Systems Founded in Byproduct Management: Ingenuity 101

Lucid Energy, Stormwater X, Toilet 3.0, and Africa's Tech Sector and Scrap Sector might solve 4 problems with byproduct management.

If you are an agent of conscience, and choose to either be perfect, or become someone guided by perfect intent, you need maintenance. Like a regular teeth-cleaning or oil change, you need to regularly evaluate your interior motives, your pridefulness, your righteous indignation, and cognitive biases.  Preemium primum non nocere.

Like a machine that has been well maintained, you will, through the cumulative exposure and effort towards the improvements you've devoted yourselves to, be in the right place when the right time for an insight, inspiration, or opportunity occurs. If, for example, you care about people living in slums in emerging markets, you might spend years doing Mother Theresa one-on-several assistance, and begin to be inured to the scale of the problem. Keep your ego in check, and your eyes open, because someone else may have a good idea and never have your insight into an application that would "save the world", or your piece of it.

Where is this going? Downhill to the problem, whose byproduct is opportunity

Cross Culture 3: Domestic Disputes in African Forestry

The Politics of Deforestation in Africa: Madagascar, Tanzania, and Uganda [Foreign Affairs]... Nadia talks about important environmental issue with permanent consequences, and whether third-party international assistance will be effective.

Middlebury professor Dr. Nadia Horning (one of the hosts of the kickoff session at Fair Trade Recycling Summit in 2013) is on of the few people talking about something important in African resource policy.

Extraction is more crucial than discard, and the most important aspect of waste is whether it influences extraction. This paper discusses the intentions and effects of external solution making.

It's a Domestic Dispute with International and Inter-generational consequences.  Plastic litter will kill a lot of individual creatures that we can see close up, but destroying and cutting road-threads through an entire habitat exposes, degrades, and destroys the entire forest system.

We feel guilt about waste like we feel guilt about negligence.

We feel guilt about consumption in a scarier way.

We feel guilt about domestic violence against a woman in a neighbor's apartment in another way.

How we need to take action, as agents of conscience, demands a little more study than we like to put in. But we at least need to agree to purge the airwaves of uncredible and false accusations.


Deauville Prizewinning Documentary to Air at Conference

This is a trailer for a 50 Minute Documentary called "Blame Game" produced by Sideways team in Spain this year.

The producer and filmmaker interviewed Joseph "Hurricane" Benson after he received a 5 year sentence for allegedly shipping TVs - which he bought, and could recycle for free in the UK - to Ghana, during "Project Eden".

Clean Hands Teaser from Clean_Hands on Vimeo.

If anyone wants to interview the filmmakers, I can get you in touch.

Cross Cultural Training in Ewaste #2: IRS FORM 13909

Two NGOs take opposing positions on trade w/ "Third world" aka "emerging markets". What's Tech? What's Scrap? Who decides? Which is a "watchdog"? Which is registered as a "charity"? Who beats up other non-profits?

Ten years ago, the mission of dba Fair Trade Recycling was to vet exporters. And by that we meant to identify USA companies it was safe to export FROM, and not foreign companies it was safe to export TO.

To me, it's an amazingly simple explanation, but it takes weeks sometimes to get it through to journalists and documentary makers.

If you begin with the assumption that the Tech Sector in an emerging market enlists the very best and brightest, the valedictorians, and assume they are flying to purchase something from the Scrap Sector in the wealthy nation - as I did - then the purpose of a civil contract between the two parties is to increase efficient and fair trade.

Earlier this decade [post WR3A California Compromise] we realized that before we could broker loads, we had to first serve the Tech Sector by advocating on their behalf against a very strongly funded defamation campaign. To complicate matters, that campaign was being promoted by "the Left", people who were quite self-certain that they didn't have a single racist idea in their minds.  People who championed "environmental justice" were in fact committing "environmental malpractice", but that was a hard message to deliver.

If I can't fundraise to pay the WR3A credit card bills, maybe we can do the next best thing and "level the playing field". Basel Action Network is registered as a 501-c(3) charity - an organization that attests it does not advocate for legislation, does not perform work to benefit any private business or organization, and provides charitable services.  If reporters are looking for a story, we got another one for you....

Cross Cultural Training Program for Ewaste Shockumentary Makers 1

This week I spent another several hours in a pre-interview for a German documentary crew from ZDF. They had seen Blame Game or seen the blog, and said that they were reaching out to see if we can get them interviews with Africans in the Tech Sector --- "At Agbogbloshie".

spend more time at the beach guys
They are attending something called the Digital Conference Republica [technovagh blog by
Joseph-Albert Kuuire], a German conference established 2013 on the subject using online information to solve global problems, to be held in Accra for the first time.

Obviously these dudes mean well. But finding a repair tech "At Agbogbloshie" is a bit like finding a mechanic at your local scrap metal yard. They are associating the original stubborn idea that imports arrive directly at Agbogbloshie (thanks to Jim Puckett and Mike Anane) with the message that Africans import what they can repair.

So in my next blog, I'm going to share some of the training and background information which we tried to impart to Alexander Glodsinksi of SDF, in a crash course via Whatsapp, with Emmanuel Nyalete, Evans Quaye, Wahab Odoi, and Olu Orga.  After the "text training", Evans suggested we put it up on a website devoted to Africa's Tech Sector. Let's start here.