Eco News

Eco News

Ten Things – 15th April 2018

lemon tea


This week has been a fast one and I’m struggling to get my head around how quickly this week has gone.

I spent most of Thursday doing some admin to make Moral Fibres compliant with the new GDPR laws which come in to force in May, which are all about data protection.

From now on in, when you want to leave a blog post comment on Moral Fibres you will need to tick a little consent box to say that you are happy for me to securely store your data.

No changes have been made to the site – the new GDPR laws mean that website owners (including bloggers) have to be more explicit on what they do with your data.  I’ve written a whole privacy policy on what Moral Fibres does with your data if you are interested (spoiler: not a lot other than storing it securely and not allowing third parties to access it, ever, and if you ever want me to delete your comment you can email me).

Anyway, enough of the legal chatter, on to the week’s links!

1.  What a week it has been for environmental news!  The huge news, in case you missed it, is that Iceland (everyone’s new favourite supermarket!) is ditching palm oil from all it’s own brand products by the end of this year, saying, quite rightly so, that there’s no such thing as sustainable palm oil.  This is in combination with it also ditching plastic from its own brand products.

2.  Waitrose is also doing away with disposable cups in all of their stores, by autumn.  I find it a bit incredulous that Iceland can do away with palm oil by the end of the year, but Waitrose need until the autumn just to ditch disposable cups, but hey, it’s another small step forward.

Waitrose has also announced the plan to stop all black plastic in their packaging imminently.  Black plastic is notoriously difficult to recycle, so it’s another step in the right direction.

3.  What the ‘Made In Italy’ label on your handbag might be hiding.

4.  2018’s dirty dozen is here.  Strawberries, always the pesky strawberries.

5.  What happens when you leave excess plastic packaging at the till?

I wonder if people will be as understanding on a busy Friday night in Lidl.  As I start stripping off the packaging (at lightning speed – I was feeling the pressure), I can feel the eyes of the checkout assistant burning into me.  Then a disgruntled ‘cough‘ comes somewhere from the queue (the ultimate British sign of disapproval).  But nobody actually says anything and when I say that I’d like the store to dispose of the waste for me, she politely nods and takes it.

Do you do this?

6.  Move over Nespresso, plastic-free eco-friendly coffee pods that can be composted at home or in your food waste bin are here.   They are sold out on the link provided in the article, but I’ve tracked them down on Amazon* and the Fresh Coffee Ltd eBay store*.

7.  I love this illustration I found on Instagram:

8.  What microplastics look like under a microscope.

9.  An interesting take on the Facebook/Cambridge Analytica scandal: you should be paid for your Facebook data.

For Facebook users furious about the Cambridge Analytica data scandal, there are currently two options to protest and protect your data: stay and have little control over your data privacy, or leave and forfeit the convenience and connectivity social media brings.

But what if there was a third option? What if the companies profiting from user-generated data had to pay you for it? What if each user got to decide whom to sell their data to, and at what price?

10.  Finally, I made this vegan macaro-no-cheese for dinner last night and it was so good.  Very highly recommended:

vegan macaroni cheese

Enjoy your Sunday!


PS: In case you missed it, you can catch up on 8th April’s Ten Things post.

Eco News

Ten Things – 8th April 2018

bicycle against brick wall
bicycle against brick wall

Hello hello!

I’ve been galavanting this week – I’ve spent most of this week on the south-west coast of Scotland, visiting my family.

Whilst we were away we talked a lot about cycling, so when I got back I loaded up the car and donated my daughter’s old outgrown bike to our local bike recycling centre (find yours here).  In its place, I bought a lovely refurbished Cannondale bike in the right size for her, for not much money.  My daughter is delighted with her new bike, meanwhile, I’m pleased that another kid can get as much joy as she did out of her old bike.  Recycling for the win!

This week’s links!

1.  In very good news, scientists have reported that the number of plastic bags found on our seabeds has plummeted thanks in part to the plastic bag tax.  The bad news is that other types of plastic pollution are increasing, so we’re not out of the water just yet.

2.  Why we must fight for the right to repair our electronics.  I am on board with this – my six-year-old washing machine broke the other month – the bearings failed – and the repairman quoted me £350 to fix it.  He explained that in new machines the bearings are sealed away where they cannot be accessed easily.  Why should fixing appliances be more costly than buying a brand new appliance?

3.  Prince Charles talks sustainable fashion, and how he mends his own clothes.  Although I can’t quite imagine Charles sitting there trying to thread a needle…!

4.  A look at London’s community kitchens – what a lovely way to get to know your neighbours.  “It’s not often you find yourself overseeing the production of a banquet of vegan sushi rolls with ten complete strangers in a lime green community hall on a Friday night. But oddly, it turns out to be the best way to kick off your weekend. This is the mad and marvellous world of community cooking – doing away with the avoid-eye-contact-on-the-tube mentality and getting people who’d never usually interact sitting down together to a great big meal – for free“.

5.  In a disposable age, luxury is something old, worn and beautiful – “As humans, we tend to prize objects we see as beautiful and meaningful, and we often recognize both of those qualities in cared-for items that wear the marks of time passing. It takes time and effort to imbue the things we love with those qualities“.

6.  This retailer has created a “living wage wardrobe”, where every item costs £7.50 or less, but I would love to know if the people who make the clothes are also paid a living wage.

7.  Speaking of who made my clothes: Fashion Revolution Week is coming.  It will run from 23rd to 29th April – it might be a good time to ask Miss Pap who made their clothes?

8.  Sochi in Russia turned orange thanks to windborne dust from the Sahara, and it looks stunning.

9.  I’m not a massive listener of Radio 4, so I have only just discovered the Costing the Earth series.  First on the listening list – the microfibre detectives.

10.  I’ve got summer holidays on my mind.  This amazing place, in Aviemore, is on my list of places I want to stay!  Here’s my list of things to do in Aviemore if you’re inspired to visit.

Have a lovely weekend! Don’t forget, if you missed it, you can catch up on the 1st April Ten Things post.


ps: I updated the is their plastic in your tea article to reflect some recent changes and developments.  A huge thanks to everyone who has tweeted/emailed/signed petitions to lobby tea companies to remove plastic from their teabags: there have been some major positive developments!  As you will see there is also still some work to do too, but we’ve come a long way since last June when I originally wrote the article!