Is Sustainability The Key To Corporate Success?

Author: Green Cyprus  //  Category: Green Economy


A recent study* has found that companies which adopted environmental, social and governance policies in the 1990s have outperformed those that didn’t.

Companies that manage their environmental and social performance have superior financial performance and actually create more value for their shareholders. They do this by attracting and keeping better and more committed employees and have more loyal customers. As societal expectations for responsible environmental and social practices by companies continue to increase, the performance advantage of high-sustainability companies will increase too, because they will be contributing to a sustainable society. Failure to have a culture of sustainability is quickly becoming a source of competitive disadvantage.

Read the full article extracted from the Guardian *Study conducted by: Robert G. Eccles, professor of management practice at Harvard Business School, Ioannis Ioannou assistant professor of strategy and entrepreneurship at London Business School & George Serafeim, assistant professor of business administration at Harvard Business School.

Avoid Using Petroleum-Based Candles

Author: Green Cyprus  //  Category: Green Tips

Paraffin candles are made from petroleum residues so neither do your health or the environment any good. Soy, beeswax or natural vegetable-based candles are better because they biodegrade, are smoke-free, and much more eco friendly.

Whether for your own use or for gifts, make a special effort and seek out vegetable-base candles from health shops and organic suppliers rather than big commercial brands which are almost definitely paraffin based. Much better to breathe in naturally scented candles made with essential oils than artificially scented candles with paraffin residues!

Buy Lasting Potted Flowers & Plants!

Author: Green Cyprus  //  Category: Green Tips

If you’re planning to give flowers this Christmas, remember to check out what you are buying.

A lot of exotic flowers are grown in greenhouses great distances away and exported around the world. Apart from the issue of transport, there can be high social and environmental costs. For example, in Columbia the flower industry uses enormous quantities of polluting pesticides and in Kenya, horticulture requires a lot of water which reduces local water resources. As an alternative, and since fair-trade/certified organically produced flowers are not available in Cyprus, buy potted flowers or plants from a local supplier who grows their own. Or buy a Green Cyprus favourite; potted herbs e.g. lavender, basil, mint, etc, which not only smell divine but have many other culinary and medicinal uses too!

Warm Up & Revitalise With Cinnamon

Author: Green Cyprus  //  Category: Talk About Food


Cinnamon has a long history of being used to treat things such as colds, indigestion and cramps and is also believed to improve energy, vitality and circulation. The following is a list of health benefits associated with this spice that studies have suggested:

  • 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon per day can lower your bad cholesterol (or LDL).
  • Cinnamon may help treat Type 2 Diabetes by lowering blood sugar levels and increasing the amount of insulin production in the body.
  • Cinnamon has antifungal properties, and it’s been said that candida cannot live in a cinnamon environment. 
  • Cinnamon can reduce the proliferation of leukemia and lymphoma cancer cells.
  • Cinnamon has an anti-clotting effect on the blood.
  • Honey and Cinnamon combined has been found to relieve arthritis pain.
  • When added to food, cinnamon inhibits bacterial growth and food spoilage, making it a natural food preservative.
  • Just smelling cinnamon boosts cognitive function and memory.
  • Cinnamon fights the E. coli bacteria in unpasteurized juices.
  • Cinnamon has been found to be an effective natural remedy for eliminating headaches and migraine relief.
  • Cinnamon can also help stablize blood sugar (which is great for weight loss). A couple of dashes in your morning tea or cereal is all it takes!
  • Lots of potential benefits but be careful not to overdo it as it has been found to be toxic in large doses! Cinnamon works best in sweet recipes such as rice and apple-based puddings but may also be added to tea or try Yogi Organic Choco Tea which contains lots of health-boosting spices including cinnamon. Yogi Tea and Organic Cinnamon are available from health shops.



Dreaming Of A Green Christmas!

Author: Green Cyprus  //  Category: Green Cyprus Blog

I think we can confidently predict that we won’t be having a white Christmas this year in Cyprus. Sadly for snow-lovers, the weather is beyond our control, however, we can opt for a green one instead! That’s of course green in the environmentally-friendly sense. Taking steps towards a greener Christmas is about being responsible and something we should all really be taking on board.

Christmas is a time notoriously associated with indulgence and excess and admittedly, most of us have been there! Too much food and drink, topped up with numerous presents, some of which will be deemed either useless or surplus to our requirements. And as for the kids, well… you know the rest! They will be piled with more and more toys which we all feel inclined to give, but inevitably many of them will just sit in the toy cupboard for most of the year.

Think about the wastage we contribute to with this over-indulgence. To make matters worse, we are living in economically difficult times with money tight and food shortages very real. This state of affairs is apparent from the downward trend in our economy. Certainly from where I’m standing, just this reason alone shifts my thinking towards a more frugal approach to festivities and a tendency to adopt a more philanthropic approach (both greener). I’m sure I am not alone….

I am not suggesting we stop our Christmas festivities and present-giving that so many of us look forward to each year. I just think that we could lessen our impact by adapting our behaviour and becoming a little more green over the Christmas period. Adopting this kind of approach is not a difficult transition. It’s simply about making wise, ecologically sound decisions, many of which will save you money and will be better for you, your family and the environment on the whole. So, get into the spirit and start preparing for a greener Christmas!

