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Ep 18. Offsetting Carbon & Creating Social Change with Vita – Holly Hughes

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In this episode I interview Holly Hughes from Vita Ireland, a charity focusing on climate justice and human rights at the same time. Their model is one many could learn from. Have a listen, rate, review & let me know what you think!

We chatted about:

  • Holly’s background before working with Vita.
  • Who Vita are & what they do.
  • What life is life for communities in Ethiopia and Eritrea.
  • How locals receive Vita.
  • How carbon credits and offsetting carbon works.
  • How their investment programme works.
  • Making sure your offsets are accredited by Gold Standard.
  • The pricing of carbon credits.
  • How to support Vita: gift packages and impact fund.
An example of the stove I was trying to explain in the episode!

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Ep 16 & 17: A Sustainable Christmas

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Episode 16 & 17 is all about Christmas! I sat down with sustainable guru Cate Russell, fellow actor and friend and we delved into sustainable solutions for Christmas from gift suggestions to recipe suggestions. All businesses mentioned are linked below. Don't forget to share this episode with a friend!

In Part 1 we covered:

  • An quick intro to Cate and how we feel about Christmas.
  • Real vs Fake trees.
  • Decorations: fairy lights, garlands, tinsel, baubles, making your own.
  • Where & how to recycle electronics. Find your local WEEE drop off point here.
  • GIFTS (see detailed description & links below).

Gifts

  • Monitor what you need to get and how much you're spending. I mention this Xmas Gift app. 
  • Ask your friends/family what they'd like or need.
  • Offset their carbon with a charity like Vita.
  • Plant a tree with a charity or company like Grown. 
  • Gift a plant.
  • For kids you can make them a book with scraps of paper, paint a t-shirt, knit a toy.
  • Sustainable clothes, accessories, jewellery or candles. Brands linked below!

Clothes, Bags, Accessories:

  • Jump The Hedges - upcycled tarpaulin to water resistant yoga bags, bum bags etc.
  • Grown - organic cotton t-shirts & jumpers & they plant a tree for every sale.
  • The Upcycle Movement - upcycled wetsuits to bags, earrings, pencil cases etc.
  • Cork Crafts. - traditional cork products (learn about cork in episode one!) such as shoes, bags wallets etc.
  • ReKINDle. - beautiful hand-painted denim jackets, patches & tote bags with earth friendly messages.
  • Fresh Cuts. - shop in Dublin selling their own eco branded clothes among other brands.

Socks & Underwear:

  • Stór - bamboo and organic cotton underwear for men.
  • Rapanui - underwear and clothes and they take their own stock back to recycle.
  • Thought - organic catoon, bamboo & hemp socks, underwear & other clothes.
  • Ecoalf - swimwear and clothes from recycled nylon plastic taken from the ocean and beaches.
  • Stripe & Stare - mostly use modal from beechtrees to make knickers and other clothes and, their knickers are compostable.
  • Patagonia - have a shop in Dublin as well as an online store and sell outdoor wear including sustainable warm socks.
  • Molke - all their colourful underwear is manufactured in Scotland and sustainably sourced.
  • Swedish Stockings - luxury detailed tights and stockings from sustainable material (plus they have this amazing scheme for taking back old tights which I didn't mention in the episode!).

Books:

Jewellery:

Candles:

Technology:

  • Mind your technology to make it last with covers like Pela and anti virus software etc.
  • Purchase second hand from CeX.

Toiletries:

Make sure they'll actually use what you give them!

  • LUSH - all ethical, mostly vegan, take back their plastic containers to recycle into new ones.
  • Bodyshop - cruelty free natural products (though they use a fair bit of plastic).
  • Superdrug - own brand toiletries are all free from animal testing but again, they use plastic.

You can buy sustainable soaps and toiletries (and more!) from these Irish retailers:

Cards:

In Part 2 we continued on discussing:

  • Gift wrapping alternatives.
  • Christmas cards.
  • Dinner.
  • Pets for Christmas.
  • Mental Health.
  • Upcoming Markets.

