Headlines about climate change are hard to ignore and the scale of the news can leave us feeling overwhelmed. But Ara Institute of Canterbury students say that small scale solutions, which can be incorporated into everyday life with the minimum of effort, will make a difference.
The Ecoshowcase at Ara City Campus Christchurch, on Tuesday 23 May 11am – 2pm, is the place to find out more. Grab a free reusable shopping bag, explore sustainable travel options, learn about electric vehicle technology through the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths) programmes at Ara - and much more.
Eco shopping bags are one solution at the Eco Showcase, Ara City Campus Christchurch
To the converted it may seem strange that we still need these reminders, however there is still a way to go in terms of mass behavioural change. For example, New Zealanders use about one billion light weight plastic bags every year according to students Rachel Baker and Emma Swain. “That’s a lot of plastic that is ending up in our landfills and oceans. We need you to help reduce this number,” they say. All they ask is that you stop by to take one of their free Eco Fruit and Vege Bags. Or of course, remember to take your own collection of reusable bags when you go shopping.
Likewise, New Zealanders are still quite dependent on their cars for city transport, but catching the bus, biking or carpooling might be an option for some people, at least sometimes. And there are benefits to travelling sustainably such as saving money, fitness and avoiding the stress of finding a carpark.
Sustainability and Outdoor Education students at Ara provide the bulk of the exhibits but the showcase is institute-wide and draws in some of the many sustainable staff and student projects at Ara.
As the students say in the Eco Showcase programme notes: “Now, more than ever, our community and our world require skills that help build a more sustainable future, not only for us here in Canterbury and New Zealand but also across the globe.
“This is not a theoretical or academic challenge, it is a practical challenge for our education, communities, and businesses - a challenge that we can all meet.”
Find out more: Ara Bachelor of Sustainability and Outdoor Education
Find out more: Sustainability at Ara