a green building rating program based on LEED. This version was developed in collaboration with USGBC. Building projects in other countries may also choose to register and comply with the U.S. LEED program requirements. LEED projects are also in other countries such as Canada, Brazil and Mexico. Additional countries have developed, or are developing, their own green building programs and ratings systems that include many of the approaches that LEED has taken.
Speculation on Future Trends Over the past two decades, voluntary programs such as LEED have made great strides in transforming the industry, building design and product development. But many consider this as only a good first step, and to gain the momentum needed to truly transform to a more sustainable built environment these concepts should become increasingly mandatory. This is already happening to some extent within the EU with the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD). Initial steps in developing 30
Figure 6 – The LEED program review and revision process
IN AN AREA WITH KNOWN WATER SUPPLY SHORTAGES, A REGIONAL PRIORITY CREDIT MIGHT BE ASSIGNED TO THE WATER EFFICIENCY CREDIT NUMBER 3 (WATER USE REDUCTION)
building codes with the full combination of green building requirements similar to LEED are also in process with the new International Green Construction Code (IgCC) and ANSI/ASHRAE/USGBC/IES Standard 189.1-2009, “Standard for the Design of High-Performance Green Buildings”. The IgCC and Standard 189.1 are written in code language such that they could be adopted into building codes. In the U.S., Standard 189.1 is a jurisdictional compliance option for the IgCC. The building code adoption process within the U.S. is fragmented by state and local governments, but several jurisdictions have already adopted green building requirements into their local codes following the IgCC and/or Standard 189.1, or are close to doing so as of August 2010. How LEED will fit into this new marketplace as green building concepts become requirements remains to be seen, but it is expected that the LEED programs will continue to evolve to encourage even better and more sustainable building designs.
What does a dendrologist study? a) Trees b) Nature c) Sea
b) 79% salty water
& 1% is readily available for humans to use c) 65% salty water & 5 % is readily available for humans to use
You could fill the largest lake in the UK with collected waste in just: a) 8 months b) 4 months c) 12 months
How much energy is saved when recycled alu-cans are used? a) 10-15% b) 30-35% c) 70-75% d) 90-95%
How much water can be saved if recycled paper is used instead of shredded wood? a) 20% b) 40% c) 60% d) 80%
What percentage of the Earth is covered by salty water and what percentage of the Earth's water is readily available for humans to use? a) 50% salty water & 10% is readily available for humans to use
Which of the following can be converted into a fuel source for cars? a) French fry grease b) Soybeans c) Corn d) Sugar cane e) Wood chips f) Garbage g) Cow manure h) All of the above
The length of the days and nights is equal at the: a) North Pole b) South Pole c) Equator d) Tropic of Capricorn
One recycled alum can saves enough energy to run a TV for: a) 3 hours b) 1 hour c) 6 hours
Paper products make up more than: a) 30% of the composition of landfills b) 40% of the composition of landfills c) 50% of the composition of landfills
Deforestation is responsible for about: a) 20% of human caused CO2 each year b) 5% of human caused CO2 each year c) 33% of human caused CO2 each year
How many tons of sheets are used every year for personal computers? a) 115 billions ton of sheets b) 15 billions ton of sheets c) 30 billions ton of sheets
By Dipal C. BARUA
TAPPING THE POWER OF THE SUN
FOR THE ENERGY STARVED PEOPLE OF BANGLADESH
n article by Reuters reports that a silent revolution has taken place in Bangladesh, where the remote areas of Bangladesh, far away from electricity grids, are installing solar systems to help boom their business. More than 500,000 Solar Home Systems (SHS) have been installed showing that solar energy applications can be scaled up massively and rapidly to provide an affordable and climatefriendly energy option for rural people. SHS are stand alone systems which can provide rural families with power for light, television, radio and even phone-charging. In a country where 84 million people are forced to live in darkness, accompanied by kerosene fumes, this makes a huge difference. Rural people in Bangladesh have shown their resilience, adaptability by making solar power a part of their lives. We are installing more than 20,000 SHSs a month and this number will double and triple in the coming months. This is a tremendous achievement for one of the most vulnerable countries facing the onslaught of climate change. Climate change is a reality. This, combined with energy poverty will lead to destructive energy practices, endangering the environment and health of billions of people around the world. The need today is sustainable models which will ensure both energy and environment security. Countries like Bangladesh cannot take the risk of increasing carbon foot print in the name of development. On the other hand, we should wean the rural people away from the energy practices which damage the environment. We have to make renewable energy technologies a part of rural life. Future belongs to Renewable Energy Technologies. But unless this technol-
ogy can reach the most deprived and vulnerable group in the world today the millions of rural people who suffer most from energy crisis - this technology will not reach its full potential, neither will the economic and social problems of the world be solved. We need to develop programs which facilitate rural communities to own and use renewable energy technologies to become eventual partners to bring and expand renewable energy technologies to their communities.
First Step towards a Sustainable Model I have been working with and for the rural people since my student days. Over the years, I have come to respect the inherent resilience and creativity of the rural people. Conventional wisdom was that renewable energy was not a viable technology for the rural people. This technology belonged to the high tech world, not to the rural peasants toiling in their fields, in a poverty stricken country like Bangladesh. I did not think so. I believed that rural people could be reached with renewable energy technologies. We just had to find the right model. Bangladesh is rich in sunshine that is why my first initiative was to popularize Solar PV technology. The upfront cost is high, but once this is paid off, there are no additional costs, load shedding, or ever-increasing electricity bills. Right from the start, I focused on developing a consumer focused integrated sustainable model, instead of a subsidy driven model. I wanted that customers would install a system because it fulfilled his or her needs, not because of any subsidy. I wanted to develop a model which would evolve around the following underlying principles: An innovative financial mechanism for making renewable energy tech-
Energy GROCERABDUR RASHIDUSED TO SHUT HIS SHOP INRURAL BANGLADESH AT DUSK, MISSING THE PEAK SHOPPING HOUR BECAUSE HE DID NOT HAVEELECTRICITY. BUT EVERSINCEHE BOUGHT A SOLAR SYSTEM, HE’S BEEN ABLE TO STAY OPENUNTIL LATE EVENING, ALMOST DOUBLING HIS DAILY SALES
nologies affordable to the rural people Awareness development for creating environment for forging community partnership Focus on consumer needs instead of subsidies through innovative consumer friendly product development Technology transfer and local capacity development Tapping into local market forces through entrepreneur development, job creation, creation of new business opportunities and linking these to renewable energy technologies Focus on women as agents of change A de-centralized bottom up approach instead of centralized top down approach to Rural Electrification The main challenge was to convince the rural people that Solar PV technology was a workable solution to their energy problem. High up front cost had to be reduced â€“ no rural family would
be expected to spend their hard earned money on an unknown technology. I came up with an innovative solution. I used installment based payment to reduce the high upfront cost and offered free after sales service for nearly three years to attract rural clients. Sales of SHS began to surge when rural people realized that they could escape from kerosene fumes, have bright light, power their mobile phones, watch TV and especially increase their business activities with solar, at the same cost of kerosene. I also focused on developing a highly efficient and motivated workforce at the rural areas. I successfully created a synergy between technical aptitude and social commitment in my work force. I called my engineers â€˜Social Engineersâ€™. My engineers were unique. They were committed not only to providing energy solution to disadvantaged rural people, but also social and economic solu-
tions to bring over all holistic development to the rural people. They went door to door convincing the rural people about the benefits of renewable energy. They were proactive in building the awareness of the rural community, motivating them to bring changes in their own life and create an enabling environment so that they can adopt renewable energy technologies. For example, we trained young men and women as solar technicians, offered scholarship to children of solar users and developed special packages for installing solar in schools, Madrashas etc. We also had special packages for our employees so that they could install a solar in their homes after working some years with us. We were also proactive in ensuring the participation of women and children. I was convinced that without changing the mindset of women and empowering them, no permanent
change could be brought to rural societies. We also had to reach the next generation to lay a sustainable base for renewable energy society. We developed special programs targeting rural women and children. We trained women on how to take care of systems installed in their homes. We organized renewable energy orientation programs in rural schools. All these resulted in a powerful model for propelling solar energy ahead in the rural heartland of Bangladesh. Local employed technicians created trust and helped to make solar popular in their communities. At the same time solar users were assured of efficient, cost effective after sales service right at their door steps. Women and children were proactive in promoting solar in their homes, to their neighbors and families. Especially women in SHS powered homes helped to take care of the installed systems, reducing after
repair and maintenance costs. A powerful synergy was created between market forces and community forces. We have successfully overturned the myth that solar technology is too expensive or too high tech to be accepted by the rural people. Our experience has been the opposite – once a Solar is installed in a community and its owner benefits from it, the demand for Solar surges in that community.
Light, Energy and Income “The customers love coming to my shop, now that I have bright lights. They can see what they are buying and what I have in stock. And they can watch television and use mobile phones too. My SHS helps to power mobile phone, which clients can use to make calls. My sales have gone up by at least Tk.300 a day,” says one satisfied SHS owner. Our programs have given thousands of
rural families light, hope, income, so that they can move forward to realize their full potential. New businesses have sprung up- mobile shops, community TV centers, and electronic repair shops. Business hours have been extended - shops, bakeries, and saw mills stay open late at night. It is as if sleepy, dark villages have woken up to new life – a life of activity, growth, which is healthy and clean. Approximately 100,000 tones CO2 per year is being replaced by the installed systems Especially the lives of women and the low income households have changed significantly. Low income shops keepers in hundreds of village markets are earning more because of solar light. Micro-utility model is allowing a group of people to share a single Solar Home System, bringing down costs and maximizing benefits. This model has become very popular in market places. 39
Small SHS of 10 and 20 watts is helping to replace kerosene or candles in low income households. Owners of 20 watts SHS used about 7.5 liters/month of kerosene saving Tk. 400 month at the current subsidized price of Tk. 50 per liter. Most rural people install 50 watt systems which can save about Tk. 800 -1000 energy cost monthly, replacing kerosene/diesel. Rural women can now run home based poultry or handicraft business after dusk under solar light. They no longer have to finish their household activities under dim light, or clean soot from ceiling or walls. They are also protected from indoor air pollution and kerosene fumes. The use of SHS brings significant social benefits. Families can listen to music and with larger SHS watch television. Domestic chores and studying can be carried out more easily for longer and more safely in the evenings with PV lighting. The availability of PV power for phone chargers has made it possible for people in rural areas to use mobile phones. This increases business opportunities and also allows people maintain contact with family members throughout Bangladesh and abroad. Our programs are serving the most disadvantaged communities, living in the coastal areas. These programs are touching triple bottom lines of sustainability social, economical and environmental, creating jobs, facilitating education, communication and especially empowering women, replacing kerosene to introduce modern, eco-friendly lighting in the rural communities.
Green Jobs for Women Kulsum Akhter was eight years old when her father died and left her family struggling to survive in Tangail, an agricultural area in the central region of Bangladesh. She was the familyâ€™s sole
money-earner, and the 600 taka a month she made from tailoring work did not go far. Her father died so her family had a lot of misery in the family. They were living in a very poor condition and could not meet daily requirements for food and clothing. Her luck changed when she was selected for a training program to be trained as a solar technician at Village based Technology Centers, managed by women engineers. Now, she earns around Tk. 5000-8000 by assembling solar accessories such as charge controllers, lampshade invertors, mobile chargers etc. She is very happy; she can take care of her family and especially bear the cost of educating her younger brother. Around 5000 rural women like Kulsum Akter has been trained as Solar technicians through 45 Green Technology Centers (GTCs ) set up in the rural areas. These women who belong to the most deprived class of their communities have learnt skills on assembling, installing and repairing and maintaining one of the most up to date technologies in the world. Over the years, I have realized that women suffer most from energy poverty. They are also deprived in other ways such as through early marriage, dowry death, trafficking and especially backbreaking hard work for very low pay. I wanted women from transform women from passive victims to active agents of change so that they would become an example of positive change for other women as well as their communities. Women have tremendous influence in their communities as mothers, wives and sisters: If they can be motivated and mindset changes, they can be the harbingers of change for their communities. I believe by empowering women, we can empower the community. 41
I wanted to create for our rural sisters, motherâ€™s respectable, skilled jobs right in their villages, which would increase their social and economic status. I considered this as social commitment and a tool for social justice. I came up with an idea to train rural women as solar technicians who would assemble, repair solar accessories as well be responsible for after sales services, especially during post warranty period. That is how the concept of Green Technology Center was created. I plan to create 100000 green jobs by 2015. My goal is to upgrade the present GTC structure to become rural based Green Technology Hub which would facilitate sourcing seed capital, technical assistance to create hundreds of Women Green Energy entrepreneurs. I see a future where Kulsum Akhter has opened her own SME business assembling, repairing solar accessories as well as promoting, installing all types of renewable including solar. I want to create a flexible, entrepreneur based supply chain which will act as a bridge between us and the rural customers.
