Tag Archives: personal

The exciting reason why I’ve been neglecting my blog

I’ll be honest – usually I hate these kind of posts. Which is why I haven’t done one until now.

I always think “in the time you took to write those monthly ‘sorry I haven’t blogged’ posts, you could have written one or two actual posts”. Plus they make a blog look dead.

But I’ve been well aware for some time now that this blog already looks dead, and I think it’s time to explain myself to any people who still read it.

There’s really 3 reasons (read: excuses) why I haven’t been blogging, and the third is the one that’s super exciting.

  1. I haven’t had the time/energy. Yep – crappy excuse first. I work full time, spreading myself across three part-time roles. I work as a social media manager for Sillman Thomas, as a marketing officer for Koru Architects and at the Post Growth Institute I manage the Post Growth Alliance and am also a co-director. Plus my work means I go to lots of workshops and talks and networking events in the evenings. Also I have actually been blogging – just not independently. I manage a blog as part of each of those three jobs. But this point wouldn’t be enough to stop me on its own.
  2. I’ve learnt so much that I’m overwhelmed. This is a bit of a weird one. During the last year since I graduated from uni and started working in digital marketing, (plus my own research from excellent resources like Problogger), I’ve learnt a dizzying amount about how to make a blog effective. From SEO to copywritng to CTAs to autoresponders, my head is full of best practices which are a million miles ahead of where this blog is. Having so much to update with so little time is kind of paralysing.
  3. I am planning a new blog. Here comes the exciting bit! If this wasn’t the case I could power through issues 1 and 2. But I have a new blog brewing. Well, more of an evolution of this one really. Refocused, rebranded and reborn. I’m not going to write much about it here, but it’s going to be a blog about the politics of one planet living. And by that I mean how party politics relates to sustainability, sustainability policy, but also the complex power relations around environmental issues. Basically a political ecology blog, but written in a casual accessible and hopefully entertaining style.

I’ve been percolating on this new blogging idea for some time. I’ve been brainstorming content ideas, researching the topics and researching blogging techniques.  I’ve got high hopes for starting this in the new year. So watch this space in 2017! 

One Year Dies, and Another is Born

Hello lovely readers, I hope you’ve all been having a gorgeous festive time.

As 2014 draws to a close and the new bubba year is just a couple of days away, I’d like to take this opportunity to write about some of the big deals in sustainability from the last year, sustainability-related things I’ve been doing personally, and some of the things I’m eagerly and nervously awaiting from 2015. I think it’s going to be a big year.

This is a UK-centric post as that’s where I’m based. If you live in another country, please feel free to leave a comment telling me what the big sustainability news from your neck of the woods has been in 2014!
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Post Growth Institute

Okay, so I may have been slacking on my blogging lately, but I’ve been crazy busy in the rest of my life. My dissertation and other university coursework is taking up a lot of time, and I’ve been volunteering with my local Green Party each week, campaigning to get our Green MP re-elected. But the most exciting reason why I’m extra busy, is that I’ve become a core member of the Post Growth Institute.

If you haven’t heard me mention them before, they’re an international group exploring how we can chart a course to a shared sustainable prosperity beyond our addiction to growth-mania.  Continue reading

Environmental Communication & Journalism

Good evening lovelies.

My latest episode of Future Focus is now online and can be listened to here. This one’s on environmental communication, and features an interview with the design coordinator of the Greenpeace field at Glastonbury Festival 2014, the wonderful and talented Tabitha Pope. The episode discusses the many forms environmental communication can take, and how important it is in a society that increasingly relies on the media. Please give it a listen, and tell me what you think. And if you like it, please get on the link-love and share, share, share!  Continue reading

Greenpeace & Glastonbury Festival 2014

I just got home yesterday from a summer-time adventure.

I was working for Greenpeace at Glastonbury Festival. I can’t believe I haven’t written about the project sooner to be honest, but my life’s been a bit of a whirlwind since I finished the 2nd year of my degree at the beginning of last month.

Basically, me and my friend Lola won a competition, which was about designing innovative ways of communicating climate change and the plight of the Arctic. In our application we summarised three ideas, which were for igloos with sound and visual installations for various Arctic issues, a timeline of melting icebergs and a large bird’s eye view map of the Arctic. The prize was to actually come to the festival and build your designs. We didn’t hear back for ages, so I was pretty shocked when Lola rang me excitedly telling me we’d won. They wanted us to create the timeline idea, and said the igloos were cool but there wasn’t enough space for them.

Anyway, that was about two weeks before the day we were expected onsite, and we were asked to stay from 17th June to 2nd July. We had the actual festival weekend off, which was fantastic. Working on the decor team of the build crew was a lot of fun, and it was also hard work. It was baking hot all week, and I felt close to sunstroke on a couple of occasions, but somehow I managed to avoid coming home looking like a lobster.

We spent three days painting our timeline, which was very big and right at the front of the Greenpeace field, next to the giant replica of the Arctic Sunrise ship. The timeline showed two scenarios, one called ‘business as usual’ which depicted melting icebergs giving way to rising sea levels and open water filled with oil rigs and industrial fishing ships. The other was called ‘global sanctuary’ and showed ice and water levels stabilising and lots of Arctic wildlife and sealife. This was supposed to show the consequences of our collective actions, and to underline that we have a choice – the melting of the Arctic is not inevitable.


Our double timeline, photo by Lola Rose.

Our double timeline, photos by Lola Rose.

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Future Focus: Energy Episode

Hey everyone, hope you’re enjoying the beautiful spring sunshine.

