Vollebak’s Garbage Watch is a timeless solution for e-waste

August 6, 2020 by  
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Vollebak, a company at the core of sustainable clothing innovation, targets time itself with a new prototype, the Garbage Watch. While the Garbage Watch’s name may sound questionable, it fits given that the watch uses materials that would otherwise end up in the dump. Specifically, the Garbage Watch  upcycles electronic waste such as motherboards and scrap computer parts and turns them into a functional watch.  Related: This sustainable luxury smartwatch monitors climate change “Today, most of the 50 million tonnes of electronic waste that’s generated every year is treated like garbage even though it isn’t. Instead it contains many of the world’s precious metals, like silver, platinum, copper, nickel, cobalt, aluminium and zinc. You’ll find 7% of the world’s gold in e-waste. In other words, millions of tonnes of the stuff people normally pay to dig up out of the ground is heading straight back into it,” the company says on its website. Vollebak worked on the project in collaboration with the Wallpaper* Re-Made project. Although currently in prototype form, the watch will launch in 2021. A waiting list has already formed for those with an early interest. Steve Tidball, Vollebak co-founder, explains how the project came together, saying, “To avoid trashing our own planet, we need to start figuring out how to re-use the stuff we already have. So our Garbage Watch started with a very simple idea. What if electronic waste isn’t garbage ? What if it’s simply pre-assembled raw materials that we can use to make new things. That’s why everything you can see on the Garbage Watch used to be something else – a motherboard from your computer, a microchip in your smartphone, or wiring from your TV.” Of course, the Garbage Watch design tackles more than just  recycling e-waste; it’s about function as well as fashion. With that in mind, the team gave the watch a unique, conversation-starting design.  As Nick Tidball, Vollebak co-founder, said, “We’ve taken an ‘inside-out’ design approach with the Garbage Watch, making the functional inner workings highly visible…Our aim was to reframe an often invisible and hazardous end of the supply chain, and make people think deeply about the impact of treating their wearables in a disposable manner.” + Vollebak Images via Vollebak/Sun Lee

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Vollebak’s Garbage Watch is a timeless solution for e-waste

Levis announces product line made with Cottonized Hemp

August 6, 2020 by  
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Many people quickly associate denim and Levi’s. The iconic red tab label is instantly recognizable. Now, those looking for sustainable clothing options can also turn to the brand with its newest men’s product line called Levi’s Stay Loose, which is made with hemp. Stay Loose offers several options for men with, as the name implies, a loose fit through hips and thighs. With typical Levi’s innovation, the styles are fashioned using Cottonized Hemp, which is a fancy way of saying a portion of the yarn comes from the hemp plant and the manufacturing makes it feel like cotton. Now that hemp is legal to grow across the U.S., myriad products have adopted the beloved material for its strength, but also because it requires less water, chemicals and land space than cotton.  Related: These sustainable shoes by Rackle are made from hemp Janine Chilton-Faust, global VP of men’s design at Levi’s said, “The Stay Loose is the perfect jean to tap into the trend of looser silhouettes, which embraces both style and comfort. A fuller fit, a wider leg, a little taper, and with a throwback ‘90s vibe that’s still very contemporary.” The Stay Loose standard length bunches just over the top of sneakers while the crop length allows the wearer to show off their shoe of choice. They are available in a range of black, indigo and faded indigo washes. In addition, the Stay Loose Carpenter Pant features the traditional carpenter style with lower pockets, side utility pockets and, of course, the hammer loop. Another option, called the Climber Pant, comes in a lightweight, non-stretch canvas rather than denim and features an elastic waist band for comfort. While Cottonized Hemp shows potential as a more sustainable material , these products are still only comprised of 23% hemp and 77% cotton, so cotton isn’t completely out of the equation just yet. Other products from the company also include the Cottonized Hemp, including the classic Stay Loose Trucker jean jacket. For women, the High Loose pant line offers three options that incorporate the material, too. All products should be widely available in fall 2020. + Levi’s  Images via Levi’s

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Nissan develops solar-powered recharging system for Leaf

July 15, 2011 by  
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Priyank Gupta: Nissan Leaf Recharging on solar energy The concept of electric vehicles has been very old, but has caught auto majors fancy after 2007’s global economic recession coupled with sky high oil prices. Japanese auto makers evolved as early birds for new electric technology, and Nissan was one of them with the launch of it’s popular electric car, The Leaf. The car with gasoline equivalent average of nearly 100mpg is hugely popular due to its long range and sporty looks. But despite of them being completely emission free, EVs used to face critics’ questions as they require electricity to charge and as in majority of cases, electric power is generated by non renewable sources resources like coal and natural gas.This eliminates the whole purpose of driving EV’s because the reduction of emission of green house gases was shifted from automobiles to power plants. Nissan’s Leaf went on sale last year and according to the company, the Leaf’s battery retains 80 percent of its initial capacity even after scrapping. Thus, with an eye on future, when large number of today’s new batteries will be scrapped, Nissan is planning to provide an alternative for electric storage in the form of Leaf’s batteries. In the same context, Nissan has launched a new prototype charging system in association with 4R Energy Corporation. The system involves the use of solar cells to charge high capacity Li-ion batteries(96kWh) with each one being the size of one Leaf. The prototype is now under testing at Yokohama headquarters of Nissan, where solar cells installed on the roof top would charge four Li-ion batteries which will be used to charge the vehicles. The system would be capable of generating and storing enough electricity to charge nearly 1800 Leafs annually. Already there’s a lot of buzz regarding solar and wind power, however the storage of energy by these sources has always been a problem. But with the advent of new charging and storing solutions by the company, the problem is expected to be solved to a large extent and may bring a revolution that would change the way EV’s are charged and used the world over and will make driving an emission free affair. Nissan Leaf Recharging to solar energy The company is much excited about its new storing solutions and is also planning to offer these to residential and commercial establishments. After Fukushima nuclear accident it would not be surprising if the company successfully materializes its plan due to people’s protest against nuclear power which may lead to closure of nuclear plants. However, now it has to be seen when the company brings out the public version and at what price because that’s going to be an important point for its widespread adoption. If the project fails to meet expectations of people, development and installation of new infrastructure for charging electric vehicles would once again continue to be the biggest challenge for increase in usage of EVs. Via: Boston

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