Bed bugs- A Serious Threat!

Are you a new student who is gonna move to Sweden soon? Or Are you someone with plans to move to a new room? This post is for you and this is important. It is the story of my misery and I don’t want it to be yours ever, because I really do care.

Hello everyone,

Recently, or to be precise, exactly 1 month before, I moved to a new apartment at Lappis from the heavenly room I had on the 5th floor with the lovely view. Sadly, my contract with KTH for that amazing room got over and I had to move to another corridor room that was sublet to me by a friend. I hope you’re aware that KTH provides accommodation only for one year!

So I moved to this new room and that’s when all bad things started happening to me. No, the room is not haunted. I wish it was, but the room is infested. Infested with bugs! Not just bed bugs, but with different other kinds of wall bugs as well. 🙁

It all started with strange marks that appeared on my skin. They were really itchy, painful and some got infected and were extremely uncomfortable. I began to blame it on the mosquitoes. Later I started wondering if I had a disease. I was imagining all kinda things except the bed bugs. Past one month I had been really busy with my summer job in the morning and Formula student work in the nights until 12 or 1 am. So I was too tired during my sleep to even realize that I was being bitten every day in the nights as I slept.

After one month of enduring this extreme misery, someone pointed out to me the existence of bed bugs. Now that the Formula Stuednt car is done, I was bit relaxed and I had the energy to wake up when I realized I was being bitten. And then I saw these monstrous buggers that emerge out of the walls, floor cracks, and the bed when the sky is dark and you’re deep asleep to devour your blood and cause pain.

If you google “Bed bug bites”, you would see exactly how my entire body looks right now.  And, imagine one month of these. I know, I am in both physical and mental pain because of these bugs. I am so paranoid and feel a phobia towards any kinda insect right now. I think it is gonna take me some time to recover.

So, when you move to your new apartment. Check for bugs. Check the bed. Or better so, trash it and get yourself a new one. Check the walls, floors and every crevice and crack. Don’t unpack your things until you have made sure that your room is bug-free. And if you think you have an infestation, call the room owner or the housing board or SSSB or KTH immediately and do not stay in that place. Exterminating them is a huge process, call Anticimex. Make sure you don’t carry these bugs with you to other places, you could spread the infestation. Here is a nice video I found for you…

As with me, I am currently sleeping in a temporary accommodation and trying to find another room to move to as soon as possible. Housing is a big problem in Stockholm. Hopefully, I will find something soon. Pray that I don’t end up homeless. Thank you.

Stay away from the blood sucking buggers.

Take care

Sindhu <3

Sustainable Arrival Day

Hi peeps! Hope you are enjoying summer no matter where you are (unless you are in the southern hemisphere hehe). Stockholm’s weather has been incredible for the past weeks as the Sun shines every day and temperatures have stayed above 20 ÂșC. As days goes by, arrival days for new students come closer! Are you one of them? Congratulations, you’ll find so many amazing things from the very first moment you enter Sweden no matter how!

Let’s suppose that you’ll be arriving by train to the amazing city of Stockholm. Did you know that all trains are operated using clean energy? Sweden is proud to be one of the leading countries in environmental knowledge and clean solutions implementation; for example, they reached their goal of supplying at least 50 % of the total energy demand with renewables by 2012 when the goal was intended for… 2020! As a matter of fact, Stockholm is on its way to become a fossil fuel free city by 2040, I do think they’ll reach this goal even sooner!

Image result for renewable energy meme

Let’s suppose that you’ll arrive directly to Arlanda (Stockholm’s international airport), state-owned airport operated by Swedavia. These are some of the things that you may not notice, but they are making your experience as sustainable as possible,

  • Low-power LED lighting (plus other energy implementations have helped Arlanda to cut its energy use by almost a third in the period from 2005-2012).
  • Feeling cold during winter? Biofuel system to heat its terminals, hangar and airfield buildings.
  • Only airport in the world that has a cap on carbon dioxide emissions in its environmental permit. As stated in Swedavia’s page, this means that “emissions from aircraft taking off and landing, from vehicular traffic to and from the airport, from internal vehicular traffic and from the heating of buildings may not exceed the level produced in 1990.”
  • Water is collected by a series of wells so it can be recycled or used in the heating systems…

…and so on!

