Energy, that is what we have here. Not polluting fossil fuel energy but positive energy. The last two days we had a lot of intersting workshops, lectures and discussions. As I described before, the first round of workshops was on economy and how the world works. I was at the workshop of Aart Huijg on ‘why is economic growth is needed?’. We saw an intersting figure with GDP (measure for economic growth) on the x-axes and quality of life on the y-axis. There is a linear relationship up to the point that your basic needs are fulfilled (you have a roof above your head, and food in your tummy). After that the line flattenes, which means that more money does not make you happier after a while. So luxury goods do not make you happy. But if you are starting to throw away your camera’s, computers and icecubemaking machines I should stop you. Because if the GDP is not increasing, people get depressed.
Aart also talked about that certain things are not incorporated in our economic system and it might be good if they are. Put a price on global warming, that might be a real start to combat the problem. This may lead to the situation that products that are more attributing to global warming will cost more and people will buy the greener product.
Dinner was awesome, which propably means that we will all be a bit heavier leaving Bakkkum then when we came here. This also means that the bus, train, plane and car will need more fuel to bring us back home. So I’m not sure if we will totally achieve the ‘practise what you preach’ idea.
In the evening we had speeddating. We were running and shaking hands, talking to people whos names you can’t prenounce and trying to remember them.
After all this love most people had freetime. So they could have deeper discussions after the quick speeddates. But if you are a declaration group member, free time does not exist. We had a meeting in which we brainstormed on what to put into the declaration.
The first word that comes to mind when decribing this day is information overload. Certainly not in a bad day, it was very intesting.
Two rounds of workshops; ‘consumers and how people behave’ and ‘food’. Most workshops on food eventually came up with meat. Our meat consumption is crazy. Producing meat is very inëfficient; for 5 kilo’s of soy you put in an animal you’ll get 1 kilo of meat. If we would directly eat the soy, will we still have a world food crises?
We also had an assignment: to come up with strategies for change. This was in the light of consumer behaviour and how to change this behaviour to become more sustainable.
Then there were capacity building workshops, for example: how can you get volenteers for your organization?
At the same time we had another declaration group meeting. After a long heated discussion we decided that the main goal carried out in the declaration will be to reduce the European ecological footprint. After that we started mind mapping, a programm to have your ideas digital, get a clear overview and group ideas. Now let’s see what happends from now on.
Right now I’m watching the cultural evening while wrinting this blog. The term free time does not exist in my dictionary. A few members of the declaration group are sitting next to me, processing the mindmapping outcomes.
Talk to you again on the next update.