The world’s first self-sustained floating lounge, Aqua Pods

September 28, 2021 by  
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Aqua Pods, designed by Emirati-owned Aquatic Architects Design Studio (AADS) and produced by Innovative Marine Ventures (IMV), are the world’s first self-sustained multi-purpose floating lounge. The Aqua Pod AP EX1 model comes with a marine e-commerce application to provide consumers with personalized experiences and services. The pods can be used for leisure, entertainment, aquatic sports, tourism and retail off the coast and along the Dubai Water Canal shoreline. The AP EX1 model was designed to align with UAE’s Vision 2021, a multi-faceted initiative to improve the country. It aims to shift from oil as the nation’s primary income, to other means that are more efficient and eco-friendly. Related: Kiribati Floating Houses address rising waters and land limitations One of the six core components of the program is healthy environment and sustainable infrastructure . Aqua Pods aim to contribute to this venture, while taking a consumer-centric approach and exploring the concept of aquatic architecture. The sleek, floating modules are fully solar-powered to utilize the abundant desert sun, thus reducing greenhouse emissions. Additionally, to obtain fresh water, the pods contain a reverse osmosis water purification system to desalinate up to 100 liters of water daily without disposing the brine back into the sea. This is an optimal alternative to typical desalination systems in the Middle East that dump brine consisting of high concentrations of salt and chemical residues back in the ocean that threatens marine life, particularly when the dense solution sinks to the ocean floor Thanks to the multifunctional nature of the Aqua Pod, it is benefits the economy . It can be used for a multitude of activities and serve various industries to bridge on- and off-shore services. The design team has been insistent on creating an integrated commercial marine ecosystem to pioneer the future of floating retail, tourism, leisure and logistics. The floating developments can offer personalized experiences for events, water sports and tourism within the traditional and modern waterways of Dubai . The self-sustained AP EX1s can also be adapted to provide medical ambulatory services or deliveries along the canal, serve as recharge stations for marine vehicles and house cultivation systems such as hydroponics . In fact, the 45 sqm Aqua Pod EX1 model can even be expanded by 25 percent to suit the needs of the customers. AADS and IMV explore floating structures as a means of adapting to rising sea levels and climate change. The AADS team hopes that their projects will spark conversations on the necessity of urban floating developments in coastal regions and to prepare for the inevitable increase in water levels and diminishing coastline . Not only will this approach create resilient cities, but will support progressive, flexible economies around the world. + AADS Images via AADS

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The world’s first self-sustained floating lounge, Aqua Pods

This luxury yacht runs on 100% renewable energy

July 2, 2021 by  
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For those who enjoy yachting, there’s nothing better than long stretches of propulsion across the water while you take in the sea and scenery. Except perhaps if you get to experience the newest Sunreef 80 Eco, an electric luxury ride that’s silent and sustainable. Sunreef Yachts developed a thin, highly efficient solar cell system that mounts completely flush to all surfaces of the boat, including masts, hull sides and bimini tops. The expected capacity of the system is 34 kWp energy, which is stored in ultralight lithium batteries until needed. Related: Isaac Burrough unveils solar-powered luxury yacht concept “We reinvented solar panels for yachts . Our team has challenged the status quo in marine photovoltaic technology, making solar panels an integral part of the Sunreef Yachts Eco design. This is something unique in the whole yachting world,” said Francis Lapp, founder and president of Sunreef Yachts. In addition to the solar panels, the yacht also produces energy through wind turbines , which seems like a natural addition as wind is a natural byproduct of moving through the water. Below the surface, the boat creates additional energy through hydropower from propeller rotations capable of generating over 15 kWh at about seven knots. All of these systems work together to provide quiet sailing with no range limitations because the energy to run both the propulsion and appliances of the Sunreef 80 Eco is renewable during travel. The processes also produce enough energy to power the water toys and the tender. Systems such as air conditioning, water makers and kitchen appliances that require power are designed to be energy-efficient .   The Sunreef 80 Eco is equipped with two electric motors that produce no pollution , fumes or vibrations, regardless of the trip distance. In addition to providing an environmentally guilt-free ride as one of the most energy-efficient luxury yachts on the planet, the boat is completely customizable with endless interior and feature options. Sunreef Yachts takes its commitment to the planet seriously with interior furnishings and hard finishes that meet stringent sustainability standards. The company expects a full release of Sunreef 80 Eco this summer.  + Sunreef Yachts Via Yanko Design Images via Sunreef Yachts

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This luxury yacht runs on 100% renewable energy

Eco Method Interiors marries environmental science and design

July 2, 2021 by  
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Traditional construction, home improvement and interior design are fraught with  waste , chemicals and carbon release. But they don’t have to be. Erica Reiner, an eco-friendly interior designer in Los Angeles and founder of Eco Method Interiors, has built her business around creating beautiful, welcoming spaces that are healthy for people and the planet. Reiner brings an interesting background to the profession, with educational and practical experience in interior decorating as well as a degree in environmental science and a Master’s of Marine Science and Management. At first, Reiner says she kept the two practices separate until she found a focus on the  environment  and the indoors could go hand in hand. Related: WELL-designed home eliminates toxins from interior textiles Reiner told Inhabitat, “I studied, worked, and lectured all in the environmental field prior to this business. I did a decorating certificate for fun between environmental degrees before realizing I could start a business. At first, I offered sustainability consulting and design separately while building my portfolio, before realizing how dirty the industry was, and realizing that I could marry the two pieces of my identity and passions together in one business.” Now well established in L.A. and across the country, Reiner provides virtual consulting, event decorating and full-service  interior design  with a specialty in removing toxic cleaning supplies and finding sustainable, eco-friendly furniture and textile options. She also hosts a popular podcast called “Green By Design,” which focuses on ways clients and design professionals can create sustainable design.  Although Reiner has worked in the business for several years, she shared her excitement over the increasing awareness of and interest in environmentally-friendly products. “In [the past] 5-7 years there’s been a huge increase in overall awareness, self-education and concern. For reference, in 2006 when I finished my prerequisites and chose my major in environmental studies for undergrad, most of the population I came across didn’t even understand what that meant,” she said. For Reiner, projects naturally come together after seeing the space and talking with the clients. She vets vendors for greenwashing saying, “We do everything from reading their website, emailing them for clarity, asking for their certification documentation or anything I feel we need for clarity. I don’t have a simple process for detecting greenwashing. It’s often just a little alarm that goes off in the way the product or material is described. Often legit companies who are proud of their efforts go into detail and have clear information accessible. Some companies, even if they don’t promote their practices, once asked can provide clear information. Companies that greenwash often use language to try to sound good, but with my background in ES academia I know it doesn’t make sense.” Reiner’s current project is a complete 9,000-square-foot house in Brentwood for a Hollywood family concerned about toxicities in the home. With this in mind, Reiner and the owners have relied on green manufacturing to custom-build sofas, beds, rugs and even wallpaper.  Her portfolio is varied, with large and small projects, residential and commercial spaces, and geographically dispersed locations. A few are highlighted below. Office and clubhouse in San Antonio, TX This project incorporated  recycled  paper countertops, furniture and art pieces made from reclaimed wood, non-toxic wallpaper, recycled PET area rugs and pre-loved books and accessories. Master bedroom and entryway in West Los Angeles, CA  To make the space cozy and environmentally friendly, Reiner included striking tables made from recycled  wood  beams. She also created a statement wall with FSC wallpaper free of toxins and made using low-impact dye. The rooms are accented with artwork, rugs, bedding and baskets made from natural fibers and organic materials. It also features vegetable-tanned leather chairs, recycled glass vases and  energy-efficient  lighting. Nursery in Manhattan Beach, CA This small, 168-square-foot nursery creates a big visual impact but a small environmental footprint with the use of organic bedding and a GOTS-certified area rug. The client chose to forgo the chemical-laden fire retardant in the nursing chairs and had a crib custom built to ensure it was made with FSC wood and low-toxin adhesives and finishes. Playroom, Los Angeles, CA Kids need space to play. While these clients wanted to look out for the health of children in the space, they also wanted to pay attention to the health of the planet by avoiding waste and upcycling where possible. To this end, they selected non-toxic throw pillow inserts, an upcycled cotton scrap area rug and a pre-owned, vintage coffee table. The space is also adorned with VOC-free paint and 100% linen curtains. Apartment, Austin, TX Recycled materials, especially those from the local area, give this apartment high ratings for low impact. To accomplish this, Reiner included pre-loved furniture and pieces with GreenGuard Certification. The space also features pillows and a rug made from recycled plastic and a wall specifically for locally sourced art. While Eco Method Interiors can help you sustainably makeover your space, Reiner mentions that there are fewer barriers than ever in creating a space you love without hurting the environment. She recommends researching online, reading books on sustainable interior design , of course listening to her podcast, and perhaps setting up an online e-design session to see how she can help. + Eco Method Interiors Images via Eco Method Interiors