Dinner:

Upcoming Christmas Markets

CountyDateMarket & VenueHostsTimeTickets
CorkEvery SaturdayCork Craft Market @ Princes Street Church, CorkThe Fair Alternative10am-5.30pmN/A
Every SaturdaySkibereen Farmers’ Market9.30am-2pmN/A
29th Nov - 1st Dec
Gifted: Craft & Design Fair @ City Hall, Cork
29th: 11am-8pm
30th: 10am-6pm
1st: 11am-6pm
Entry €5
1st DecChristmas Pop Up @ Riverlee Hotel, CorkChaos and Harmony & Babyboo.ie10am-6pmN/A
1st DecSustainable Christmas Market @ Nano Nagle Place, CorkCork Zero Waste11am-3pmFree, Booking Advised
7th DecThe Night Market Before Christmas @ Mall Arts Centre YoughalRevolving Wardrobe Events6-9pmTicketed €10 incl drink & canapes.
8th DecConscious Christmas Flea Market @ The River Lee Hotel, CorkSustainable Fashion Dublin12-5pmFlea is Free Entry but there's a ticked tea & workshop.
13th DecGreen Friday 2019 @ St Peter’s, CorkTBCN/A
DublinDaily until 31st DecMakers Market @ Om Diva BoutiqueOm Diva Boutique10am-6.30pm
Sun: 12-6pm
N/A
Sundays 24th Nov - 22nd DecChristmas Market on the Green @ The Well, Stephen's GreenUrban Markets Dublin12-5pmN/A
29th NovFashionally Upending Black Friday @ The Well, Stephen’s GreenChaos and Harmony10am-6pmN/A
30th NovFair Lady Vintage Fair @ City Assembly HouseFair Lady Dublin10-5.30pmN/A
1st DecChristmas Pop Up @ Riverlee Hotel, CorkZero Waste Festival Ireland12-6pmN/A
4th-8th DecGifted: Craft & Design Fair @ The RDSGifted Fair€12 / €10 Booking & More info here
6th-8th DecSustainable Christmas Fair @ Rediscovery Centre, BallymunRediscovery Centre6th: 5-9pm
7-8th: 9am-5pm
N/A
6th-8th DecSustainable Christmas Market @ D-Light Studios, D1Native Events6th: 4-8pm
7-8th: 11am-8pm
N/A
14th DecSustainable Fashion Dublin Flea @ The Workman’s ClubSustainable Fashion Dublin12-5pmN/A
14th & 15th DecChristmas Eco Craft MarketNational Botanic Gardens10am-4.30pmN/A
Kerry7th, 8th, 14th, 15th DecOld Market Flea @ The Laurel’s Hall, Killarney11am-5pmN/A
Kildare24th November & 8th DecCountry Market & Craft Fair @ Castletown HouseCastletown House1am-5pmN/A
Meath22nd DecMarket @ Sonairte, LaytownSonairteTBCN/A
Wexford8th DecSustainable Christmas Market @ Seal Rescue Ireland, CourtownSeal Rescue Ireland10am-4.30pmN/A

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Ep 15. Bringing Biodiversity Back into your Garden or Balcony- Collie Ennis

Collie Ennis is a fellow podcaster (check out The Critter Shed!), Science officer with the Herpetological Society of Ireland and a research associate at Trinity University Dublin. He's also a great laugh to have the chats with and a fountain of knowledge. We delve into all things critter related in this episode.

In particular we cover:

  • How Collie came to work with critters.
  • How important invertebrates are to biodiversity.
  • Why invertebrates are struggling today.
  • How climate change is affecting them.
  • The hidden species of Ireland from newts to toads.
  • How to easily turn your garden or balcony into a haven for invertebrates on rented or owned land.
  • What happened at the Tallaght Wetlands.
  • Advice as a community member on how to protect a local patch of land, vital to species, threatened by development.
  • Working with neighbours to turn estate greens into bio-diverse areas.
  • Growing food in a garden full of bugs.

Mentioned:

You can follow Collie on Twitter or Instagram and don't forget to checkout The Critter Shed podcast (who are on Twitter and Facebook).

Let me know what you think of this episode and don't forget to rate, review and share!

 

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What to do for Invertebrates on your land:

  1. Provide a water source either level with the ground or with a ramp of rocks around it so animals can get to and fro. Place in an underwater plant from a local canal or pond.
  2. Plant vines (like Clematis) around your garden so frogs can climb in and out. You can also knock a brick or small hole out of your garden wall on either side so animals like hedgehogs can come and go either direction.
  3. Plant wildflowers recommeded by the Pollinator Plan. If you're renting, plant pots with over flowing plants like nasturtiums.
  4. Pile old decking for bugs like bumble bees. (Let it rot!)
  5. Bring in some rotting wood (from deciduous trees, not pine)and fallen leaves for insects to feed from.
  6. On a balcony, place out a bucket or tray of stagnant water. Plant some wildflowers in pots.
  7. Sit back and enjoy the life around you!
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Ep 14. Consumer Culture & Decluttering – Emma Gleeson

Emma Gleeson is a professional declutterer with a background in fashion. The research she did into the psychology of consuming things makes this episode an interesting one! We chatted about a whole host if things including:

  • How Emma came to work as a sustainable advocate.
  • The psychology behind why we buy things and why it makes us feel good.
  • How Emma's approach to decluttering works.
  • Where things should go when you're letting go of them.
  • Why we find it hard to part with some "sticky" items.
  • Dealing with stuff on specific holidays.
  • Organizing your children's toys.
  • Decluttering your wardrobe.
  • Tips for your mental health while decluttering.

