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TransparentSea: Raising Awareness about Ocean Issues

18 October 2011

TransparentSea is an initiative to raise awareness about issues facing the ocean, specifically along the California coast.

Using foot-powered ecokayaks, the team is sailing along the west coast of America to draw attention to issues of marine conservation too, by following the migration route of the endangered Grey whale.

To find out more about the TransparentSea voyage visit the TransparentSea website.

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Conservation Victory: Baby Gorilla Rescued

18 October 2011

In a victory for conservation, a poached baby gorilla was recently rescued by an undercover team in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Thanks to a tip-off, three rangers managed to rescue the baby gorilla by posing as interested buyers, and arresting the poachers.

The baby gorilla, named Shamavu after one of the rangers, is now being taken care of by gorilla handlers at the Virunga National Park.

Source: Treehugger

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Taking Green To The Streets

17 October 2011

In an effort to add some colour and life to often drab and concrete urban spaces, people all over the world are adding some green to their cities by “guerilla gardening”.

On a local scale, isabeaupeep recently featured some guerilla gardening that has been put up in the streets of Cape Town behind street signs, using recycled bottles.

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Occupy Wall Street Goes Global

17 October 2011

On Saturday, events inspired by the Occupy Wall Street protests in New York City took place all over the world, including South African cities like Cape Town.

According to an article on the Daily Maverick, the “Occupy” movement is gaining momentum worldwide, which emphasizes the revolutionary potential for this shift in thinking to become a global phenomenon.

To see photos of the Occupy event in Cape Town, visit this link.

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The Reality of Ocean Pollution

16 October 2011

The ocean is so extensive that it’s impossible to keep track of everything in it, including the mass of pollution that ends up in our seas.

In this effective advertising campaign from Advertisers Without Borders highlights the reality of ocean pollution, and reminds us that there is so much rubbish in the sea that we’re not always aware of.

Source: Advertisers Without Borders

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Weekend Wanderlust: A Journey Through Bali

16 October 2011

For some more relaxed weekend viewing, and a reminder of the upcoming summer weather, here is a travel video that shows the beauty, life and landscapes of the Indonesian island of Bali.

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Exhibition: Postcards from the Road

15 October 2011

Photojournalists Don Pinnock and Justin Fox have worked for Getaway magazine for ten years, and taken their fair share of travel portraits.

They’ve captured images from all over the world, one that tell us stories of both hope and destruction, but also ones that show the amazing diversity and magnitude of nature and how people interact with it.

To see a selection of these epic photographs, which have been displayed as narrative postcards, visit the Postcards from the Road exhibition at the David Krut Gallery, which opens today and continues until 3 December.

Image Source: Books Live

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A Different Look at Lilies

15 October 2011

Since it’s the weekend, and there’s time to appreciate the smaller things, here’s a video that looks at nature from a more intricate perspective.

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Occupy Cape Town Tomorrow: Company Gardens

14 October 2011

The Occupy Wall Street movement has gained momentum all over the world, with a worldwide event set to take place tomorrow morning.

According to the Occupy South Africa website, people will be occupying areas in cities all over the country, including the Company Gardens in Cape Town. For more information visit the Occupy South Africa website.

To find out more about the Occupy Wall Street movement in general, read this recent article published on the Mail and Guardian website, and watch the video below, which gives an indication of the community involvement on the ground in New York City.

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Sea Change: Two Oceans Aquarium Switches to Clean Energy

14 October 2011

The Two Oceans Aquarium in Cape Town is a popular attraction for both local and international visitors, but it’s more than just a place to admire underwater creatures in tanks.

The aquarium is also setting the standard for environmentally-consciousness construction, and was recently selected by Project 90×2030 as a green energy demonstration site.

In an effort to reduce their carbon emissions, and contribute towards a less polluted environment, the aquarium has just installed the first grid tied wind and solar PV system on their roof, the first in the City of Cape Town.

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New Seven Wonders of Nature: Vote for Table Mountain

13 October 2011

In a new bid to recognize the New Seven Wonders of Nature, Table Mountain is one of the nominees- an initiative supported by Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

Cast your vote to have this South African heritage icon recognized worldwide, by watching the video below and either casting your vote online or via SMS.

