Written By: admin // Filed Under: Environment // Date: Jun 15, 2013 // Comments: 0


To mark World Environment Day, the June issue of ELLE International has published a series of interviews with top green celebrities including two UNEP Goodwill Ambassadors – Gisele Bündchen and Li Bingbing.

– When and how did you become engaged with this foundation/association?

I grew up in a small city in the south of Brazil and had the opportunity of being close to nature, so I´ve always had strong ties to it. But I really got involved and became an activist after I went to visit an Indian tribe, in 2004, and saw the problems they were facing because OF WATER POLLUTION AND DEFORESTATION. Since then, I´ve fully embraced the socio-environmental cause. In 2009, I had the honor of being invited to serve as the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Goodwill Ambassador.

– What is its goal and mission?

I think one of my key strengths is that I can use my image to call attention to the socio-environmental issues and help people heighten their awareness of the importance of conserving nature and using natural resources wisely and sustainably. We have to remember we´re all connected and our health depends on the health of our planet .

What is the environmental cause closest to your heart?

Just look around and see what´s taking place in the world and you´ll realize that we´re in serious trouble. Natural disasters are happening more frequently.
The important thing is to understand that all the environmental issues are inextricably linked. One of my main concerns and which is the cause I´ve championed for years is the water issue since it´s indispensable for our survival. The lack of drinking water can directly impact people in the near future.  We need to stop and take a good look at how we´re using our natural resources because they´re finite, and we´re depleting them at a very fast pace beyond their capacity to regenerate.

-How do you contribute to it?

In addition to using my image to call attention to the cause and support diverse projects, I also have a personal project called Água Limpa in the town I was born, which I´m very proud of. It´s managed by my family and aims at restoring and preserving the quality of drinking water supplied to the city. During the four years of its implementation, over 40 thousand trees have been planted along the banks of streams, and today the results are starting to show. The project has also been sanctioned and certified by Banco do Brasil as a social technology in water resources. Also, to further promote awareness, the project has an environmental teaching lab, where regional schools come to gain knowledge on environmental and water preservation.

– Daily, how do you make a contribution to the environment?

In my daily routine, whenever possible, I try to save our resources by doing things like saving water when washing the dishes, brushing my teeth or taking a shower…recycling, and not wasting electricity, just to name a few. I also use alternative energy sources in my home (solar energy), energy-efficient light bulbs, and collect rainwater. I have my own herb and vegetable garden and use compost. We also use a water filter instead of drinking bottled water. I think it comes down to just adopting more sustainable practices in your daily life and teaching your kids to do the same.

– What are your projects and those of your association to support this cause?

This year we´re focused on the “International Year for Water Cooperation” and also on this global campaign by UNEP and FAO calling for the reduction and prevention of food loss and waste. It’s called Think.Eat.Save – Reduce Your Foodprint. I´ll be directly involved with UNEP, attending events and activities to call attention to this issue, which is of key importance as 1.3 billion tons of food is lost and wasted from the farms to the households every year. This means that one third of all the food produced globally perishes or is wasted while millions go hungry.
The campaign will comprise different actions around the globe and will come together under one portal at www.thinkeatsave.org. The site also offers a variety of simple tips on how to consume sustainably.


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