On the contrary, "green-and-fair" spending as first world consumer does pay off in several ways. For instance, paying higher prices for fair trade products (such as coffee, tea, sugar, bananas, chocolate, textiles, handicrafts etc) imported from socio-economically disadvantaged countries can be counter-balanced by a reasonable consumption. At the same time, your shopping helps the often marginalized second/third-world producer groups gain more self-efficiency via financial stability, an improved well-being and a chance to plan for future investments - all of which you can, of course, also support by ethical investment. From a local perspective, using energy efficiently saves real money. Simultaneously, this cuts down on environmental pollution and human health risks - as does opting for regional, degradable and non-toxic(ally produced), and above all, durable goods.
In any case, align your purchase habits with the demands of a local and global sustainable development. Read below about the various ways of becoming a responsible shopper in Harburg (and beyond).
> Purchasing technical equipment > Re-using office papers > A healthier way of life
> Fair Trade Days > Energy Counselling in Harburg > Water Bus-Stops in Harburg
> Mobile Hazardous Waste Collection > Environmental Counselling Buero of Harburg
> Environmental Hotline for Harburgers
Purchasing technical equipment
Many technical appliances have literally "come a long way", ie from the far east. Long distance transportation takes its toll on the environment - as does, for that matter, the production of household technologies such as refrigerators, cookers, television sets, computers etc. Cuts in the respective demand can cut environmental pollution and protect our climate. If you don't want to do without, consider this: If you share, rent or borrow equipment you only need sporadically (eg washing-machine, cars, printers, PCs, tools), you can save real money. If you buy cheap equipment, you spend more money than purchasing long-lasting appliances. For more information contact or focal group Transport21 (Arbeitsgruppe Verkehr21).
Re-using office papers
Since August 2008, the local Health Authority collects re-usable paper (front page misprints and out-dated information sheets etc) from all its offices and for the benefit of its workforce and the HARBURG21 team (their guest lodgers). By August 2009 ca. 3.500 sheets have been re-used for personal notes and informal communication. See also our news on "New Paper-Mates".
A healthier way of life
So far, these two to four week exhibitions at the local town hall (2008 & 2009) have informed the public about sustainable ways of redecorating and restorating the interior of flats and buildings, as well as Green & Fair Fashion. The public display is hosted by the Environmental Counselling Buero of Harburg. Contact: Fachamt Verbraucherschutz Gewerbe und Umwelt, Knoopstraße 35, 21073 Hamburg, Tel. +4940-428 71 23 75.
Fair Trade Days
The nationwide events period called Fair Trade Days aim to raise public awareness of the importance, ways and means of purchasing fair trade goods. The local worldshop "Weltladen Harburg", the local fair globalization group "Arbeitskreis Gerechte Globalisierung" and HARBURG21 engage in respective local activities. This includes information stands and signature campaigns entitled "Fair trade creates a good climate" (motto of the International World Shop Day 2008 & 2009), invitations to an eco-fair lunch (2008) or an eco-fair breakfast (Worldshop & Globalization group, 2009) as well as selling fair chocolate at readings in Harburg (2009).
Energy Counselling in Harburg
If you are planning to make your home more climate friendly and healthy at the same time, you can now (since 2008) arrange an appointment with an energy counsellor at the HARBURG21 office (Room 132). You may either contact our office or turn to the Verbraucherzentrale Hamburg (Consumer Counselling Centre of Hamburg).
Water Bus-Stops in Harburg
The so-called "Water-Bus" is a mobile information centre run by HAMBURG WASSER. It tours Hamburg and of course, also Harburg, throughout the year. At special Water Bus-Stops local citizens are invited to learn everything connected to drinking water and waste water.
Mobile Hazardous Waste Collection
This project was launched by Hamburg's Rubbish Collectors in 2008 - to protect the environment against pollutions caused by illegal and improper disposal of dangerous waste. For more information about Hamburg's waste management access a pdf download from this website: Rubbish Collector of Hamburg.
Environmental Counselling Buero of Harburg
This office advises the public on environmental issues and supplies you with a variety of related tips and materials (in German language). Contact: Fachamt Verbraucherschutz Gewerbe und Umwelt, Knoopstraße 35, 21073 Hamburg
Tel. +4940-428 71 23 75.
Environmental Hotline for Harburgers
Queries, questions and complaints about environmental damage in the Harburg area will be dealt with at this office from Monday to Thursday (8 a.m. - 4 p.m.) and Fridays from 8. a.m. to 3 p.m. Just call this telephone number: +4940-42871-2383.