WOMENWHO BELONG TO THE MOST DEPRIVEDCLASS OF THEIR COMMUNITIES HAVE LEARNT SKILLS ON ASSEMBLING, INSTALLINGAND REPAIRING AND MAINTAININGONE OF THE MOST UP TO DATE TECHNOLOGIES IN THE WORLD 42
The Next Step: Unlocking the Full Potential Despite the huge popularity of solar power in Bangladesh, we have just tapped only a tiny portion of its full potential. Growing aspiration coupled with increased disposable income and concurrent machination has created a huge potential of solar energy in the rural areas. Time has come to diversify the application for solar technology and come up with innovative business models to meet the diversified the needs of the people. Some of the potentials are: Solar for Agriculture: Our farmers suffer from severe power crisis every year. Government doles out large diesel subsidies, but this can be considered only a temporary and partial solution to problem. There are some 200, 000 pumps consuming around
750 MW electricity. Solar powered pumps can be a solution. We can use solar pumps for irrigation during the day and lighting during the night. Extra electricity can be transmitted to the grid. We can also configure power tillers, rice haulers, threshers into hybrid models so that they can be powered by solar technology. Rural Enterprise: We can create Green Enterprise Zones in the rural areas for assembling, repairing solar accessories on a mass scale. This would create employment for rural youth. We also see a growing rural businesses assembling, repairing irrigation pumps, power tillers etc. We can easily green these businesses by assembling, repairing, leasing climate friendly products such as solar pumps, hybrid power tillers etc. We can install Mini Solar hybrid grids to facilitate rural enterprises. Thousands of rural businesses depend on
diesel generators to power their businesses. Solar power can replace these generators easily. For example, in rural market places, we can successfully install Solar- Biogas Hybrids, where biogas plants are powered by human and market wastes. Against Climate Threat: Frequent cyclones such as Sidr and Aila have turned our coastal areas into disaster zones. Thousands of people are living on embankments surrounded by salinity. Solar power can be a solution. We can install small solar powered water desalination plants, early warning systems, refrigerators in cyclone shelters, schools and rural clinics. We can use hybrid models such as solar â€“biogas hybrids or solar â€“wind hybrid to protect our coastal people from the threats of climate change. These systems in relevant places can help the disaster struck areas to stay connected with the rest of country,
apart from providing other benefits. Health, Education: We can facilitate education and health in the rural areas through installing solar in schools and clinics. We can have solar powered computers, televisions in rural schools which help in distance learning and help rural children to get connected with quality education. Lack of power and refrigerators are major problems in rural clinics. Solar power can facilitate this saving many lives. Power House: We can install grid connected Solar Systems on roof top of urban buildings. To study the suitability of such grid connection, a model of 1.1 k W Solar Pv system was installed on the roof top of the Renewable Energy Research Center of Dhaka University on August 2008. The model ran successfully. According to this model 1 MW electricity can be generated from forty building roof tops. Urban households can escape from load shading
while transmitting the extra electricity to the grid. This would tremendously reduce the over load on our grid system. We can initiate feed in tariff to popularize Solar PV technology in urban buildings. Large Shopping Centers, Restaurants can also install Solar PV technology to meet their lighting needs. We can install Solar panels in Chittagong Hill tracts areas to feed power to grid lines. Eco-villages/Zones in Coastal Areas: We can create eco-villages or zones where each home and business is run using solar and other renewable energy technologies. This special zones would have solar mini â€“grids, improved cooking stoves, rain water harvesting, organic fertilizers, nurseries and tree plantations etc. The houses would be built sturdily on especially elevated bases. We could promote this type of villages especially in coastal areas suffering from cyclones, tidal surges.
Low Income Households: Small SHS of 10 and 20 watts have become popular in rural shops and low income households. We can accelerate this trend through promoting mini SHS (3 to 5 watts) as well as solar lanterns. We can promote these technologies through creating women entrepreneurs. Small shops in urban areas can also use these mini systems for lightening instead of illegal grid connection. We can also promote these systems in slums and low income urban households to meet their lightening needs. Solar Energy Hub: We can manufacture world class solar accessories in Bangladesh and export these to the international market. We are already assembling all accessories in Bangladesh and we only need to upgrade these and manufacture low cost tailor made quality products on a mass scale. Low cost would make Bangladesh an attractive stop as cost increases in China and India. This would help to create hundreds of jobs as well as earn foreign currency. We can also train human resource and export to other countries
A Solar Bangladesh I dream of making Bangladesh one of the First Solar Nations in the world. I see a future where Renewable Energy Technology is a major contributor to energy mix. I envision Bangladesh as a country rising to the challenges of Global Warming and where renewable energy technology plays a key role. I want to take solar energy to 75 million people of Bangladesh so that everyone can have access to clean, 44
efficient power for themselves and their children. I want to build on what we have achieved so that Bangladesh can be a Solar Nation by the next decade. Despite the huge potential and acceptance of solar energy by the masses, our successes have been limited to only SHS. My own experience in Bangladesh has shown me that we need a new type of business model to facilitate a market based sustainable business culture which will attract new investment, reduce overhead costs, create entrepreneurs, and be flexible and fast growing. We can facilitate a cutting edge entre-
WE SHOULD HELP CREATE SMALLAND BIG BUSINESS COMPANIES LINKED WITH LOCAL ENTREPRENEURS TO SPREAD SOLAR. THIS WOULD CREATE OWNERSHIP, INNOVATIONS AND COMPETITION
preneurial environment by focusing on the following: Evolving a Cutting Edge, Entrepreneur Based Structure: Our financial incentives are focused on micro-finance institutions. Instead of this, we should help create small and big business companies on a district/sub district level linked with local entrepreneurs to spread solar. This would create ownership, innovations and competition. We can create villages with female based entrepreneurs to promote solar lanterns, small SHS as well as Improved Cooking Stoves. They can be provided with micro-credit. We can create village based entrepreneurs to popularize solar pumps, mini â€“grids etc through SME financing. The entrepreneurs would invest in the technology and earn a return by renting the technology to others. The entrepreneurs can source loans from rural banks. We can have national level organizations that would help district/subdistrict level small and big companies to source finance, technology and build up their market etc. Creating an Efficient, Cost Effective Supply Chain We need to set up more battery and other solar accessory manufacturing units to create a competitive environment, reduce costs and increase efficiency. Our government should try to attract foreign investment and R & D in this sector. Currently solar practitioners are suffering from high battery price. This can be solved through more battery companies.
Energy About Dipal C. Barua Dipal Chandra Barua is the Founding Managing Director of Grameen Shakti (GS), an organization that has installed more than 200,000 solar PV systems currently providing power for more than two million rural people. GS has developed a number of other initiatives, including a biogas technology that converts cow and poultry waste into gas for cooking, lighting and fertilizer. GS has installed more than 6,000 biogas plants and plans to construct 500,000 more by 2012. In addition, GS has trained rural women to be solar technicians enabling green entrepreneurs through a highly successful micro- credit program. In 2009, Mr. Barua was awarded Zayed Future Energy Founding Managing Director of Grameen Shakti for his visionary efforts to bring renewable energy solutions to the rural population of Bangladesh.
We should concentrate on manufacturing export quality products to achieve economies of scale and tap into the world market. We can consider setting up Green Enterprise Zones especially for solar accessories such as charge controllers, mobile chargers etc with a focus on the rural areas, to create green jobs. Easy Access to Green Credit & Funds Providing long term soft loans at 5-6 % interest rate to all solar related businesses... Present practice is that service providers can access soft loans after installing the systems. This does not take into account high upfront cost of sourcing supplies or developing the organizations. Similarly solar related manufacturing/ supply companies have to access loans at very high cost. Including a component in housing loans for installing solar Creating a special green fund for providing grant for pilot testing new projects Providing matching grants through local government institutions to green our infrastructure such as rural schools, clinics, cyclone shelters
Creating a window in agricultural and other rural financial institutions to provide credit for renewable. We can include training and credit for renewable energy technologies in our youth development programs. We should especially focus on SME loans and micro-credit loans for creating small and big entrepreneurs in the rural areas. Circulating Green bonds for raising capital for solar and other renewable. Passing Pro-Renewable Energy Laws Allowing feed â€“ in tariff for promoting solar both at the individual and commercial level. Removing all VAT/ Tax off solar accessories and raw materials to reduce cost. Bangladesh has one of the highest tariff structure in the world Providing tax holidays and other benefits for investing in solar businesses Making it mandatory to have all market places, restaurants, commercial buildings to install solar. At the same time government should provide soft loans for solar installation which would be part of housing loans.
Investing in Capacity Development and R&D Developing a sustainable framework for human resources through country wide vocational centers, training institutes etc. Focusing also on developing export quality human resource, which will also be an incentive for private companies to participate with the maturing of the sector. Focusing on R &D in order to adapt and develop innovative technologies. We should have innovation lab in all major universities linked with international institutions and research institutions. Government should create an incentive structure such as competitions, awards to promote R &D. Facilitating new ideas such as installment collection through mobile phones, prepaid cards to scale up and reduce transaction costs. I have always been a passionate believer of Solar Energy. I want solar energy to reach millions of the people around the world. My dream is to create A Solar World for all and make Bangladesh, for starters, one of the First Solar Nations in the world. 45
By Steffen LEHMANN
GOING Beyond GREEN BUILDING Entering the Ecological Age
Conversation between Peter Head and Steffen Lehmann, Singapore 2009.
Arup, the global design, engineering and business consultancy, is the creative force behind many of the worldâ€™s most innovative and sustainable buildings, transport and civil engineering projects. Founded over 60 years ago, Arup has operated in China for more than three decades, and almost a quarter of their worldwide staff of 9,000 is based in Hong Kong and China. 46
rup was initially commissioned by the Shanghai Industrial Investment Corporation in 2006 to put forward concept proposals for a new sustainable city: Wanzhuang Eco-City, located in Hebei Province. Plans for the 80 sq km site are now being guided by a Development Strategy, the Prelimi-
nary Control Plan and Sustainability Design Guidelines. British engineer Peter Head has been a director at Arup since 2004 and is based in London. He is chairman of global planning and leads the companyâ€™s planning and integrated urbanism business, which includes development planning, eco-
nomics and policy, integrated urbanism, transport and environmental consulting and sustainable development. In his early career, Peter worked at the forefront of steel bridge technology and in 1998 he was awarded an OBE for his services to bridge engineering. He is also chairman of the Steel Construction Insti-
tute. Peter was appointed a Commissioner on the London Sustainable Development Commission in 2002, representing the construction sector. There, he was a member of the group that drafted the ‘Sustainable Development Framework’ for London, which led an initiative to create a voluntary code of practice for sustainable planning, design and construction of London's built environment. For the last decade or so, Peter has been dedicated to overthrowing the notion that urbanization is inevitably the fast track to environmental collapse. Specifically, he is fighting to ensure that a growing number of the world’s mega cities, and the associated mega projects, embrace sustainability principles from the outset. From 2004 to 2008 he was project director for the Dongtan Eco-City project near Shanghai, a project that has recently stalled. Over the last five years, Peter Head has lectured all over the world on sustainable development and the transformation of cities. He gave the 2008-9 Brunel Lecture Series for the Institution of Civil Engineers, titled 'Entering the Ecological Age’, which he presented in twenty countries. The Brunel Lecture looked, in detail, as to whether there is a model that would enable 9 billion people to live sustainably on Earth in 2050. It asked which policies and investments would be needed to achieve this? and whether it could be done without damaging the economy. In focusing on this ecological transition Peter developed retrofit scenarios for existing buildings. Steffen Lehmann met with Peter Head at the IGBC Conference in Singapore in October 2009 (where they were both speakers) that discussed the world crises caused by climate
change, food and water shortages and resource constraint problems. He asked him what the planner’s and engineer’s role will be in the cities’ transformation to sustainable urbanism. Particularly, how such urban concepts and technologies could be scaled to fit the world’s most populous country, China? Here are excerpts from their conversation.
EVERY YEAR FOR THE NEXT TWENTY YEARS IT IS ESTIMATED THAT UP TO 10 MILLION PEOPLE WILL MOVE FROM CHINA’S COUNTRYSIDE TO ITS URBAN AREAS Steffen Lehmann (SL) Peter, with the economical and financial crisis it has become obvious that our industrial model of economic development is failing and we quickly need to move towards a new model based on efficient use of renewable resources and materials. I would like to talk with you about the challenges of designing sustainability at the scale of the city district; for instance, how can we best address the broader requirements for a transformation of existing cities, city districts and their energy landscape?
Peter Head (PH) A significant paradigm shift in archi-
tecture, urban planning and engineering is required, and has started to happen, with the aim being to achieve a fair distribution of resources and to encourage a reduction in non-renewable resource consumption. To make real progress, we need to think on the level of the entire city and of complete systems. The main parts of such a holistic approach are food, energy, water and raw materials. Especially important is to include food production as part of a harmonious ecological development. The answer for water is probably in energy, because if we have enough energy we can desalinate water. We need strategies based on ‘smart responsive simplicity’. By this, I mean we should keep systems simple, instead of building more and more complex systems; for instance, to use small distributed, decentralized systems, rather than large central ones. This includes collecting energy from the building and district scale, where every building itself produces the energy it requires to operate and feeding surplus energy into the grid, and also, generating energy from waste and reducing energy used in transport and water supply. The solar energy feed-in tariff, which was introduced by Germany, allows every citizen to produce their own energy, and has been a great success story. This policy is about to get replicated and adapted by fifty other countries.
SL It needs a dramatic rethink and a different approach to town planning and urban design. I imagine we will probably see more buildings that are simpler and more generic, less specific, to make them more flexible and to integrate newly-developed systems easier. Technology and design are now drivers for any modern eco-
TO MAKE REAL PROGRESS, WE NEED TO THINK ON THE LEVEL OF THE ENTIRE CITY AND OF COMPLETE SYSTEMS nomy. It is particularly exciting to think of the domain of sustainable technology and design as an emerging force rather than an established, already defined practice. Given that you are involved in projects from London to Shanghai to Mumbai, how do you feel about exporting this knowhow globally? How is the office driving the design of masterplanning projects, especially sustainable developments for China?
PH Arup has always been active globally. In China, the ecological footprint is currently growing at a rate of around 3 per cent annually, which means finding an extra 90 mill. hectares of new land each year. The situation in China is quite unique, and the Chinese people are now beginning to embrace a fundamentally different paradigm in urban development, one which starts to reduce this unsustainable demand. Quite apart from the demographic and envi-
ronmental pressures, there are commercial incentives too. They are also saying that if we get it right, we can sell this success, with its urban solutions and technology, to the rest of the world. Every year for the next twenty years it is estimated that up to 10 million people will move from China’s countryside to its urban areas. This unprecedented rural–urban migration is placing huge demands on existing cities. To accommodate the new urban population, the Chinese Government plans to build over 50 new cities by 2020. China’s leaders recognize the environmental consequences of such growth and have placed an emphasis on economic development based on social harmony, environmental protection and energy conservation. The volume of people is so large that there is no one answer for how to accommodate them in a sustainable way; however, we are now working on several initiatives with the Chinese Government, private developers and
research institutes that will form part of the solution. Wanzhuang Eco-City is one such initiative that transforms a number of existing communities into an ecocommunity. Eco-cities deliver significant, tangible and measurable environmental, social and economic gains versus the ‘business as usual’ case for urban development. They demonstrate greater energy efficiency, better land usage, reduced resource consumption and reduced emissions. We believe that to be truly sustainable, a city must not only be environmentally sustainable, but also be socially, economically and culturally sustainable too.
SL Could you elaborate on the different social and technological strategies you are using for Wanzhuang Eco-City?
PH The site of Wanzhuang Eco-City is in 49
Hebei Province, 50 kilometers south east of Beijing and halfway between the nation’s capital and the port city of Tianjin. It is close to the city of Langfang, which some have dubbed ‘China’s Silicon Valley’ due to its fast developing economy based on computing and technology. The 80 sq km site includes 15 villages with a total existing population of 100,000. The area has been selected by the Chinese Government for development into a city that will accommodate a population of 400,000 people by 2025. We found that geothermal
power is available at this location and plan to tap into this wonderful renewable energy resource for a power supply. Prior to our involvement, the plan for the city was a Los Angeles-style grid of roads based on super blocks – gated communities on a mammoth scale, typically over one kilometer square, that cause social segregation, encourage car use and rely on centralized services – electric power lines, sewage treatment plants, sewers and sanitary water supply. The design swallowed existing villages and
would have relied heavily on private cars for transport. Our masterplan is very different. We argued that the American model is much less useful for China’s urbanization compared to the European one, with its compact, mixed-use model. The design proposal begins with the simple proposition of retaining and enhancing existing communities through selective renovation and regeneration. Historic buildings and more organic-shaped street patterns are retained as a footprint for the new city, and the villages are ex-
WANZHUANG ECO-CITY IS ONE SUCH INITIATIVE THAT TRANSFORMS A NUMBER OF EXISTING COMMUNITIES INTO AN ECO-COMMUNITY
panded as mixed–use communities that connect with walking, cycling and public transport to create the city. Jobs will be created for residents in a range of different zones. Expansive historic pear orchards, which are a key feature of the region, will be preserved. We proposed that the standard of living and environmental quality of the existing villages should be improved, as well as them having new opportunities through education and jobs. A community consultation was carried out with villagers to ensure that the project priorities of addressing culture, water transport and green space were correct. We found that the existing villages in the Wanzhuang area are culturally diverse and could become distinct neighbourhoods. In a cultural workshop with villagers, they expressed the type of cultural spaces the residents would like within Wanzhuang; for example, areas for ‘pole walking’ and public squares for dancing. The aim of these consultations was to encourage local identity and ownership of place. We gained much experience with the earlier Dongtan Eco-City project, a similar project close to Shanghai, designed for 500,000 people. While this masterplanning project was halted in 2008, it created a large knowledge pool for similar projects in China.
SL With such large-scale projects in China or India, I believe it’s of prime importance to understand and translate local cultural traditions. Such a careful renewal approach, which you describe, marks a clear change in attitude. Public consultation and grassroots participation, such as running workshops with village leaders to make sure that the planners have the
objectives correct from the start to ensure people-sensitive urban design, is a new approach in China. It’s about doing things differently. However, I think such strategies are increasingly important for slowing down and harmonizing the negative effects of rapid, high-speed urbanization, which is frequently lacking long-term planning frameworks and guidance for cooperative process. Sustainable design is about holistic approaches and about seeing things, systemically exploring and understanding the variety of solutions that are usually available to any problem. What about the technological strategies for water, energy and transport in the Wanzhuang project? For instance, in regard to transport-oriented developments close to public transport and mixed-use neighbourhoods, how do you deal with the need for higher density in the urban design?
PH To determine the best relationship between population density, land value, building density, water management, transport models, and so on, is always very difficult. For instance, water scarcity is a serious concern in neighbouring Langfang, and we have, therefore, suggested a range of methods for reclaiming and distributing water for drinking and non-drinking (grey water) use. Drinking water will be harnessed from underground reserves, and non-potable water will be made available through the treatment and recycling of alternative sources of water. This water will also be used to recharge the underground reserves. By recycling all the existing waste water from the area and recycling it as grey water, there will be enough water to irrigate the farmland for the first time. This, in turn, will in- 51
crease food yield. In the landscaping, we reintroduce techniques from the past, slopes which cause erosion and water run-off will be replaced by terracing. The flat surfaces contain and soak away rainfall. Water will be harnessed in the existing canal network, but significant improvements have first to be made to the currently polluted network. In addition, we propose that a new water and waste management system be incorporated into the canal network, including new pedestrian paths for improved access, and tree planting schemes to improve shading and reduce water evaporation. In terms of transport, the Government has proposed a new highspeed rail link that passes through adjacent Langfang. The site is intersected by an existing freight and passenger railway linking Beijing and Tianjin. We are suggesting a new electric public bus or tram network linking all the villages to Langfang and this new high-speed rail station. A network of direct paths will connect the villages to encourage walking and cycling, and the city centre will be a dedicated pedestrian zone. Cars will have to follow protracted routes along the canals in order to avoid crossing the pear orchards and the cycling and pedestrian paths. Fossil fuel vehicles will be restricted and a programme of extending the use of cleaner vehicle technologies will be promoted. Social infrastructure such as schools, offices, medical centres and shops will be spread throughout the city to reduce the need to travel and to minimize use of private cars. In regard to density, despite the compact planning, we provide a large amount
of green space. Historic pear orchards and poplar forests will be retained and enhanced to become an expansive city park stretching all the way to Langfang town centre. The new park defines the limits of each development area around the villages and reinforces the city edges with high density development. These city parks will provide additional visual and physical amenity to residents living along its edges, thereby increasing its value. Efficient public transport is crucial, as it means better economic growth and a healthier city.
OUR MASTERPLAN IS VERY DIFFERENT. WE ARGUED THAT THE AMERICAN MODEL IS MUCH LESS USEFUL FOR CHINAâ€™S URBANIZATION COMPARED TO THE EUROPEAN ONE, WITH ITS COMPACT, MIXED-USE MODEL By the way, the city state of Singapore is a good example of this. Transport energy in Singapore is really low and the government continuously invests a relatively large 3 per cent of its GDP annually into the public transport system. Singapore is also on the way to becoming a great model for new eco-mobility, as an island state with 5 million people can move more quickly to introduce and implement new policies compared to larger countries.
SL The fossil-fuel powered energy and transportation systems that currently support our cities must be rapidly turned into systems that supply cities with renewable energy. If we look at infrastructure, we find that cities are always planned and built in direct relationship to their urban infrastructure systems. Transforming our urban environments through better integrated infrastructure and landuse planning will be vital in making the transition to sustainable city districts. Talking about systems, I know you are very interested in biomimicry principles, as defined by Janine Benyus, and others.
PH Yes, nature teaches us some important lessons; for instance: to use waste as a resource; to optimize not maximize; and to use local resources and materials. These are all great principles which can be applied to urban design, such as looking at circular rather than linear systems. Itâ€™s not about copying or imitating nature, but about understanding the principles and applying them abstractly. This is performance-led design. I have already described the principle of collecting and using energy efficiently in buildings, but there is also the matter of information: whereby people can live a more sustainable lifestyle through having access to real time information on things like public transport and local services.
SL In order to reduce car-dependency, many cities have taken action: from Barcelona to Vancouver, from Curitiba to Copenhagen, cities everywhere have adapted robust models, where walking and cycling is made
Sustainable Development more pleasant and is well supported by an inter-linked public space network. The concept of ‘cities of short distances’ is about new ways of connecting buildings and precincts to each other that makes better use of existing infrastructure and moves living spaces closer to where we work, closer to transport nodes and community facilities. What do you think will be the effect of the electric car on urban design?
PH That’s an interesting question, as we do not know yet if we will need to build more roads to facilitate a new form of transport. I am convinced that very soon we will see the large-scale rollout of electric vehicles, and this will have important positive side effects on the urban environment; for instance by reducing air pollution, we will get a quiet and clean environment in the city, which will again deliver us the opportunity to increase natural crossventilation of buildings by simply opening the window. This means, that the electric vehicle will enable us to build a city district based on natural ventilation and reducing our air-conditioning dependency, which is all very positive. On the other hand, inter-connecting cities and city centres with high speed railway will be the future, combined with a policy for public transport-led urban planning.
SL Most experts agree that sustainable city planning will play a major role in reducing the negative effects of climate change. In the past few years, this role has been actively debated at all levels and some experts have expressed a very clear and progressive view of what cities could do to tackle climate change related issues. For
instance, it has been suggested that we start with city-wide, urban-scale transformations of existing districts, re-engineering and retrofitting the existing building stock to make them energy-efficient buildings. Today, the technology and concepts for holistic solutions are mostly available; however, not much of it has really been taken up so far. In the meantime, some cities have grown considerably and have further increased their ecological footprint. A high percentage of environmental problems are produced by the uncontrol-
led expansion of cities. How can a more sustainable, more compact form of urban design be achieved? Shouldn’t we establish strict growth boundaries and clearly focus on densifying the existing footprint?
PH New urban-rural linkages need to be considered, where we reconnect the urban-rural resource flows to establish a better rural-urban economy, in order to develop the urban and the rural together. Not enough work has been done in improving the rela-
Prof. Dr. Steffen Lehmann Professor Dr. Steffen Lehmann holds the UNESCO Chair in Sustainable Urban Development for Asia and the Pacific. Professor of Sustainable Design and Director of a Research Centre at the University of South Australia, in the School of Art, Architecture and Design, Adelaide. Steffen was appointed to a full professorship (Research Professor) and Directorship of the new Research Centre for Sustainable Design and Behaviour, in April 2010. This Research Centre is co-funded by the Government of South Australia, Zero Waste SA, and part of the Division of Education, Arts and Social Sciences: www.unisa.edu.au He has been building green buildings and realizing green urbanism since 1993, in Germany, London, Tokyo and Australia. Over the last 15 years he has presented his research in green urbanism at over 250 conferences in 23 countries. For further information: www.slab.com.au
THERE ARE NOW A SERIES OF SO-CALLED ECO-CITY PROJECTS UNDER WAY, WHICH ARE BUILD ON GREENFIELD SITES AND WHICH ARE IN NEED OF FURTHER CRITICAL ASSESSMENT
tionship between the urban and its rural hinterland. We will also need to consider the important role of Brownfield sites, to stop building on Greenfield sites, and focus on densifying the existing city. There are now a series of so-called eco-city projects under way, which are build on greenfield sites and which are in need of further critical assessment. I am still skeptical of the Masdar EcoCity project outside Abu Dhabi. Will it be a model that can be replicated? Will it attract communities and people to live there? Another much published project is Tianjin Eco-City. Unfortunately, its energy supply is based on a coal-burning power station. The energy generation is, of course, a major aspect and in the case of Tianjin Eco-City this has not been shifted to renewable energy, so it’s a limited model. We also have to remember that much of sustainability is ongoing, still evolving, and ‘learning by doing’. I agree that we need to put higher density mixed-use developments around existing or new transport hubs in cities and suburbs, so that public transport is more affordable and people can get to work more easily. In some sprawling cities, some suburbs will have to be abandoned.
SL Sustainability has a long history and there are multiple examples of tradi-
tional solutions, in vernacular architecture throughout the world, where passive design principles have been convincingly applied. However, over the last fifty years, with the introduction of mechanical air-conditioning systems and other ‘techno-fix’ solutions, it seems like we have forgotten about the most basic and elementary design concepts. Buildings often do not respond well to their environment, climate and context. How can we better reintroduce passive design principles into planning and architectural design?
PH It’s important to quantify the effect of these passive design principles to better understand how they can be applied most effectively. The combination of thermal mass and greening of walls, roofs and surrounding spaces to shade and cool the building are all important techniques that can improve the overall efficiency and working and living environment, and they can be much cheaper and more attractive than current designs.
SL You mentioned that solving the energy question by de-carbonizing the energy supply and introducing decentralized systems to generate energy and supply water is of prime importance. What about the large
solar thermal projects like “Desertec”, which plan to build gigantic solar fields in the desert to supply energy to Europe?
PH There is enough solar energy in desert regions to power the entire world’s energy needs 10 times over. The issue is, of course, how to get the energy from the desert to the cities. I would think hydrogen is a better solution for some situations, like taking energy from the Australian continent for use in Japan. Ships could transport the hydrogen power stored in cells, and the ships themselves could be powered by hydrogen, transporting the power from places with plenty of sun, such as Africa and Australia, to places of consumption. Africa and Australia could become main producers of hydrogen energy and supply it to large cities in Asia and Europe. However, low conductivity grids and the use of wind, waves, hydro and stream power will also play their part.
SL Things are moving quickly now, and it seems important that we keep people engaged in sustainability efforts without overloading them with technical information and causing them to lose interest. Peter, thank you very much for the interesting conversation.
