Blog Tag: Sustainability

I will if you will – Tree Planting Challenge

Posted by Peter MUIR

Tree planting

DB Green tree planting

Posted by Peter MUIR

Here are the details for DB Green’s tree planting this Sunday….

The rainy season has definitely arrived and so it’s time to plant another 1000 trees in the conservation area! This is a wonderful project to return native trees to this once forested area and in doing so also improve the biodiversity of the local wildlife.

Directions: To find the conservation area you head up the road towards the golfcourse and turn right at the concrete road to the lookout. About 100m on your left is a couple of routes to get you to the conservation area. Look for bamboo stakes with coloured twine for the trees we’ve previously planted. We will try to put some kind of marker to get there but it is frequently removed by security so your best chance is to look out for happy diggers on the hill on your left. Failing being able to spot someone easily (sometimes we are on the other side of the hill), try calling John Horwood- our tree planting organiser on 9457 5548.

What to bring: Sturdy shoes (hiking boots are great or old sneakers as it gets quite muddy sometimes), plenty of water, insect repellent, sunscreen, snacks, friends (many hands really does make light work!) and, to prevent scratches, wear long trousers and shirts.

Time: Usually 10am to 4 pm or it may finish earlier if  trees taken up for the day are planted.

Even making it up for an hour or 2 is a great help.

Donating: Each tree costs $10 thanks to the generosity of Kadoorie Farms and covers the cost of the tree, bamboo, twine, equipment and transportation.

If you would like to donate to the cost of the trees you can transfer money to HSBC: 571 213511 001 or donate cash at the next flea market in June or beach cleanup on the 19 of May or give to John directly. 

World Water Day

Posted by Peter MUIR

March 22 is World Water Day – a day to focus on what many people around the world take for granted, while millions of others struggle to access daily requirements – water.

The day provides an opportunity to become aware of the challenges many face around the globe due to a lack of fresh water, as well as the realization that one of our most important resources is not infinite.  An idea for students – conduct a Personal Water Audit (pages 4-8) to see how much water you use over two days (sorry – it’s from Nth America so you’ll need to convert to metric).  You might also wish to extend this to look at the amount your whole family uses at home.  Then look at ways that you could reduce your personal water footprint.  Present your findings at school.

Trawling Ban in effect! A msg from WWF….

Posted by Peter MUIR

Passing on a message from WWF that featured on the DB Green website

Dear Supporter,

I am pleased to inform you that as of 31 December 2012, the territory-wide trawling ban came into full effect. This legislation provides a solid foundation on which to build a sustainable fishery in Hong Kong. This ban, applicable to all forms of trawling in the entirety of Hong Kong waters, was one of our key conservation achievements in 2012 and it was your support that made it happen. Since 2005, WWF has been tirelessly campaigning for a ban on trawling in Hong Kong waters, and has been advocating that the government implement further measures to preserve the city’s near-collapsed marine ecology. This groundbreaking fisheries management measure will safeguard the diversity of marine life and ecological integrity of our marine environment. WWF hopes that the Hong Kong government will continue to provide support to the affected fishers and help them make the switch to other livelihoods like marine eco-tourism. We are also urging the government to implement the concept of Marine Spatial Planning, which will allow Hong Kong to allocate marine resources more efficiently, to balance ecological, social and economic objectives.

These gains aside, we are disappointed to have to inform you that another marine species in Hong Kong – the Chinese white dolphin – is also under threat. Over 1,700 hectares of the sea in western Hong Kong waters has been reclaimed in past decades, causing great disturbance and the direct loss of the habitat of this precious marine mammal. Compounding the problem, this reclamation has also removed the habitat of the fish on which these dolphins feed. WWF is urging the government to ensure that any possible impacts to the dolphins are kept to a minimum by putting in place sufficient environmental protection measures. We firmly believe a balance has to be struck between development and the survival of this unique species. Your support will help us improve the situation for the dolphins. Everyone in Hong Kong enjoys life in the ocean’s embrace, but our marine environment is under great pressure and the sea needs everyone’s support to restore its health and beauty. Your charitable contribution will make a big difference by ensuring the continued success of our marine conservation programs. Show your support by making a donation today. With every donation of HK$500 or above, you will receive a FREE dolphin key ring and a one-year WWF membership.

Yours Faithfully,

Samantha Lee
Senior Conservation Officer, Marine
WWF-Hong Kong

An Idea – Home Composting Project

Posted by Peter MUIR

A C&S / CAS Idea – Set up a home composting project.

Research about composting and how it benefits the environment.  Do some specific research about micro-composting in an apartment, then develop a promotional campaign to encourage people to have their own home compost.

 

73 million sharks killed globally each year

Posted by Peter MUIR

73 million sharks killed globally each year for shark fin trade, a trade that is centred in HK.

Shark fins drying

This picture, taken earlier this year, shows thousands of shark fins being dried on a rooftop in Kennedy Town.  The picture paints a troubling picture of the state of shark conservation.  How could you take action to help address this issue?  Here is a related post, and this report from WWF outlines more action you can take:

WWF has been advocating that the public “say no to shark fin” and we launched the No Shark fin Individual Pledge last year. So far more than 7,100 individuals and 147 corporate have pledged not to eat or consume shark fin products, while 114 restaurants and hotels have committed to provide Alternative Shark Free Menu, either providing alternatives for customers, or implementing a total ban on shark fin dishes . Yet, as the photos show, Hong Kong remains a key shark fin trading hub.

To help combat this problem and minimize local demand for shark products, we need your help: starting today, please ask everyone you know to pledge not to consume any shark fin products.

In order to strengthen worldwide trade regulation (e.g. CITES and ban on illegal trade) and the public’s demand  on consuming sustainable products, WWF calls for the Hong Kong government to collect and release full trade statistics of shark fin including information on species, volumes and country of origins.  This type of scientific identification of random samples of shark fin, through DNA testing for example, is essential for developing verification purposes.

WWF and other environmental groups have launched a petition, We’re urging the Hong Kong government to make a public policy of not to serving shark fin in official functions.

Looking for members of the DC Sustainability Committtee

Posted by Peter MUIR

Keen to make DC more environmentally friendly? A new Sustainability Committee is being formed and is looking for eager students to get involved and make a difference.  The Committee Aims are:

  • To raise awareness about issues on Sustainability among students.
  • To create environmental change around school through a number of student led initiatives eg recycling bins, throttle the bottle, nude food, meat free Mondays, environmental audit, waste audit, green campaigns such as plants in classrooms.
  • To write a school green policy.
  • Implement green reps in school
  • Brainstorm ideas and priorities – follow Community Engagement Calendar to help with themed weeks or days such as water days; earth hour etc.
  • To represent DC at the ESF Environmental Conference on 28th Feb (at DC).

Structure:
Primarily this will be a student led committee with teacher guidance. You will be required to collaborate with others throughout school such as: Teachers, Facility management staff etc.

CAS / C&S
Being an active member of the Sustainability Committee can be a valuable and meaningful part of your C&S (MYP) or CAS (DP) Programme, and offer much scope for achievement in the required learning outcomes of both programmes.

Anybody is welcome to join the committee – the main requirement is being eager to make a change.   To apply to become a committee member, please email julia.surman@discovery.edu.hk a response to the following questions:

  • How can you contribute to the committee?
  • What skills do you bring with you?
  • What are your initial views on how we can improve our environmental performance at DC?