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Meet Anja Lill of The 200 Year Project in Toluca Lake

Today we’d like to introduce you to Anja Lill.

So, before we jump into specific questions, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I am originally from Berlin, Germany but came to Los Angeles in September 2009 to work in the film industry. My journey for “The 200 Year Project” started about 3 1/2 years ago when I started slowly eliminating plastic from my life and started my Instagram @zerowasteveganlife where I share tips on how to be more environmentally friendly and how to get rid of single-use plastic and other unnecessary items. I then started creating my website which is based on what an individual can do daily to improve the environment.

In 2017 my professional career as an Assistant Director aligned with my personal goals when I got to work on Avatar 2 + 3 with James Cameron. I have admired him for his environmental stance and for not being too afraid to take it to the level that it needs to be taken to – veganism. The set was the most environmentally friendly set I’ve ever worked on with a vegan caterer! His wife Suzy has featured my website in her book “OMD – One Meal A Day” which is a great start for anyone looking to reduce their environmental impact!

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
So far the biggest struggle has been time. When working as an AD, I spend up to 14 hours a day on set and sometimes I find it difficult to pursue my personal goals on the side. I have been working toward expanding my website with more articles, videos, content and recommendations, but with a recent new addition to the family, I’ve had to take a short hiatus. What’s been immensely helpful in this downtime is taking courses to enrich my knowledge to improve content and expand this platform.

Please tell us about The 200 Year Project.
Have you ever wondered what the world will be like when your grandchildren reach the age you are now? How their environment will be? Their health? Their society? Technology? How about their grandchildren when they are your age? And then what about theirs? In about 200 years our grandchildren’s grandchildren will be finishing their time on this planet. Today maybe 2019, but everything we do is shaping their 2219.

At the 200 Year Project we are focused on providing step by step actions and Informational Resources for Individuals on their way to building their more sustainable world – a world our grandchildren and their grandchildren will inherit. Everybody can learn how to be more environmentally conscious in their everyday life. We are most proud to provide a free resource and to educate people in making better choices. One person can make a difference and if everyone starts focusing more on what they do each day they can create a huge wave and inspire others.

We are working to improve day in and day out, as every step forward is a positive part of the process. Perfection is substituted by persistence as part of our equation. We work to live our lives not just for our children and their children, but for theirs and then theirs too.

We will never get to meet that 6th generation when they are held gently in their mother’s arms. But, we can be a part of the foundation that gives them clean air, proper food and a wealth of opportunity to continue building a world that benefits the future of all life on earth. 200 years may seem distant and untouchable today, but every step we take in its direction, our grandchildren’s grandchildren feel the weight of our walk. We can be their long lost idols and inspirations or we can be forgotten with a simple Command+Shift+Delete. Their future is being built by our present. We have a wonderful opportunity to be heroes in their eyes if we are willing to journey through our own lives with theirs in mind.

Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
Most importantly it is to be open to learning new things and never being afraid to be questioned on your current thoughts or beliefs. I am open to a logical discussion on anything. I approach subjects with an open mind and that is the only reason I have gone down this path. I was not always vegan or aware of our plastic pollution, but when I approached a vegan and honestly asked why and listened or read about the plastic impact, my world was shaken how little I did not know and how ignorant I was in so many ways.

I ended up going vegan overnight since I am not afraid to change my outdated world views to benefit others. Unfortunately, that is not the case with many other people I have found. Often times convenience and old habits trump reason and logic. Einstein, Tesla, DaVinci, Gandhi, Tolstoy – they cannot all be wrong and they are way smarter than most of us, if not me follow them and always think about how your actions will impact others.

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