On the subject of thoughts that become actions, we report here on two initiatives that are only indirectly to do with the soil, but which we regard as highly relevant.
The first is in Sweden, the second is a supermarket in Amsterdam.
Sweden: “Transforming our world” is the UN’s sustainable development agenda to be achieved by 2030. In addition to Zero consumption of fertile soil 169 targets are listed for the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. One of them is the development of sufficient energy for a nation’s needs without CO2 emissions. Sweden will hit this target in December 2018, 12 years ahead of time. The country has invested particularly in wind energy and has reached a production capacity of 18 terawatt-hours a year.
Sweden will gain two advantages from reaching energy autonomy: i) the increased supply of electricity will lower costs for individual consumers; ii) businesses will also benefit from lower energy costs, with distributors close to their premises and without the need to invest in solar panels, wind turbines or other infrastructure.
Amsterdam: Ekoplaza is the name of a chain of Dutch supermarkets. It has introduced whole food departments where there are no plastic food containers. On entry you don’t immediately notice the difference, the packaging looks normal. But on closer examination you see that the transparent wrapping is made from plant material. It biodegrades in 12 weeks through composting. More than 700 products are wrapped in natural biodegradable containers, some of which are even edible. Those behind the initiative remind us that plastic packaging is used for a matter of days but that its environmental impact can last for 70 years or even longer.
The first “plastic-free” section was opened by Ekoplaza in an Amsterdam supermarket on 28/2/18. The aim is to do the same in the other 74 shops before the end of this year. Ekoplaza is leading the way, but other businesses are also voluntarily removing plastic containers from the production cycle.
This is good news for the environment, especially for the soil and the seas.