About the film
Continuing the ‘tradition’ of celebrating Earth Day together each year, Green Initiatives (GI) will return to the American Culture Center (ACC) at the University of Shanghai for Science & Technology (USST) for its 6th edition.
The official global theme for Earth Day 2018 is ‘Ending Plastic Pollution’. From poisoning and injuring marine life to disrupting human hormones, from littering our beaches and landscapes to clogging our waste streams and landfills, the exponential growth of plastics is now threatening the survival of our planet. In response, Earth Day 2018 is dedicated to providing the information and inspiration needed to fundamentally change human attitude and behavior about plastics.
Green Initiatives’ Plastics Are Forever (PAF) project team will be at ACC to share this global message, share problems and solutions on the topic, and screen the short-film, A Plastic Ocean. The PAF team will also look to organize some clean up activities to get the students and the community to ACT on the problem they see around them.
Earth Day is an annual day on which events are held worldwide to demonstrate support for environmental protection. Earth Day is observed on April 22 each year.
Program / Itinerary:
- 14:00-14:30 Introduction by Jennifer Tarlin, Director, ACC and Nitin Dani, Director, GI
- 14:30-14:50 A Plastic Ocean – Short Film Screening
- 14:50-15:30 Talk & Discussion with Heather Kaye, Co-Founder, Finch Designs
- 15:30-15:45 Talk on Innovation in Plastics by Erna Spela, Volunteer, GI
- 15:45-16:00 Talk on China’s Waste Scenario by Emily Wang, Account Manager, Collective Responsibility
----- 20-min Tea Break -----
- 16:20-17:30 Campus-Wide Plastic Waste Collection Drive
- 17:30: Closing Remarks; Program Ends
Heather is the co-creator and Project Leader of the “Plastics are Forever” impact project with Green Initiatives. She is also the co-founder of FINCH Designs. Transferring from Liz Claiborne’s New York design offices to China’s manufacturing front in 2006 for a one-year assignment proved to be the beginning of a twelve year (and counting) behind the scenes odyssey in apparel design, sourcing and production. In 2010, Heather co-founded FINCH Designs with Itee Soni with the goal of upending the most unsustainable aspects of the fashion industry: fast fashion cycles, throw-away quality and environmentally damaging raw materials.
Today FINCH eco-swimwear is responsibly produced in China, made exclusively from Repreve® rPET, and sold globally through value-aligned partners. Recognized for their timeless, singular textile prints, FINCH has become a premium resource for the eco-conscious global traveler.
While speaking on a panel last spring, Heather had the opportunity to watch ‘A Plastic Ocean.’ Despite thinking she had a good grasp on plastic pollution, she was blown away by the enormity of the problem documented in the film. With the Green Initiatives team, Heather is now on a mission to share ‘A Plastic Ocean’ and highlight the danger of continuing to perceive plastic as being disposable. Through the “Plastics are Forever” impact project, Green Initiatives joins the Plastic Oceans Foundation in fostering a global movement focused on changing how we use and dispose of plastics.
Heather is a graduate of Harvard University (BA ’96) and Parsons School of Design (AAS ’99).
Erna grew up in Latvia, surrounded by forests and marshes, which takes up 60% of the country’s lusciously green land. Living in China for 5 years and frequently visiting United States made her realize the fragility and importance of nature and environmental diversity. Since 2017 Erna has pledged to stop consuming plastic, a step which has evolved into drastically reconsidering the way people live their current lives.
She is involved in a Shanghai based organic, local farming project, Farmonize, which aims for big city dwellers to appreciate locally grown food and, to develop more interest in healthy eating. In late 2017 Erna also got involved with Green Initiatives on the Plastics Are Forever project campaign, with the goal to inspire more people to reduce their environmental footprint by reducing their everyday plastic intake.
Emily is a Chinese who graduated from USST in Shanghai and later on got a Master degree in Cultural Management in Barcelona, Spain. After two years working and studying in the cultural and art field in Europe, she came back to Shanghai recently to dedicate herself in sustainable development in China, especially on waste. She was one of the organizers of the Earth Day event in USST in 2014 and the project leader of “Green Roof” in Enactus USST program with KPMG. Right now she is working as Account Manager in Collective Responsibility and also a volunteer at Green Initiatives.
Nitin Dani is an architect by profession and an environmentalist at heart. He did his Bachelor in Architecture, from Bangalore, India and Masters in Strategic Design from Politecnico di Milano, Italy. He was raised and educated in various parts of India and has previously worked in Bangalore, Singapore, and Milan. In Shanghai he began his career in a branding agency in 2010. He later moved on to co-found an entrepreneurial venture facilitating clean technology solutions for the Chinese market, while also co-founding Green Initiatives (formerly “Green Drinks China”).
Nitin also works full-time as a Project Director with GIGA, an organization working on material research, cloud software and indoor air quality certification to further a new generation of healthy buildings.