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Eco Method Interiors marries environmental science and design

Verdi creates home dcor from natural fibers and metal

July 1, 2021 by  
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Interior design is a culmination of many things, not the least of which is culture. Mix in the desire for sustainable, fair-trade textiles and other decorations that are made from non-toxic materials and you’ll find a Colombian company called Verdi, rich in history yet innovative in design. Verdi began in 1995 when Carlos Vera Dieppa began exploring techniques to make unique rugs and later developed his own looms. Following his death, his son and daughter took the torch and launched Verdi in his name (VERa DIeppa). The company now specializes in fique and metal rugs, organic silk cushions, plantain-fiber and copper-thread curtains, textiles, tableware and silver-plated handbags among other handwoven items. Related: Cariloha luxury textiles use organic, sustainable bamboo The newest release is called AES, which is Latin for rough bronze, and once again highlights the company’s passion for interweaving natural fibers with lineal metal. This rug collection is made up of ethically sourced alpaca fleece, plantain fibers and solid bronze plates. The resulting designs are not only original and handmade but also represent sustainable manufacturing. To avoid toxic dyes that pose a danger to workers and the environment, Verdi developed its own eco-friendly options. The company is dedicated to harvesting fibers in a sustainable way by only removing external leaves of the plants during the collection of fique fiber. Fiber and textile waste are looped back into the system as part of new pieces, as samples or as decorations in the office. Verdi also eliminates pattern waste by reusing acrylic patterns. The company is built on three pillars of home, fashion and art, yet all products are made with the environment in mind. Verdi relies on natural materials at the core of each design and acts sustainably in its fair-trade manufacturing with 30 skilled artisans that represent generations of inherited craftsmanship. In addition, the company sources its main fibers close to home, supporting at least 19 farming families in the process. Verdi is involved in at least a half-dozen social and environmental initiatives. + Verdi Images via Verdi

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Verdi creates home dcor from natural fibers and metal

Amazon deforestation threatens harpy eagles

July 1, 2021 by  
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A new study published in the journal  Scientific Reports has found that young harpy eagles are dying in the Amazon due to deforestation. The harpy eagle, one of the world’s largest eagles, has almost “zero” chances of surviving if Amazon deforestation continues. The study has established that harpy eagles are dying of starvation in areas where significant deforestation has occurred. The Amazon is the last remaining hope for the survival of harpy eagles, with almost 90% of the birds currently residing there. The study warns that the geographical range of the eagle is continuously being limited by continued deforestation. Related: Monarch butterfly population declines due to climate change and logging Professor Carlos Peres of the University of East Anglia, U.K. and co-author of the study said, “Considering that harpy eagles have the lowest life cycle of all bird species , their chances of adapting to highly deforested landscapes are nearly zero.” The adult harpy eagle females grow to 10 kilograms, making them one of the largest raptors in the world. They are native to the tropical forests of Central America to northern Argentina. Unfortunately, due to human interference and widespread deforestation, the eagles have disappeared from large parts of their native range. Currently, the biggest threat to the survival of the birds is deforestation . However, other factors, such as hunting, are also threatening their existence. In some countries, including Brazil, Panama and Suriname, the harpy eagle has legal protections. Unfortunately, enforcement of the laws in these regions has remained a big challenge. The study was led by Everton Miranda of the University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. In their study, the researchers monitored 16 nests in the Brazilian Amazon using cameras. They found that eagles in the region mainly feast on two-toed sloths, brown capuchin monkeys and grey woolly monkeys. From bone fragments observed around nesting areas, the researchers established that the eagles could not find alternative food where there was deforestation. The most alarming observation was that in areas with 50% to 70% deforestation, at least three eagles died from starvation over the period of the study. In areas with deforestation over 70%, there were no nests to be found. Via BBC Image via cyrusbulsara

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Paddling towards sustainability with the spirit of Aloha

September 13, 2017 by  
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Pono Shim, leader of nonprofit economic development organization PBR Hawaii and one of Hawaii’s most gifted storytellers and business influencers, talks about the importance of pulling together to achieve the goal of a sustainable society. Throughout the VERGE Hawaii conference where Shim spoke, there was a theme of all paddling forward in the same canoe. But if everyone jumps headfirst into the same canoe, he said, the boat will capsize. 

