Alternative Fruit and all other Homunculus Media productions are as green as can be. We have green energy from 100% renewable sources, no gas, and no company or personal vehicles. We do our recycling and we even feed the birds. But hang on, we are digital media, surely it's a lot easier to be green if you produce a digital product. You of course are completely right. We did have it easy, in fact we were green before it was cool. It may be a cutesy way of neglecting all the pioneers who came before her but the Greta Thunberg effect is making a positive difference. Let's not look a gift horse in the mouth here, she's pretty cool in our book. And brave, too. How can those businesses who have vehicles and factories, paper-trails and leaflets, get on the green boat? We can't stop climate change but we can stop making it worse, if we could only do what we all can to change what is there to change. I'm sure we will be making CO2 and other greenhouse gasses in decades to come but how many? Can we reduce them? Can we clean up the filthy air that people are being forced to breathe? We need pioneers and path-beaters to get us there.
In Vienna can be found the Friedensreich Hundertwasser Institute. One of the area's top museums, the Institute houses the largest collection of the artist's work in the world. The artist and photographer also had a hand in designing the building itself. His quirky surrealism making itself known in the very core of the architecture, it's probably only natural for this venue to explore how going greener can be achieved. For years now, the museum has annually displayed the works of four invited photographers which uncover various ecological issues. A disparity was found though, in which the gallery explored and preached yet was not doing all it could to go greener itself. This has now changed.
After finding their way through the minefield of protocol and method, it got to a point where the Institute felt they had achieved a suitable standard of environmental responsibility. When they went to apply for a stamp of approval, which is given to businesses when they show themselves worthy, it was found that museums had no guidelines for how to attain one. This entire industry had been forgotten, perhaps because it was assumed they already did their bit. We know now that we can't assume this and so a seal of approval could be something of value.
To solve this problem, the Friedensreich Hundertwasser Institute teamed up with the Austrian Museum Association and the Austrian Environmental Institute to form a draft set of criteria. This has led to other Austrian museums also seeking the official seal of green thinking. For an organisation like a museum the carbon footprint is held up for the majority in what the visitors do as well as visit. Do they eat a meal, do they buy products, do these things cost carbon? When they hand out leaflets are they recycled? Every function of the museum experience had to be “deep greened” in order to fit the strict criteria set by the authorities. And rightly so, it's clearly something of high importance.
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