By Gabriella PORILLI
World’s specialists agree
AGROSPACE STRATEGY The world’s innovators in the fields of agronomy and space technology came together in Italy to progress the new science of AgroSpace. Controlled Environmental Agriculture (CEA) was central to the debate with focus on food production techniques to benefit both this world and the future generations of space explorers. 56
Sustainable Development Sperlonga with its abundance of greenhouses for crop production was the location for the workshop
THE ANSWERS LIE IN FOOD PRODUCTION IN CONTROLLED ENVIRONMENT GREEN HOUSES, WITH POLLUTION AND RESOURCE WASTE REDUCED TO NEARLY ZERO ON EARTH, IN ANTARCTICA, IN THE DESERT, ON THE MOON AND EVEN ON MARS
AgroSpace Workshop 2010 poster
he biennial event, which was held for the fourth time, was hosted by Aero Sekur SpA and Federlazio, along with ESA (European Space Agency) and ASI (Agenzia Spaziale Italiana). Speakers included Gene A. Giaco-
melli, Professor Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering, Director Controlled Environment Agriculture Center, The University of Arizona. Other experts that contributed to the dialogue were Silvio Rossignoli, Aero Sekur SpA and President of Federla-
zioâ€™s Aerospazio & Defence sector: a combination of engineer and visionary, Rossignoli created the AgroSpace concept and is inspiring engineers at Aero Sekur to develop a Lunar greenhouse. The plant biology synergies between
Earth and Space were reported by Giovanna Aronne and Veronica De Micco from the University of Naples. The role of Space agronomy research in aiding advancements in food production on Earth was reported by Maurizio Fargnoli of Telespazio s.p.a. The former Santa Maria church in Sperlonga Italy was the venue for the workshop and over 80 specialists in agronomy, plant biology and CEA attended the event. The location, with its abundance of greenhouses for crop production due to its mild winter climatic conditions, offers great potential for adopting simple protective shelters. As a result, the region has gained increasing prestige as one of the
world’s main areas for protected cultivation.
Setting the Scene Silvio Rossignoli said: “Six years ago, we set out to develop a project that would improve food production on land – this has developed to become a significant international showcase, extending to applications for Space and major Life Support programs for astronauts.” At the fourth AgroSpace workshop, the first results of the development path of the AgroSpace concept were presented encompassing our ideas, meetings, achievements and concerns. “We are steering a course that is taking many small steps and some
major leaps forward: these developments are being made with conviction, depth and ambition," he added. It is a similar path to the one that resulted in man walking on the moon in 1969. Many dreamt of reaching this new world, many more dreamt of possibilities… the visionaries made the enterprise a reality. As a result, a few people have walked on the Moon’s soil. Similarly, the participants at the workshop shared a vision to follow a path that will face the challenges of feeding this world and the next.
Safe and Nutritious Rossignoli added: We want to have Mars in our sights while we explore
Lane Patterson a student from The University of Arizona monitors the light intensity of the LEDs in the demonstration greenhouse
AT THE FOURTH AGROSPACE WORKSHOP, THE FIRST RESULTS OF THE DEVELOPMENT PATH OF THE AGROSPACE CONCEPT WERE PRESENTED ENCOMPASSING OUR IDEAS, MEETINGS, ACHIEVEMENTS AND CONCERNS applications on Earth. We also want to make a central link between planets, the life that is produced and what is regenerated. “We have to live in harmony with the environment, from the microcosm of a Space station through to the Moon, Mars and other planets. We recognize that we must learn to respect the surrounding land and to understand its delicacy and intricacy. The answers lie in food production in controlled environment green houses, with pollution and resource waste reduced to nearly zero on Earth, in Antarctica, in the desert, on the Moon and even on Mars.” Gene Giacomelli played a key role as one of the workshop discussion leaders. Summarizing his paper, which focused on greenhouse technologies - the link between Earth and Space, Giacomelli said: “Controlled Environmental Agriculture (CEA) technologies developed for Earth applications are vitally important for providing food and floral products within modern agriculture practices around the world. Their importance continues to expand as the demand for consistent, high quality, safe and nutritious food products increases, while the available resources such as water, labor, land and good climate become more scarce and costly to provide.” As the 21st century begins, there is little doubt that CEA will continue to
provide the fresh vegetable crops for a diverse and culturally enhancing diet for all who choose to use the technology to serve the market demands. These demands have become more environmentally conscientious and not only desire knowledge of the product’s history, but also that the product has been grown with the efficient use of resources, and with limited environmental impact. Therefore CEA, which is the production of food products within controlled environments, has within the past 20 years expanded to about 1,000 hectares within the USA. Most of the remaining developed areas of the world have been using CEA extensively for many years before, having in general more than tens of thousands of hectares in production such as in Northern and Southern Europe, the Middle East, China, the Pacific Rim and Australia. Modern CEA has a diversity of system designs for specific applications. Greenhouse designs, in general, still use the fundamental metal framed structures with either glass or plastic film coverings of one or more layers. However, the size and technological level of capabilities is extremely variable to meet the production demands (production capacity, quality, timing) and to capitalize on, or to offset, the local climate conditions (temperature, solar ra-
diation, humidity, water quality) with the greenhouse technology systems (cooling, heating, shading, rain/wind sheltering, fertigation). As a result, designs range from the grower’s hand-made versions at very low cost to the highest/ most expensive technology for optimum year-round climate control. The production capacity and quality of product, except for short natural periods of ideal weather conditions, increases/decreases based on the calibre of system technology employed.
Challenging Yet Effective CEA designs have most recently become interesting for urban agriculture, where food products could be produced directly within the locations where the majority of the consumers are living. Although challenging, urban agriculture may offer new opportunities for learning food production within unique circumstances, such as on building rooftops, or within closed buildings. “For any food production system, the importance of grower expertise cannot be underestimated, and the proportion of production success or failure generally follows in direct proportion to the experience of the grower/manager or, alternatively, the ability of the grower for getting and following information from advisors. Therefore, education and practical experience is an absolute ne-
cessity for a successful production system: the ability to provide realtime operations support to the grower is critical, added Giacomelli. The production requirements for the plant, wherever it may be located, or whatever system in which it is grown, are always biologically similar. Therefore Earth expertise offers fundamental knowledge to Space applications of food production in this manner, assuming that the unique Space environmental situations can be overcome (reduce gravity, lower atmospheric pressure, atypical composition of the atmosphere, high energy particles and radiation), and the hardware systems can provide for the fundamental needs of the plant. Space biology expertise must begin with fundamental knowledge of Earth plant biology and agricultural production system management for success. Then the engineering of monitoring and control systems to activate delivery systems to modulate the plant environment can be designed. Operations would then follow from the necessary plant management procedures as the plant progresses from seed to maturity and then harvest. Following harvest, the need for recycling and reuse of materials in Space imposes stricter demands on the system design in terms of materials, consumables and resource usage. Giacomelli further explained: â€œThe primary purpose of the harvest is for cycling through the human biological system, but the non-edible portion of the plant, as well as the biodegradable but non-edible production system components, must also be considered. It is with these restrictions that plant system designers must be stricter in their des-
THE NEED FOR RECYCLING AND RE-USE OF MATERIALS IN SPACE IMPOSES STRICTER DEMANDS ON THE SYSTEM DESIGN IN TERMS OF MATERIALS, CONSUMABLES AND RESOURCE USAGE ign solutions for Space applications. However, such procedures once proven will also be valuable for Earth applications to ensure that waste is minimized and harvest index is optimized. Therefore there is a full circle of knowledge and expertise that began on Earth with soilless culture nutrient delivery systems of plant production, using the controlled environments for agriculture, that has been extended for Space applications. Following new designs and material developments, such expertise should then return to improve the efficiency of Earth agricultural systems.â€?
both on the behaviour of biological systems and on the functioning of physical principles. From a scientific viewpoint, they argued that the Space environment can be considered a preferential laboratory, with peculiar conditions which can also contribute to the understanding of some phenomena related to the evolution of life on Earth. Plant Space biology has been a discipline involving the study of the effect of Space factors on numerous phenomena at cytological, morphoanatomical, biochemical and physiological levels. However, although several experiments have demonstrated the occurrence of seed germination and plant growth in Space, many phenomena still need to be clarified in order to cultivate plants away from Earth. One example cited was the metabolic and structural responses of plants to Space factors which may be affected by the interaction with various sources of variability such as: the used biological source the physiological and phenological states of the plant the interaction among factors technical issues such as the test conditions experimental protocols hardware used during the tests.
Synergies with Space Confirming the synergies between Earth and Space, Giovanna Aronne & Veronica De Micco from the University of Naples presented on Research in Plant Biology: bringing results from Earth to Space and back. Aronne and De Micco observed that the cultivation of higher plants in Space involves the development of new technologies and the understanding of the effects of Space factors,
From an agro-technological viewpoint, Giovanna Aronne and Veronica De Micco advised that the development of new Space-oriented cultivation technologies could also be transferred to Earth to help: a) the realization of productive systems to be used in extreme terrestrial environments, b) the evaluation and forecasting of the impact of global changes on natural and agricultural
Sustainable Development systems, and c) the management and recycling of organic wastes. The representatives of the University of Naples concurred that plant research in Space should continue to pursue both basic biological objectives and topics of agro-technology in order to optimise the transfer of knowledge and technologies from Earth to Space and back.
pics addressed in order to solve the serious problem of the lack of alimentary resources affecting a large number of Countries, mainly located in the African Continent.”
Three main lines of action have been identified: access to water food security infrastructure development
Aiding alimentary resources Confirming the role of Space agronomy research in aiding advancements in food production on Earth, Maurizio Fargnoli of Telespazio s.p.a. said: “ Agricultural development has been one of the most important to-
“Space technologies and infrastructures including satellite remote sensing applications can provide solutions, contributing with substantial impact on the management and control of sustainable development of agricultural production.
Thanks to the true affordable utilisation costs of Space applications/products, the poorest countries can benefit in particular from the availability/ accessibility/exploitation of Space resources.” A number of environmental challenges including management of the natural resources; development/growth of agricultural production; the impact of climate change and the impact of monitoring and controlling full food production can be successfully addressed making extensive use of Space resource/applications. “Remote sensing is of paramount importance in this context. Today, there are already several projects,
Aero Sekur engineer Marzia Pirolli with prototype lunar greenhouse displayed at the workshop
implemented during the last threefive years, whose results are showing the validity and the effectiveness of Space applications to support planning, monitoring and control of food production systems,” said Fargnoli.
The Impact of ISS Looking to the future of Space exploration, and the benefits of the International Space Station (ISS) to advancing the science of AgroSpace, Matteo Lamantea and Cesare Lobascio of Thales Alenia Space Italia said: “With the ISS approaching the completion of its assembly, a new era for Space activities is dawning with the focus placed on the exploitation of the orbiting laboratory for the scientific and technological targets, including those in preparation of the future exploration missions.”
Important Benefits The agriculture systems and technologies to be developed for future Bioregenerative Life Support Systems in Space can realize several important benefits from this new phase, with enhanced possibilities for developing and testing. Procedures and operations can be verified and tested. Data for productivity, reliability, maintenance and crew time involvement can be extensively collected to address the design. Effectiveness of devices and techniques for early stress detection, pathology and microbial control and validity of the countermeasures can be studied in the highly isolated ISS volumes. Models for prediction, optimization and control of the system behavior can be refined and validated. Compatibility with the peculiar aspects of the Space environment can be investigated and evaluated. 62
THE AGRICULTURE SYSTEMS AND TECHNOLOGIES TO BE DEVELOPED FOR FUTURE BIOREGENERATIVE LIFE SUPPORT SYSTEMS IN SPACE CAN REALISE SEVERAL IMPORTANT BENEFITS Though the ISS is currently limited in capabilities to host large agriculture systems, it will be a unique test bed for development of systems and parts necessary to support crew presence in orbits and transit to Planets. It will provide a number of indications on the specific effects of the environment (e.g. gravity, electromagnetic field, radiation, isolation) both on sensitive technologies (e.g. irrigation, humidity control) and procedures.
Challenging Yet Effective Research on the ISS needs to be paralleled with corresponding ground activities, with the following aims and advantages: performing wider and more controlled experimentation, capability to integrate lessons learned from ISS and ground experience; capturing the entire spectra of gravity dependence aimed at having the correct focus on reduced gravity planetary surface applications and exploiting analogues to advance technologies at an inter-
mediate maturity. For aspects such as architectural arrangement and operational procedures, and for many of the integrated technologies, (e.g. illumination, humidity control, irrigation, monitoring) ground testing can represent a realistic test bed to prototype systems for planetary surface applications. “Advances in critical technologies and procedures (e.g. illumination, nutrient delivery, monitoring systems) will be extremely beneficial for achieving on ground low-resource-demanding agriculture systems and are expected to focus dual interests of both terrestrial and Space industries in a common research effort,”added Fargnoli. Matteo Lamantea and Cesare Lobascio emphasised the opportunities offered by the different test environments, highlighting the role each will have. The speakers confirmed a need for a synergistic and complementary effort from the ISS to the ground. Summing up the consensus of opinion, Gene Giacomelli reports that workshop participants were in harmony with a shared vision to aid global food production challenges through advancements in CEA on Earth and capitalizing on agronomy initiatives for Space. It was agreed that data should continue to be shared to benefit terrestrial agriculture and future Space projects. The delegates concurred that they would continue to liaise to develop solutions to feed both this world, and the next. A date for the next AgroSpace Workshop was set as 24-25 May 2012.
FOR MORE INFORMATION VISIT: http://www.agrospaceconference.com
By Alya KEBIRI
THE PRICE OF DUBAI’S ARTIFICIAL ISLANDS
How sustainable is Dubai’s development? 64
ubai, a city-state in the United Arab Emirates with a population of around one million, would be one of the world's smallest but wealthiest countries on its own thanks to the oil wealth of its inhabitants. In addition to its penchant for acquiring records for the Guinness Book of World Records, Dubai has also embarked on an ambitious plan to boost its international standing in the eyes of the world's rich (and its neighbors) by building a number of artificial islands. These islands, which will house luxury residences, villas, and hotels, are a growing concern for environmentalists due to their impact on the local marine ecology. Dubai should be concerned as well for the long-term viability of the plan-rising sea levels from global climate change could spell trouble for its audacious and ostentatious investments. As Earth Island Journal puts it, "How ironic that the very people who drive rising sea levels through their businesses, which emit much of the world's greenhouse gases, will undoubtedly be some of the first to experience the devastating effects of climate change."
The Price of "The World": Dubai's Artificial Future While there have been numerous articles written recently about the proliferation of artificial island projects, the astounding "The World" venture among them, few have addressed or assessed the environmental impact of such massive undertakings and the transformation of both the sea and landscape. Until recently, Nakheel, the government-controlled corporation developing these ambitious projects, has been able to focus
predominantly on promoting rather than defending the islands, but new evidence of environmental detriment is bringing the company and its projects under fire from certain groups. Inspired by the three artificial palm tree-themed islands projects, The World is a heady $14 billion endeavor, consisting of 300 individual islands arranged to mimic the shape of the globe's landmasses.
