Environmental campaign floods UK Royal Mail with empty potato chip bags

September 28, 2018 by  
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The U.K. postal service has implored its public to stop mailing empty potato chip bags addressed without an envelope after a surge in chip bag mailings was encountered by its courier offices. The mailings are part of an environmental campaign urging the most popular brand of British crisps, Walkers, to reevaluate its plastic packaging. Walkers, owned by PepsiCo, is being met with a petition signed by more than 310,000 people and an online campaign that is sending unknown numbers of empty bags right to the company’s doorstep. Twitter is buzzing about the environmental activists , who have been posting pictures of themselves mailing the empty packets of chips through the Royal Mail service. The rebels are using the hashtag #PacketInWalkers to comment on the company’s latent efforts to revamp its packaging. An emailed statement from a Walkers spokesperson, released by CNN , stated, “We have received some returned packets and recognize the efforts being made to bring the issue of packaging waste to our attention. The returned packets will be used in our research, as we work towards our commitment of improving the recyclability of our packaging.” The company has announced that it plans to achieve plastic-free packaging by 2025. . @walkers_crisps 2025 is too long to wait for you to use plastic free packaging. It’s just not good enough. You produce 4 billion packs per year. I’m sending these back to you so you can deal with your own waste. #PacketInWalkers pic.twitter.com/S13uiZXpdx — Jarred Livesey (@Jaz_Livesey) September 22, 2018 For many campaign participants, such as Jarred Livesey, the commitments are vague and inadequate. “2025 is too long to wait for you to use plastic free packaging. It’s just not good enough,” he commented on Twitter last week. Despite PepsiCo working on a pilot project in the U.S., India and Chile that features compostable packaging , consumers are adamant about stopping the polluters as soon as possible. Related: UK’s Co-op to ditch single-use plastic bags for biodegradable bags Lisa Ann Pasquale went a step further in her Twitter commentary, suggesting, “What if — instead of buying crisps and posting the packages back to @walkers_crisps — we just save our planet AND cholesterol levels by not buying crisps… .” Pasquale makes a sound argument, considering the 11 million bags of potato chips Walkers produces daily in order to keep up supply for its spud-loving consumers, who consume approximately 6 billion packs of chips a year. The Royal Mail service is caught in the cross-hairs of this environmental argument. Bound by U.K. law to treat the empty potato chip bags as mail as long as they are properly addressed, there is not much else the national communications carrier can do. “If an item is addressed properly and carries the correct postage, then Royal Mail is obliged by law to handle and deliver the item to the stated address,” a Royal Mail spokesperson told CNN. “If they are taking part in this campaign, we would urge them to put crisp packets in an envelope before posting,” because improperly packaged bags could cause delays or be tossed from the sorting sequence. Via CNN Image via Allen Watkin

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Environmental campaign floods UK Royal Mail with empty potato chip bags

This eco-friendly wooden laptop is designed to curb e-waste

September 28, 2018 by  
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The innovators at iameco (“I Am Eco”) have created a new sustainable laptop to accompany their lineup of eco-friendly tech, including a desktop model and computer accessories. The Dublin group took a look at computers on the market and became frustrated with the e-waste , the earth-damaging materials and the toxic chemicals used in mainstream technology. So, the team decided to do something about it by first creating an eco-friendly, touchscreen PC and then a new wooden laptop with the same environmental principles as their original product. The sustainability of iameco products starts with the design, which focuses on longevity. The company claims that its computers run about three times longer than other products on the market. With systems that last up to 10 years, this green technology creates quite a reduction in the stream of e-waste. We know what you might be thinking — the world of technology moves too fast for any computer to be useful for 10 years. Well, iameco has that covered, too. The engineers created a modular design, meaning that individual components of the laptops can be updated as they wear out or upgrades become available. Related: Wooden-framed “iameco” computer reduces environmental impacts In addition to making interchangeable parts to reduce waste, the company also eliminated the toxic chemicals used in common manufacturing, such as lead, cadmium, mercury, PVCs and brominated flame retardants. That means a healthier user as well as a healthier planet. Plus, the laptops use one-third less energy than other models available and have ditched the petroleum-based plastics found in standard computers. Instead, the team uses natural ash, maple and beech harvested from sustainable forests for the laptops’ construction. The d4r laptop model cuts 75 percent off the required water consumption during production and achieves a 70 percent reuse and recycling rate. Meanwhile, the company’s v.3 touchscreen computer is the first to ever receive the EU Eco Flower certification, which enforces stringent environmental standards. The company didn’t stop with computers — iameco also designs durable accessories, like keyboards and computer mice, made out of sustainable wood. In an industry with few accolades in the earth-friendly category, iameco comes out a clear winner for smart design, durability, interchangeability and e-waste reduction. + iameco Images via iameco

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This eco-friendly wooden laptop is designed to curb e-waste