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Ep 13. The Native Seals & Why a lot need Rescuing – Melanie, Seal Rescue Ireland

I had the absolute pleasure of visiting Seal Rescue Ireland in Courtown to interview Melanie. Her extensive knowledge of conservation made this a really enjoyable educational episode, although sometimes very saddening due to how Seals are suffering at the hands of humans. Have a listen, share it around and be the eyes and ears of SRI when you're out along the coast.

We covered:

  • Melanie's background before coming to work for Seal Rescue Ireland.
  • Facts about the seals that are native to Ireland and how their populations have fared over the years.
  • Why SRI end up needing to rehabilitate seals.
  • How pollutants end up in the sea and what we can do to stop them.
  • The importance planting trees, particularly Riparian buffers, has on the health of the sea.
  • The relationship between seal conservationists and the fishing industry.
  • The benefits of Eco-Tourism.
  • How SRI rehabilitate their seals and releases them.

What to do if you see a seal on the beach:

  • Stay at least 100 metres away.
  • Call SRI's hotline number: +353(0)87 1955393.
  • Keep your dog on a short lead.
  • Do NOT approach the seal or try drag it into the sea!

 

Adopt a Seal here. Your adoption certificate will be e-mailed to you as well as regular updates!

 

 

 

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Don't forget to rate, review & share!

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Cormac protesting in style against the invasive sitka spruce.

Ep 12. Why it’s time to join the Rebellion- Cormac Nugent, Extinction Rebellion

For episode 12 I asked Cormac Nugent for an interview on behalf of Extinction Rebellion Ireland. He has been with the group for a few months and hosts some of their public 'Heading for Extinction' talks. He knows an awful lot about the climate crisis situation and more importantly, what we need to do about. We cover a LOT in this episode so it's longer that usual but you won't notice the time going. We sure didn't!

Some of the highlights we talked about are:

  • How Cormac became involved in Environmentalism.
  • The Montreal Protocol: protecting the ozone.
  • Who Extinction Rebellion are, their demands and values.
  • Why they do disruptive actions.
  • What The Climate Emergency the Irish government declared means for us and the climate emergency measures bill.
  • A brief science of the climate crisis: previous extinctions, carbon absorption by the ocean, coral reefs, soil degradation.
  • The temperature rise, why and how it happens, what needs to be done to stop it.
  • Tree cover in Ireland and the problem with sitka spruce.
  • Our carbon budget.
  • What a just transition means.
  • Electric cars Vs public transport.
  • The top 3 causes of climate change.
  • Erica Chenoweth’s studies including the 3.5% rule.
  • Rebellion Week.
  • What you have to do to risk arrest.
  • Examples of affinity groups: Plant Bandits and The Bumble Bees.
  • Advice for battling eco-anxiety.

Educational Resources:

Cormac protesting in style against the invasive sitka spruce.
How to get involved:
  • Social Media Channels: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram.
  • Joining your local group (or setting one up if there isn't one!).
  • Via your College/University XR society. Again, you can set one up if there isn't one!
  • By attending local Heading for Extinction talks, NVDA workshops and monthly meetings, all events are listed on their Facebook page here.
  • Share XR's events and posts online and with your friends and family.
  • Donate to their GoFundMe by clicking here.
  • Join protests in person.
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Find and join your nearest strike on the 20th of September!

[Sign up to be a steward here.]

School-age students have self-organised marches around the country and they need you to attend.

  • Dublin: Gathering 12:00 at Customs House, marching at 12:30 to Merrion Sq., rallying 13:00 - 14:00 at Merrion Sq. in front of Govt. buildings
  • Cork City: Gathering on Grand Parade St. from 12:00, marching at 12:20.
  • Kerry (Tralee): Meet at County Buildings, Ratass, at 9am
  • Clare (Ennis): Meet at The Height, O’Connell Square at 9am
  • Drogheda: Demonstrating from 13:00 outside St. Peters's Church, West St.
  • Galway: Demonstrating from 13:00 - 16:00 in Eyre Square
  • Navan: Demonstrating from 13:00 - 15:00 at the Market Square
  • Limerick: Marching from Arthur's Quay Park at 13:00, finishing at City Hall.
  • Dundalk: Demonstrating from 12:30 - 15:00 in the Market Square
  • Kenmare: Demonstrating from 9:00 - 13:00 outside the Courthouse
  • Dingle: 12pm at the Town Park climateactiondingle@outlook.ie.