OYSTER BEDS HAVE BEEN COVERED IN AS MUCH AS TWO INCHES OF SEDIMENT, WHILE ABOVE WATER, BEACHES ARE ERODING WITH THE DISRUPTION OF NATURAL CURRENTS Ranging in size from five to 20 acres, and with 50 to 100 meters of water separating each island, the total area encompasses just over 20 square miles. The development is located about two and a half miles off the coast of Dubai city. Islands go for $7 million to $35 million each. From the air, The World and Palm projects create a highly visible impression on the landscape of Dubai. And back down at sea level, significant changes in the marine environment are leaving a visual scar of another type. As a result of the dredging and redepositing of sand for the construction of the islands, the typically crystalline waters of the gulf of Dubai
have become severely clouded with silt. Construction activity is damaging the marine habitat, burying coral reefs, oyster beds and subterranean fields of sea grass, threatening local marine species as well as other species dependent on them for food. Oyster beds have been covered in as much as two inches of sediment, while above water, beaches are eroding with the disruption of natural currents. The profound underwater changes currently taking place as a result of construction are only matched by the grandiose vision of Nakheel developers. Plans for one palm island project, The Palm, Jumeirah, includes an artificial diving park complete with four themed areas from which enthusiasts can choose One area called Snorkler's Cove will feature traditional marine life as well as an added incentive--a daily deposit of a single solid gold one-kilogram bar, worth $15,629 at current gold prices. Developers also intend to transfer and sink several wrecks for a more dramatic diving experience. Project backers assert that such additions will actually help attract fish and other marine life by providing shelter and leading to reef expansion and community diversification. This optimistic outlook aside, another archipelago project, the Palm Jebel Ali, is located in a formerly protected marine reserve. The management of Jebel Ali marine reserve, the Persian Gulf's second most biodiverse marine system, was taken away from the Dubai Municipality Protected Areas Unit and passed over to Nakheel developers to build the island. Few can argue that the replacement of these natural formations with artificial structures can be a true substitute for what is being destroyed
and result in a net gain in marine biodiversity. Further, ecologists fear that standardizing of the marine environment will alienate native species and encourage the likely introduction of new, foreign and possibly destructive species. Environmentalists' concerns about the present state of Dubai's waters are not without warrant. Coral reefs and their associated mangrove and sea grass habitats function on
varied levels, providing a number of integral services. Among these values are the provision of food and shelter for a wide range of marine species, the protection of coastal regions from storms, the prevention of coastal erosion and the support of commercial fishing and recreational activities-namely scuba diving and sport fishing. Troubled waters are nothing new for Dubai or any other marine region. The health of the coral reefs has been in a state of continuous decline over the past 50 years. The Arabian Gulf is one of the most grievously affected areas, with recent estimates of habitat loss pegged at 35 %. Increases in temperature and salinity have previ-
Sustainable Development ously been attributed as the leading factors in reef habitat degradation, but the new pressure from dredging serves only to exacerbate the declining state of the environment. Nakheel concedes that its various artificial archipelago projects have indeed buried reefs and changed the environment, but argues that the company will try to alleviate and even reverse some of the detrimental effects by building artificial reefs upon completion of the islands. What is more, the company has
THE ARABIAN GULF IS ONE OF THE MOST GRIEVOUSLY AFFECTED AREAS, WITH RECENT ESTIMATES OF HABITAT LOSS PEGGED AT 35 % employed a marine biologist to monitor and rehabilitate damaged reefs. Imad Haffar, the research and development manager of Nakheel predicts local fauna will flourish in the newly constructed environment, but ecologists fear otherwise. Environmentalists and scuba divers alike report that so much silt has been stirred up from dredging that
organisms and the reef itself are slowly being choked by the sediment particles. The current activity has essentially destroyed Dubai's diving industry even if temporarily, and enthusiasts have left the area for clearer waters. Once dredging and construction are complete, the waters should clear, but will anyone recognize what has been left behind?
By Hala KILANI
ENGAGING THE FOREST PEOPLE OF CAMEROON MANAGE THE RAINFOREST Monitoring and communicating land use through innovative GPS technology. 68
ight Central African countries contain within their boundaries 20 % of the world’s tropical moist forest, second in size only to Amazonia. Cameroon, the Central African Republic, Congo, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Burundi and Rwanda house 200 million hectares of rainforest, boasting a great diversity of flora, fauna, cultures and people. Often this rich forest land is negotiated for what it contains in terms of material resources and people are left out of the equation. For politically motivated reasons or simple misconceptions, it is widely believed and argued that these forests are uninhabited. Sadly, this argument, or sheer neglect, form the basis of most planning carried out for these forest lands that are often described as “pristine,” “untouched,” “primary,” or “mature.” Reality is much different from these contentions. This forest land is a human cultural artefact, sculpted as such through generations of manipulation by indigenous people, later joined by others who also became forest dwellers. “Present day biodiversity exists in Central Africa not in spite of human habitation, but because of it” write Robert Bailey, Serge Bahuchet and Barry Hewlett in “Forest Conservation in Central and West Africa,” published by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. The indigenous groups that have traditionally populated the Central African forest are now somewhat diverse. They were forced into fragmentation by the imposition of nationstates in Central Africa, dividing them geographically across Cameroon, Congo, DRC, Gabon, and Burundi. To cite a few, they are now the Efe, Mbuti,
THE INDIGENOUS FOREST PEOPLE ARE AN INTEGRAL PART OF FOREST DYNAMICS. THE FOREST IS THEIR COSMOS
Yaka, Asua, Babongo, Twa and Baka people, who are often referred to as Pygmies, a term derived from the Greek unit of measure pyme, meaning the length of which is from the elbow to the knuckle, used by Europeans to describe the indigenous people of Central Africa whom they found to be relatively short-statured. The term is contentious but often used to group together these people who were forced to observe and learn about boundaries post white colonisation.
The Forest is the Cosmos The indigenous forest people are an integral part of forest dynamics. The forest is their cosmos. As Anthropologist Jerome Lewis describes it, “they cannot conceive of their lives, deaths and afterlife without the frame of the forest around them.” They completely depend on it for their spiritual, economic and social activities. For subsistence, forest people
hunt, fish and gather wild fruits and honey and sometimes clear land for farming or trade with farmers to complement their protein intake from hunted meat with starch and minerals coming from cultivated food. They also occasionally provide labor to farmers or logging and mining companies in exchange for cash or food. But “they value forest activities and foods as superior to all others,” according to Lewis who lived with the Mbendjele Yaka Pygmy hunter-gatherers from 1994-1997 in the Northern Republic of Congo and has conducted annual visits there since 2000. For this reason, they are often referred to as specialized hunters and gatherers. For these people, the forest is therefore their home, their hospital, as they rely on traditional medicine and medicinal plants for their health care, and their “supermarket” or “refrigerator” as those who are familiar with
western lifestyles describe it. They have traditionally been roaming the forest freely and nomadically in search of resources to feed their families using skills and knowledge built over generations. Intimate knowledge of the forest allows what is now highly salient and valued in conservation discourse: sustainable management and use of resources. The holistic harmony and equilibrium established translates in Pygmy groups responding to the forest's calls; they are in constant communication with each other, a communication based on respect. When forest areas are not bountiful, they move to places where the forest is more abundant in resources, allowing its depleted parts to rest and "breathe". The Pygmies' mobility is an asset to both themselves and their habitat. It is the basis for flexibility and resilience of both Pygmy groups and the forests they rely on.
Massive Deforestation and Unrecognized Rights of the Indigenous People Technically and officially however, most forest land in Central Africa is owned by the state, and indigenous people's land rights remain unrecognized. With steadily rising EuroAmerican demand for forest products since the Atlantic Trade Era, namely wood and minerals, Central African states have been selling forest land concessions to timber and mining companies with disregard to forest people's rights, without their prior consultation and consent. There is also little or no financial benefit, generated from the international timber trade that gets fed back to the indigenous Pygmy groups. In parallel, driven by paranoia and panic over the scarcity of resources 72
resulting from the hastened industrialization that has transformed natural landscapes in Western countries, the Developed World, represented by international organizations, has been increasingly applying pressure to Central African governments to establish protected areas. However, some of these nature reserves are excluding forest people by restricting access to the forest - their home - therefore upsetting the necessary harmony and balance without which detrimental consequences may ensue for the forests and Pygmy groups. All these factors are conspiring to compromise the closely intertwined fate of the forest and its people. It is estimated that 41% of this globally important block of forest may be destroyed or severely fragmented in the next 50 years leaving thousands homeless and seeking alternative lifestyles in urban areas where social ailments such as unemployment, alcoholism and prostitution are often likely to severely affect such groups. The rate of environmental degradation is so rapid that it is noticeable over a short period of couple of decades by observers and local people. "Of these others who say our forest is theirs there is Ecofac [the conservationists], MINEF [the ministry for forests] and the loggers. When the loggers cut our trees we got nothing, and we still get nothing. We who are older notice that all that was in the forest before is getting less. We used to always find things â€“ yams, pigs and many other things â€“ we thought that would never end. Now when we try and look we canâ€™t find them anymore," Lambombo, an elder Baka told Lewis in Cameroon in 2002. The fact that there is more sophisticated technology and machinery available to resource extraction com-
panies only serves to accelerate and intensify destruction, degradation and disequilibrium. The noise generated from this machinery has driven many animals away from forest areas neighbouring concessions. Furthermore, these companies are exacerbating an already problematic relationship existing between the Pygmies and their neighbouring Bantu communities. The Bantu are mainly farmer communities living either within or next to Pygmy villages. Although inter-marriages do exist between these two communities, there are cases where Bantus have exploited Pygmies for labour for meagre or even harmful returns such as alcohol. The exploitation of Pygmy labour is intensified with the increasing presence of resource extraction companies because they naturally offer more labour opportunities, especially to the forest experts and hard workers: the Pygmies.
Cutting Regulations and Widespread Corruption In Central Africa, many logging companies do not operate sustainably and donâ€™t respect cutting regulations. With widespread corruption in some countries, logging companies have little incentive to comply with laws regulating timber extraction. "Of the hundreds of logging companies operating in the Congo Basin, not even a handful have achieved Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification, indicating that they are sustainable forest managers," writes Jerome Lewis in his paper Maintaining abundance not chasing scarcity: the real challenge of conservation in the twenty-first century. "And among those that have been certified controversy often surrounds the legitimacy of the certifi-
cate, to such an extent that some founders of FSC militantly oppose the Council today."
What Are the Solutions? Solutions to these problems require drastic reversal of attitudes and a strong political will by governments and international conservation organisations that will be willing to look at the macro picture and deal with the root causes of degradation.
CREATING PROTECTED AREAS IS ONLY ADDING TO THE PROBLEM AS IT IS ALLOWING FOR FRAGMENTATION OF THE FOREST AND JUSTIFICATIONFOR LOGGING COMPANIES TO USE THE REMAINDER OF THE SPACE WITHOUT RESTRAINT Creating protected areas is only adding to the problem as it is allowing for fragmentation of the forest and justification for logging companies to use the remainder of the space without restraint. In some instances, forest people have been portrayed as the cause of forest degradation when they have generally always used the resources sustainably and have been responsible stewards of these global assets for generations.
A New Software for the Management of the Forests: Parties who have close familiarity with the situation in Central Africa have de-
veloped a model, which, if replicated and applied properly, could produce an alternative solution that would revolutionize forest management. A UK based software company, Helveta along with University College London, represented by Dr Jerome Lewis, the Forest People Programme and Cameroon based non-governmental organizations, are designing and are implementing a groundbreaking project aimed at empowering local forest communities to monitor forest activities with particular focus on illegal logging. The project's main tools are easy-touse, GPS enabled handheld computers with specially developed icon-driven software produced by Helveta that requires no literacy skills and can be used by speakers of many different languages. The icons represent forest activities such as hunting, gathering, farming, socialising and worshiping as well as illegal logging. The graphics of the icons were developed with the input of forest people to ensure that they can easily identify them and select them in correspondence with respective forest activities using a touch screen. The idea is that forest communities carry these handheld devices during their daily expeditions to the forest and record as they go along what they encounter including farms, sacred places, fruit and medicinal trees and stumps or logs left behind by loggers. Local NGOs in Cameroon then collect the devices, then upload this information to Helveta's software platform, where the data could be analysed and translated onto maps, which then would act as powerful physical evidence of people's customary practices and presence in the forest as well as others' possible illegal forestry activities. The NGOs will then use the maps to negotiate with 75
governmental officials and compel them to enforce the laws as they pledged in bilateral agreements like the Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT), initiated by the European Union.
A Mobilisation of the Eyes and Ears of the Forest: "This is a mobilisation of the eyes and ears of the forest," said Lewis in an interview for this article. "There aren’t enough scientists or professionals to collect this data. Local people are completely capable, and increasingly being relied upon, to collect high quality data in remote, 76
difficult to access areas and basically communicate what they find to the rest of the world." The project, which started in 2007, is being implemented in South East Cameroon by a consortium of partners, led by Helveta, mostly with Baka Pygmy and mixed Baka/Bantu communities. The local Cameroonian project partners are the Centre for Environment and Development, Okani, Centre pour l’Environnement et la Formation pour l’Appui aux Initiatives de Développement (Centre for the Environment and Training for the Support of Development Initiatives), Association des Baka de l'Est
Cameroun (Association for the Baka of East Cameroon), and Organisation pour la Protection de l’Environnement, la Recherche et l’Appui au Développement en Afrique (Organization for the Protection of the Environment, Research, and Support of Development in Africa.) The project involves the training of local communities on the use of the handheld computers and building NGO capacity in Cameroon whenever needed. So far 15 local communities in Cameroon are involved in the project. Both NGOs and communities have received the project well, expressing great faith in its potential
results and satisfaction with its approach that engages them closely and effectively in forest management. The local communities have also found the training and the handhelds very easy to absorb and use which has been instrumental in the success of the project adoption and rollout. Local communities see in the project hope and concrete means to communicate with state officials who are otherwise inaccessible to them. The project does give them more sense of power and control and when they see the maps developed , they get a sense of achievement. They have achieved
the evidence that proves that they exist and they are living in harmony with the forest. "This project is good for us, we really need it to protect the forest, it's what we live off, it's all we have," said Irene from the Baka community living in the village of Mayos in the area of Dimako, South East Cameroon.
