Attempting Harmless Fashion

beards

The concept of sustinable fashion is more of a goal than something that can be put into practice. One company, Asket, is taking a different spin on making the fashion world better by adding accountability through traceability with the spin off effect of sustainability. Asket educates consumers on the supply chain of their products so people can make informed choices about what they wear. Nobody wants to financially support the factories in China using Uighur slave labour or the factories wasting 100 billion items of clothing each year. There’s a lot of work to be done in the fashion industry so it’s good to see a company tackling issues head-on.

As always, the most fashionable choice is to reduce your consumption by wearing what you already own or buying vintage wear.

We believe it’s crucial that the customer knows and understands the journey of a garment and the massive amount of resources and work that is put into them, because that’s the only way for someone to appreciate them and make sure that we turn them from disposables into investments; and that we then, in turn, actually start taking care of them and minimize our consumption.

I guess the disclaimer would be that traceability in itself doesn’t mean that you’re necessarily more sustainable. It just means that we’re aware where it’s made and how, and then you can start working on lowering your impact based on that. But of course, if you’re working with traceability and disclosing that, I would say you are working more responsibly, otherwise you wouldn’t put that [information] out there. If you’ve got nothing to hide, then you can do that.

Read more.

G7 Nations Agree on Minimum Corporate Tax

money

Corporations love keeping their shareholders money instead of contributing to society, and it’s the role of governments to ensure that corporations do their part. Usually this comes in the form of taxation. Multinational corporations create multiple subsidiaries to obfuscate and obstruct the ability of governments to collect tax, it’s the corporate equivalent of dining and dashing.

A recent G7 meeting revealed that the largest economies in the world are going to enact a global minimum taxation rate for corporations. Having an agreed-upon minimum will remove the incentive to corporations to create subsidiaries to avoid taxation, while increasing the wealth of nations.

The rules on making multinationals pay taxes where they operate – known as “pillar one” of the agreement – would apply to global companies with at least a 10% profit margin. 

Twenty percent of any profit above that would be reallocated and taxed in the countries where they operate, according to the G7 communiqué. 

In the case of the UK, for example, more tax revenue would be raised from large multinationals and would help pay for public services.

The second “pillar” of the agreement commits states to a global minimum corporate tax rate of 15% to avoid countries undercutting each other.

Read more.

Bustling Bike Boom Brought on by Pandemic Continues

Riding bikes has gotten more popular over the course of the pandemic due to the fact it’s a safe outdoor activity. Popularity of commuting by bicycle has also increased thanks to initiatives done throughout many cities to increase infrastructure supporting bicycling. All of this has led to demand for bicycles which far exceeds the current global supply. This is a good thing, the more people riding bicycles the better.

The new infrastructure supporting bicycles has actually lead to a massive increase in the amount of people riding bikes daily. You can see the evidence of this and a new interactive report out of Ryerson University that looks at how cycling infrastructure drastically increases the numbers of riders.

Things are pedal to the metal all over the country. Whether it’s CalgaryToronto or Halifax, bike shops are slammed, with a surge that started in March 2020 and has not let up — and a backlog that some experts say won’t be cleared up for months or even years.

That’s provided a surge in demand for bikes. Market research firm NPD Group says Canadian numbers aren’t tracked, but in the United States, sales of bicycles increased 75 per cent in 2020 compared with a year earlier. For the first two months of 2021, the increase year over year was 130 per cent.

Read more.

Reducing Meat Consumption can Reduce the Risk of the Next Pandemic

Zoonotic diseases are nothing new and are often the cause of large outbreaks which cause great harm to humans and other animals. It’s speculated that the recent COVID-19 coronavirus popped into existence due to close animal – human contact in Chinese wet markets. History as shown us that wherever there is frequent, close contact between animals and humans there is an increase in the likelihood of new diseases. This has led to scientists calling for reduced meat conniption with the thinking that if eat less meat than the potential for human-animal transmission is reduced in markets and processing facilities.

This shouldn’t be that big of a challenge since people are already reducing their meat consumption and in Canada 10% of the population is vegetarian or vegan.

It is clear that the origins of these pandemics are not restricted to certain countries or certain practices, such as “wet-markets.” For some researchers, including Swedish chief physician and infectious diseases professor Björn Olsen, stemming rising demand for meat and dairy is a necessary part of reducing our risk for pandemics.

Olsen, who is well known for being an early critic of his government’s COVID-19 response, is now becoming known for another early warning — one he has been making in books and articles for nearly 10 years now. In a recent interview in Swedish, Olsen notes that pandemic viruses have all arisen where animals and humans meet, and raising billions of animals as food will have effects.

Read more.

Plastics are Toxic in Canada

The advertising around plastics highlights how recyclable it is, but in reality plastics are a pollutant that barely get recycled in a meaningful way (this is why the 3Rs are in a particular order: reduce, reuse, recycle). Plastics come in all sorts of densities, colours, and strength, but are traditionally made using petroleum. The source of most plastics is unsustainable and the waste generated by plastics after use is equally unsustainable. In fact, the waste produced by plastics has led Canada to categorize plastics as toxic!

By declaring plastics toxic more rules and regulations will need to be followed to ensure that the damage done to the plant (and people) are limited.

A 2020 government science assessment found ample evidence that plastic harms the environment, choking seabirds, cetaceans and other wildlife. The findings form the basis of the government’s decision, as substances can be considered toxic under CEPA if they harm the environment and biodiversity, human health, or both.

In October 2020, ECCC released a proposal to deal with the problem. Under the proposed rules, Canada will ban six single-use plastic items, like straws and six-pack rings, create incentives for companies to use recycled plastic, and force plastic producers to pay for recycling.

Read more.

Scroll To Top
%d bloggers like this: