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GPP’s End of Year Wrap Up 2016
As 2016 comes to a close, we both struggled as to how to craft our end of year post. As I, Beth, tend to be the writer on our team, it is tasked to me at each year’s close to write our end of year summary in the form of a blog post.
At this writing, because of the outcome of the US election, the sustainability movement in the US (and the world now, with the US being one of the world’s leading economies), faces overwhelming challenges in the next 4 years. Just when we should be making huge strides toward alternative energy, President Elect Trump, a climate change denier, is set to name another climate change denier to his cabinet as Chief of Staff. He has said that he would pull the US out of the COP 21 agreement. He has investments in all sorts of dirty energy, including The Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) (more on that bellow).
Just as last year seemed to end on a high note, with the signing of the COP 21 agreement, and us in Paris during the talks, upon re-reading last year’s post, I realized that there were both ups and downs in our world and the greater world at large last year as well. COP 21 happened very shortly after the terrorist acts in Paris at Le Bataclan (in the neighborhood where we stayed), a café, and outside a stadium. Our dear friends and colleagues at Film Biz Recycling had to close up shop. Our friend Emellie at Earth Angel held her first annual NYC Earth Hour event, and we began working with accessory companies to place them in TV shows and feature films and to continue growing the scope of sustainable products available to props masters, set decorators and costume designers.
This year, the same is true of it being a year filled with challenges, set backs, but also of growth and hope. We actually grew our brand family even more, to include apparel (Afterlife and Wallis Evera), and more accessories, including jewelry (Landfill Dzine, Starling and Ivy, Shana Kroiz Jewelry) along with more home products (pots and pans from sustainable cookware pioneers Green Pan, along with reusable vessels from Reduce), and also bamboo bicycles (GreenStar Cycles) in addition to a handcrafted guitar made of repurposed bicycles, Prisma Guitars). Our show count is well over 225. Beth began writing for venerable sustainability press, Triple Pundit. Our friends from Film Biz Recycling continue to grow their online platform Art Cube, and it was just announced that Film Biz Recycling is moving to Savannah, Georgia at the helm of a new leader, Samita Wolfe. Emellie became a Tory Birch fellow and continues to grow her business. And this- the pushing forward of the movement is exactly how we need to react to this new regime change in Washington.
Just as the “Water Protectors” – native peoples, environmental activists, veterans and other cause supporters stayed steadfast in the face of militarized force used by local law enforcement and DAPL hired security forces by using prayer, ceremony and peaceful protest to fight back against seemingly insurmountable odds and centuries of mistreatment to protect the earth and its resources, so must business stay steadfast in our efforts to grow the sustainability sector even when faced with forces which may push back against forward progress.
Numerous business leaders have pledged to forge ahead with sustainable growth because it’s just good business. Climate change denial is clearly a falsified theory created by big oil and coal as explained in this excellent short documentary by The Real News Network, The Doubt Machine. It is a great companion piece to Leonardo Di Caprio’s documentary that also came out this autumn, Before the Flood. We were fortunate enough to meet the creator of The Doubt Machine at a Maryland Film Industry event in October.
2016 saw us grow our scope of representation and also grow our relationships with sustainable people of influence in entertainment, media and business. To revisit our metaphor of a new business being like a child, our “baby” has gone from infancy, to toddlerhood, preschool, and soon, kindergarten.
As we find ourselves facing numerous obstacles as we “escort our ‘child’ off to school”, we must look to the example of the people of Standing Rock and never waver in our vision of a better future for our planet and the people of our planet.
We must never lose hope and remember no amount of significant progress ever happened without setbacks and resistance.
We wish all of our colleagues, clients, production contacts and friends all the best for 2017.
All our best,