Let's Do Something About Fracking + A Sparkly Giveway For You!

   I almost wanted to title this post "a frakking giveway" -- those of you who have seen Battlestar Galactica will know what I mean ;)

   Today I'd like to introduce you to Ruby, a boutique lingerie and handmade jewellery brand based in Cape Town, South Africa that specialises in fashion-forward pieces with hand-crafted elements. Their pieces have been featured in magazines like Elle, Cosmo and Glamour. Many of their items are hand-beaded and finished by the Ruby Beading circle which gives career opportunities for rural, impoverished women with no marketable skills but their traditional beading techniques. As an independent, designer-owned brand, RUBY is in a unique position to leverage off their fashion-forward position, and utilise various media to draw attention to a number of issues that they feel are important for us, and our planet.

   Here is their latest Anti-Fracking "Count Fracula" Lingerie campaign, shot to create awareness about fracking. The South African government recently gave permission to Shell to start the exploration process for shale gas in areas of South Africa. If shale gas is found in large enough quantities oil companies like Shell want to start fracking, which will have a horrific effect on the water, environment and the lives of the people and animals in the region. RUBY's campaign not only grabs our attention with it's gorgeous lingerie but also, most importantly, aims to raise awareness about fracking:

   Now, this I can totally get behind: fashion and ecological issues.

  You have probably heard of fracking, but not everybody knows exactly what it is. Fracking is basically drilling very deep to get to deep oil and gas reserves, (very prettily explained here). The biggest problem with this is that harmful chemicals (the names of which oil and gas companies will not disclose to the public) are pumped into the earth during the process, which end up in the soil, the atmosphere through evaporation of waste-water (a by-product of fracking) and the groundwater. There is high risk of leaks, spills and contamination during all stages of the process. A test frack in the UK even caused an earthquake. This video shows what comes out from the taps in the kitchens of homes near areas where fracking takes place:

   These are the fracking-prone places, as of 2013. If fracking is allowed to boom, many more frackeable sites may be discovered and you might find a drill in your own backyard very soon.

Image from shalestuff

  The solutions? Develop renewable resources instead of drilling for more oil. The world needs to move away from gas and oil anyway, and it is absolutely doable. If Germany, a country with not much sunlight (its photovoltaic potential can be compared to Alaska), not much empty space and few rivers appropriate for generating hydropower, actually managed to get half of its energy from renewable resources last year; then every country can do it. The technology exists, there are so many incentives (environmental, health, decentralisation of the energy business). It's just that governments prefer to overlook the good of the average citizen and support huge corporations instead. Ridiculous subventions of oil have to be stopped. In Germany the government artificially raises the price of energy to motivate push people to make their home energy efficient (an average German house uses around half the energy that an average US house uses, even though many parts of the US have a warm climate and tons of sunlight while all German homes need to be heated several months per year).
  If you are interested in saying no to fracking, search online for petitions in your country. Sign them and pass them on to your friends. Hopefully you are living in a democracy, where voting "no" might just change something. The UK has this great site where you can find out if your home is at risk of being fracked. For the US, here is a handy map, and here is a petition to sign.

Ruby jewelry giveway

   Ruby's gorgeous lingerie and jewellery are available amongst others in their Etsy store. The pieces are surprisingly affordable! RUBY is are kindly giving away jewellery pieces to six lucky winners! You could win one of these beauties:

#1 24k Gold Plated handmade Heart Locket

#2 Copper plated Spirit Quartz Pendant

#3 Gold Geometric and Crystal Necklace 24k Gold

#4 Gold Dipped White Druzy Crystal Pendant

#5 Shark's Tooth Fossil Talisman Pendants

#6 Spirit Quartz Claw Pendant

#7 Upcycled French Franc Coin Heart

#8 Vikki Hoops

   My personal favourite is the Geometric Crystal Pendant, but a close second is the Spirit Quartz Claw because I love the juxtaposition of the rough and the shiny.

   You can enter the giveaway via the Rafflecopter form. Don't forget to mention in the comments how do you feel about fracking!

* The giveway is open worldwide
* It will run till the 10th of April 2014
* Six winners will be chosen randomly and notified by email. Please check your spam folders, since almost each time I run a giveway some of the emails that notify the winners never get found.

RUBY images by Gavin Goodman

Check these out: