Behaviour

We Are What We Wear

Planet Pod asks whether fashion has to cost the earth or is there a more sustainable way to look and feel good in the clothes and accessories we buy? We explore the real cost of what we wear with Amelia Womack, Deputy Leader of The Green Party and Sustainable Fashion Blogger, Sophie Slater, Co-Founder of Birdsong and Bronwyn Lowenthal, Founder and Design Director of Lowie.

Our guests:

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Amelia Womack’s five years as Green Party deputy leader have seen her work across the country, visiting hundreds of local campaigns, events and organisations. She works to raise awareness of local issues while campaigning for change on a national level.

She was elected in 2014 at the age of 29 and has used this platform to highlight problems affecting young people, from tuition fees to zero hour contracts. Amelia is a leading voice in the campaign to make misogyny a hate crime, and is outspoken on campaigns from ending zero use plastics to opposing the M4 relief road in her home country, Wales.

Amelia holds a BSc in Environmental Biology and MSc in Environmental Technology. She works across a wide range of social and environmental issues, with a particular focus on women’s rights, biodiversity, climate change and community resilience.

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Bronwyn Lowenthal is the Founder and Design Director of Lowie, a London-based sustainable womenswear brand blending traditional techniques and heritage elements in a modern way, with unique knits and prints at its heart.

Bronwyn set up the brand is 2002, initially selling on market stalls and then through retailers such as Liberty, Anthropologie, Le Bon Marche in Paris and Barney’s in New York. The brand now has two standalone retail stores in South London, being named one of ES Magazines best 5 shops for ecowarriors.

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Sophie Slater and Sarah Beckett started Birdsong in 2014, inspired by the skill and creativity in women’s community groups and with the shared vision of building a brand that promised no sweatshops and no photoshop. The team believe in creating beautiful, sustainable clothes that empower the wearer, the worker, and the community that binds us all together. 

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Once Upon a Farm

Is it ever sustainable to eat beef? When is food “slow food” and what’s the environmental cost and benefit to taking it slow?  Join the Planet Pod team down on the farm as Amanda chats with Bridget and Bill Biddell, owners of Hampton Estate and Shane Holland, Executive Chairman of Slow Food.

Our guests:

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Bridget Biddell (nee Thornton) and her husband Bill run and manage the Hampton Estate in Surrey and live at Hampton Lodge with their two daughters.  Bill is the Chief Executive of the Hampton Estate and Hampton Estate Farms.

Bill graduated from Cambridge University and then qualified as a Chartered Surveyor specialising in commercial property before joining the estate in 1988.

The estate produces 100% grass fed beef from its pedigree Sussex herd and specialises in the growing of Fuggles Hops used by traditional breweries across the UK. The estate woodlands are managed for high quality timber and the estate buildings comprise cottages, houses, offices, workshops and a craft centre.

Bill has been a college governor at Merrist Wood College, Guildford, he sits on the Surrey Nature Partnership, is a director of Stern Farms and has recently stepped down as Chairman of The Surrey Agricultural Society.

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Shane Holland is the Executive Chairman of Slow Food in the UK.  He has held CEO positions within both the business and the third sectors and has chaired a number of large NFPS. Within the third sector his work has specialised in regards to our most vulnerable citizens, their issues of food poverty & food skills, education, offending, and access to service. 

His other current roles include chairing Eat Club, the organisation that teaches food skills to young people and sitting as a  trustee of the charity United St Saviours, which gives grants to community groups and other charities of in excess of £1 million a year alongside running best in class almshouses. 

He is a governor and chair of Friends of Highshore School, a special School which has food education, growing, and food enterprise as an integral part of its curriculum, and is past chair of Plan Zheroes, the platform that connects surplus fresh food with charities and people in need.   

A  food writer – specialist subject, cheese – he also frequently sits on expert panels,  appears both in print and on the radio, lectures at universities, has given a TED Talk as one of their “Architects of Tomorrow”, and carries out dozens of speaking engagements a year.  

We are delighted that Planet Pod was shortlisted as a finalist for the Be The Change Awards 2019.  See our short award entry video here.