For more information, contact Philip.Briscoe@helveta.com at Helveta Limited, 90 Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxfordshire, OX14 4RY, United Kingdom. www.corporate.helveta.com
Hala Kilani Hala Kilani is a PhD Candidate in Anthropology at University College London. She has an extensive professional experience in environmental journalism and nature conservation. 77
ADOPTING THE GREEN ATTITUDE The Dos and Don’ts for getting you started on thinking Green
Eco-Living here are many ways to help preserve the world, here we depict a few pointers that will help you change your daily lifestyle and in turn help earth.
Are you going on a long trip? Chose wisely. An average new car generates 160 g/km of CO2 equivalent per passenger, a plane 100 - 250 g/km, a bus 40 - 80 g/km, and a train 40 - 160g/km. If going by car, take as many passengers onboard as possible as it will reduce the CO2 emissions per person. Are you taking another flight for a business meeting? Develop a habit of considering telephone or video-conferencing first! During cold winter days, donâ€™t warm up your car's engine while idle. It's safe to start the journey with a cold engine, and you will save on fuel. Off for the weekend with the family? To avoid traffic jams and the related stress, not to mention polluting, why not consider other transportation alternatives? After all, trains are more comfortable. Are you planning on buying a new car? Why not buy one of the new generation vehicles? A hybrid car consumes between 20 % and 30 % less fuel and generates far less CO2 than a classical vehicle. So why not pollute less and save money â€“ all at once? Do you want to avoid lonely drives? Car-pooling with your colleagues will lessen your impact on the environment, save you money and let you travel in the company of others. Ask which of your colleagues live nearby and take turns driving to work. Get on the move and cycle, walk or use public transport! You'll improve your health and lessen your impact on the environment. Remember that for each liter of fuel burnt in a car engine, more than 2.5 kg of CO2 is released into the atmosphere. Our waste can produce lighting, electricity, heat and even jobs! Remember to recycle what you no longer need. In the office, switch from the old computer monitor to a more energy-efficient LCD screen. If you're using your screen up to eight hours a day, you can save up to 100,000 W in one year.
Put a lid on your pots when cooking. They can save up to a quarter of the energy needed for preparing the dish. Pressure cookers and steamers are even better: They can save around 70%! When not in use, simply switch off the bar and save on the electrical con. Switch to LED flashlights. With a lifespan of almost 100,000 hours, this lamp will serve you for dozens of years without producing any waste or pollution! Turn off your computer during your absence from the office for long meetings or lunch hours. You can thus save up to 20 % of your daily electric consumption. Even if it is not you who is paying the electricity bill, think of the environment. Switch the lights off before going on holiday. To save electricity, before you leave don’t forget to unplug as many appliances as is possible. If the appliances are still plugged in, they continue to use up energy, even if you switch them off. Don't forget to switch off the lights. Switching off five lights in hallways and rooms in your house – when you don't need them – can save around EUR 60 a year! This prevents the release of approximately 400 kg of CO2 gas in one year. Turn down your hot water thermostat. It doesn't need to be set higher than 60 ºC. The same goes for the boiler of your central heating. Remember, 70% of the energy used by households in the EU is spent on heating homes and another 14% – on heating water. Defrost your food by taking it out of the freezer the night before and placing it in the refrigerator or simply leaving it out on the counter. Avoid defrosting in the microwave and adding to your electricity bill! The recommended temperature for a refrigerator is between 1 – 4 °C and for the freezer it should be set at -18 °C. Each degree below these temperatures makes no difference as to how well the food is preserved, but it does increase energy consumption by approximately five %. Place a thermometer in the refrigerator and the freezer to check the temperature!
By Robert MOSRIE
PROTECTING THE CEDAR TREE OF LEBANON A PATRIOTIC CAUSE 83
not only its country, but also its people. Brigadier General Chamel Roukoz explained the aim of the hike, “this endeavor was not only meant to encourage sports activities between civilians and the military and to get to know the Rangers Regiment of the Lebanese Army better by showcasing the real and authentic military lifestyle, but it also aimed at promoting competition between civilians, the Lebanese Army and foreign participants, as well as
rom the top of the highest Lebanese mountain peak, specifically from Tanourine’s Cedars extending to Bcharre, civilians raced alongside military corps over the snow. The Rangers’ a Regiment of the Lebanese army wanted this winter activity to be a unilateral communication with Lebanese and foreign civilians, an indirect effort meant to bring closer the multifaceted role the army plays towards
instigating foreign teams to participate in local races and get to know the beauty of Lebanon’s landscapes and its mountain peaks.”
Environmental Cause The other objective of the race was an environmental one aimed at protecting the green trees. Cedar trees from Tanourine’s Cedar reserve were distributed to the participants who were instructed how to plant them along the racetrack’s path.
Eco-Living The Rangers Regiment used to organize such sporting activities, but this yearâ€™s participation was unique, as that number reached 750 individuals ranging from Lebanese, Americans, French, Swiss and other nationalities. The race consisted of skiing, running and racket over the snow. A huge tent was built to welcome the participants and brief them on the dayâ€™s programme, which began at five in the morning. The competitors in that race were divided
into teams of three with 18, 30 and 45km tracks to choose from.
Preparating the Event Preparing such events was not a walk in the park. It took months of logistical planning in addition to an extensive advertising and media campaign to organize it. â€œWe have prepared an extensive media plan by printing outdoor ads, brochures distributed to various universities as well as providing extra information on the Lebanese armyâ€™s website,â€? said one of the organizing officers. On the day that preceded the event, a huge tent was erected for the participants to sleep in. The Skidoo was used to prepare the track and evacuate the injured and media personnel covering the race. In addition, both the Red Cross and the Military Medical Corp built checkpoints along the entire track from start to finish. Video cameras were also positioned on top of hills to
record the progress of participants. Those feeds were wirelessly broadcast onto huge screens at the finish line in coordination with Prosec Company. Brigadier General Roukoz thanked the Lebanese Army Chief Commander General Jean Kahwaji for his support, guidance and encouragement. He also commended on the efforts exerted by the participants, as the tracks were not easy to navigate. He finally expressed his gratitude to every person who helped in the organization and participation, especially those who endured all difficulties that came their way. The activities took an international dimension, reflecting the real image of the Lebanese people. This event, showed, once again, the love the participants have for their country, honoring the true sacrifices of their national army, preserving the natural beauty of their homeland and proving they are strong advocates of any patriotic and secular event.
By Marlene MAZRAANI
Corporate Social Responsibility:
BANKMED ENCOURAGES HEALTHIER ENVIRONMENT THROUGH SCHOOLS
n 2009, BankMed became the first local bank to endorse environmental projects and raise awareness amongst the public. With their initiative to preserve the environment for future generations, BankMed launched the ‘Happy Planet’ campaign, which has managed to increase awareness of environmental concerns in Lebanon, while advocating healthy living to maintain a clean, pure and healthy environment for all Lebanese. Many of their initiatives have been carried out with the Ministry of Environment. One of BankMed’s most recent activity was their school initiative, entitled ‘Green School, Green Student’, whereby a competition was hosted across the Lebanese territory, where school-
children were invited to submit projects on how to improve the environment, over the course of seven months. This program is part of BankMed’s ‘Happy Planet’ campaign, developed by Mr. Mohammed Hariri, Chairman – General Manager of BankMed, in order to support environmental activities and ensure a better world for future generations. Thousands of submissions came through, composed of scientific projects offering solutions to environmental problems in Lebanon. An awards ceremony held at the bank’s headquarters, gathered the children and prizes were given for the best projects. The contest encouraged schools across Lebanon to include environ-
mental education in their curriculum, encouraging awareness campaigns and the green activities carried out all year round by students and staff. This education is integrated within the different disciplines to help students develop a better understanding of their relationship with the natural environment and how every step they take can have a great impact on their lives and the lives of others. Schools across different regions in Lebanon worked on environmentally friendly activities on different levels: Classroom and playground green activities, planting trees in their region, cleaning areas and beaches in Lebanon, building models that suggest solutions to Lebanon’s environ-
Greenest Schools Awards Beirut Greenest school in Beirut: Mohammad Chamel, Mixed Public Elementary School Special Prize of the Jury for Excellence & Outstanding Achievement: College St Gregoire, Beirut Special Prize of the Jury for Excellence & Outstanding Achievement: Al Makassed Khalil Chehab School Beirut.
Mount Lebanon Greenest School in Mount Lebanon: College Central des Moines Libanais, Jounieh Special Prize of the Jury for Excellence & Outstanding Achievement: Antonine International School Special Prize of the Jury for Excellence & Outstanding Achievement: Ecole St Joseph de la Ste Famille Honorary Prize of the Jury: Al Hadi Institute for the Deaf & Blind
North Greenest School in the North: Rawdat el Haifaâ€™a College, Tripoli Special Prize of the Jury for Excellence & Outstanding Achievement: David Karam Educational Center Al koura Special Prize of the Jury for Excellence & Outstanding Achievement: Al Hajj Kousha Public School
South Greenest School in the South: Public Middle School of Saida Special Prize of the Jury for Excellence & Outstanding Achievement: Public Middle School of Tayrdebba Special Prize of the Jury for Excellence & Outstanding Achievement: Elementary Public School of Ain El Heloue
Bekaa Greenest School of the Bekaa: Salim Haidar Public Middle School, Bednayel â€“ Baalback Special Prize of the Jury for Excellence & Outstanding Achievement: Lebanese Canadian School , Rachaya Special Prize of the Jury for Excellence & Outstanding Achievement: College du Christ Roi des Soeurs Basiliennes, Zahle 89
mental problems and much more. As good success example is Central College who won the Greenest School in Mount Lebanon 2010. As it is the case every year, the School Board of directors and coordinators, presided over by the Rector, suggests a macro project to be implemented in all classes from Nursery to Grade 12. The macro project for the year 20092010 was Sustainable Development, where student planted 3000 trees in the region of Mayrouba, planting fields, gardens, and concrete planters in the school, cleaning Jounieh’s beach, preparing for a huge exhibition at the end of the academic year by trying through student works to propose solutions to Lebanon’s environmental problems. The success of the different projects were evaluated by experts in the Greenest School Competition and granted 16 schools from different areas in Lebanon the Greenest School Awards.
Greenest Students Awards Category 12 to 14 years old: 1st Prize: Joseph Lteif, Karl Nehme, Georges Assaf, Mohammad Chami, Ghadi Freiha and Roy Saad - For their project “La Pollution Maritime”, College St Gregoire (affiliated school to Notre Dame de Jamhour) Beirut 2nd Prize: Arij Kamel Ayass, Jessica Najib Abou Karroum, Rogina Ramzi Abdel Samad, Rim Ramzi Harb, Safaa Afif Ghanem, Tarek Marwan El Masri, Magui Zaher Abou Karroum, Majd Wajdi Abou Ghanem, Hani Tarek Barakat, Wiam Ajwad Abdel Baki - For their book on glass recycling, Marj El Toufoula School 2nd Equal: Rana Bou Jaber - For her Poem on Lebanon’s Environment, Baakline Middle School 3d Prize: Class of EB8, Sainte Famille School, Miziara 3rd Equal: Amani El Halabi - For her drawing. Al Irfan School, Al Basateen Category 10 to 12 years old: 1st Prize: Mary Lynn Chedid and Rayan Assaf – For their project with pictures on Lebanon’s environmental problems and proposed solutions, Central College of the Lebanese Monks 2d Prize: Yasmine Ankouny, Siba Younes, Mohammad Raka, Zeina Mokahal - For their study on Lebanon’s environment and water saving, Al Ahliah School, Beirut 3d Prize: Haidar Abdel Ghani al Bayouni - For his drawing , Hassan Hamad Ghandour School, Nabatiyeh 3d Prize Equal: Charbel Hourani - For his project on Energy Solutions in Lebanon, College Central of the Lebanese Monks Category 8 to 10 years old: 1st Prize: Rita Hayek - For her drawing, St Joseph School 1st Equal: Lea Maalouf- For her drawing, St Joseph school 2d Prize: Reine Farsakory and Hadi Nasser- For Go Green and Save Green Project, Makassed Khalil Chehab School 3d Prize: Doha Saleh Abi Ghannam - For her drawing, Al Orfan School Al Basateen 3d Prize Equal: Georges Matta and Siraj Kharouta , David Karam educational Center
By Francesco KOVARIC
POGGIO FOCO’S FARM
TRUE RESPECT FOR NATURE
Poggio Focoâ€™s, organic farm defines its love for earth by preserving a better world for future generations. Today, the farm is a true example of respecting nature. The land is worked on following the same principles that guided farmers during the previous century. Farmers who considered land as a â€œMotherâ€?...
