We can all make a difference

The global challenges we have in front of us are overwhelming. Today over seven billion people inhabit the planet. The natural resources produced by the earth are not enough and in Europe we live as if we had access to 2.6 planets. In addition to this there is the climate changes that makes our situation even more challenging. Thankfully a glimpse of hope was kindled at the latest climate meeting in Paris, but we all need to do our part.

If we continue to emit the same amount of greenhouse gases as we do today, we could during the next century reach an average rise in temperature of four degrees. Four degrees rise in temperature would lead to a large part, 40 percent, of the earths species extinction due to their destroyed living environment or scarcity of food and human’s ability to produce food would be severely threatened.

We need to act now

After the climate meeting in Paris the world now has a common goal to limit the rise in temperature to well below two degrees by decreasing the global climate emissions. But we all need to help out. Not least given the prospect of our children and grandchildren having a brighter future. In this task, consumption and the supplies from companies play a key part. Today several companies can offer, us the consumers, climate saving services that enable us all to lead a more sustainable life. This report from Schibsted’s marketplaces for secondhandtrade, is a good example of new services that has been created by the growth of information technology and that make it possible for us to make more sustainable choices.

The importance of secondhand trade

When it comes to the secondhand market and the services that the marketplaces offer, there are large climate benefits in allowing certain products such as furniture, be reused as many times as possible before being passed on to recycling. But we have to be careful. All products are not enhanced with the years. For certain products such as household appliances, it is during the use itself that the largest volumes of carbon are emitted. Certain products must therefore be analyzed from a so called life cycle perspective. We need to address the impact on earth from a good’s raw material through its production to the usage and finally as waste, to understand how much climate savings come from selling an old refrigerator a second time. Sometimes it may even be better to buy a new model that is really energy efficient than to keep an old model.

WWF sees this report as an important step towards showing the climate benefits from secondhand trade. Services, such as Schibsted’s marketplaces, can help us consumers make the selections that are the most climate friendly, help decrease resource consumption and in short lead a more sustainable life.

NAME: Mariann Eriksson

TITLE: Director of Marketing, World Wide Fund For Nature