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Planet Pod goes walkabout with The Ramblers and the Western Front Way

Planet Pod gets out of the studio and goes walkabout with our guests Tompion Platt and Rory Forsyth.  Amanda finds out first hand about the work of The Ramblers in making it easier to access walks in our cities as well as the countryside, and also learns about the Western Front Way – the new, continuous, permanent way marked path from the Swiss border in the South through France and Belgium to the channel coast in the North.

Our guests:

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Tompion Platt is Director of Advocacy and Engagement at The Ramblers, a charity whose goal is to protect the ability of people to enjoy the sense of freedom and benefits that come from being outdoors on foot.  Tom joined the Ramblers in June 2018. Previous to that, he was head of policy and communications with Living Streets and a board member of the International Federation of Pedestrians. 

For over eight years, Tom has campaigned across the UK to improve places for people on foot and promote the social, economic and health benefits of walking. He has led on several high profile campaigns and advised senior policy makers at a national level on the walking agenda. Tom is also a strong believer in the importance of grass-root campaigning and working with volunteers to effect change at a local level. 

Tom is a passionate walker, whether it’s back in the Peak District where he grew up, or exploring a new city on foot.

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Rory Forsyth is CEO of the Western Front Way – a long-distance walking route along the Western Front.  Rory has been visiting the battlefields since he was a young boy and has retained a passion for military history, walking and learning. His key goal is ensuring the Western Front Way stands in the best possible place to succeed. ‘For me personally, life moves incredibly quickly most of the time. Walking over such sacred ground with nothing but birdsong and the company of fellow walkers for company is a truly special experience.’ As CEO, Rory is responsible in directing the operational side of the charity towards short, medium and long term goals. He often speaks on the charity and to potential supporters to maximise the impact of the WFW in the time left before the end of the centenaries. Rory also owns and operates Panshard Ltd, a premium events company specialising in production and delivery of major scale events and campaigns. 

Links:

Western Front Way website

The Ramblers website

#whyIwalk – Share your stories about why you walk via Twitter and Instagram

Get involved with The Ramblers Walking Neighbourhoods campaign here

We are delighted that Planet Pod was shortlisted as a finalist for the Be The Change Awards 2019.  See our short award entry video here.

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Planet Pod talks to Amelia Womack, Deputy Leader of the Green Party, about why elections are so important for the planet

From recycling to upskirting and deciding who wins an election by flipping coin – Amanda talks politics, environment and women’s issues with Amelia Womack, Deputy Leader of the Green Party in this special Planet Pod episode.

We are delighted that Planet Pod was shortlisted as a finalist for the Be The Change Awards 2019.  See our short award entry video here.

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Planet Pod discusses Air Quality with Elle McCall from Hubbub, Kings College London researcher Andrew Grieve and private banker Emily Bernstein from Investec

The air we share is not as clean as is could and should be – but what is air pollution and what is it doing to us? Where are the clean areas and who is most at risk from pollution? Is it better to be a cyclist or an HGV driver? In this episode a marathon runner and a University researcher share their experiences of the recent Hubbub air pollution study in London.

Our guests:

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Elle McAll is a Creative Partner at environmental charity Hubbub UK. She has a track-record of designing and delivering innovative, award-winning sustainability initiatives. She’s currently leading the development of the ‘Air We Share’, a transformative engagement campaign to cut Londoner’s exposure to poor air quality.

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Emily Bernstein joined Investec Private Bank in 2018 as a Business Development Manager specialising in working with high net worth clients who work in the legal profession. Prior to Investec, Emily spent seven years working as a consultant for the youth homeless charity, Centrepoint with a focus on bringing on board high profile celebrities, philanthropists as well as producing fundraising events and creating new fundraising initiatives. In Emily’s spare time, she loves to run marathons and is a champion for sustainability, having recently been an ambassador for the Air We Share campaign.

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Andrew Grieve is a Senior Air Quality Analyst at the School of Population , Health and Environmental Science at Kings College London.  After suffering from asthma as a child, Andrew studied Environmental Science and Information technology at Stirling University with a focus on air pollution.

Andrew joined the monitoring team at King’s in 2005, and has combined his twin passions of air quality and digital technology to pioneer many of the group’s air quality apps and communications platforms such as the London Air, City Air, Lewisham Air apps, helping to bring the public and those responsible for air quality management closer together.

Andrew also speaks regularly at community events and science festivals and appeared across national tv, radio and press.

We are delighted that Planet Pod was shortlisted as a finalist for the Be The Change Awards 2019.  See our short award entry video here.

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Planet Pod celebrates Earth Day at Somerset House with visual artist Justin Brice Guariglia, Carmen Aguilar y Wedge from Hyphen-Labs and curator Karishma Rafferty

Earth Day 2019 at Somerset House – Planet Pod celebrates Earth Day by chatting with some of the artists who have created special installations and art pieces to highlight the loss of species. Hear how Justin Brice Guariglia, visual artist, Carmen Aguilar y Wedge from Hyphen-Labs and Karishma Rafferty who has curated the season have responded.  Dive into the Anxious Ocean or catch your breath at #ReduceSpeedNow

Links:

HOT NEWS:  We are delighted that Planet Pod has been shortlisted as a finalist for the Be The Change Awards 2019.  See our short award entry video here.

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Planet Pod considers the Ethics of Sustainability with Estelle Dehon from Cornerstone Barristers and consultant physician Veneta Cooney

Are we making the link between poor health and the climate, and is it provoking more acts of protest and civil disobedience? Are the protests effective and what should and could the law do about it? 
 
Join Amanda as she discusses health, the law and ethics with Estelle Dehon, a leading barrister at Cornerstone Barristers whose work includes environment and planning law (with particular expertise in climate change matters) and Dr Veneta Cooney, a consultant physician who specialises in occupational and environmental medicine.

Our guests:

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Estelle Dehon is a public law barrister at Cornerstone Barristers. She is recognised as a leading junior in environment and planning law, with particular expertise in climate change matters. She is described in Chambers & Partners as a “first-rate” advocate who has “a wonderful manner with clients”. 

Estelle appeared for Friends of the Earth in the six-week Lancashire fracking inquiry, represented a well-known activist in the subsequent Court of Appeal fracking challenge and recently appeared for Frack Free Ellesmere Port and Upton at an inquiry in Chester opposing IGas’s use of acid to extract shale gas. She regularly appears in the High Court and Court of Appeal in matters concerning environmental and planning law. Estelle was named as one of The Planner’s Women of Influence in both 2018 and 2019.

The other main area of Estelle’s practice is data protection and access to information. She is a member of the European Commission’s Multistakeholder Expert Group on the GDPR, which assists the Commission in dealing with potential challenges in implementing the GDPR across Europe. She recently represented the investigative journalist Stefania Maurizi before the Information Tribunal in her FOIA challenges concerning information relating to the extradition of Julian Assange and the Met Police’s investigation of WikiLeaks staff members.

 

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Dr Veneta Cooney is a Consultant Physician in Occupational and Environmental Medicine specialising in assessing how the physical and psychological environment impacts on the health of the working population. Of particular interest to her is the psychology of human behaviour and what factors influence how people respond to challenges.

As a long term advocate of the natural environment, she has championed the view that the health of the nation is intrinsically linked to the health of the environment, and all the socio-economic advantages that cascade from that. Having assessed thousands of people over a 28 year clinical career, her focus is on advocating a social rather than medical model of health provision.

 

HOT NEWS:  We are delighted that Planet Pod has been shortlisted as a finalist for the Be The Change Awards 2019.  See our short award entry video here.

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Planet Pod goes Underground with Growing Underground’s Richard Ballard and Faye Tomson from District Eating

Something is stirring in the tunnels of South London and it isn’t the Northern Line!

Join Amanda and guest co-host Alex Gilbert as they chat deep below London with Richard Ballard, co-founder of Growing Underground and Faye Tomson, MD of Central Eating.  Hear how how disused WWII air raid shelter tunnels are being put to good use to grow salad crops organically, efficiently and unbelievably fast.  Find out more about how unused heat generated from district heating networks can be used to grow food.  These really are examples of Smart Food Production in action!