THE GEOLOGY OF A TERRITORY INFLUENCES THE TASTE AND QUALITY OF WINE IN A VARIETY OF WAYS. IT INFLUENCES THE LANDSCAPE’S SHAPE AND GIVES IT CERTAIN MORPHOLOGIES THAT MAKE IT A DISTINCT PRODUCTIVE AREA WITH RESPECT TO OTHERS
ocated in the south of Tuscany, in a geographic area called La Maremma, Italy, La Maremma is an untouched virgin land. Its hills are covered with majestic oaks and big extensions of olive trees inspiring peace and serenity. Maremma is a unique beautiful and wild natural environment that contains clear rivers and lakes and a varied coastline which is almost untouched. Bruno Kovarich and Simonetta Merlo arrived in Maremma, in 1977, looking for a piece of land. They found the lo-
cality of Poggio Foco, between Capalbio and Manciano Villages, just 7 miles south west from Tirreno Sea. A piece of land abandoned for nearly a century that had never been touched by human hands. Its 550 hectares of land is dedicated to oraganic farming. It’s a self sufficient farm using no pesticides, no herbicides, no biocides, no insecticides and no acaracides. Surrounded by a big extension of forest, Poggio Foco’s farm cultivates cereals, like spelt, barley and grain; olive tree and
wine production. The farm feeds 700 sheep, 50 Maremma cows and 50 wild boards. Kovarich and Merlo ran Poggio Foco’s organic farm where their focus was on the preservation and protection of the native plants and animal life. The Personality of Poggio Foco’s wines are determinate for the relationship between the vineyards and the different elements of interaction in their live grown, like the soil, the climate, the sea, the others plants
and animals around, and of course, the way we work. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Alicante, Cabernet Franc, Sangiovese plants are growing up Our vineyards reflect a symbiotic relationship between soil, climate and plant. Winds play a very important role in the growing and preservation of the vineyards. Our neighbor Tirreno Sea (7 miles south west) and mountain Amiata (25 miles northwards) provide a constant breeze that never stops and which strokes the vineyards â€˜
Characteristics of the vineyards: Total area:
Year of plantation:
2000,2001 and 2002
190/250 m a.s.l.
12 km south
6.650 vines per hectare
Katia Guerrini 95
leaves providing sodium and iodine. These two chemical elements are equally found in our wine that represents, in each of its characteristics, the territory from which it comes. The position of each of the rows was chosen according to the direction of this breeze. The vineyard’s altitude ranges from 623 to 820 feet, grants the correct temperature during the day and at night, especially for the formation of the thick grape skin that we, as wine growers, are so fond of.
Poggio Foco’s vineyards are surrounded by prominent and evergreen vegetation and as in much of the area “Colline del Fiora”, our land boasts most of the medical herbs growing in Grosseto province and almost the 2% of the medicinal plants present in European territories. In Poggio Foco you can find myrtle, camomile, thistles, celandine, cypres, hypericum, hop, marjoram, toronjil, olive tree, nettle, rosehip, blackberry, sage, among a range of other herbs. Here we live in an unpolluted world
still unaffected by the modern effluence. It is a land with such rich soil that it has never been necessary to use neither fertilizers nor herbicides. It is situated a distance away from automobile traffic, urban pollution and industries. We are located on a quartziferous and chalky geological anomaly with a sedimentary origin that can be traced back to the Cretaceous Era (120-90 million years ago) circumscribed in an area of about 16 miles around us.
OUR WINEMAKING PHILOSOPHY EMBRACES THE USE OF THE MOST NATURAL PRACTICES AVAILABLE. TO THIS END WE ALLOW FERMENTATION TO TAKE PLACE USING THE NATURALLYOCCURRING YEASTS ALREADY PRESENT ON THE GRAPES The geology of a territory influences the taste and quality of wine in a variety of ways. It influences the landscape’s shape and gives it certain morphologies that make it a distinct productive area with respect to others. Geology is of paramount importance since it has a high impact on the characteristics of the soil in terms of depth, granulometry, composition, as well as nutrients. Besides, the nature of rocks determines the content of minerals present in irrigation water, influenc-
ing, in this way, the characteristics of the wine. Soil Management Policy Work is done by hand in order to stimulate and enhance the vineyard’s biological energy and activity. Different practices are carried out throughout the year to stimulate the vitality and health of the soil, which in turn provides beneficial nutrients and oxygen to the wines. We adopted a “close-circle” system in which the organic compost used to
feed the soil is produced by our cow breed and fed exclusively in our farm (trucks full of “organic compost” are bought from France to the wine cellars), we know what we use in the vineyards, because we have it here. Cover crops of barley, broad beans and clover are planted in alternating vine rows to contribute to the organic richness of the soil. The whole vineyard has drop irrigation system that is used in July and August and only if the summer is too hot and dry. We believe that only by 97
giving the plant a stress free environment, we can obtain a nice grape. Harmony in a plantâ€™s life mean harmony in the wine. Viticulture Notes the first harvest of the year is in June, so we concentrate the energy in a limited number of grapes for planting. We harvest by hand only 1.2 Kg when the plant would be able to produce more than 10 kg. Moving the grapes immediately in small cases to avoid crushing before arriving to the
wine cellar. Once in the wine cellar, the grapes are laid out on the selection table, where remaining stalks are removed before filling the fermentation tanks. Winemaking Notes Our winemaking philosophy embraces the use of the most natural practices available. To this end we allow fermentation to take place using the naturally-occurring yeasts already present on the grapes. We add a minimal dose of sulphites for
hygienic purposes and to aid against oxidation. Zero emission: friendly system, â€œcarbon freeâ€? reality. All the energy used to make wine in our wine cellar come from the photovoltaic panels on the roof. Our Wines Cecco DOC Sovana Cabernet sauvignon Coming exclusively from our organic grapes. No wood Ruby. Perfumes linked to the lands of
Poggio Foco References 2009 Cecco VinForum
Sept./Oct.2009 November 2009
91 points 4/5 grapes
Germany/ Austria Italy
Sept./Oct.2008 November 2009
89 points 4/5 grapes
Germany/ Austria Italy
2006 Sesá Falstaff Duemilavini 2010
2006 Secondome Falstaff Duemilavini 2010
Vinitaly 2007 International Wine Competition Biofach 2010 (5400 wines tasted) International Organic Wine Award
Grand Mention Diploma
2005 Sesá September 2008 October 2008 September 2008
91 points 90 points 4½ /5 stars
Germany/ Austria U.S.A. Canada
Falstaff Wine Spectator Zoltan Szabo Duemilavini 2008 Luca Maroni 2009
September 2008 October 2008 September 2008 November 2007 October 2008
89 points 87 points 4/5 stars 4/5 grapes Consistency 9½ /10
Germany/ Austria U.S.A. Canada
Balance 8 /10
Integrity 7½ / 10
Berliner Wein Trophy 2008
Falstaff Wine Spectator Zoltan Szabo
(2300 wines -120 gold medals)
2004 Sesá Falstaff Wine Spectator Guida Oro 2008 Duemilavini 2008
October 2007 October 2007 October 2007 November 2007
Grand Mention Diploma Silver Gold
Berliner Wein Trophy 2008
91 points 90 points 3/5 stars 4/5 grapes
Germany/Austria U.S.A. Italy Italy Italy Germany
2004 Secondo Wine Spectator
Maremma: juniper, myrtle, thyme, currants ending with vegetal notes. Shows excellent drinkability, thanks to a fine tannin extract. The mouth is hot and tasty. Cecco 2009 has been produced with the goal to get a young, fruity, fresh and harmonious wine, with a low alcohol content, well structured and with soft tannins. To do this, the harvest of the main grape varietals Cabernet Sauvignon has been anticipated for some weeks. In that way we where able to obtain the
acidity and the flavours that are also typical in white wines. The following step was to create a “saignée” typical for the production of rose wines. Meanwhile, the skins have been preserved for a week at a cool temperature. Subsequently, the second harvest made with the other grape varietals that were picked in a mature stage. Soignée technique and white vinification was used also on those grapes. After that, the skins of both harvests were put together. Meanwhile, the wine
fermented without using additional yeast, and were blended together. To conclude, we have again put together the liquid part with the skins, for a short Maceration. The wine was filtered and bottled. The result is a fresh wine, unique for that territory, with a clean fruit in it, using only natural practices. Even for the fermentation process, only the naturally-occurring yeasts already present on the grapes were used. 33.500 bottles of this wine were produced. 99
Sesà I.G.T. MAREMMA SUPER TUSCAN 50% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc, 15% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% other Slightly earthy, with a currant and mineral undertone. Medium-bodied, with fine tannins and a chocolate, berry aftertaste.Coming exclusively from our organic grapes. Aged 18 months in 100% brand new 225 litre French oak barrels. During the first six months, the wine remains in contact with its fine lees, kept in motion by frequent batonages and microoxygenation. Secondome Sovana DOC Red Superior Cabernet sauvignon Pungent nose of crushed berries, barley and meat follow through to a
POGGIO FOCO’S VINEYARDS ARE SURROUNDED BYPROMINENT AND EVERGREENVEGETATION AND AS IN MUCH OF THE AREA “COLLINE DEL FIORA”, OUR LANDBOASTS MOST OF THE MEDICAL HERBS GROWING IN GROSSETO PROVINCE AND ALMOST THE 2% OF THE MEDICINAL PLANTS PRESENT IN EUROPEAN TERRITORIES full body, with soft tannins and a fruity finish. It is one of the few examples of DOC Sovana Cabernet Sauvignon. La DOC Sovana includes a territory that borders to the north on the zone of “Morellino di Scansano” and to the south with Lazio. Coming exclusively
from our organic grapes. Aged for 12 months in 225 litre French oak baroques that had contained the previous vintage of Sesà. We invite our colleagues to start thinking “in green”, the best for earth is the best for us.
ECO LIVING YOUR ENVIRONMENTAL CONSULTANTS
WE HELP YOU IMPROVE YOUR GREEN IMAGE BY BECOMING MORE ECOLOGICALLY FRIENDLY:
ENHANCE CORPORATE RESPONSIBILITY
DEVELOP ENVIRONMENTAL AWARENESS
GREEN CORPORATE TRAINING
IMPLEMENT SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS PRACTICES
REDUCE YOUR IMPACT ON GLOBAL WARMING
Customization Innovative Strategies Cost Effective Solutions Creative Planning Know-How Green Certified Websites & Web TVs
By Mimo Khair
NOTES FOR A UNICEF SPONSOREDVISIT
Photo by Mimo KHAIR
TO THE DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO
THERE IS AN INCREDIBLE NUMBER OF CHILDREN LIVING ON THE STREETS OF KINSHASA, BEING ABUSED IN SO MANY WAYS INCLUDING THE BASIC LACK OF A NORMAL HOME AND FAMILY LIFE
When the eyes open a door to the soul.. It was so moving being in the CAJED center for demobilized child soldiers. Just the idea of being with a child who has experienced trauma of that level and can yet be so resilient to want to be a child again is mind boggling. Most of these children spoke only Swahili, so when I interviewed them all had to be translated. But the moments that they just watched me with piercing looks and just held their gaze, I felt my breathing stop. Their eyes searched, questioned, told, sought, defied, but never wavered. I will never forget these eyes that disarmed me completely and transmitted stories too horrible to be told with words.
Photo by Mimo KHAIR
Photo by Mimo KHAIR
Photo by Mimo KHAIR
They have seen too much! Children at the “Centre Nutritionnel Therapeutique” in Goma, arrive in a state of malnutrition and illness to receive basic nutrients and medical attention. That helps them get rehabilitated to be able to move on with their journey. Most are part of the thousands of refugees that come through the area or are affected children from Goma and surroundings. They looked more like old men to me than children, old men who have seen too much. They may be missing the grey hair and the wrinkles, but their eyes tell their story very clearly. It is very difficult to look at them without examining our values, life on this planet and the state of affairs of the human race… It would be much easier to look away when you see photos like these, and many of us do. I feel so grateful for the existence of people who do something about this and who dedicate their time and effort to bring help where it is needed. May there be more of them and less of these children.
THE IDEA OF BEING WITH A CHILD SOLDIER WHO HAS EXPERIENCED TRAUMA OF THAT LEVEL AND CAN YET BE SO RESILIENT TO WANT TO BE A CHILD AGAIN IS MIND BOGGLING
Photo by Mimo KHAIR
I WILL NEVER FORGET THESE EYES THAT DISARMED ME COMPLETELY AND TRANSMITTED STORIES TOO HORRIBLE TO BE TOLD WITH WORDS
Children are the hope for our future but who will give them the hope? They must have hope to give hope. They cannot be struggling for survival and be expected to carry the weight and responsibility of the future. It just goes against nature not to nurture the young and helpless. They need us who have to give. And maybe just a very small thing can change a childâ€™s destiny.The world is built on webs of connection, it is such a mystery. One small tug this way or that could alter the balances of things. No movement is too small. I used to feel hopeless about making a difference, because what can one person do? But I now believe that every little smile won from a sad child, every small moment of confirmation given back to a child, and every bit of dignity offered to a child who tries is a huge victory. A tiny candle is all we need to dispel the darkness.
Photo by Mimo KHAIR
TIME MACHINE Photography is the window to an intriguing world frozen in time to help us discover and understand the diversity of life and its humankind. â€œIt is not about what you see but rather about how you see itâ€?.
By Elton BOCANDI
hristian Ghammachi, a lawyer by profession, and photographer by passion, eternalizes moments with his camera, which he likes to think of as his own time and space and time machine, his key to a world he hopes to never leave. Christian makes it a point to travel as often as he can and learn about different places and cultures. â€œTraveling has allowed me to discover how rich and diversified our world is, be it in people and cultures, history, natural beauty and human creations; traveling truly humbles youâ€? he says.
