Editor’s letter by Lisa: Choices
We can't keep being on that next plane, says Lisa Corneliusson, who's just been on a 15 hour flight. (Life isn't easy.)
Working from TOMS in Venice today. Do you know about TOMS? It actually started out here in Venice, with the idea of giving shoes to children in need. Now TOMS work on a global level with a one to one koncept, meaning that for every purchase of TOMS products–shoes, coffee, eyewear, bags–TOMS helps provide shoes, sight, water, safe birth or bullying prevention to a person in need.
TOMS has signs on the walls saying “we’re in business to help improve lives”. And they are, actually, not the only ones. It’s all around us. Just across the street, Industry of all nations has opened a concept store. Growing organically since 2010, IOAN is “a design and development office founded with a commitment to rethink methods of production for consumer goods”. IOAN works with local communities and manufacture products in the regions where the materials originate, and then bring the local businesses to an international market. I bought a sweater from their Alpaca project, it’s made in La Paz, Bolivia with only virgin fibers, no dyes.
I spoke to my dear Space Matters colleague Aziza Azim the other day. She’s a fashion consultant focusing on new businesses, and she’s spent the last weeks in Venice too, meeting brands and others from the fashion industry. Her overall feeling being here? People don’t really care about fashion anymore. Not in itself. They want things to matter; something more holistic; something that makes sense. I think she’s right.
People want things that matter – and they want to travel. According to a new report, 87 percent new affluent consumers here in the US rather put money on traveling than on material goods. I find this uplifting; travels expand the mind. But like a fashion photographer friend told me the other day: “all this traveling, it just doesn’t make sense anymore”. We can’t keep being on that next plane all the time.
From a readable NY Times feature the other week:
“…the biggest single thing individuals can do on their own is to take fewer airplane trips; just one or two fewer plane rides per year can save as much in emissions as all the other actions combined.”
And here I am, in car-bound Los Angeles, 15 flight hours from my home.
I travel less and for longer than before, but I still take those long flights.
I how I love it. The distance gives me perspective. Yet… it’s not really a sign of perspective. (I keep thinking about my sister feeling so bad about having to go to Helsinki by air the other year.)
Life isn’t easy.
I wanted to finish off by linking to two comments on COP21 that I think are worth while:
Vice’s video reports, meeting everyone from Brandalism, Naomi Klein and different young activists with important views on the protest ban and the resistance to change. There’s obviously an irony in the encouragement from United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon for people to engage themselves and demand change – while civil society are not allowed to protest.
A view on COP21 as most of all a diplomatic triumph. “The only way to ensure the participation of the United States and China was to make the agreement nonbinding.” The New Yorker piece also points out, the agreement doesn’t include a tax on carbon, “which would change the financial incentives facing individual decision-makers, such as power suppliers and motorists”. I really don’t get that. More mandatory carbon taxes please.
Have a good week, take care of each other. <3
Pictured: Industry Of All Nation’s store on Abbot Kinney in Venice, Los Angeles, a pair of TOMS sunglasses, an Alpaca sweater by IOAN, a flight somewhere by Stefano Galli.
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