Wednesday, November 14, 2007

What do the Oscars, the 2008 Beijing Olympics, and the ISB International Food Fair have in common?

They all went green!
We may not be as big as the Olympics, but the IFF is making efforts to reduce its eco footprint. How? Well, we hope to have NO disposables if possible. IFF will use the Green Panthers dishes instead of disposable ones to reduce waste and we will have recycling bins for cans and bottles.

What else makes this event green?

The Green Panthers will be there with adult and student members helping out in many areas.
• We will have tables to collect the used dishes. This year there is no deposit, but please return your dishes anyway to help us out. Remember they are not gifts and cannot be taken away.
• We will have Eco-games with cool prizes.
• We will perform some funny, but informative skits.
• We will sell 3 new versions of Green Panther organic t-shirts. Yes, we have small sizes this year!
• We might even have organic rice, milk, and yogurt and more!

If you would like to help us by volunteering please contact Kerry at

How can you make this event even greener?

• Try to use only one plate at the IFF. This will reduce how often we have to wash the dishes and reduce the quantity of water and detergent used for the event.

• Bring your own Tupperware in case you want to take some food home with you.

• Think about how you are getting to this event. Would it be possible to pick up a neighbor and go together in 1 vehicle instead of 2? This would cut down on traffic and carbon emissions.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

The Scoop on Organic Dairy Products at ISB

MANY people have been asking for additional details on the organic dairy products now available at ISB. Here is the low-down.

The farm is called Dairy Home and the website is: The site is primarily in Thai but we are in Thailand. We can all find a friend to help us figure it out, right? The owner's name is Khun Pruitti Kerdchoochuen and he can be reached at

Aside from ISB, Dairy Home's organic products are available at Villa and Foodland. All animals on the farm receive an organic diet and the farm also follows free range practices (i.e. they are not kept in pens all day. There is no clear certification program in Thailand for organic farmers, so Khun Pruitti follows the guidelines of European and North American regulatory agencies.

The dairy also has a store on the farm itself if you ever want to visit and check it out.

All those appliances you think you turned OFF

Getting savvy about standby power
By Noah Buhayar, Fellow, Rocky Mountain Institute ( | Posted Fri Nov 2, 2007 2:47pm PDT

Ever wonder how much electricity your household appliances use when they're supposedly off—in "standby" or "ready" mode? Think of the clock on your microwave, your DVD player that's on but not playing a movie, or the little sensor on the bottom of your TV that waits for a signal from your remote control.
It turns out that these "vampire" loads are gradually sucking away power—a lot of power.
An estimated 13 percent of household electricity use, according to a recent study published by the California Energy Commission, is from appliances in low-power mode (which is to say, not performing any of their primary functions).
Standby mode, the least amount of energy an appliance can use without powering down, is just one example. Many appliances have multiple low-power modes.
A DVD player, for instance, may have both a standby and sleep mode. Computers, as well, often save power by shutting down one or more components without turning completely off.
What it costs
The costs of these low-power modes are enormous. Standby power alone accounts for 5 of that 13 percent of household electricity use.
In 2000, a group of researchers from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory estimated that each year Americans spend about $4 billion just on standby power.
Generating that electricity puts roughly 27 million tons of CO2-equivalent emissions into the atmosphere (more than 3.7 million cars' worth) every year.
While the amount of low-power mode energy required by most new appliances is going down, the number of appliances (from washing machines to air conditioners) with continual power needs is increasing—eclipsing those savings. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that standby power could consume as much as 20 percent of household electricity by 2010.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Royal Photography Contest

Under the patronage of His Majesty the King of Thailand, Greenpeace Southeast Asia and the Royal Photographic Society of Thailand are sponsoring "Endangered Water, Endangered Lives," a photo contest intended to bring people together to celebrate and protect our important freshwater sources. Thailand, though blessed with large fresh water resources, faces many threats to its rivers and lakes. Photography provides a powerful medium to raise awareness of urgent need to protect one of Thailand's most precious resources.

About the photo contest.

Under the title “Endangered Water, Endangered Lives”, the photographs must feature freshwater and freshwater sources in Thailand, taken from January 1, 2007 to November 31, 2007. Examples are lakes, rivers, streams, springs, tap water, etc. Photos should convey how freshwater is important to people / the environment (‘celebrating water’), or how clean water is being threatened by sources of pollution (‘water at threat’). Marine water (seas, oceans) are not considered.

Submission of entries: September 21 to November 31, 2007

Target Groups
1. Photographers
2. Thai Youths
3. General Public
4. All these categories mean ISB STUDENTS!!

For full details about the contest, please go to

Greenquest -Featured Site

Take some time to check out Greenquest. This British site features new developments in sustainable business and farming practices. Most importantly it includes tips on what each of us can do to reduce our impacts on the environment. There are sections, amongst many others, for teachers, business people, students, families and gardeners. There is even a specific section on THAILAND and the many positive changes that have occurred here over the past few years.

As all of us know, the journey out of the environmental mess we are in is one of small steps. Greenquest provides many ideas about how to start.

Check out the site: Contact Greenquest directly if you have information to share or questions by emailing

Friday, November 2, 2007

Bobby's Introduces Organic Dairy Products

This week Bobby's, the Middle and High School cafeteria began offering organic dairy products for the first time. This first for ISB is the result of a lot of hard work and planning to ensure quality, safe products.

As you probably know (but we'll summarize anyway), organic dairy products come from cow that have not received hormones, antibiotics or genetically modified food. All of the former are used to maximize milk production but have side-effects on animal health. Traces are also frequently found in the dairy products humans consume and thereby impact the health and well-being of consumers. Organic ensures you get milk, not milk with hormones and prescription antibiotics.

This step not only helps ISB students and faculty, but it also gives a boost to the production of organic dairy foods in Thailand. This is currently a small market and an outlet like ISB encourages other farmers to switch to sustainable methods of production.

Thanks to Bobby and all the people who worked to make this happen.


1. It's healthy. Organic food tends to contain higher levels of vitamin C, cancer-fighting antioxidants, and essential minerals such as calcium, magnesium, iron and chromium. It is safe, nutritious, unadulterated food.
2. Organic food doesn't contain food additives that can cause health problems such as heart disease, osteoporosis,migraines and hyperactivity.
3. 3. It avoids pesticides. More than 400 chemical pesticides are routinely used in conventional farming and residues are often present in non-organic food.
4. It is environmentally friendly and doesn’t pollute our fresh water with runoff from pesticides.
5. It is produced without GMOs or drugs to the animals
6. It is against animal cruelty. Animals live on fields not in cages.
7. It is produced without antibiotics and growth-promoting drugs
8. It reduces dependence on non-renewable resources
9. There has not been a case of BSE (Mad Cow Disease) in any herd that has been in full organic management since before 1985.
10.It relies on a modern and scientific understanding of ecology and soil science, while also depending on traditional methods of crop rotations to ensure fertility and weed and pest control
11.It's good for wildlife and the environment. Organic farming is better for wildlife, causes lower pollution from sprays, produces less carbon dioxide - the main global warming gas -and less dangerous wastes.
12.It's flavorful. Many people prefer organic food because they say it tastes better.