ClimatePact

Just Look Up! Open discussion about Climate

Just Look Up! Open discussion about Climate

 

As part of the information campaign about the European Climate Pact, non-governmental organization Oxygono, as the Country Coordinator for the Pact in Cyprus, will host on 2 August an open discussion on climate change and the actions that can be undertaken through the Count Us In platform.

The discussion will take place at at the open-air Amphitheatre of Eleftheria Square at 20:00 and will be based on the well-known film Don’t Look Up that follows two low-level astronomers who must go on a giant media tour to warn mankind of an approaching comet that will destroy planet Earth.

The film is now streaming on Netflix and those interested can watch it to “prepare” for the discussion. Statements made by the cast and climate experts will be presented during the event to trigger a discussion.

The discussion will be moderated by Vlatka Katusic, one of the Ambassadors of the European Climate Pact, who is a researcher at the Circular Economy Research Center in Paris and Special Researcher in the Circular Economy Sector of the Circular Economy Alliance Limited based in Cyprus.

For more info

Thea Christoforou (Oxygono) t.christoforou@oxygono.org

Kypros Savva (Ampersand) kypros.savva@ampersand.com.cy

Facebook event: https://fb.me/e/3h4eGfU6Z

#MyWorldOurPlanet #EUClimatePact #Cyprus #JustLookUp #GreenDeal #ClimateChange #Oxygono

 

Say goodbye to festive waste!

Our top hacks for making the most of leftover food, gifts and decorations

While the festive season is a time for treats, it also generates huge amounts of waste in the form of non-recyclable wrapping paper, plastic decorations and uneaten food. However, with a little prior thought, you can breathe new life into your leftovers. So here are our low-effort holiday hacks to lessen your festive waste!

  1. Make smart, sustainable and seasonal food choices

The first step to reducing food waste is to avoid overbuying, especially for perishable foods like meat and dairy, so think about how many people you’ll be cooking for every day. When shopping for food and drink, make sure that the fruit and vegetables you buy are seasonal and locally sourced. Clementines, apples, pears, cabbage, carrots, leeks and potatoes are all examples of food that is in season right now. You can also limit packaging waste by opting for low-waste shops and bringing your own refillable containers, and make sure you recycle any plastic, glass or paper packaging you are left with.

  1. Less is more

At this time of year, it’s easy to over-indulge. One way to combat this is by letting people serve themselves at the table, which gives them control over how much they take and helps you to avoid the temptation to overfill their plates.

After the feast, pack up any leftovers in glass containers or beeswax cloth and store in the fridge or freezer. You could also incorporate the leftover ingredients into new creative recipes such as turkey curry or Brussels sprout pesto. Keep a note on the outside of the fridge documenting what’s still to finish, so nothing gets forgotten about. Another key tip to avoid food waste is to research food donation schemes near you for anything you can’t manage.

  1. Look beyond tinsel, baubles and candy canes and opt for nature’s decorations

While plastic decorations garnishing your tree or mantlepiece can create a sense of festive ambience, did you know that a sustainable alternative can be found on your doorstep? Whether you’re tidying up the garden or going on a brisk winter’s walk in the countryside, consider foraging for beautiful decorations like pinecones, holly, ivy and mistletoe to bring nature into your home.

You can also make your own decorations, such as used cinnamon sticks, biscuits tied to a tree with ribbon or wine cork garlands. If you have any decorative lights, make sure they use low energy LEDs and don’t forget to turn them off before going to bed.

  1. Wrap and re-wrap

The holidays are a time for giving and receiving, but in addition to sustainable gift ideas, there are ways to be even more green. Although wrapping paper adds a sense of mystery to a gift, all of it ends up in the bin. So why not wrap your gifts in fabric instead? You can repurpose cloth from old scarves, tea towels or other items using a Japanese tradition called ‘furoshiki’.“I collect things all year long – from old bags to used sheets of paper – to wrap presents and make cards,” says Bogomila. “I try to avoid using plastic sticky tape and challenge myself to find ways to wrap without it. You’ll be surprised how creative you can be when you take away something as regularly usedas tape!”

  1. Make New Year’s resolutions through the Climate Pact

New Year, new start – why not continue repurposing your leftovers into 2022? Through the European Climate Pact, you can pledge to make small changes to your routine such as cutting food waste, eating seasonally, or reusing what you already have.

Your pledge will go a long way to help Europe become the first climate-neutral continent by 2050, so here’s your chance to make a big difference in 2022!

Looking for gift ideas?

Here are 5 low-waste and sustainable suggestions

While gift-giving at this festive time of year is a tradition that dates back centuries, many of the products we give to each other contribute to the waste generated during the holiday period. So how can you find gifts that are thoughtful and personal, while at the same time being good for the environment? Here are our top gift ideas – and spoiler alert: none of them involve buying anything new!

  1. Offer an unforgettable experience – that doesn’t cost the Earth

An experience is the perfect present, but make sure it’s not one that has a negative environmental impact. Check out the recipient’s nearest rural area for guided walks like bird watching, forest bathing or stargazing. Alternatively, offer a Covid-safe indoor experience like tickets to a museum, art gallery, or cinema, or even a voucher – perhaps for a local spa or yoga retreat, an indoor gardening or plant care class, or a restaurant that serves locally-sourced, seasonal dishes.

For a more personal touch, why not offer an ‘I owe you’ note for a home cooked meal or babysitting to allow parents a night off? You could also offer your unique talents – such as baking, crafting or DIY – for a truly memorable experience.

  1. Don’t put a tree in your living room – plant one outside instead

Helping a brand-new forest grow: how about that as a present for your friend or family member? If you like the idea, donate to a tree planting scheme on their behalf – it’s a gift that will last longer than a lifetime! Plus, it will give both you and the recipient the ‘green glow’, or the good feeling of achieving something worthwhile for the planet. Just make sure you research the scheme beforehand to guarantee that it’s beneficial for the local environment.

Trees capture excess carbon in the air, so forests are natural air and water purifiers – in addition to being home to 60% of the world’s plants and animals. The EU aims to plant at least 3 billion trees across Europe by 2030 to help remove CO2 from the atmosphere and protect our wildlife.

So, contribute to the expansion of our forests – and help to green our rural areas, towns and cities – by giving the gift of a tree this year. Check out the EU tree counter now to find new trees near you!

  1. Focus on pre-loved presents

Reusing what we already have is crucial to slowing down our festive consumerism. Did you know that the EU textile supply chain is the ο πέμπτος μεγαλύτερος παράγοντας που συμβάλλει στις εκπομπές αερίων του θερμοκηπίουfifth highest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, after housing, household waste, transport and food? If a garment is used for double the amount of time before it’s thrown away, more than 40% of those emissions can be avoided. And this applies to many other products too – the more we reuse materials, the more we can help fight climate change!

So this year, try regifted or re-used presents. You’ll avoid the carbon footprint of manufacturing and transporting a new item, and save precious raw materials like wood, paper, metals, and oil. Regifted presents can be extremely thoughtful and personal, while being a fraction of the cost of a brand-new item. Second-hand books, clothes, household decorations, electronics, or kitchen items can be found online and in your neighbourhood’s charity shops. The latter will also save you stress with delivery times while supporting local businesses!

What about kids? Re-used toys can make them very happy, and you could even swap toys and children’s clothes with your friends who are parents. Both can also be available via subscription services: a couple of months’ subscription on a clothes package or a voucher at a clothing rental company could be a great gift for an adult too! You can find great examples of such circular business models and gifts on the European Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform.

  1. Breathe new life into worn-out or damaged items

But what if an item is broken and can’t be reused? You could still give something worn-out or damaged a new life. If you have an eye for sewing, look out for second-hand clothes and fabrics you could repurpose into a unique and personal cushion cover, blanket or garment. Or consider offering your talent as a gift, in the form of a self-designed voucher/coupon for fixing up your friend’s favourite item of clothing. Again, it also works for other products – you could offer to pay for repair or maintenance of your friend’s phone, laptop or bicycle, or promise to fix it yourself if you’ve got the skills! There’s even a way to combine repair and buying new by choosing a present that gives waste a second chance. Online platforms offer products born from the concept of scraps reuse, with circular and local networks of producers and artisans joining forces to transform waste into new products. You can save materials from landfill while doing online shopping!

  1. Give the gift of action through a Climate Pact pledge

Add something extra special to your gift – make a Climate Pact Pledge to act for our planet together with your gift recipient. For example, you could pledge to cycle to work together and offer your friend a membership to a city bike scheme; or gift an outing to a vegetarian restaurant combined with you both pledging to eat more plants. You could offer them a repurposed, zero-waste cookbook, and you could both pledge to cut food waste.Why not also consider scouting charity shops for a vintage jumper or cardigan,and give it in addition to you both pledging to turn the heating down by a degree or two? or two?

Once you start to think beyond material presents, there’s an incredible range of original, planet-saving gift ideas you could offer this winter.

 

 

Peer Parliaments Registration is now Open!

Peer Parliaments Registration is now Open!

 

  • How we move and get around?
  • How we make energy green and fair?
  • How we eat and consume?

Europe’s future climate policies will only succeed if we design them for people and with people. Oxygono as the European Climate Pact Country Coordinator for Cyprus, is inviting you to hold your own “Peer Parliament” with a small circle of friends, family, neighbors or colleagues, and discuss key topics from the perspective of your everyday life.

EU Climate Pact Launch Event

EU Climate Pact Launch Event

Oxygono with the support of the European Committee representation in Cyprus held on 19 October 2021 an Online Event for European Climate Pact.

The discussion was moderated on behalf of Oxygono by Nikolas Papachristoforou with the participation of: Marina Kyriakou (Architect & Urban Planner, Cyprus Energy Agency), Dr. Theodoulou Mesimeri (Head of Climate Action Unit, Department of Environment), Aspasia Christodoulou (Communications and PR for Let’s do it Campaign) and Dr, Nestor Fylaktos (Associate Research Scientist, The Cyprus Institute).

Participants were invited to share with the public their views on Sustainable Mobility and Sustainable ShoppingAll participants stressed the need to implement the relevant national strategies as well as the importance of taking individual initiative, the need for a "bottom-up" approach and substantial changes in culture.

In her welcoming opening statement the Environment Commissioner Clelia Vassiliou tressed that the effort and the debate on the environment concern everyone, emphasizing that «there is no one who should remain indifferent or indifferent to the debate on the climate, in terms of the action of each of us in everyday life, in our small or big habits, in the choices we make every day, because these are what define the weight we give in practice and in the result of reducing the effects of climate change ».

Regarding the action of her Office, Ms. Vassiliou referred to the effort, in collaboration with the academic community, to simplify the terms used and to inform students that«no science is indifferent to the environment, no one can remain indifferent to this discussion».».

On the Pact and the European Green Deal

The EU Climate Pact is an initiative of the European Committee part of the European Green Deal, that aims to help the EU meet its goal of becoming the world’s first climate-neutral continent by 2050. The Green Deal aims to make the EU economy more sustainable, turning climate and environmental challenges into opportunities, ensuring this transition is fair and inclusive.

Information for editors

The Launch Event for the European Climate Pact is the first in a series of events and activities organized by Oxygono as the National Coordinator for the Pact in Cyprus of the objectives of the initiative. The aim of the local actions, with the participation of the local ambassadors for the Climate Pact, is to activate the citizens, to be informed about how their action contributes to something better, to get practical advice and to know how they can act for the climate.

For more info

Nikolas Papachristoforou (Oxygono) n.papachristoforou@oxygono.org

Kypros Savva (Ampersand) kypros.savva@ampersand.com.cy