The thing about being a LOHAS consumer is that once you’re turned on to greener options, you can’t turn back. Plastic packaging starts to glare like sharp glass on supermarket shelves, your stockpile of reused jars and bags outgrows you, and despite budgetary constraints you may still reach for organic bananas. Walking into Walmart feels like a death march.
E is for ‘exaggeration’ but also for Epic Expo, a celebration of sustainability that takes place annually in Vancouver and Dubai and is a soothing as much as refreshing exhibition of services and goods. Under one 9,000 square foot roof: everything from maternity clothes to menstrual pads to jams and jellies and motorcycles, more pamphlets than you could shake a stick at, and an answer to every question you’ve ever had about how to go green.
Get the full list of exhibitors here; but here are a few of my faves:
FAIR TRADE PAVILION
Fair Trade Vancouver is a not-for-profit run by volunteers passionate about the promotion of fair trade practice, who eagerly ran down for me their goals of awareness, availability, and sales support of fair trade products in the city.
(We were even lucky enough to celebrate World Fair Trade Day 2012 in the midst of the Expo on May 12.)
The global fair trade movement is one that serves to better the social and economic standards of vulnerable populations in the corporate market share of goods around the world by putting ‘fair’ social and environmental standards in place. It means that your extra pennies for these products go a long way for the families that produce the food you eat.
A third of the world’s population lives on less than two dollars a day. –WTFO
Amid all the happy shoppers were busy booths lined with just paper. I was ecstatic at the wealth and breadth of exhibitors at Epic, from shiny cars and huge giveaways to less “sexy” exhibitors like these: pushing policy change and petition.
Expo-goers were able to see and sign petitions including against pipelines in BC, and for GMO food labeling in Canada.
The most important thing I learned here I’d like to share is that online petitions are never an end to the means of fighting for a cause. In Canada, online petitions are not accepted on the floor of legislatures and the House of Commons. That means that your work is by far not over once you hit ‘send’—activism STILL, in this digital age, means marching the picket lines IRL (In Real Life) and doing something out in the world that is more tangible than what you type.
Get the Canadian House of Commons Practical Guide to Petitions.
More great green resources:
Please share your favourites in the comments!