Dutch designer creates a wooden motorcycle powered by algae

August 11, 2017 by  
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An algae-powered wooden motorcycle? The concept isn’t too far out, considering algae has been used to create everything from eco-friendly sneakers to living lamps that absorb CO2 . There’s even an entire algae-powered building in Hamburg ! Dutch designer Ritsert Mans and scientist Peter Mooij created a wooden motorcycle that runs on algae to increase the visibility of the lesser known fuel source. “For every part of the bike, I looked to what nature could provide me with,” said Mans, who built the frame and springs with wood. He used cork for the dampeners and hemp for reinforcement. The team was interested in showcasing how algae oil could be potentially used in the future. So, they grew algae in saltwater, built a wooden motorcycle that runs on the stuff, then tested the concept on a local beach. In his narration, Mans likens the experiment the pioneering era of the 1900’s. Back then, people had no idea what to expect in terms of the up-and-coming automotive landscape. Now that millions of citizens are making a collective effort to invest in renewable energy and sustainable initiatives, great advances are expected to take place. “People don’t know what the world will look like 30 years from now in terms of transportation and energy,” Mans said, “but that uncertainty allows people to develop and build their own ideas.” “Even though the single-sided swingarm seems to contrast with the ‘prehistoric’ material it is made of, it’s actually a full composite, with all sorts of directional fibers provided by nature,” he added. Related: Mexico-sized algae bloom in the Arabian Sea connected to climate change Mans and Mooij wrote a book called The Thick Algae (or De Dikke Alg, in their native Dutch). Their wooden algae bike was made to accompany the resource. If you’d like to learn more about the project, watch Peter Mooij’s 2015 TED talk on algae oil: + Ritsert Mans Via Motofire Images via Ritsert Mans

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Dutch designer creates a wooden motorcycle powered by algae

Who Cares About the 2015 Green Car of the Year?

January 12, 2015 by  
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One thing we’ve looked for in our annual coverage of the North American International Auto Show  (NAIAS) is the attention paid to green cars. Over the past few years, we’ve noted that environmental concerns have diminished year to year. Part of this is due to those concerns going mainstream and being incorporated into manufacturers’ whole lines, to a greater or lesser extent. But the days of having a “green flagship” are pretty much over. This year’s five finalists for Green Car of the Year were: Audi A3 TDI, BMW i3, Chevrolet Impala Bi-Fuel, Honda Fit, and VW Golf. The field is still wide open, as these include a range of fueling options, including diesel, electric, bi-fuel (gasoline/ethanol), conventional high-efficiency gasoline, and an all-of the above smorgasbord from VW with almost all of those options included in the available options for the Golf. In fact, the VW Golf was awarded North American  Car of the Year honors at this year’s show, and the new, aluminum F-150 Ford pickup won for Truck of the Year. But none of the manufacturers has a display touting the Green Car of the Year. Senior representatives for a couple of the contenders knew that it wasn’t one of theirs, but didn’t know beyond that. The Green Car of the Year seems to have fallen off general awareness at this year’s show. The most striking new technology on display, which will be of interest to green car enthusiasts, are hydrogen fuel cell vehicles (FCVs). These are going to be the next big thing to watch for, and a number of manufacturers are displaying their FCV concepts and demonstrators. Companies with FCVs in their displays this year include Honda, Hyundai, and Toyota. Fabrication and 3d printing are also concepts getting prominent display at this year’s show. An operational 3D printing station is on the main floor as part of the Local Motors display, printing out a car body during the show. The lower level of the show, which often has some of the more interesting displays, has a complete 3D printed car, as well as probably the least fuel efficient vehicle at this year’s show, a Bradley Fighting Vehicle (not for retail sale). Informative static graphic displays are also in much less abundance than previous years. The engine-on-a-stick motif and the cutaway display are much less a part of this year’s show. Many of the manufacturers seem to be focusing more on the sculpture and the simple presence of their cars. Displays about fuel efficiency or milage are in very short supply at this year’s show. And no one is trying to show off a particular vehicle as an esepcially green leader. If you’ve read this far, then you, too, must have some interest in green cars. Since the announcement was made a few weeks ago, maybe it’s not considered news. But it seems emblematic of just how far things have gone – whether you see that as a good thing or a bad thing – that it’s not even a part of BMW’s display for the vehicle to announce that the BMW i3 is this year’s Green Car of the Year .

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Who Cares About the 2015 Green Car of the Year?