In my last post I mentioned how busy I’ve been working on my new radio show, Future Focus – a talk show all about sustainability for an online community radio station. I’m so excited to tell you that the first episode is ready for your listening-pleasure!
Unfortunately they somehow forgot to tell me when it’d be broadcast, so I was sitting here waiting for the heads up when they actually aired it six days ago without telling me. No worries though, because they mixcloud all their shows. Here’s the link to the episode, which centres around sustainable energy in the UK.


This is the first time I’ve worked with the radio so it’s a learning process! I’ve already learnt buckets of stuff that’ll help me out in the next episode, so I’m sure I’ll improve my presenting skills as I go along.

Please have a listen, share with interested friends, and let me know what you think!

The next episode is going to be about sustainable food, so watch this space.

Radio Free Brighton - an online community radio station.

Radio Free Brighton – an online community radio station.

Busyness and the Radio

Hi lovely readers, I hope everything’s going well with you.

I just wanted to explain why my blog’s gone a bit quiet at the moment. As usual there is a good reason, I’m not just being lazy on the writing front. Actually I’ve been incredibly busy. Half way through my degree, my workload is picking up quite a lot (I have to start writing my dissertation soon!!), and I also have a waitressing job that’s taking up most of my evenings. But I’m also doing two other much more exciting things. Continue reading

An Environmentalist’s Evolution

Sometimes I find myself wondering how I came to be so fiercely concerned with the state of the world; with all it’s complex social and environmental aspects. The truth is, my interests have developed, evolved and broadened as I’ve grown from a wide-eyed bubbah to a 20 year old university student.

My interest in the environment was probably given a good head start by my parents, my mum especially. I enjoyed a pretty unconventional upbringing, which involved home education, growing up in a woodland low impact settlement, plenty of wacky life experiences and a healthy dose of skepticism towards government and general authority. My mum taught me to respect plants and animals, to be grateful for my food and never waste it, not to waste water, how to make a fire and which wild plants were edible.

Whether because of this or for some other innate reason, I remember always, from as young as I can remember, being extremely fond of animals. I used to read zoology books constantly and fantasize about opening an animal sanctuary. When I was eight years old, I distinctly remember engaging two of my friends in conversation about the issue of animal cruelty. We decided we would do something about this broad and prevalent issue, and Tiger’s Eye Kid’s Club was born. Our parents thought it was great and helped us a lot, it would never of happened without their work. I made all my friends join and we basically raised awareness about animal rights issues and raised money for action groups. We had a website, which my dad made, and we had information stalls at Glastonbury Festival for two years.

I eventually dropped Tiger’s Eye as I became older and needed to focus on my GCSEs. But that was really where my interest in environmental issues came from, because my research told me that many animals are threatened mostly from habitat destruction and pollution. The more I learned, the more I began to see environmental damage as a problem in and of itself, rather than just because of the animals it affects. I took Environmental Studies at A Level which consolidated this view, and also showed me how complex environmental problems really are, and how many human effects they have. It was around my time in college that I began to look more at the human perspective, seeing pollution, hazards and climate change as problems that have severe and important social repercussions. I started reading and thinking about the concept of sustainability, which is being environmentally responsible because it makes sense from a human standpoint, rather than conservation which is good for ‘the rest of nature’. From there it was only a short jump to caring more deeply about social issues in the broader sense.

During my gap year, I did lots of reading around these subjects and I began to realise how most environmental and even social issues are caused by the way our economy is set up. This led to me taking a sudden interest in economics, and especially new or ecological economics pioneered by the Post Growth Institute, nef and CASSE. I spent countless hours scribbling in notebooks and racking my brains, trying to envision or design an economy whose rules would automatically encourage a sustainable and happy society – a kind of utopia that I was obsessed with imagining.

I went to university for a degree in Environment and Media Studies and so far I’ve loved every second of it. Last year we studied subjects I hadn’t really considered before, which broadened my interests still further. I became incredibly interested in politics, feminism, human rights, and especially with world development and poverty reduction. I continued to do lots of reading about alternative economics, and when I read Enough is Enough everything seemed to click into place. When I stumbled upon this concept of a post-growth or steady-state economy, where the goal is sustainable and equitable human well-being rather than profit, and the economy doesn’t grow but stays balanced within the Earth’s limits, I felt like I’d found the recipe for the philosopher’s stone or something…

I was elated.

This was the solution I’d been trying to dream up, already laid out neatly if slightly inconclusively by like-minded thinkers.

My attitude towards modernity, cities and technology has also changed radically since I was a young teen. I used to think people should ‘get back to the land’ and that technological advancement was no good for humanity or the Earth. I no longer think that way. I think cities are here to stay, and rightly so. I think technology can be harnessed to do great things and I’m a little bit in awe of the internet. I think there’s no sense in trying to return to a rustic idyll that wasn’t actually that romantic; I think we need to evolve to a state we’ve never read about in history books.
I used to be in love with the past, but we’ve broken up and now I’m infatuated with the future.

I’m just about to start my second year of university, and I can’t wait to begin soaking up more knowledge and learning even more about my subject. As ever, I’ll continue to post my thoughts, ideas and discoveries on this blog.
I’m now convinced that a post-growth society is our best possible hope of having a sustainable society with a high quality of life, as opposed to living very frugally amidst environmental desolation. I endeavour to learn more about this new but growing concept and maybe even add something of my own, one day.

It’s very interesting to study how interests evolve.
If I could tell my five-year-old butterfly-chasing, squirrel-feeding self that one day I’d be fascinated by economics, I don’t think I’d of believed it!