Mother Earth

7 SEPTEMBER 2012: The fifth Clean Tech Media Awards will be held at the Tempodrom in Berlin. Here’s the story of how this prestigious event came into being:


Marco Voigt, Founder of The Clean Tech Media Award:

Signet“It was in 1987, during the times of the Iron Curtain. The youth in East-Germany was crazy about pop and rock music from the West. However, they were neither able to hear their favorite music nor to buy it. The government demonised rock and pop as a destructive influence of capitalism. So, the music was heard secretly. Every night, teenagers like myself sat in front of the radio to hear RIAS 2 and we recorded the forbidden songs on tape. Our stars were as far away as the stars in the sky.”

However, one day everything changed for Marco and thousands of other young people behind the Iron Curtain. Satellite technology brought a Dutch music TV show named “Countdown” into their homes.

Marco Voigt: “Then, I got my first record: Shattered Dreams by Johnny Hates Jazz, an aunt’s present from West-Germany. With this sought-after record I was the king of my schoolyard. After the German reunification, times changed. Suddenly, you could almost buy everything. And so I hit the road to complete my record collection. I ordered Clark Datchler’s first solo album ‘Raindance’ for 80 Marks at the ‘WOM’ music store and I almost waited nine months on the shipment, because the record was only sold in Japan.

“In 2008 – I already worked as a consultant for green technology – I discovered new songs by my former star: he actually sang about environmental topics and the brilliant inventor, Nicola Tesla! On his website I saw some videos made by Simone Walraven, about Clark’s solar studio in America.

“So I wrote him a message on MySpace and invited him to support an event of the green technology scene. I was more than surprised when he answered my mail. More than that, Clark Datchler, the hero of my youth, really wanted to support my idea and play a gig. So, I had to create an appropriate event urgently! This is the story behind the environmental award.”

Simone Walraven’s video of “Tomorrow” opened the first Clean Tech Media Award event in Berlin in 2008, which is now the biggest event of its kind in the world.

Simone Walraven is interviewed on 9 October 2009 by Ronnie Overgoor (BlueShots TV) for the program Idealize. The interview focuses on our Earth and the importance of artistic, cultural, social and natural diversity. The interview has been broadcast repeatedly by Dutch television channel Het Gesprek.

Interview Copyright 2009 Blue Shots TV


Arrival in Tennessee, Spring 2011: I was just in time for the most intense weather season in recorded history in the Southeast of the United States. In April alone, there were 600 tornadoes; even the most weather-hardy farmers in the area thought that was a bit much. Some of the American media have used this opportunity to point a blaming finger at “Mother Nature”, elaborating on the “violent cruelty” of our planet.

However, here are some interesting numbers:

The 2011 US Tornado season has caused 552 human fatalities. This averages to 1 to 2 people a day.

Yearly fatalities on US highways number approximately a shocking 34,000. This averages to 93 people a day.

40 People die in the US every day as a result of abuse of prescription painkillers.

Domestic violence in the US results in the deaths of 1,000 to 1,600 women every year. This averages to 2 to 5 people a day.

10 years of war in Afghanistan from 2001 – 2011 has led to 1,852 US casualties. This averages to 1 person, every two days.

Tornadoes are violent, and many scientists say that Global Warming is making them a lot more frequent and violent than they would be naturally.

Giving Nature a bad rap is not very honest, if it is done without looking at human responsibility in the same breath.


For thousands of years, indigenous peoples all over the world have stated the obvious: what humanity does to the earth, we ultimately do to ourselves. The hippies of the 1960’s and ’70’s revived the slogan, and in 2010 a street artist painted it on the exterior wall of a now defunct electricity generating plant in Southern England. It is interesting that the artist refers only to “man” and “himself”, leaving women out of the equation. Perhaps, if women would have been allowed to form an equal part of the equation over the last two thousand years, humanity would not be in the mess we’re in today.
Photo: Simone Walraven