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Ep 11. Cloth Nappies: the “How”s and “Why”s – Annie Byrne, Cloth Nappy Library Ireland

In this episode I give a brief mention about the Amazon Fire and what we can do about it before getting down and dirty with all things nappy related with Annie from Cloth Nappy Library Ireland. Whether you're a current or soon-to-be parent or know someone who is, or just like learning new things, this episode is for you.

The two of us chat about:

Annie's Cleaning Advice

  1. Do a cold rinse first.
  2. Then a hot wash at 60 using whatever detergent you use.
  3. Depending on hardness of water you can do a rinse at the end.
  4. Airdry the outershell.
  5. Most of the padding/boosters can go in the dryer.
  6. That's it!

Events, Groups & Meet-Ups Mentioned:

Where to find some beautiful cloth nappies as mentioned by Annie:

Annie's collection!
Annie's collection!

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Ep 10. Why we are Sick of Plastic! – Claudia Tormey, Friends of the Earth

Episode 10 is here already! This one specifically looks at plastic and I talk to Claudia Tormey about it. Claudia works for Friends of the Earth and runs their #SickOfPlastic campaign. Have a listen to learn about:

  • How and why Claudia came to work for FOE.
  • Who are Friends of the Earth & what do they do?
  • Why plastic is such a problem.
  • Fracking & drilling for oils in Ireland.
  • The LNG terminals (take action here!).
  • How to Shop and Drop.
  • What's been happening to our waste.
  • Advice on how keep it together as an environmental activist.
Photo: Sorcha McManigan

Other campaigns & causes mentioned:

 

Media Mentioned:

Take action by signing their Sick of Plastic campaign petition here!

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Ep 9. The Solution to Plastic Toys & “Toy Miles” – Sharon, Jiminy

It's time to awaken our inner child with Sharon from Jiminy! This woman is an inspiration for anyone who wants to just do something for the planet from micro activism to evoking huge changes within corporations.

We chatted about:

  • Sharon’s background before Jiminy.
  • What’s the exact problem with toys?
  • The challenges Sharon faced of finding eco friendly toys.
  • What are Toy Miles?
  • The criteria products must fill before Sharon orders them.
  • How she encourages her suppliers to do plastic free shipping.
  • Borrow kits, how they work and how you can help!
  • Personal advice from Sharon as to how we can help the planet.

Below is Sharon's list of Stockists across Ireland! You can also find it on her website here.

Where Retailer Range stocked
Dublin Mira Mira, Sandymount Green Toys
Designist, George's St Toys
Hugh Lane Gallery Bookshop Art/craft supplies
Irish Craft Siopa, ABC Drumcondra Toys, art/craft supplies
Bí Urban, Stoneybatter Toys
Paper Pieces, Raheny SC Toys
Reuzi Art/craft supplies, few toys
Wicklow The Village Store, Enniskerry Toys
Wexford Hook Lighthouse Giftshop Toys
Galway Lighthouse Giftshop at the National Aquarium Toys
Mayo PAX Westport Art/craft supplies, few toys
Sligo Pulled Screenprinting  Art/craft supplies
Tyrone Soul Hippy Toys, art/craft supplies

 

If you want to get in touch with Sharon, be it as an eco toy producer, potential stockist or to offer a party kit, her e-mail is hello@jiminy.ie or contact here via the Jiminy Website. Don't forget to follow Jiminy on Instagram and Facebook too!

 

Please rate, review and share this episode with a friend!

Ceara X

 

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Ep 8. A Minimal Waste Lifestyle from Kids to Corporate, Reuzi – Pat Kane

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I had the absolute pleasure of chatting to Pat Kane, the force behind Reuzi. She is doing great work for the planet from providing sustainable products to educational services in schools and businesses on the why's and how's of living a greener lifestyle.

In this episode, we touch on:

  • Pat's childhood in Brazil.
  • How Reuzi came about.
  • How sourcing and shipping products work.
  • The corporate talks, home visits and parties she hosts.
  • Eco bricks, how to make them.
  • Producing minimal waste with babies (nappies and wipes!).
  • Making your own cleaning products.
  • Advice for starting out on your own minimal waste journey
  • The future of Reuzi!
Pat giving one of her talks at a primary school!

Mentioned in this episode:

 

Keep up to date with Pat and Reuzi on Instagram (@reuzi.e), Facebook and Twitter!

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