As a lawyer, Christian has worked extensively with Governments and UN organizations, in relation with environmental and humanitarian damages resulting from conflicts. As a photographer, he puts us in touch with our world as he see it, through his eyes. With one shot, of a moving and powerful eye contact, a breathtaking landscape, Christian goes on exploring the world and capturing every essence of emotion and culture he stumbles upon. It all started in 1991, when, at the age of 18, he borrowed his father’s manual camera, awakening an immediate passion for photography. From nude photography to human rights, life and nature, he portrays the beauty that each element around him has to offer, and should retain. “My perception of beauty does not lay in how graphic a photo will be, but more often than not in what it implies, hints and the story it tells,” says Christian, “I believe in the power of photography because it moves you and teaches you. A photo can document a moment in its true form and reality, help the viewer see deeper into things…”
19 years later, Christian is more passionate than ever about photography and has finally decided to publish his photographs on the pages of a hard cover book. 19 Years Later, three magical words to remember, as it is the title of his first photography art book, which will be released in November 2010 in two editions, the normal version with 312 pages and the full version,
including his collection of nude photographs, in 328 pages. Release Date, 19 October 2010 Book, designed in Germany by Miriam Lutz and printed in Lebanon by Raidy Printing Group s.a.l. It will be available on Amazon.com and in Virgin Megastore outlets for the Middle East. www.christianghammachi.com
By Gabriella PORRILLI
BYARTWE LIVE Profiles of theYoung at Art
Photos by Mimo KHAIR
Because the world needs creative minds and because minds flourish with Art, By Art We live is a project founded by Mimo Khair and Mark Siegel and meant as a space to discover, nurture, and celebrate Art and meet some of its newest, youngest champions from all around the world. For art itself, for its sponsors, for its lovers, for art's practitioners: here is a place to come together.
CHILDREN AND THEIR STORIES ARE AS VARIED AS HUMANS ARE
THE ART, THE STORIES, THE SMILES, THE FACES, THE VALUE, THIS IS WHAT BY ART WE LIVE LOOKS FOR IN CHILDREN OF THE WORLD
cience studies the mystery; while art joins in the making of it. All around, politics and history may divide us, but art unites. Forever will the artist reach into the future and fetch our collective tomorrows. Art
knows no borders, it is everywhere we are, it always was and always will be. It is no mere hobby; it is a life passion for these young humans. “By Art We Live” looks for budding work, and finds value in their stories.
Recognizing Children’s Talents Mimo has been traveling for the last two years identifying, interviewing and photographing artist children and their art works. She has seen more than 50 children worldwide in- 117
cluding China, Cambodia, Lebanon, France, Austria, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Six of these children have been identified for the “By Art We Live” project for their special story and their obvious love for art. The stories and artworks of these children are posted on the “By Art We
Live” website (www.byartwelive.com) where they are acknowledged, valued and recognized for their talents. Coaching is then provided in a very special and personal way from the rich care and experience of Mark who is living in his own magical story and adventure with art. And the children and their stories are
as varied as humans are. Rebecca in China has found her voice and expression in art. She was unhappy and closed until she found her openness in her creative bubble. Maria is a happy and bubbly young girl from Lebanon who expresses her wild imagination in a very unique and attractive way with color. Chou Mailey in
ART KNOWS NO BORDERS, IT IS EVERYWHERE WE ARE, IT ALWAYS WAS AND ALWAYS WILL BE. IT IS NO MERE HOBBY; IT IS A LIFE PASSION FOR THESE YOUNG HUMANS life of selling trinkets to tourists in the village of Sihanoukville by the CCPP (Cambodia Children’s Painting Project) that provided him a home for him and his family, food, and regular schooling with the other 200+ children that this amazing project changes the lives of. (www.letuscreate.org). Safari in Congo is a recently demobilized child soldier. We met him in a UNICEF protected center in Goma where he was immersed in art to heal the horrible and inhumane experiences that robbed him of his childhood at such an early age. The art, the stories, the smiles, the faces, the value, this is what “By Art We Live” looks for in children of the world. One of the future aims of the project is to produce a photographic book that documents the children’s stories and an international art camp that brings as many of them as possible together in one place to see what magic that can bring and how much art will be served by bringing its young champions together from all parts of the planet.
Mimo Khair was born in Lebanon. She graduated from The American University in Beirut and moved to New York at age 21, where she first discovered her passion for art overall, and photography in particular. She attended the Parsons School of Design and later apprenticed with Vietnamese photographer Noc Nol. Since 1996 Mimo's photography has spanned the globe. Her photo exhibits mostly feature her favorite subjects: children, ancient monuments, and landscapes from her travels. Mimo's photographic works on her blog http://mimokhair.wordpress.com are used in renowned educational programs internationally-including Talking Hands Talking Feet, New York's Earth School, Something Good in the World, and the template multicultural program. Since 1997, Mimo has led summer art camps for children in Europe, the United States and the Middle East. She founded the acclaimed Blue Star Youth Movement to foster budding talents in art and photography for teenagers. She currently lives in Shanghai with her husband and young daughter and exhibits her work internationally and locally in Shanghai.
Mark Siegel was born in Michigan and grew up in France. He returned to the USA when he attended Brown University, majoring in creative writing and fine arts. Mark has illustrated several award-winning children's picture books published by Simon & Schuster, including the Texas Bluebonnet winner Seadogs and Robert F. Sibert Honor Book To Dance, co-created with his wife Siena, won critical praise for inspiring young readers to follow their passion in the arts (see www.todance.info) Mark is also the Editorial Director of First Second Books, an imprint of Macmillan Publishers. First Second is dedicated to publishing high quality graphic novels for all ages; these have garnered considerable praise and numerous awards, including the Printz Award and a National Book Award nomination for American-Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang, and the New York Times bestseller The Photographer, by Emmanuel Guibert. (see www.firstsecondbooks.com) Mark has taught and lectured internationally on the arts. He lives in New York with his wife and two young children.
By Alya KEBIRI
DUBAIâ€™S WASTE MANAGEMENT, CHALLENGES AND INITIATIVES Scientific management of solid waste is a grave challenge faced by most modern societies. In the Gulf region, where most countries have highest per capita waste generation across the world, the scale of the challenge faced by civic authorities is even bigger.
ast-paced industrial growth, recent construction boom, increasing population & rapid urbanization, and vastly improved lifestyle & unsustainable consumption pattern have all contributed to this burgeoning waste problem. Most of the waste management regulations and strategies adopted are based on universally accepted scientific approach enumerated in Integrated Waste Management Hierarchy. However, the hurdle lies in effective implementation.
Recycling: Is Dubai Really Making the Effort? Imagine a building 270 m high and with the same area as a football field. Now imagine 10 of them, all lined up, one after another. This is the amount of waste Dubai produces every year. With the city's rapid growth and urbanization, waste generation has increased dramatically. Total waste collected in 2005 was 11.3 million tons compared to 6.6 million tons in 2003. Have you ever stopped and asked yourself: What happens to the waste you produce at home? Where does it
all go? For most of us, waste is not something that demands much thought. We unwrap, use, and throw. And that's the end of it. But what if we were asked to take a minute and think about how our waste is managed? Images of landfills far, far away come to mind. Magical places where all of our garbage disappears so we never have to see it or think about it again. Unfortunately these places are anything but magical. They are not as far away as we imagine; and they create more problems than they solve.
DUBAI IS IN THE INITIAL STAGES FOR MARKETING RECYCLABLE PRODUCTS. THE NEW COMPANIES THAT PRODUCE THESE PRODUCTS FROM RECYCLABLE WASTE AS THEIR SOURCE MATERIAL WILL BENEFIT FROM A NEW LAW BANNING EXPORT OF ALL TYPES OF WASTE FROM THE EMIRATE In the last 10 years Dubai has made some efforts to deal with the excessive amounts of waste generated in the city. Recent developments have emphasized waste minimization and recycling. In 2005, 46, 000 tons of recyclable material representing only 3% of total general waste, were collected from 42 recycling centers around the city set up by Dubai Municipality and by private companies. Compared to other emirates, Dubai has the most recycling centers, but not enough
residents are making use of them. More efforts need to be made by the government to promote recycling but this is made difficult by the fact that a large percentage of the city's residents represent a "floating population". People living in Dubai usually leave after only a few years and are in the UAE only temporarily. This makes creating awareness even more difficult than it already is. Recently, Emarat has installed recycling systems in various service stations and encourages their use through their "recycle and win" campaign. Every time an individual utilizes these units, he automatically obtains coupons that would entitle him to participate in special offers and receive discounts for products at Emarat's retail outlets. Dubai has also held the first exhibition of waste management technologies in November 2006 entitled "Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle".
Future Plans: The Path to Improved Waste Management According to the P.N. Surendra Prasad, environmental study officer at the waste service section of Dubai Municipality, Dubai is in the initial stages for marketing recyclable products. The new companies that produce these products from recyclable waste as their source material will benefit from a new law banning export of all types of waste from the emirate. The law came into effect on May 6, 2006. A number of private players are active in the waste collection and transportation market. At present around 70%of the total waste in Dubai is collected by private sector. There is good growth potential for such services in the market. 123
The Municipality has also commissioned the construction of a large automated waste sorting and recycling plant. Tadweer waste treatment LLC will have a capacity of receiving and sorting 4000 tons of municipal solid waste per day. Once Tadweer is operational in about a year or so, it will take care of most of the recycling in the city but private companies will continue to operate their recycling centers. Dubai residents should, therefore, continue to place their recyclable waste in these centers. â€œThe Dubai Municipality has always striven to ensure that the waste management and public cleaning service infrastructure is at par with the best on offer. We are always in the search of bringing in quality products and systems by constantly studying and updating various new technologies and system specifications adopted in different countries,â€? says Hassan Makki, Director of Dubai Municipalityâ€™s Waste Management Division. The Municipality faces numerous challenges in terms of collection and disposal of solid waste. The higher
waste generation in the recent years (i.e. from 2002 to 2008) due to the fast-paced industrial growth, construction boom, increasing population, rapid urbanization, vastly improved lifestyle and unsustainable consumption pattern is posing a serious challenge to the Municipality. However, there was about 15 percent reduction in the waste generation due to the recession last year. However, the intention is to work around the obstacles and take meaningful initiatives towards managing waste effectually. To this end, Dubai Municipality strongly believes in forging strategic partnership with the private sector to meet the various environmental challenges existing locally and globally. In addition, recycling projects have been initiated to cope with increasing waste problems in Dubai. A municipal policy of encouraging private waste collection for commercial establishments which has been active since the mid 1990s has resulted in the private sector having grown over the last few years both in terms of the number of companies and their serv-
ice capacity. The private waste collection companies accounted for 70 percent of the general waste collected in Dubai in 2009. They are also involved in the collection of Construction and Development waste and are the sole collection service providers for hazardous waste and medical wastes. The private collection companies are issue permits by waste management department and are regulated and monitored.
Each Person in Dubai Produces 1676 kg of Waste per Year! Dubai has always had a penchant for acquiring world records, but being one of the largest producers of waste per capita, with 1676 kg of waste (in 2004), is certainly not something to be proud of. Despite all the current efforts, Dubai is still in the early stages of finding an adequate solution for its great waste production, and minimizing waste production is not something that the Municipality can do on its own. Each one of us can help out by taking the time to think about our waste and what happens to it, and taking action.
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18 Oct 2010
Road Dust - Health Effects and Abatement Strategies STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN
19 Oct 2010
e r u t u F l a t n e m n o r i Env s t n e v E
European Future Energy Forum EFEF LONDON, ENGLAND
25 Oct 2010 Climate Change and Impact Assessment Symposia AALBORG, DENMARK
28 Nov 2010
29 Nov 2010 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, UNFCCC, COP 16 & CMP 6 16th Conference of the Parties CANCÚN, MEXICO
Second International Symposium on Biodiversity and Coastal Ecosystems (BEL 02) ORAN, ALGERIA
07 Oct 2010 3rd International Scientific Conference titled “Energy and Climate Change” ATHENS, GREECE
05 Oct 2010 1st Pan African Conference on Pharmaceuticals in the Environment- An Increasing Environmental Problem of our Time ACCRA, GHANA
11 Oct 2010 Future Megacities in Balance -New Alliances for Energyand Climate-Efficient Solutions ESSEN, GERMANY
28 Oct 2010 3rd International Workshop on Biodiversity in the Adriatic PIRAN, SLOVENIA
17 Nov 2010 BIO & ECO Expo 2010: The 1st International Specialized Exhibition on Healthy Food, Drinks, Products and Technologies SOFIA, BULGARIA
04 Oct 2010 Open Days-8th European Week of Regions and Cities BRUSSELS, BELGIUM
15 March 2011 Build It Green Lebanon BEIRUT, LEBANON
11 Feb 2011 Clean India 2010 AMEERPET, HYDERABAD, INDIA
06 March 2011 Gulf Environment Forum JEDDAH, KINGDOM OF SAUDI ARABIA
03 May 2011 Qatar Sustainability Conference (QSC) DOHA, QATAR
22 Nov 2010 World Green Tourism Abu Dhabi, National Exhibition Center ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
17 Jan 2011 World Future Energy Summit ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
ABOUT THE COVER ARTIST Victor van Gaasbeek is a 20 year old graphic designer from the Netherlands. He completed his Master Degree in Graphic Design at the Grafisch Lyceum Rotterdam. He is currently studying Visual Communication at the Willem de Kooning Art Academy, while working as a graphic designer at design and communication agency, B Focused. Ever since he held his first pencil as a child, he knew he wanted to become an artist. Eventually, his dream came true. Victorâ€™s works include identity design,
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a) A dendrologist studies trees
The Global Warming poster featured on the cover of issue 06 of WE magazine was used for the promotion of the "The East Asian Seas Congress 2009" organized by the Partnerships in Environmental Management for the Seas of East Asia (PEMSEA) and DENR and supported by the Global Environment Facility, United Nations Development Programme, United Nations Office for Project Services and Coastal Management Center.
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h) All of the above
d) 95% of energy is saved when recycled aluminum cans are used
c) 60% water can be saved if recycled paper is used instead of shredded wood
a) 3 hours
a) 8 months
b) 40% of the composition of landfills
b) About 79% of the Earth is covered by water or ice
Only about 20% is dry land. 97% of the water on Earth is salty ocean and 2% is frozen The remaining 1% is available to meet human needs but much less is good drinking water
illustrations, type design and more. He has illustrated his first book for Peter Muller and is now focusing on the more illustrative projects like Sliced Pixel and Line Art. Victor, as a hobby, also does photography.
a) 20% of human caused CO2 each year
a) 115billions ton of sheets
Published on Jun 24, 2013
WE Magazine is entirely dedicated to cover worldwide environmental issues such as Global Warming, Water, Energy, Global Warming, Waste Manag...