How do you measure the importance of a political issue? If it airs on Netflix.

Ladies and gents, I present to you the global acceptance of climate change and the policies needed to avoid local and global energy crises. Now brought to you in “prime time”.

There is a telling moment at the end of the first episode of Occupied, the highly entertaining new Norwegian TV political thriller, now available in the United States on Netflix (with subtitles!).

One of the main characters, sitting in a cafe with his family, looks bleakly through the glass at the shoppers in the mall outside, knowing they are oblivious to how fragile their world has just become.

This is how Slate starts the chilling and exciting review of the new political thriller Occupie. The show tackles the issue of climate change and global energy policy, set in a not so distant future. (Read full review here)

Why does it matter?

By January 19th 2016, Netflix had 75 million subscribers worldwide. 40 million of them located in the US. Like it or not, the United States of America still has a lot of influence on global climate policy.

In 2015, a warbling 40% of the American public didn’t see climate change as a threat.

Currently, non of their republican presidential candidates believe climate change to be a serious issue. And let’s not get started on the senate.

To air a Norwegian show about climate policy, in a country where half of the population think it’s overrated, is not just a small an insignificant action. It is a reflection of the world and the issues we deal with in this world. The time is right for this. And the American public needs to wake up to this new world and new reality, and demand more from their politicians.

 

Watching the world change through our TV

children-tv-Monajensen

The entertainment sector is helping, in the way that it is both a strong indicator of hot topics, and a driver of discussions. Follow the hot topics, find the power and money. Airing a show like this just 2 years ago would have been unthinkable, but in the wake of the COP21 agreement, it makes perfect sense.

Steps like this will bring the discussion of climate change and energy policy from the universities and political areas, into the living rooms and kitchens. And this is where the real change happens.

Airing Occupied on Netflix, will pave the way for a national debate in the US. These debates will influence the political arena, as voters go where they feel heard. A change in the political arena will then, eventually, lead to a change in policy. Just think about LGBT rights and minimum wages as a few recent examples of policy changes in the US – for giggles, google the top shows on Netflix in the years leading up to it.

The big difference here is, the rest of the world would benefit from not continuously banging our head against the US wall of climate ignorance.

Yes, I said it. 40% people, the numbers speak for themselves.

Global climate policy needs the US on board if it is to run smoothly, and the US need to get on board, before China and Russia completely steal the climate spotlight. I would love to elaborate on this, but for now, I am fresh out of time.

So there you go, a very short post, about climate change and “prime time TV”.

I for one will be looking forward to Occupied.

 

Oh, and Netflix, though I am highly frustrated with your pricing scheme, and the fact that I can’t watch same shows in the Denmark, as in the US, I will say this to you: Well played, well played.

 

 

Canary in the coal mine – why Coca-cola is a great environmental indicator.

The following post will argue that the Coca-cola company is a potent social, and environmental indicator, and why you should pay attention to their environmentally friendly products, and campaigns.

 

A friend of mine recently posted this video on my facebook page (Thanks Sonja). Edit: The video has almost completely disappeared from the internet. It’s even been removed from Coca-colas own site. After 30 min of digging, I did find a video. You can read more about the caps that turn old coke bottles into squirt guns and shampoo dispensers here.

Many people believe because I am ‘Environmental Mona’ I would like this sort of initiative. Well, yes and no.

Although I am pleased that Coca-Cola is taking steps to increase product lifespan, I’m actually not a fan of this particular product. However, I am thrilled about it as an environmental, and social indicator.

Several of the ideas in this video are already being used as DIY projects in Asia. There is no need for a product like the one Coca-cola is selling here, because they are already being made. The DIY projects rose from an economic necessity, and now Coca-cola is mainstreaming them to make a buck.

At the same time, coca-cola is introducing several new products in the world, to extend the lifespan of one other product – in my view, an action that creates a greater problem than it solves.

You now have a situation, where you wanted to expand the life of one end-of-pipe-product (the empty bottle) but created, 10 new plastic things, that you need to buy to extend the life of that one bottle.

You have now generated more material that eventually has to be disposed of.

Also, there’s the ingenious soap-bobble extension. Wow, how fun. Now you’ll have kids begging their parents to buy a set of ten plastic items, to screw on empty soda bottles. And if they don’t have empty bottles?

Yep, buy more fizzy liquid sugar, in a plastic bottle.

From the above, you might think I really, really dislike this product. Well granted, I kind of do. But I also love it. I love it because it reveals so much more about the state of the world than Coca-cola knows.

When Coca-cola launches a product like this, it’s because there’s money to be made. They are putting this product out there because there is a marked for resource awareness. There is already a focus they can tap into.

It is also the reason why they’ve joined the 3D printer market (with an equally redundant 3D-printer). DIY and local manufacturing is a big wave and it will grow over the next decade.

I do not for a second buy into this greenwashing Coca-cola is trying to pull. In my view this product creates far more waste than it eliminates. But they are one of the best environmental and social indicators out there. When they start making noise, you better listen because they will tell you where the money and the focus is. And what is really the underlying platform of money and focus? Need.

So what are they actually saying with this product? What kind of needs are out there right now?

 

1) We (the world) are producing to much waste, and need to change that

2) We (producers and consumers) need to expand the lifespan our products

3) We (the global community) have an interest in doing so, and a knowledge about why it’s important

 

Canary in the Coca-cola coal mine

 

Coca-cola is the canary in the coal mine. When the bird starts behaving differently, you should pay attention.

 

 

 

*Disclaimer: This is the part where I’m supposed to say, that none of this post is targeted directly at the Coca-cola company or any of its products, but who are we kidding. If they have a problem with this post, they can send me an e-mail.