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Let’s Restore our Earth! Ecosystem Restoration Camps @ The Green Living Lab

It was a pleasure to host Ecosystem Restoration Camps members at The Green Living Lab yesterday!

We heard from John Dennis Liu, Pieter Van Der Gaag, & Rik Armando Ridder from the Ecosystem Restoration Camps team why we need to come together now to use our collective resources & talents to restore degraded ecosystems for the survival of future generations. We know how to restore our world, so let’s do it! There is no more time to waste to ensure our children’s future & the survival of our species. The stakes cannot be any higher. Nature will be OK, however, humans are threatening their own extinction by destroying the only home they have to live in.

Luckily, we have the knowledge & skills to change this for the benefit of future generations, but we have to act now.

If you would like to act to make a greener, healthier & more sustainable world a reality, become a member of Ecosystem Restoration Camps today. Every individual contribution counts.

For information on how to become a member, please contact: pieter@ecosystemrestorationcamps.org & check out the website here: https://www.ecosystemrestorationcamps.org/

John Liu will return to The Green Living Lab on Wednesday 11 July, from 19.00 – 21.00, to discuss the value of living systems vs non-living systems.

Please see this link for information on John’s work to restore ecosystems worldwide, & the event:

https://www.facebook.com/events/395739337500840/

We have just 5 more places available for this event. To book your place, please send your full name by email: info@greenlivinglab.org

We look forward to seeing you there! ?

 

The Class of 2018 have Graduated! Green Student Bootcamp Challenge 2018

We celebrated a beautiful finale to this year’s Green Student Bootcamp Challenge , where students first went into our organic garden to investigate our resident insects.

Led by Dr. Cor Zonnveld, an ecologist at Amsterdam University College, students learned about the classification, anatomy, and habitats of insects. It was clear that some did not like the idea of insects at all, however, after spending time with Cor in the garden and looking at insects closely with curiosity and wonder, they learned to appreciate our insect friends and their important place in our ecosystem.

Students then harvested from our garden and dived into the kitchen to made delicious vegan food to celebrate their graduation. As a special graduation gift, students were presented with pots of soil from our garden, symbols of fertility and of our care for the living ecosystem of The Green Living Lab location. Our graduating students learned through the course of the programme that life begins in the soil, and that looking after our soils by building fertility is essential for a sustainable world.

We hope this class of 2018 will now go forth to help make a healthier greener world in harmony with nature. In fact, we are pretty sure they will. ?

Biomimicry @ The Green Living Lab: Learning Sustainability from Nature

A Sustainable World Already Exists & Holds the Secrets to Our Survival

Throughout the Green Student Bootcamp Challenge 2018, students have been encouraged to observe and interact with nature. From sowing seeds & brightening grey urban environments with seed balls for people and pollinators, learning how to grow vegetables and oyster mushrooms at home, composting their organic waste, foraging and cooking with wild plants, looking with Green Office VU at the issues caused locally and worldwide when humans do not work in harmony with nature at the Whole Earth? photography exhibition, (also on the campus of the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam ), and hearing how natural processes can be integrated into cities to create a healthier environment for all, our class of 2018 has been on quite a journey!

No better way to spend the penultimate session of this year’s programme than learning about Biomimicry. Biomimicry is a strategic design approach to innovation, where nature’s 3.8 billion years of research and development is a source of sustainable solutions. If we view nature as a teacher, we see that everything that nature does is already circular and sustainable. Animals, plants, and microbes are skilful engineers. By emulating nature’s time-tested patterns and strategies we can create products, processes, and policies that are well-adapted to life on earth in the long-term. In this way we can solve massive sustainability problems we have created for ourselves and future generations.

Jamaica Den Heijer, is a consultant with Biomimicry Nederland and Innovation Manager with Heijmans, a large Dutch construction company, that is looking to nature to develop sustainable innovations for construction. Thankfully more and more progressive businesses & organisations in The Netherlands are looking to natural ecosystems to learn from them how to innovate in order to operate sustainably.

Jamaica inspired students to go out into The Green Living Lab ‘s organic garden to observe nature’s patterns and design strategies, and students began to see the garden, which they had already spent a lot of time in, from a completely different perspective. With a new curiosity, respect and understanding of the design genius in the natural world around them, this group of students from the Vrije Universiteit AmsterdamUniversity of Amsterdam / Universiteit van Amsterdam, Amsterdam University CollegeHvA – Hogeschool van AmsterdamUtrecht University & TU Delft are ready to graduate!

For more information on Biomimicry & for info trainings & courses in The Netherlands, see: www.biomimicrynl.org