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Paddling towards sustainability with the spirit of Aloha

Solar-powered yacht sails silently for a cleaner, greener eco-tourism experience

September 7, 2016 by  
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Dutch marine designers Soel Yachts has created a solar-powered motor boat intended to boost eco-tourism , and it will debut later this year. The SoelCat 12 is a 39-foot catamaran built from lightweight, resilient materials. The boat can reportedly travel up to six knots in complete silence when powered exclusively by its massive onboard solar array, which should make for some pretty smooth sailing, so to speak. The double-hulled boat vaguely resembles a pontoon boat , with a large, wide awning covering the deck. That covering sports 809 solar panels, which generate clean energy to power the boat’s silent motor. Additionally, there are two 30kW battery-powered motors onboard, which can boost the boat’s speed up to 15 knots when engaged. Related: World’s largest solar-powered boat unveiled Soel Yachts says the boat will be composed of lightweight materials especially chosen for their resilience against salty seawater . In keeping with the latest trend in manufacturing, the boat is designed to be manufactured as flat-pack components, making it possible to fit all its pieces into two 40-foot-high cube containers for easy shipping. The SoelCat 12 was developed primarily for use as a sightseeing vessel, and it will reportedly be able to connect to waterfront homes or resorts to contribute to their clean energy stores when not in use. “The SoelCat 12 was developed for the fast growing ecotourism market,” said Joep Koster, designer and naval architect at Soel Yachts. “It is great to see a lot of green initiatives at resorts these days, however, water bound transport always seems to be neglected.” Koster says his company’s creation offers “a 100-percent sustainable alternative to conventionally powered boats used in the industry so far” and could make a huge impact on the tourist experience, given the absence of noise and engine exhaust. When the SoelCat 12 is released later this year, it will cost a mere $562,000 (£420,000). Via DailyMail Images via Soel Yachts

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Solar-powered yacht sails silently for a cleaner, greener eco-tourism experience

Amazing floating sauna lets you heat up and then cool off in Seattle’s Lake Union

April 1, 2016 by  
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goCstudio has taken the Scandinavian tradition of recharging in a sauna to an amazing new level in Seattle. The wa_sauna is a floating building on Lake Union that offers a heated respite followed by an invigorating plunge into cool waters. Read the rest of Amazing floating sauna lets you heat up and then cool off in Seattle’s Lake Union

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Amazing floating sauna lets you heat up and then cool off in Seattle’s Lake Union

Invisible canoe offers full view of the world under the sea

December 31, 2014 by  
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Move over, glass-bottom boats: this canoe/kayak hybrid is entirely transparent. You might feel like Wonder Woman cruising in her invisible jet as you glide through the waters with a full view of everything beneath the surface. The canoe is made from the same material used for the cockpits of fighter jets, can support up to 425lbs, and displaces a greater amount of water for more surface stability and better balance. These things are really important when your vessel is transparent, as it might be more difficult to find your canoe should you manage to capsize it. The included paddles, however, are not transparent. This amazing watercraft can be yours for the cool price of $25,000. + Hammacher Schlemmer Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: boat , canoe , clear , fun , gifts , Kayak , ocean , recreation , river , see-through , transparent , unique products , watercraft

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Invisible canoe offers full view of the world under the sea

Solar-Powered 2013 Shed of the Year is Topped With an Old Fishing Boat

July 8, 2013 by  
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Read the rest of Solar-Powered 2013 Shed of the Year is Topped With an Old Fishing Boat Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Architecture , boat , boat roof , Boat Roofed Shed , LED lights , Recycled Materials , Shed of the Year , solar panel , tiny homes , Wales        

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Solar-Powered 2013 Shed of the Year is Topped With an Old Fishing Boat

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