Impact Hack at LDIW Conference Day

The second day of the Let’s Do it World 2020 conference day was focused on the impact. The day started with a motivational speakers: Let’s change the world together, with various inspiring speakers.

Andre Dzikus from UN-Habitat emphasized the urbanization trends: more than 50% of the world’s population is living in the cities, and this number is estimated to be 68% by 2050.

He discussed the UN Waste Wise Cities Campaign, already including 132 cities across the world, designed to help cities to improve waste management in urban areas through advocacy, education, project financing and data monitoring.

Brittany Kelly from UN SDG Action Campaign shared about the global week to act for UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), celebrated across the world in September, at the anniversary of SDGs. In 2019 Let’s Do It World was also among the participating initiatives.  She also called conference participants to send in applications for the SDG action awards starting from March 1st, 2020.

Marathon swimmer Ben Lecompte, who swam through the Great Pacific Garbage Patch shared his experiences from the swim. The mission of the swim was to collect samples and data of microplastics from the ocean for scientists, but also to raise awareness about plastic pollution in the oceans, through sharing his story. He emphasized: „If we do not recycle or discard properly, it is going to end up in the ocean“.

Next, Cesar Harada, Director of Scoutbots shared his personal experiences in using innovative technology to solve environmental problems. His suggestion was: „If you want to make a change, get your hands and your hearts in touch with the topic,“ explaining that innovation could be a way to solve environmental problems, but it all starts with empathy.

Luukas Ilves, founder of Tech Green Pledge introduced the pledge that many Estonian tech companies have signed. In the pledge, these tech companies promise to pursue significant impact through innovation, set a positive example and track, measure and share their environmental impact. The goal is to invite all tech companies to sign the pledge.

The Earth Restore Network, as explained by Henri Laupmaa and Yelena Žovnikova, is a new green crowdfunding platform, that will provide funding for projects that help to restore the Earth and make a transition towards a sustainable future. It was founded by Let’s Do It World and Fundwise and they carry out an impact hack session during today’s conference.

Martin Noorkõiv from Domus Dorpatensis started with a pessimistic message: „Despite everything I do and we all do, the world is still changing for the worse. However there is still hope,“ he continued on a more optimistic note, saying that he finds hope in science. He invited participants to join his workshop, where he introduced the concept of deep sustainable transition.

We then heard from Janek Pohla, representative of Tahe Outdoors, a producer of watersport products. He introduced a River Cleanup project, a non-profit to reduce marine waste all over the world. The company has donated 200 kayaks for Lets Do It World for this project and it will engage volunteers throughout the world for cleanup of local coastlines and rivers in cooperation with Let’s Do It World local teams.

Following this, Heikki Laidma and Ove Musting started their presentation showing a used drill and an electric kettle that they no longer needed and asked if someone from the audience would like to have them. After the items found new owners among the conference participants they introduced Smartswap, an innovative reusing platform for any items that are no longer needed. The idea is to bring idle-standing items back in use, to reduce consumption of new products. Smartswap is a platform where you can get everything you need, for free. The goal is to connect people who have items they no longer need and people who need these items, and through this, create a true reusing community, where less is wasted.

The conference day continued Impact Hack featuring eight best environmentally impactful ideas from the idea competition ranging from waste detection algorithm to alternative solutions for food delivery packaging.

Also, parallel sessions on how to launch a transition towards a clean and sustainable world; Great Global Cleanup to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Earth Day Network and how to organise a successful World Cleanup Day were held. After the workshop hosted by Earth Day Network, Earth Day Network and Let’s Do It World signed a Memorandum of Understanding to make their collaboration official. On 22 April the Great Global Cleanup will take place across the USA and the world, supported by Let’s Do It World with some of the countries in our network participating in this event. At the same time, the two organisations agreed to join forces once again for World Cleanup Day on 19 September 2020.

The two organisations hope to engage millions of people worldwide with their concerted efforts for a cleaner world. Let’s Do It World, which has been organising cleanups since 2008, welcomes this collaboration and the Earth Day Network’s efforts to join the global cleanup family.

In the afternoon, Kadri Kalle from the Let’s Do It Foundation facilitated a workshop on Keep It Clean Plan, where five countries shared their success stories with implementing the plan. The Netherlands, represented by Plastic Soup talked about the extensive recycling facilities in the country; Denmark represented by Plastic Change, spoke of their experience on engaging corporates in tackling plastic pollution. Jaka Kranjc from Slovenia, Francisco Pizarro from Panama and Agustina Iskandar and Mohamad Bijaksana Junerosano from Indonesia all shared their experience with implementing the Keep It Clean Plan.

The day ended with an award ceremony where a number of Let’s Do It teams were recognised for their work before, during and after World Cleanup Day 2019.

The Conference is supported by the European Regional Fund through Enterprise Estonia, Estonian Foundation for Civil Society, British Council in Estonia, Baltic American Freedom Foundation, the Harman Foundation and many more.

This program is made possible by funding from the Baltic-American Freedom Foundation (BAFF). For more information about BAFF scholarships and speaker support, visit www.balticamericanfreedomfoundation.org.

Photos from the conference: https://www.flickr.com/photos/letsdoitworld/albums/72157712812339916

Let’s Do It World and World Cleanup Day Global Media Contact
Katrin Winter
Head of Communications
katrin.winter@ldiw.org