Tesla’s Model X Crossover is the Fastest Selling Tesla Ever

February 15, 2012 by  
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Last week Tesla officially unveiled its latest model, the Model X crossover . Four days after the automaker started taking reservations for the new electric crossover, Tesla has already received over 500 reservations (which translates into $40 million in sales), making it the fastest selling Tesla ever. When it was unveiled last Thursday at Tesla’s design studio in Southern California, traffic to teslamotors.com increased 2,800 percent , and two-thirds of all visitors were new to the website. Read the rest of Tesla’s Model X Crossover is the Fastest Selling Tesla Ever Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: automobiles , electric car , electric vehicle , elon musk , Green Automaker , Green Automobiles , green car , green cars , tesla , Tesla Model X , tesla model-s , zero-emissions

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Leanne Marshall Unveils Cool Glacial Couture at Fall/Winter 2012 New York Fashion Week

February 15, 2012 by  
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Leanne Marshall recently debuted her Fall/Winter 2012 collection at  New York Fashion Week and impressed us with her gorgeous pieces inspired by photos of bright white glaciers melting into blue water. The  Project Runway winner is still doing everything herself, which she proved to us by showing fingers stained the same colors as the gowns on display.  While the statement was meant to be fashionable and not political, Marshall was inspired by the effects of global climate change.   Click ahead to check out the looks! READ MORE > Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Climate Change , eco-fashion , Ethical Fashion , Fall/Winter 2012 , glaciers , global warming , green fashion , Leanne Marshall , new york fashion week , New York Green Fashion Week , Project Runway , Sustainable Fashion , sustainable style

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Leanne Marshall Unveils Cool Glacial Couture at Fall/Winter 2012 New York Fashion Week

Martine Camillieri Makes Toy Cars from Recycled Bottles!

October 1, 2011 by  
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Got an empty bottle of laundry detergent kicking around? When artist Martine Camillieri looks at it, he sees an ice cream truck. A bottle of motor oil? That looks sort of like a sports car. Camillieri specializes in transforming everyday objects into toys, and his latest creation is a series of plastic bottles that have been converted into different types of (adorable) automobiles. After creating a vehicle, Camillieri stages it so that the toy car can be viewed in its ‘natural’ habitat. Click through to see some of the others. MORE > Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Art , automobiles , cars , eco toys , Martine Camillieri , recycled produces , recycling , toys , upcycling

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Martine Camillieri Makes Toy Cars from Recycled Bottles!

Team China Fuses High & Low Tech With Their Y Container Solar Decathlon House

October 1, 2011 by  
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Read the rest of Team China Fuses High & Low Tech With Their Y Container Solar Decathlon House Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: ‘Container House , 2011 solar decathlon , china container house , eco house , green home , phase change walls , Solar array shading , solar decathlon Team China , solar hot water , Tonji University solar decathlon , Vacuum insulated panels , Y Container

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Team China Fuses High & Low Tech With Their Y Container Solar Decathlon House

Volkswagen’s Vision? Electric Commuter Car…For One

August 23, 2011 by  
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Volkswagen photos of the L1concept car – the EV version is likely to be similar. A variety of one-seater cars have rolled into the market over the decades, and pretty much rolled right out again. Volkswager has been showing one-seater concepts for nearly a decade, and will now debut an all-electric, “zero emissions” one-seater on September 8. “If you limit a car to one person, you can make it smaller with less weight. You need less energy to transport the person, and then … it can be better on CO2 and fuel efficiency.” – Jurgen Leohold, head of Volkswagen research, to

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Cheese 2011: International Cheese Show Spotlights Artisan Techniques and Slow Food Tradition (Slideshow)

August 23, 2011 by  
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Photo: Slow Food Since 1997, the biennial Slow Food expo Cheese has been bringing together lovers of formaggio for three days of classes, tastings, and debate. This year, Cheese 2011 will take over the streets of Bra (in Piedmont, Italy) from September 16-19 for a celebration of the rich, creamy food: From the artisans who prepare it using traditional techniques to the future of fromage, the event promises a savory look at the world of cheese production.

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Cheese 2011: International Cheese Show Spotlights Artisan Techniques and Slow Food Tradition (Slideshow)

Ask Pablo: Do $1 Coins Have A Smaller Footprint Than $1 Bills?

August 23, 2011 by  
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Image credit: US Mint , used under the United States Mint Circulating Coin Design Use Policy Dear Pablo: Do $1 Coins have a smaller footprint than $1 bills and what is the environmental impact of the $1 coins that the US Mint is supposedly stockpiling? On the one hand paper money is lighter and cheaper to make but, on the other hand, coins last a lot longer. Let’… Read the full story on TreeHugger

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Ask Pablo: Do $1 Coins Have A Smaller Footprint Than $1 Bills?

First Toyota Camry Hybrid Built in Australia Rolls Off Production Line

December 15, 2009 by  
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Image: Toyota Australia Friday last week saw the first mass produced hybrid vehicle built in Australia hit the road. It was a Toyota Camry. The plan is for Toyota’s plant in Melbourne, Victoria to churn out about 10,000 hybrids for the local Australian market (several hundred will also be exported to New Zealand), going on sale to the public in February 2010.

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