Here are 10 Green Christmas tips that’ll help you to save money, reduce your Christmas carbon footprint and have a more eco friendly and sustainable Christmas.


1. Opt for Local & Organic Food and Drink

 Always try to buy locally produced food which is organically grown. Buying locally produced food boosts rural jobs and supports our economy. If you are buying turkey or chicken, try to make sure it has been reared in humane conditions and is organic. Organic poultry besides being chemical-free, tastes better too. Organic fruit and vegetables are available in selected supermarkets and health shops so you can also enjoy pesticide-free fruit and vegetables over the festive period. Health shops tend to sell fresh organic produce at very competitive prices, especially the local produce.

You can get the party going with organic wine, beer and soft drinks (see the Green Cyprus website for stockists) and know that your hangover, common with cheaper alcohol, won’t be quite so bad! On the subject of hangovers, you might also want to try some milk thistle, a detoxifying, immune-boosting herb well known for its ability to enhance liver function. It’s available as a tincture from most health food shops or from

 2. Buy gifts which give

Try to buy presents that are beneficial and make a positive difference to the lives of the receiver such as bicycles, juicers, blankets and jumpers to encourage them to exercise, be healthy and cut down on their heat use as well as save money. A necessity bearing in mind our astronomical electricity prices! There are many online suppliers of some great, green alternatives and eco gift ideas to make this year a green Christmas. Visit companies like Green eBay () and Natural Collection ( for a variety of fabulous gift ideas.

3. Look for locally made gifts

Many gifts in today’s marketplace come from halfway around the world, and the impact of transportation contributes significantly to greenhouse emissions and global warming. Local craft fairs and artisan shops are a good source for gifts that come without the added costs of transportation. And gifts made locally often have a story which goes with the gift, since the artisan and the origin of the gift are known. There’s no shortage of craft fairs and small suppliers of hand-made gifts here in Cyprus. Check out the newspapers and facebook for a variety of local events and gift ideas.

4. Give a charity or environmentally friendly gift

Sponsor an animal or give a membership to a charity or environmental organisation for Christmas. We tend not to be big on giving to these kind of causes in Cyprus and it would be good to see a change for the better. Think about whether you or your loved ones need that extra bottle of perfume this Christmas when you could instead make a positive impact on someone’s life. Or consider donating instead to one of my chosen charities, animals. With so many unwanted and abused cats and dogs in the Cyprus sanctuaries and municipal pounds, I would personally rather see 30 euros handed over on my behalf than be the recipient of a concoction of 160 chemicals i.e. a bottle of perfume! There are many kinds of charities from where you could buy a sponsorship gift for a loved one. If you do choose the animal option, Sirius Dog Sanctuary is one of the many shelters desperately in need of funding. Visit their site at ()

5. Use recycled wrapping paper

There’s no point recycling rubbish if you don’t buy recycled products! I’m sure there’s sufficient wrapping paper that ends up in our rubbish bins to wrap up the whole of Cyprus, so try to make sure that you use recycled wrapping paper or gift bags that can be reused.

6. Use recycled Christmas cards or send messages electronically

Numerous Christmas cards are sent each year only for them to be thrown away after Christmas. Try to send recycled Christmas cards or ones made from sustainable sources. You can also make your own, or send texts or e-cards instead. You can also buy recycled Christmas cards from charities and donate up to 20% to less fortunate people at the same time. Just a little thought into the way you convey your Christmas messages to your friends and family can have a more positive impact.


7. Choose a real Christmas tree

Real or artificial? If you’re wondering which is better, the simple answer is that real trees are the more eco friendly choice as they biodegrade. Although artificial trees last for many years they are made from metal and derivatives of PVC, which requires large amounts of energy to make and also creates by-products such as lead which can be harmful to both the environment and human health. The average life of an artificial tree is just 6 years and given that they are not naturally biodegradable they will potentially pollute a landfill site for many years to come. Most artificial trees are made in Taiwan andChina and so have additional energy costs associated with transport. Real trees are carbon neutral, absorbing as much carbon dioxide as they grow as they will emit when burnt or left to decompose. They are a naturally renewable resource and generally feel much nicer in your home. Try to choose a tree with roots so it can be replanted and used again next year or why not start growing your own?

8. Avoid using petroleum-based candles

Paraffin candles are made from petroleum residues so neither do your health or the environment any good. Soy, beeswax or natural vegetable-based candles are better because they biodegrade, are smoke-free, and much more eco friendly. Whether for your own use or for gifts, make a special effort and seek out vegetable-base candles from health shops and organic suppliers rather than big commercial brands which are almost definitely paraffin based. Much better to breathe in naturally scented candles made with essential oils than artificially scented candles with paraffin residues!

9. Be battery-wise

Families can get through a lot of batteries, particularly at Christmas. Discarded batteries are an environmental hazard. Batteries contain toxic chemicals and don’t biodegrade. Instead use rechargeable ones or try . By opening the cap and plugging into a USB connector, you can recharge them pretty much anywhere there’s a USB socket. You’ll never have to search for a charger again.

