#BuyNothing: Greenpeace and partners ask people to make something instead this Black Friday

"With our throwaway lifestyles, we are fueling climate change, pollution and the destruction of people’s homes and irreplaceable natural wonders. MAKE SMTHNG Week offers a fun and creative way out of this wasteful consumerism."

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Image Credit: Indy Bay

As Black Friday and Cyber Monday gets millions of people to start their holiday shopping spree, this year Greenpeace has partnered up with Fashion Revolution, #BreakFreeFromPlastic, Shareable, Arts Thread, the Fab Labs Network and the Fab City Global Initiative launched Make SMTHNG week to disrupt international consumerism. Between Nov. 23 and Dec. 2, the campaign will host more than 273 event in 30 countries asking consumers to #BuyNothing and #MakeSmthng.

“By sharing, caring, and repairing things we can make more of what we already own and give our beautiful planet a break,” Robin Perkins, Make SMTHNG campaigner at Greenpeace, said in a press release.

The campaign will “bring together hundreds of designers, artists and makers to lead workshops where people can learn creative techniques of reuse, repairing, fashion upcycling and DIY,” the press release reported.

We are already drowning in stuff – stuffed wardrobes, garages, and kitchens – yet we keep on shopping for more fashion, gadgets, food, single-use plastic, toys, and cars,” Perkins said. “With our throwaway lifestyles, we are fueling climate change, pollution and the destruction of people’s homes and irreplaceable natural wonders. MAKE SMTHNG Week offers a fun and creative way out of this wasteful consumerism.”

The campaign is trying to teach humans to reuse, repair and upcycle to try and break the trend of over-consumption of convenience products. According to the press release, “humanity used up more natural resources than the planet is able to reproduce in a year,” and it’s pushing the planet to its limits.

“Large corporations continue to put profits first, while they reduce the quality, repairability and versatility of their products,” Perkins said. “Through omnipresent advertising we are told, again and again, to buy more and more stuff we don’t need. Companies won’t change unless we show them people want something different. Together we have to build something that will make this outdated, wasteful model obsolete.”

Cullen Schwarz, the founder of the Boston-based e-commerce site DoneGood, reported that “sixty percent of this online spending between Black Friday and Cyber Monday goes to only a dozen giant retailers, none of which are impact-focused.” Therefore, DoneGood launched its campaign, Shop for Good Sunday, in which the online partnered with brands who have met Fair Trade standards and other ethical certifications as well as offering handmade products from organic, eco-friendly materials and processes.

All sales from the DoneGood platform on Nov. 25 will go to RAINN, a large anti-sexual violence organization, EcoWatch reported.

“Imagine if even a fraction of these holiday shopping dollars were also used to reduce poverty, fight climate change, or make the world better,” Schwarz said. “The impact would be enormous.”

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