Another month has flown by and it’s time for our latest edition of the Save the Earth Newsletter. If you’ve been following our blog this May, you’ll know that our article on Universal Basic Income has kindled a hot debate – what’s your standpoint on the subject? For this, plus the latest on our Ethical Business Network and much more, read on …
Universal Basic Income – An Invaluable Benefit?
This month, our feature on Universal Basic Income sparked quite a debate. It’s received 2700 shares across social media so far, with our audience declaring their broad spectrum of opinions on the topic. Defined as a society in which each and every citizen receives a monthly payment from the government which meets their basic necessities regardless of their circumstances, Universal Basic Income will be trialled imminently in Finland, the Netherlands and Canada. Why not take a read of Save the Earth’s article and let us know where you stand on the matter?
Here are ten reasons to support Universal Basic Income, according to Basic Income UK:
1) Basic Income will help us rethink how & why we work
A basic income can help you do other work and reconsider old choices: It will enable you to retrain, safe in the knowledge that you’ll have enough money to maintain a decent standard of living while you do. It will therefore help each of us to decide what it is we truly want to do.
2) Basic Income will contribute to better working conditions
With the insurance of having unconditional basic income as a safety net, workers can challenge their employers if they find their conditions of work unfair or degrading.
3) Basic Income will downsize bureaucracy
Because a basic income scheme is one of the most simple tax / benefits models, it will reduce all the bureaucracy surrounding the welfare state thus making it less complex and costly, while being fairer and more emancipatory.
4) Basic Income will make benefit fraud obsolete
As an extension of (3), benefit fraud will vanish as a possibility because no one needs to commit fraud to get a basic income: it is granted automatically. Moreover, an unconditional basic income will fix the threshold and poverty trap effects induced by the current means-tested schemes.
5) Basic Income will help reduce inequalities
A basic income is also a means for sharing out the wealth produced by a society to all people thereby reducing the growing inequalities across the world.
6) It will provide a more secure and substantial safety net for all people
Most existing means-tested anti-poverty schemes exclude people because of their complexity, or because people don’t even know how to apply or whether they qualify. With a basic income, people currently excluded from benefit allowances will automatically have their rights guaranteed.
7) Basic Income will contribute to less working hours and better distribution of jobs
With a basic income, people will have the option to reduce their working hours without sacrificing their income. They will therefore be able to spend more time doing other things they find meaningful. At the macroeconomic level, this will induce a better distribution of jobs because people reducing their hours will increase the jobs opportunities for those currently excluded from the labor market.
8) Basic Income will reward unpaid contributions
A huge number of unpaid activities are currently not recognised as economic contributions. Yet, our economy increasingly relies on these free contributions (think about Wikipedia as well as the work parents do). A Basic Income would recognise and reward theses activities.
9) Basic Income will strengthen our democracy
With a minimum level of security guaranteed to all citizens and less time in work or worrying about work, innovation in political, social, economic and technological terms would be a made more lively part of everyday life and its concerns.
10) Basic Income is a fair redistribution of technological advancement
Thanks to massive advancements in our technological and productive capacities the world of work is changing. Yet most of our wealth and technology is as a consequence of our “standing on the shoulders of giants”: We are wealthier not as a result of our own efforts and merits but those of our ancestors. Basic income is a way to civilise and redistribute the advantages of that on-going advancement.
Have you heard about Save the Earth’s Ethical Business Network? It’s a place where businesses with green sensibilities can trade products and services, as well as share ideas and inspiration, with both our ever-growing ethically-minded audience and each other.
Of course, without our valued Creator Member Companies, there would be no network! That’s why we’ve decided to feature some of the businesses we have on board, such as the ingenious Reforestum.
Reforestum is an app which measures the carbon footprint of your daily activities and offers you the possibility to become carbon neutral by planning and developing your own forests. In a few clicks, you can manage, track or expand your forest, with cultivation experts on hand to plant your trees.
We invited its Reforestum’s CEO and founder, Diego Sanz Prieto, to tell us all about his exciting new innovation – here’s what he had to say.
Get Connected to Save the Earth’s Ethical Business Network
Are you a business owner who wishes to be part of a network of like-minded companies who embrace ethical ideals? If so, then why not join Reforestum and many others by signing up to a creator membership with Save the Earth Co-operative?
