Paulo Mirpuri tells Sustainable Brands Oceans Conference how to fly with a conscience.

Mirpuri Foundation Founder and President Paulo Mirpuri was a keynote speaker at the recent Sustainable Brands Oceans, conference held in Porto. The Sustainable Brands Oceans Conference was the first Sustainable Brands (SB) event ever to be held in Portugal. It claims to be the natural home for courageous optimists, and the premier global community of brand innovators, who are shaping the future of international commerce.

Speaking from a stage that rotated through 360º to create an immersive experience for the audience, Paulo Mirpuri took on the challenge of explaining to delegates on the topic ‘How Sustainable can you fly?’

He explained to all, the journey that the Mirpuri Foundation, as principal sustainability partner of the Hi Fly Airline, has taken over the last three years, speaking at length on combined  efforts to combat plastic pollution, and what measures the partnership has implemented to improve aviation sustainability.

Paulo Mirpuri also explained the dangers of plastic, notably microplastics, on human health and the environment, and recanted how, amid industry skepticism, the Mirpuri Foundation had led to the complete removal of single-use plastic items on all Hi Fly aircraft, a first for the international passenger aviation industry.

He spoke of how environmentally friendly replacement items were sought, tested and developed, and how the Mirpuri Foundation has sponsored innovative university programs to produce alternatives to items like the single-use plastic bottle, gifting each speaker a Mirpuri Foundation reusable metal water bottle as a memento of the conference. 

Among the other international speakers addressing the event were: filmmaker and an environmental activist, Alexandra Cousteau, Frida Bengtsson from Greenpeace, CNN’s Blathnaid Healy, Katherine Bryar — Head of Global Branding and Communications at sustainable aquafeed giant BioMar, Anne-Cecile Turner from The Ocean Race, Dee Caffari, skipper of the Mirpuri Foundation founded “Turn The Tide on Plastic” team and João Meneses, from the Business Council for Sustainable Development, Portugal.

In a practical measure, organised by SB in a link-up with The Plastic Bank, to illustrate their commitment the eradication of plastic pollution in our oceans, some 84 pounds of plastic was lifted from the seas for each person attending the conference, equivalent to the amount of plastic we each use and discard annually. Attendees then received a personalised certificate and access to a link that allowed them to understand where in the world ‘their plastic’ was taken to be recycled or reused, as well as offering tips on other sustainable practices.

In addition to this and the varied and interesting lectures, the SB program also included workshops, knowledge sharing ‘masterclasses’ and film screenings. Speaking after the successful event, Paulo Mirpuri said:

“We are grateful to the people at Sustainable Brands for the opportunity to spread our message to like-minded individuals and companies. The Mirpuri Foundation has a solid presence now in the international sustainability conference arena that allows us to take our work and our message to places we have not done before. We have many friends here, and it is lovely to catch up with some old faces, but we must look forward and take our message, and our passion for the Mirpuri Foundation’s causes to new audiences whenever we can.”

Since 2006, the Sustainable Brands goal has been to inspire, engage, and equip business leaders and practitioners who see social and environmental challenges as an essential driver of brand innovation, value creation, and positive impact.