Valuable wetlands are disappearing 3 times faster than forests, new study warns

September 28, 2018 by  
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Wetlands around the world are disappearing at an alarming rate. New research shows that these valuable ecosystems are vanishing at a rate three times that of forests . Unless significant changes are made, the disappearance of wetlands could cause severe damage around the globe. The Global Wetland Outlook , which was completed by the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands, found that more than a third of the wetlands on Earth have disappeared over a 45-year period. The pace that wetlands are vanishing jumped significantly after the year 2000, and regions all over the planet were impacted equally. Unfortunately, there is a handful of reasons why wetlands are diminishing around the world. This includes climate change , urbanization, human population growth and variable consumption patterns, all of which have contributed to the way land is used. Related: Natural wetland in India filters 198 million gallons of wastewater a day with zero chemicals There are several different types of wetlands found on Earth, including marshes, lakes, peatlands and rivers. Lagoons, coral reefs , mangroves and estuaries also fall into the wetland category. In total, wetlands take up more than 12.1 million square kilometers, an area larger than Greenland. Wetlands are crucial, because they provide almost all of the world’s access to freshwater — something that is key to survival. Humans also use wetlands for hydropower and medicines. From an environmental perspective, wetlands help retain carbon and regulate global warming . They also serve as the ecosystems for 40 percent of living species on Earth, providing food, water, breeding spaces and raw materials for these animals to live. If the wetlands keep vanishing at the current rate, many species will go as well. “The Global Wetland Outlook is a wake-up call — not only on the steep rate of loss of the world’s wetlands but also on the critical services they provide. Without them, the global agenda on sustainable development will not be achieved,” said Martha Rojas Urrego, Secretary General of the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands. “We need urgent collective action to reverse trends on wetland loss and degradation and secure both the future of wetlands and our own survival at the same time.” With wetlands in danger of disappearing, the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands has pledged to make saving these regions a top priority. The parties involved with the group have targeted 2,300 sites for protection and hope to expand that to include more wetlands around the globe. + Ramsar Convention on Wetlands Image via Jeanethe Falvey / EPA

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Valuable wetlands are disappearing 3 times faster than forests, new study warns

Wrap Holiday Gifts in Upcycled Potato Chip Bags

December 19, 2013 by  
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Potato chips bags are good for a lot more than holding potato chips, as this DIY project demonstrates.

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Wrap Holiday Gifts in Upcycled Potato Chip Bags

5 Easy-to-Grow Container Plants for Winter

December 19, 2013 by  
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Many of your favorite fruits and veggies can easily be grown indoors in containers during the cooler months — providing nutritious and footprint-free food all winter.

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5 Easy-to-Grow Container Plants for Winter

How can I reuse or recycle Stax potato chip cans?

July 15, 2011 by  
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Tammy Gary has asked: Would love ideas to reuse the Stax potato chip cans. We don’t have Stax over here in the UK but my friend Google tells me they’re like Pringles, but packed in a plastic tube instead of waxed cardboard. Some of the Pringles ideas will still apply: they’re great for storing knitting needles and paintbrushes, can be used as storage for homemade biscuits, and is useful as a small poster tube – for either storing documents without creasing or sending through the post. As these bad buys are plastic (rather than card) so water-resistant, they will lend themselves to other reuses too – I’d imagine they could easily be turned into a bird feeder (cut a couple of feeding windows about a third/half of the way up, add a perch at the bottom then fill with seed), could be used for storing dried goods in the kitchen or as storage for small kids’ toys (eg lego or jigsaw pieces) or crayons. Any other suggestions?

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How can I reuse or recycle Stax potato chip cans?

SunChips’ Green Packaging Comes Under Fire for Creating a Racket

August 18, 2010 by  
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Laura Scudders, a brand born during the Depression Era, used to claim its potato chips were the "noisiest chips in the world." These days, to hear some consumers tell it, SunChips are breaking the sound barrier with new packaging that is eco-friendly but creates a din when handled.

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SunChips’ Green Packaging Comes Under Fire for Creating a Racket

Clean Batteries and Dirty Coal: Your Tax Dollars at Work

August 18, 2010 by  
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The Recovery Act is spending big money in surprising places, including cleantech startups that have yet to find a market and a company that makes mining equipment for coal-fired power plants.

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Clean Batteries and Dirty Coal: Your Tax Dollars at Work

Do Potato Chips Have a Larger Carbon Footprint Than Cement?

April 10, 2010 by  
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A recent report from the Carbon Trust notes that there are ” more carbon emissions from crisps (potato chips) than cement .” Although it may be a surprising bit of news at first, it conceals the greater issue of scale. Undoubtedly though, someone is certain to rail against potato chips and argue that we don’t need to worry about cement production when snack foods are the bigger problem. While the Carbon Trust’s statement is factually correct from one perspective, as the famous saying goes, there are ” Lies, damned lies, and statistics “, so let’s talk about numbers a bit.

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Do Potato Chips Have a Larger Carbon Footprint Than Cement?

Amtrak On Course To Set Ridership Record This Year

April 8, 2010 by  
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Amtrak is on course to break its annual ridership record this year.  By the halfway point (their fiscal year starts in October), 13.6 million passengers have traveled on the rail system. Ridership for March 2010 was up 13.5 percent from March 2009 on its popular Acela line and five short-haul routes had double digit increases in the past six months too.  All this bodes well for the rail system’s request to Congress for a $446 million budget increase that would go towards upgrading to more fuel-efficient trains, possibly including GE’s diesel-electric rail cars.

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Amtrak On Course To Set Ridership Record This Year

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