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Help Hold De Beers Accountable

13 October 2011

De Beers is planning to sell an unrehabilitated diamond mine near Hondeklipbaai in Namaqualand, before full disclosure and proper consultation with affected parties has taken place.

To hold De Beers accountable, and make sure that they honour their obligations to rehabilitate the area before they sell to Trans Hex, Green Renaissance has released our latest film, which follows the character of Dawid Markus- a community leader who is taking a stand against the corporations that have not consulted with the interested and affected parties.

Markus is adamant that this sale cannot take place until the community has been assured that the companies will honour their obligations, as the area is also an important area biodiversity hotspot, and one that needs to be returned to its former state to guarantee sustainable livelihoods in the future.

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Appeal to Coldplay to Help Save the Karoo

12 October 2011

Coldplay recently finished up their South African tour, and filmed a music video in Cape Town and the Klein Karoo.

Their choice of the Karoo as a filmic shot is testament to the beauty and value of the area, which is why Jonathan Deal, Chairman of the Treasure Karoo Action Group (TKAG) has appealed to the UK band to bring attention to the threat of fracking in the area.

To read more about Deal’s appeal read this press release.

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When Nature Gets Too Close

12 October 2011

Just in case you missed it- a video about a mountain biker’s collision with a red hartebeest went viral yesterday, and to date has over 4 million views.

It’s incredible how this video has gone viral, and how moments like like can be captured and shared with people all over the world- very much a case of wrong place at the wrong time!

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Harnessing the Power of Nature: Building a Leaf

11 October 2011

Nature is unbelievably efficient, and leaves are no exception. They’re completely sustainable elements of a tree, and even produce their own energy through photosynthesis.

So it seems inevitable that humans would try to harness this efficiency, and it’s no surprise that a well respected institute like MIT has aimed to invent a fully functional leaf from artificial materials.

In this case though, they seem to have got it right, read more about it here.

Source: Wired

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Surfing and Sustainability: Manufacturing Stoke

11 October 2011

Surfing seems to be one of the most natural sports, one that connects people directly with the ocean.

But surfboards are not made from the most environmentally friendly materials, a topic that the documentary “Manufacturing Stoke” addresses by examining the sustainability of the surf industry, and the move towards environmentally-friendly manufacture.

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Outdoor Advertising with Vertical Gardens

10 October 2011

With a lack of space for gardens in urban areas, vertical gardens have become a way to grow some greenery without the need for soil.

This idea has also been used for advertising, like in the photo below, which shows a billboard by Tractor Outdoor for Emirates in Kloof Street, Cape Town, that was made using two varieties of succulents.

Source: Inhabitat

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Saving Two Birds with One Tree

10 October 2011

In support of a campaign for the Coalition of Rainforest Nations at COP15, this video puts into perspective the rate of global deforestation.

It’s scary to think how quickly a forest can be destroyed, which emphasizes the importance of “unchopping” trees, and investing in carbon-offsetting and greening projects.

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Conservation Victory: A Sanctuary for Sharks

9 October 2011

Earlier this week, it was announced that the Marshall Islands in Micronesia had established the world’s largest shark sanctuary.

Although sharks are often portrayed as dangerous and aggressive predators, they are essential part of our ecosystem, and for the Marshall Islands community, an integral part of their culture.

The infamous Great White sharks that breach in the waters of False Bay are still under threat though, but hopefully this kind of initiative can set an international precedent, and help to protect all threatened shark species worldwide.

To read more visit this post on the National Geographic website.

photo by luiz rocha

Image Source: Our Amazing Planet

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The Increasing Importance of Urban Farming

9 October 2011

In a recent column by Andreas Spath on News24, he discussed the increasing importance of urban farming, and how growing our food closer to home is going to prove an essential element of urban sustainability.

In his article, Spath also mentions the Abalimi Bezekhaya project on the Cape Flats, which Green Renaissance filmed last year for WWF and Nedbank- an example of an urban farming project close to home that provides for the needs of the surrounding community.

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