Ok, you have arrived and then? Coming to the city from the airport by commuter train or fast train? Powered by renewables! Coming by bus? All busses are powered by biofuels! Taking a taxi? There’s a pretty high chance that your taxi is going to be a hybrid or even a Tesla #FirstWorldTransportation! So bottom line… looking forward to see you here! And even if you are not a future student, I’m pretty sure you’ll love this amazing city!

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Cheers to new beginnings!

Hey guys! Welcome to this new space that we just created to bring you all the funniest, craziest, and the most relevant information about our lives as KTH students! It’s going to be an amazing journey that we are looking forward to beginning with all of you! Want to learn a bit more about what’s coming in this new space? Watch the video that we made for YOU, dear readers!

We now have three very different perspectives in one blog, so do let us know if you would like us to write about any topic in our upcoming posts.

DON’T FORGET TO SUBSCRIBE TO THIS NEW BLOG!!!

Vi ses… <3

Reusable Food Containers

Restaurants working with customers for sustainable development and food consumption? Doesn’t sound that crazy! Well, the past week a little bird told me about this amazing idea that our friends from ReTak had about working altogether to decrease the amount of containers (mainly styrofoam) used in the food industry. How? Based on an app, customers and restaurants that offer efficient solutions as these reusable containers, will be connected and will interact with a third party (supplier) in charge of delivering clean containers to the restaurants and receiving the used ones from the customers.

Do you feel keen about knowing more about this idea? Well, during the Smaka pĂ„ Stockholm or a “taste of Stockholm” festival taking place in KĂŒngstrĂ€dgĂ„rden 5 – 10 June 11 am-10 pm , you will be able to test this in real life, and will be handed out food samples in the recyclable boxes for trial!… is free entry! Remember that is vital that we decrease our consumption in these type of non-biodegradable materials such as styrofoam, based on the fact that by 2050 it is estimated that there will be more plastic in the oceans than fishes 🙁

Want to be an active member of this idea? ReTak will love to have volunteers to help them during the food festival with some ideas about the design and implementation of how the booth is going to look like. If you would like to take part with them, contact me! 😀

 

Veggies Everywhere

Vegetarian, vegan, meat-based… so many different adjectives to classify our diets, but are these diets easy to follow here in Sweden? Well, let me tell you they actually are easy to follow and how much you are concerned in their different environmental impacts!

According to this graph, you can see how much environmental impact your type of diet has. Meat has not only health related problems, but also environmental ones. In Sweden, more particularly in Stockholm, I’ve encountered infinite options for plant-based diets; nevertheless, it has been estimated that around 10 % of the Swedish population has a 100 % meat-free diet. With projections saying that by 2050 humanity will reach 9 billion people, eating meat puts lots of pressure to our environment.

Don’t misjudge my opinion towards meat, I love its flavour, I grew up eating it, but the fact that it has a huge environmental impact makes it harder for me to just do nothing and enjoy eating a steak. As far as I know, we should all (humans and other species) be able to enjoy a sustainable environment. I don’t consider myself vegetarian (less vegan), but I do have a beef/lamb-free diet and I do eat fish and chicken. Pork has never been so appealing to me if I have to confess. The problems with beef and lamb are,

  • Beef requires a huge quantity of space. Estimations are about 28 times what pork and chicken need… remember that land is also home of other species, like trees; trees that absorbe CO2
  • Beef produces 11 times more greenhouse gases than potatoes, wheat, and rice.
  • Beef livestock produces an estimated 2.9 gigatonnes of CO2-eq (40% of all livestock emissions)
  • Livestock produce… hold on to your seat… 15 % of the total anthropogenic GHG emissions!!!
  • 15,000 L of water used per kg of beef meat! Don’t believe me? Check this link
  • Eating a kilo of lamb produces emissions equivalent to driving about 150 km… and no, it’s not a Tesla what you are driving while eating it.

and the list could go on and on… but well, here in Sweden we find these kind of corners in the supermarkets “vego för alla” or veggie for everyone, where you’ll be able to choose between vegetarian “meatballs” or vegetarian chorizo!

And it doesn’t stop there… look what you find as ads in the metro stations…

So would you like to help me saving the Earth “one taco at a time”? Try decreasing the beef and lamb you tend to eat to almost zero! Trust me it’s not difficult! This planet is also yours and you are as responsible as me of taking care of its resources. Let’s do it together! 😀

Student Sustainability Summit

Do you believe that human security and climate change are connected? Ever heard of exponential technologies? I presume the answer is yes! This presumption stems from the fact that the medium in which you read this article is a perfect example- The Internet!

This post is the concluding part of my amazing weekend in Harnosand. If you missed the first, you can find it here😉 Disruptive technology is becoming a favourite topic in the sustainability space and this led to the topic,  Exponential thinking in Sustainability. During the summit, Rebecka Carlsson enlightened us on  Singularity University and the different projects that people are/were working on during her time in the programme.

Exponential technologies move from deceptive to disruptive. This is evident in various sectors such as transportation, industrial growth, energy implementation, communication, the internet, processing speed of computers, amongst others. Interestingly, most of these technologies span from humans thinking about ways to improve the ways of working in their everyday lives.

Follow these sentences, do they bring to mind any new technology or brew new ideas in your mind?

  • This technology might stop climate change
  • The solar car I thought I would invent has been invented by my colleague
  • We might live long enough to live forever
  • Virtual reality can make us more emphatic
  • It is possible to make an engine work on asteroid minerals.
  • The coming 100 years will be 20,000 years of technological development

Some people have come to the conclusion that forty percent of fortune 500 companies that exist today will no longer exist. This extrapolation stems from this topic of exponential technologies and the impending revolution, most people expect to take place soon.

Giving my two cents 🙂 Photocredit: Sustainergies and Svanen

CASE SOLVING

The next session was all about goal 12. Have you heard of The Swan or Nordic Ecolabel? Have you seen this sign on some products and wondered why?

Nordic Ecolabel Logo

The Nordic Swan Ecolabel is the official sustainability ecolabel for the Nordic countries. The purpose was to give Nordic Consumers guidance and to help them choose products which had fulfilled strict environmental requirements. In Sweden, there are thousands of products carrying the Nordic Swan Ecolabel.

However, despite the awesome work the Nordic Swan is doing, the younger generation including me is oblivious to their activities. In addition, companies so as to gain market advantage make their own eco-marks. These were some of the challenges we tried to solve during the case solving session

groups presenting their various solutions. (Photo credit: Sustainergies and Svanen)

COMMUNICATIVE STRATEGIES

Photo credit: Sustainergies and Svanen

This was the final session which dealt with how we communicate the SDG goals. In this session, we learnt a lot on effective communication with respect to the dynamics in the room and how to engage your audience optimally. Also, we learnt how to prepare outstanding presentations irrespective of the topic of discussion.

Then we played the privilege game and called it a wrap not long after that:)

Privilege game

 

PERSONAL REFLECTION: I really loved the sustainability summit for students. I would encourage every student to take part at least once in the summit. It was good to listen and share ideas with people from various fields and different universities discuss sustainability and other interesting topics needed to move the world thinking in the right direction.

I also like the efforts Sweden is making with ensuring that companies are taking the necessary steps to ensure sustainability in the life cycle of products and not just, the disposal of products.

Did I mention it was my first vegetarian weekend? All meals were vegetarian options only and it was soooo goood!! So if you’re reading this and planning an event for just vegetarian options but want everyone to enjoy it, ask SIDA for advice on the best caterers!

Finally, do not forget this…

Everyone has a part to play in achieving the seventeen sustainable goals. What are you doing in your little world?