Our guests:

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Richard Ballard has started an agricultural revolution along with business partner Steven Dring in the form of Growing Underground. Located 100ft under the streets of London in disused WW2 Air Raid Shelter, this subterranean urban farm sustainably produces micro-greens using the latest LED technology. The duo are now delivering fresh hyper local produce to retailers and the London wholesale markets.

Sustainably feeding the city from within the city, Richard is obsessed by all things green tech and the future of cities.

Click on the following links to view the film he made which inspired Growing Underground – full length and animation only

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Faye Tomson is an Energy and Environmental Engineer with extensive experience working in the fields of district heating, low carbon heat infrastructure projects, and industrial resource efficiency. She has worked on some of the UKs most cutting-edge heat infrastructure projects, as well as with some large-scale industrial food and drink producers, advising on resource efficiency. Faye spent several years working for the UK Government Heat Network Development Unit.

Faye comes from a family of farmers and horticulturalists, so has a lifelong experience of food markets and production. It was this background combined with her previous work experience that led Faye to realise the opportunity for efficiency savings for all stakeholders that can be achieved when the gap between energy use and 
food production is bridged.
Faye is an alumni of the School for Social Entrepreneurs, and as well as being commercially aware, she also has a desire to maximise the very real social benefits that can be achieved through urban and community farming.  

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Guest co-host for this episode:

Alex Gilbert is Senior Energy Strategy Manager at TfL as well as being Principal and Director of Clean Growth Ltd.  In his role with TfL he is curating, commercialising and delivering the energy projects that will assist in the transformation of TfL – London’s largest and most significant energy user.

HOT NEWS:  We are delighted that Planet Pod has been shortlisted as a finalist for the Be The Change Awards 2019.  See our short award entry video here.

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Planet Pod talks Sustainable Sourcing with Fairtrade’s David Finlay and eco chef Tom Hunt

Question:  What has a banana, your mobile phone and your fridge got in common?  Answer:  They can all be Fairtrade products!

Listen to our latest pod to find out how the gold in your phone (or even in your fridge) is as important to the Fairtrade movement as the banana in your fruitbowl. Join Amanda in conversation with David Finlay from Fairtrade Foundation and award winning eco chef Tom Hunt as they discuss gold, coffee and bananas…plus Tom’s secret recipe for hot chocolate!

2019 marks the 25th Anniversary of Fairtrade in the UK and presents an opportune moment to re-examine both its need and relevance.

Our guests:

David Finlay

David Finlay is a Supply Chain Manager at Fairtrade Foundation, where he has worked for the last 8 years. In his time with Fairtrade, he has supported a wide range of initiatives particularly with cocoa, coffee and, more recently, gold producers in the Lake Victoria Region of East Africa.

Call to action:  Please support Fairtrade by

  • Buying Fairtrade certified products
  • Taking action in Fairtrade Fortnight (25 Feb – 10 Mar 19) to campaign for fairer prices for cocoa farmers – see below for info and links

Links:

What is Fairtrade

How to get involved in Fairtrade Fortnight 2019

10 facts on how Fairtrade tackles food security

Food security briefing report

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Tom Hunt is an award-winning chef, food writer, Guardian columnist, cookbook author and sustainable food expert. He co-owns a small restaurant called Poco in Bristol – awarded the most sustainable restaurant in the U.K. in both 2016 and 2018 – and works as a sustainability consultant. Tom prioritises people and the environment within his work and believes in a fair global food system where our actions benefit the environment.

Fairtrade Fortnight: 25 February – 10 March 2019

For two weeks each year, thousands of individuals, companies and groups across the UK come together to celebrate the people who grow our food, people who live in some of the poorest countries in the world and who are often exploited and badly paid. This year we are focusing on the people – in particular the women – who grow the cocoa in the chocolate we love so much.

FIND OUT MORE AND GET INVOLVED HERE

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