10. Don’t forget to turn off your appliances & Christmas tree lights

15% of household electricity is wasted by leaving TVs, computers and other appliances on standby bumping up our annual electricity bills by over €50 per year. Make sure you turn things off when you’re not using them. Lighting accounts for around 15% of household electricity, and 100-string Christmas tree lights left on for 10 hours a day over the Christmas period produces enough carbon dioxide to inflate 60 balloons. So make sure you turn them off at night and when you’re out and buy for your house.

To sum up, if you want a green Christmas remember to keep in mind the three R’s – Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. Let’s not add to our already over-grown problem of being one of the worst waste-offenders in Europe, so make an extra effort to…

Recycle your unwanted presents
Everyone te
nds to receive one or more unwanted gifts at Christmas. The best way to recycle any unwanted presents is to give them to charities and hospitals. You can also participate in our Green Christmas Campaign (see our event on ). Alternatively, you could try swapping them for other people’s unwanted gifts! Visit facebook’s Swap Shop for more information. 

Recycle your waste

Remember to recycle your Christmas cards, paper packaging, used cans, plastic and glass bottles. We use dozens of extra bottles and drinks cans over Christmas. Make sure all your empty cans, bottles and jars find their way to your recycling bank or are bagged up for collection by Green Dot.

Recycling an old laptop, phone or kettle takes more effort but is still important. Quantities of e-waste are even greater at Christmas, and with much of this ending up in landfill, we should all be concerned about what happens to the heavy metals used in electronic components once they are buried underground. If you have any e-waste you wish to dispose of, contact WEEE Electrocyclosis Cyprus Ltd (). Alternatively, you can do a good deed and donate your old technology to a charity. You may no longer have use for it but someone else may well do.

Finally, remember that if you do have used non-rechargeable batteries, you can drop them into AFIS Cyprus recycling bins ( which are located in various locations across Cyprus e.g. supermarkets, banks, etc.

A little thought and preparation can make this year a Green Christmas and a few careful choices can make a big difference. Less sometimes means more and undoubtedly in this case, that holds true. By following these simple guidelines, why don’t you opt for a greener Christmas too?

Green Cyprus will be supporting families in need this Christmas and as part of the Green Cyprus: Green Christmas initiative, we are collecting donations of food and unwanted toys and clothes in good condition for Alkionides Charity. If you are interested in donating please see our event on our facebook page .

We will also be presenting ‘tips for a Greener Christmas’ at Utopia’s Green Christmas event on Wednesday 19th December at 7pm. We promise an informative and festive evening so please come along and join us! Check the event section on our site for details (

Himalayan Salt: Cleaner, Purer & Greener

Author: Green Cyprus  //  Category: Talk About Food

Himalayan crystal salt is far superior to traditional iodized salt. It is millions of years old and pure, untouched by many of the toxins and pollutants present in other forms of table salt and sea salt. Himalayan salt contains the same 84 natural minerals and elements found in the human body. This form of salt has also been maturing over the past 250 million years under intense tectonic pressure, creating an environment of zero exposure to toxins and impurities. Its minerals exist in a colloidal form, meaning that they are tiny enough for our cells to easily absorb.  

The health benefits of using natural Himalayan Crystal Salt may include: 

• Controlling the water levels within the body, regulating them for proper functioning

• Promoting stable pH balance in the cells, including the brain

• Encouraging excellent blood sugar health

• Aiding in reducing the common signs of aging

• Promoting cellular hydroelectric energy creation

• Promoting the increased absorption capacities of food elements within the intestinal tract

• Aiding vascular health

• Supporting healthy respiratory function

• Lowering incidence of sinus problems, and promoting over-all sinus health

• Reducing muscle cramps

• Increasing bone strength

• Naturally promoting healthy sleep patterns

• Creating a healthy libido

• In combination with water, it is necessary for blood pressure regulation

• Prevents cellulite, when compared to table salt

• Reduces chances of developing rheumatism, arthritis and gout, when compared to common chemically-treated salt

• Reduces chances of developing kidney and gall bladder stones when compared to common chemically-treated salt 

Highly recommended as a green product, cleaner and purer Himalayan salt is a must have for your kitchen cupboard. Available in health shops.

Green Cyprus: Green Christmas

Author: Green Cyprus  //  Category: Events

Green Cyprus will be presenting tips on how to have a greener Christmas at Utopia, Nicosia on Wednesday 19th December at 7.00pm. With guests. Contact us at [email protected] for further information.

December Events At Utopia

Author: Green Cyprus  //  Category: Events

Christmas Events at Be Natural

Author: Green Cyprus  //  Category: Events

Please for a list of Christmas events from Be Natural Health Store, Nicosia.

Green Economy Report

Author: Green Cyprus  //  Category: Green Economy

UNEP’s Towards a Green Economy: Pathways to Sustainable Development & Poverty Eradication is a comprehensive 631 page examination of the Green Economy. The report can be  and is also viewable chapter by chapter under sections including tourism, agriculture, water, energy and waste. A must read for all budding green economists!