“We are stardust loves wilderness; it is for those who love adventures, exploring and discovering. Cards are created with respect and awe for the natural world."
- we are stardust about page
Human-made climate change is real
It is beyond doubt that human-made climate change is real. The International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) most recent report cites over 6,000 scientific articles and was prepared by 91 authors and review editors from 40 countries: 97% of climate scientists agree climate change is caused by greenhouse gases released in to the atmosphere by humans.
The IPCC report released on 8 October 2018 showed that the current 1C increase in global warming above pre-industrial levels is already having negative consequences with extreme weather becoming more common, sea levels rising and Arctic ice melting. It stated that “rapid and far-reaching” changes in land, energy, industry, buildings, transport and cities are needed to limit global warming to 1.5C above pre-industrial levels.
This scares me. A lot. And sometimes I feel helpless when my efforts to try and help curb climate change seem miniscule compared to governments ignoring the facts and continuing as normal. The only thing I can cling on to is that if enough of us “little” people make individual changes and continue to push our MPs into action, global change will happen:
(I recently looked at the They Work For You website and found out my MP's track record on voting for environment policies is pretty bad).
Five eco-friendly things
One of the joys of owning my own business is that I can make it as environmentally friendly as possible. However, this is easier said than done. It is can be quite hard to trace back where and how packaging and paper is made. I am doing my best to limit the impact on we are stardust has on the environment, and here are five ways we are stardust is improving its eco-credentials (as well as some of the difficulties I am facing tracking down the facts):
- Business cards are made from recycled cotton T-shirts via Moo.com. Where I need to do more research is whether the process of creating this card is also environmentally friendly – I am struggling to adequately compare the environmental impact of using recycled card (bleaching processes, water used etc.) versus Forestry Stewardship Certified card.
- Greetings cards are made from Forestry Stewardship Certified and 100% recycled Shiro Echo Bright White card from The Imaging Centre. Again, the difficulty is understanding whether 100% recycled card is actually more environmentally friendly than Forestry Stewardship Certified card.
- Cards are packaged with ribbon from MacCulloch & Wallis, rather than plastic wrap, as much as possible. How and where the ribbons are produced is something I need to do more research on and it may be possible that there are more environmentally-friendly ribbons I can use. I have tried sourcing hand-dyed ribbon from natural ingredients, however, these are too expensive per meter (and rightly so – they take a long time and skill to make). In the meantime, I truly believe that because the ribbons can be reused, rather than thrown away as a plastic wrapper would be, ribbons are the better option at the moment. It is worth saying, however, that when I do have to use plastic wrappers, e.g. for stockists, the wrap I use is fully recyclable.
- Envelopes are made from 100% recycled Kraft paper from Regent Envelopes. Again, I need to do more research into how the paper is produced.
- Boxes and packaging for wholesale orders are recycled. This I am confident is the best for the environment. I reuse boxes and packaging sent to me by suppliers and try to make it look as good as possible before sending it on to my stockists.
Areas to improve
As always there is more to be done so here are areas I am looking to improve on in the future:
- Use biodegradable tape to wrap orders.
- Find alternatives to plastic wrappers for wholesale orders and market stalls.
- Use non-bleached packaging to post orders, e.g. non-bleached tissue paper.