As you can imagine, we are joining many others in canceling our public events planned for April, 2020 due to the Coronavirus. Thus the April 22nd, 2020 film screening and the April 25th, 2020 Earth Day festival are both canceled until further notice.
Our events team is still very enthusiastic and will continue planning, but for some unknown time in the future. We are also looking into online event options. If this emerges in a timely manner, we will post updates here and on our Facebook Earth The Day Netherlands Page.
What we can all do in the meantime, is to inspire one another to reduce our ecological footprint, especially when it comes to global warming and to think about what we can learn from the Coronavirus, from an environmental perspective.
Here are a few interesting articles on that note.
The Coronavirus Outbreak Is Having an Unexpected Effect on The Environment. Science Alert, February 20, 2020. Science Alert.
Coronavirus and climate change: A tale of two crises. Ruby Russel. DW Online. March 5, 2020. Read DW article here.
Today is the beginning of Natonale Week Zonder Vlees (National Week without Meat) in the Netherlands. This challenge to eat only vegetarian meals for a week runs from March 9th through March 15th, 2020. A number of restaurants and schools are also participating.
You can sign up via this link: Week Zonder Vlees. Once you sign up, you have access to a magazine with vegetarian meal recipes, tips and information to make your week without eating meat a feasible transition. This annual event was started by Isabel Boerdam, a vegetarian, foodblogger and author of De Hippe Vegetarier.
According to the Mayo Clinic, switching to a vegetarian diet has many health benefits. Here is a quote from a Mayo Clinic article on meatless Meals.
“A plant-based diet, which emphasizes fruits, vegetables, grains, beans, legumes and nuts, is rich in fiber, vitamins and other nutrients. And people who don’t eat meat — vegetarians — generally eat fewer calories and less fat, weigh less, and have a lower risk of heart disease than non-vegetarians do.” Meatless Meals: The Benefits of Eating Less Meat. Mayo Clinic, July 26, 2017. Read the full article here.
Both Dutch versions of Women’s Health Magazine and Men’s Health magazine have online articles about Nationale Week Zonder Vlees, but the articles are definitely catered to their audience. Women’s health provides daily recipes to inspire you.
Men’s Health uses an entirely different image to convey the benefits of Nationale Week Zonder Vlees. If an image is worth a thousand words, then this image says ‘healthy, strong men also eat vegetables.’
From an environmental perspective, going vegetarian is great for the planet. In the book “Verborgen Impact” (hidden/buried impact), here are a few statistics about meat.
Er zit 15.000 liter water verborgen in 1 kilo rundvlees. (There are 15,000 liters of water used in just 1 kilo beef (hidden impact when you count water use for all phases of production, from growing food for the animal all the way to transportation). (Source: p. 69 De Verborgen Impact. Babette Porcelijn 2016)
Other water facts associated with meat and the hidden impact of water consumption:
120 gram rundvlees (beef) = 1800 liters water
120 gram varkenvlees (pork) = 630 liters water
120 gram kip (chicken) = 480 liters water
Source: De Verborgen Impact. p. 65. Babette Porcelijn 2016
Would you like to learn more about our Verborgen Impact in the Netherlands, not only in regards to food, but in what we buy, how we travel and how we live? Then visit this website in the caption above and get your own copy. (Only available in Dutch).
There is also plenty of inspiration to keep you going during the week without meat!
This is a day where people are encouraged to put on an extra warm sweater (warme trui) and turn their thermostats down a degree or two in order to save energy. Every year around 200,000 Dutch citizens participate! How much energy could be saved in one day if everyone in the Netherlands participated? This 2016 info-graphic lays out just how much is possible.
Would you like to participate in Warmetruiendag as an individual, with your co-workers, with your club or faith community? You can sign up on this link! But hurry! At the time I am writing this post, warmetruiendag is just four days away!
There are a number of events in the Netherlands that focus on the environment, from ‘de Dag van de Duurzaamheid’ on the 10th of October to warmetruiendag in February. So why do we also need an Earth Day? These two aforementioned events are local to the Netherlands. Earth Day is an international event, where people across the planet gather, rise up and take action for the environment.
Considering we only have one planet, and we’re mutually responsible for its well being, it makes sense to view it from a global perspective. Earth Day does just that: It is a day to tune in to what’s happening around the world, while you also tune in to what you can do locally. That whole slogan of Think Globally Act Locally is still as relevant today as when it was first introduced.
Hou van je Huis (Love your House) is a program organized through the Municipality of The Hague to advise homeowners on how to save energy in the home. They can also inform you about about subsidies available for both roof and floor insulation. Hou van je Huis works with VvE balie, and they can also provide a free energy scan and hot water heater check for homeowners.
Come visit their booth this Saturday April 21st at Earth Day The Hague and you can sign up directly for that free energy scan or hot water heater check! In addition, Jetty Kurhaus will be at the booth with information on how you can receive a B-label on your home (the year your home was built plays a role of course).
IN HET NEDERLANDS
Met het project “Hou van je Huis” adviseert de gemeente particuliere woningeigenaren over energie besparen.
Er zijn subsidies beschikbaar voor dak- en vloerisolatie, we werken veel samen met de VvE balie, en we kunnen ook gratis energiescans en ketelchecks aanbieden voor woning eigenaren in Den Haag.
Op die dag kan ik direct inschrijven voor een energiescan of een ketelcheck. Ik neem verschillende kaartjes mee met maatregelen hoe je je woning (met een bepaald bouwjaar) naar een B-label kunt krijgen. Jetty Kurhaus van Hou van je huis neemt info mee over de subsidie regeling en wat monsters van isolatie materialen. Een hele handige kaart met maatregelen hoe je energie kan besparen door gedragsverandering etc.
The Hague is the proud owner of the Fairtrade Gemeente title since October 2015! Fairtrade Gemeente is a national campaign with the aim to increase the sales and consumption of fair trade coffee, tea and many other fair trade products. By buying fair trade products you contribute to a better income and livelihood for farmers and producers in developing countries.
You earn the title when the municipality as well as a substantial number of companies and offices in the municipality serve fair trade coffee, tea, cocoa, sugar, etc. Also there are criteria for the number of shops, restaurants and cafés that sell fair trade products. As a consumer you can contribute by buying these products and asking in shops and cafes whether the coffee is fair trade!
The shops, lunchrooms and cafes were easily found with the help of the Fair Shopping
Foundation (EerlijkWinkelen). EerlijkWinkelen guides you to shops that sell fair trade,
organic and second hand products with their (free!) app, website and maps. They are
present in over 60 places in the Netherlands, including the Hague!
Come to the stand on Earth Day to get your free copy of the FairShopping card and the fair fashion flyer of the Hague. At our stand we will provide you with information about Fairtrade Gemeenten, sustainable shopping and fair fashion (in cooperation with Fair Wear).
Also, we will have a quiz with which you can win a gift card from the Wereldwinkel