Eating together is more fun, and can also be more sustainable. Photo: Melker Dahlstrand/imagebank.sweden.se
Lukas Moodysson’s film Tillsammans (Together) from 2000, about Swedes living in a 1975 commune, has a tagline which has become classic. It’s the lonely retired man Birger, having a beer with the newly separated Rolf, who says:
- I’d rather eat oatmeal porridge together with others than a fillet of beef on my own.
There’s a lot of truth in that.
Today Sweden has the world’s highest percentage of one-person households. In Stockholm, where this trend is even more significant than in the rest of the country, more than half of all households consist of one single person.
Living on their own is something that a lot of people are happy with, but there are things that you can miss. Like eating with others, without having to go to a restaurant. Or just eating something you haven’t cooked yourself.
Swedish word of the day: Knytkalas (Potluck in English). Everyone brings a dish that can be shared by all. Minimal work for a maximized dinner! Photo: Marie Linder (CC: by-nc-sa)
If you want to leave the hammock and dedicate a few sunny minutes to learning the latest about sustainability, a hot tip is to check out the Whiteboard Seminar videos from Stockholm Resilience Centre.
These are short, informal presentations done by researchers on a particular issue. Each last no longer than 10 minutes and the researcher can only use a whiteboard and a pen to present and explain the issue.
Why not create your own summer course?
Just another ordinary sushi... Photo from the film Blue Marble Café.
Crisis, crisis, crisis. Climate change, crashing economies, oceans depleted of fish and other natural resources fading away under human pressure.
We certainly live in times of great changes, some of which can be quite hard to grasp. And usually culture is a good companion, that can help us process and understand what is going on around us.
But when it comes to the environment, I’d say that culture hasn’t really kept pace with the course of events. At least in Sweden, rather few theatre plays, films and books take on the subjects of climate change and resource scarcity.
But there are a few. When I went to the festival Uncivilised earlier this summer, I happened to talk to the film maker and actor Håkan Julander. Together with Björn Engström he has taken on the difficult task of making films about our time’s big crisis – with a sense of humour.
– We certainly need heavy, expensive film projects like “Home” and “The Planet” , but it must also be possible to make entertainment about these issues.We can joke about everything else, so why not his? he tells me.
One beer coming up! Photo from the film Blue Marble Café.
Rule number 9: DIY. Like picking your mushrooms yourself, locally, instead of bying expensive ones at the supermarket. Photo: Jonas Overödder/imagebank.sweden.se.
Happy New Year! Not long ago I wrote about my new favourite green role model: The “tant”. Now that a new year has just begun, resolutions are popping up around me. Personally, I’m thinking about letting a bit more of the green tant ideals be my guiding light into 2012. So, here’s a few concrete tips for others who want to follow (some from the book Supertanten av Elin Ek, others from the female, and male, tants around me). Read more » >>
The Swedish parliament decided this summer that the overall goal for Sweden’s environmental policy is to leave a society to the next generation where the big environment problems are solved, and that this should be done without causing more environment and health problems in other parts of the world.
As the situation is today, a lot of the products we import means environmental impacts where they have been produced. For example it takes about 140 liters of water to produce one cup of coffee. Counting all that “hidden” water in means we “use” about the same amount of water abroad as we do within Sweden, alltogether 5 500 liter per person and day. That’s equal to 37 filled bathtubs! If all our consumption is counted for, Swedish per capita emissions of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide also runs up from six tons per person to ten tons, writes the report.
This isn’t very happy reading. But the report points out: if we want to do something about this, we need to know about it.
… is one of the founders of Sweden’s first climate magazine, Effekt. Seeing the connections between society and nature results in a lot of thoughts about how we live our lives. How are Sweden and its inhabitants setting about the challenges of making our society a more sustainable one? Why is Sweden often rated as one of the world’s most sustainable countries? Do we earn that title? And what have we got left to do?