Tanya Ha sorts fact from fiction and the crap from the credible. She’s an award-winning broadcaster, science journalist and communicator, best-selling author, television presenter and sustainable living expert (phew – what a list) and soon she can add keynote speaker for The S Event Upcycled! We can’t wait for you to hear her speak, her energy and fresh perspectives on living sustainably will have you nodding along.
For example, to Tanya, being sustainable is a self-centred cause, “I’m interested in the environment…because I’m completely selfish!” she laughs, “Like anyone else, I want a comfortable future – a beautiful planet and climate to live in, it’s just that I’m selfish and long-sighted.” She also points out that living greener isn’t just a long-term goal, it pays for itself in the short-term too. She says, “There are so many benefits, I mean who doesn’t want a healthier home to live in, who doesn’t want bills that are cheaper? Living healthily, comfortably and affordably, it just makes sense.”
When we asked her for her favourite piece of sustainability advice, she said, “Measure it. It’s often said that “You can’t manage what you don’t measure”, so keep score of your sustainability. It’s like if you’re a swimmer and you get a personal best - you don’t hang up your togs, you jump back in and try to go faster. And it’s so easy to track things like electricity and water, they’re already measured for you by the people you pay bills to! I like to try and set a goal to improve, I compare my water and electricity bills to the last season, or see how empty I can keep my bins that go to landfill. It’s important to see how you’re doing.” She relates this to one of her career highlights, when she worked to create the cartridge recycling system at Planet Ark, which has recycled over 41 million cartridges since it began. "It's just really satisfying to be able to see how something I was a part of forming has spread."
|Another highlight, Tanya at the 2011 Logies in a zero waste outfit including vintage dress from Circa vintage|
As we chatted with Tanya we shifted our focus to our hopes for sustainability. Tanya said there are two parts to what she’s hoping for, the first is that she hopes that people will start tuning into the voices of people who really want to help them, and the sustainable message will get through. But to get there the message needs to be spread, and she hopes that more creatives will begin to get involved, “I want to see more than just the scientists, the environmentalists and the policy makers pushing the message, I really want to see the creative industries be involved. I have a friend with a saying that I love, she says we need to make the sustainable future look irresistible. And that’s what creatives can do, they can make the future look beautiful and irresistible.” She gives examples of showing cities with more urban greenery, film makers taking PowerPoints and turning them into truly moving films, like the creation of The Inconvenient Truth. Tanya says, “I’ve seen the PowerPoint, and it’s very different to the movie! The ability of creatives to show people how irresistible a sustainable world can look can be just as important as the research and science behind it, because at the end of the day humans are hugely visual and sensory beings.” It's up to everyone to work together and use their talents to spread the message...until the penny drops.