We’ll showcase your business or initiative in an article on our blog, ensuring our broad audience get to hear about what you have to offer.
To find out more about the benefits of becoming a Creator Member Company, drop us a line HERE, or simply click below to join us today!
Meet Our Board Members
Every month we ask one of our board members to step into the spotlight, so that you can get to know them better. This time, we introduce Phil Smith, co-founder of Save the Earth and chairman of the trustees.
Born and bred in Cambridge, UK, Phil is the son of a gypsy father and an aristocratic mother, describing their union as, “the ultimate rags to riches love affair”! He has been a businessman all of his working life, starting off at his father’s haulage and removals business then finding his feet in the corporate world. Working for corporate giants such as the Prudential Assurance Company and the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company, Phil climbed the career ladder, becoming European Managing Director of the Huntsman Corporation. While living and working out in Germany, he was twice elected to the position of Chairman of the European PVC Film Manufacturing Association (EPFMA). Back in the UK, he became Chief Executive of an OFEX-listed company and led it to a listing on the Alternative Investment Market of the London Stock Exchange (AIM).
You might well think this isn’t an especially environmentally-friendly career path for our co-founder to have taken, and you’d be right – Phil came to the same realisation himself and set out to counterbalance this. “I decided that big was not necessarily beautiful, especially in the corporate world of dog eat dog,” Phil clarifies. “So I started looking around to put something back and, about six or seven years ago, was introduced to Emlyn Mousley, the brains and ideas man behind this journey we are embarking upon.”
Phil’s wealth of experience running large organisations and chairing key associations has been invaluable to Save the Earth and while he wouldn’t describe himself as a natural environmentalist, he is passionate about being green and is learning fast. “I’m definitely not an activist, but I now see that you don’t need to be if you belong to a well-thought-out movement of like-minded individuals, most of whom know a good deal more than I do, but who all respect and value each other’s contributions to the whole. That’s the great thing about Save the Earth – it’s created by the people, for the people – every member gets a vote.”
As a family man, Phil is keen to secure a safer, more settled society to benefit upcoming generations, including his four grandchildren. “We need to regain the power and influence in this world in order to leave something good for those who follow in our footsteps,” he explains. “We cannot leave it any later to bring about the change we wish to see in this world so that our children and grandchildren can benefit and stop living in a world of hatred, famine and war, not to mention greed, corruption and abuse of power. It’s madness that so many people on this planet don’t have food and water security, let alone a roof over their heads.”
Currently residing in Cheshire, UK, Phil lists Formula 1 motor racing, reading James Patterson novels, walking, health & fitness and cooking among his many interests. His favourite films are Four Weddings and a Funeral, Love Actually, the Taken trilogy and the first four movies in the Jason Bourne series. Phil’s heroes include Elvis, David Attenborough, Nelson Mandela and … Emlyn Mousley! “Emlyn’s the only one I’m inspired to follow, so maybe that explains a lot!” Phil laughs.
Save the Earth’s Monthly Cash Raffle – May results!
Fresh for spring, Save the Earth has launched a monthly cash raffle! Our very first draw took place on 4th May 2017 and we can confirm that the winner is Mike Knowlton from Poole, UK.
Mike is a valued member of Save the Earth and his company Green Bear are a recent addition to our Ethical Business Network. Green Bear’s website offers a broad range of health and beauty products, green cleaning solutions and bamboo goods, made from wholly natural ingredients. You can read more about Green Bear and their partnership with Save the Earth in this feature.
If you’re a paying member of the co-operative, the great news is that from now on, you’re in with a regular chance of scooping a cash prize.
£1 of your membership fee will be allocated to the raffle every month, with one member selected at random, taking home all the money.
Our second draw will be held at 21:00 GMT on 1st June 2017 and the winner will be notified shortly afterwards.
If you haven’t joined Save the Earth yet and you’d like to be in with a chance of winning, then all you have to do is sign up before 12:00 GMT on the day of the draw.
Guardian Membership costs just £72 per annum or £6 per month via direct debit. You can find out more about the benefits of becoming a member HERE.
The more members we have on board, the bigger the cash prize, so if you’re feeling lucky, come on and join us!
Here is May’s live draw, where the result was revealed: