Designers recycle aluminum production waste into functional ceramic decor

March 25, 2019 by  
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The red clay ceramics produced by the design team at Royal College of Art and Imperial College London may look like the creation of any standard potter. However, these are not your everyday bowls and teapots. In fact, they are the result of a process that uses a by-product from aluminum production that transforms the so-called red mud into a raw material suitable for making kitchen wares. Bauxite residue is a by-product from the refining of alumina, which is a precursor to the process we know as aluminum production. It is not an insignificant by-product either. In fact the process creates bauxite residue at twice the rate of the amount of aluminum produced from it. Around the world, the watery red material is left behind in huge pools of abandoned waste so the team of scientists and designers decided to find a way to make use of it. Designers Guillermo Whittembury, Joris Olde-Rikkert, Kevin Rouff, and Luis Paco Bockelmann were excited to dive into the potential of the otherwise neglected by-product, hoping they could find practical applications for it. To discover the potential of the discarded substance, the team paired up with material experts from Imperial College London and KU Leuven, scored some red mud from one of the oldest alumina production facility on the planet, and headed into R&D. Through hundreds of tests and experiments they discovered a versatile ceramic as well as an alternative concrete. The R.E.D. (residue enabled design) project, also known as From Wasteland to Living Room, resulted in a vast array of cups, saucers, teapots, bowls, vases and a myriad of other design pieces. Related: This British café is serving to-go coffee in ceramic mugs to combat waste They also found that the fired color in the finished product produced a range of colors from a standard terracotta to a deep burgundy. To bring out more variety, the team used metal oxides from the residue to make glazes in a range of colors too. “The designers aim to make people at once aware of the impact of materials taken for granted, like aluminium, and to hint to the potential of their byproducts. “We want people to see that Red Mud isn’t a ‘waste’, that industry is keen to find uses for it, and that using it is possible,” states Kevin. This project is a small step towards what they believe as a more sustainable future in which “wastes” will be considered as valuable assets, and they hope it stimulates more uses of the material. + R.E.D. Via Dezeen Images via R.E.D.

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Designers recycle aluminum production waste into functional ceramic decor

The Green New Deal: From resolution to reality

March 12, 2019 by  
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Appropriately defined and implemented, it has the potential to be a powerful vision for society, one that yields both short- and longer-term benefits that are tangible to voters.

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The Green New Deal: From resolution to reality

Here’s the 101: How to create transit-oriented communities in Los Angeles

March 12, 2019 by  
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Reframing the land use and transportation debate, L.A. is trying to make mobility about its people.

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Here’s the 101: How to create transit-oriented communities in Los Angeles

Why Columbus is shifting mobility patterns to lower greenhouse gas emissions

March 12, 2019 by  
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Incentivizing EV adoption with partnerships, better planning and more.

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Why Columbus is shifting mobility patterns to lower greenhouse gas emissions

Is your sustainability team thinking enough about human rights?

November 12, 2018 by  
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By overlooking socioeconomic factors, we limit the potential for transformation.

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Is your sustainability team thinking enough about human rights?

Lyle Jack from the Oglala Sioux Tribe on creating a new wind project and power authority

November 5, 2018 by  
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The six Sioux tribes from South Dakota had come up with a great idea — to develop a wind energy farm on the Native American reservations across the Great Plains, which already had the potential. But they continued to run into barriers from possible partners, who wanted majority control (and profit) from the project. The tribes refused. 

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Lyle Jack from the Oglala Sioux Tribe on creating a new wind project and power authority

Electrifying fleets — accelerating an EV revolution

November 5, 2018 by  
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Commercial and industrial vehicle fleets — from delivery vans to garbage trucks to transit buses — are  beginning to electrify. This segment could go electric more rapidly than passenger vehicles, thanks to incentives and mandates, potential fuel savings and corporate sustainability goals. In this session you’ll hear from some of the world’s leaders — UPS, Walmart and BYD — that are buying and selling the latest electric fleet vehicles. 

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Electrifying fleets — accelerating an EV revolution

What would a carbon tax look like for Hawaii?

August 6, 2018 by  
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The best of live interviews from GreenBiz events. This episode: Energy leaders and policy makers discuss the potential of a carbon tax.

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What would a carbon tax look like for Hawaii?

6 actions that businesses can take across the plastics value chain

August 6, 2018 by  
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What can your business do to solve the plastic waste puzzle?

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6 actions that businesses can take across the plastics value chain

UK’s first energy positive classroom produces 1.5x the energy it uses

June 29, 2018 by  
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After one year in operation, the numbers are in: the United Kingdom ‘s first energy-positive classroom is capable of producing 1.5 times the amount of energy it needs to operate. Known as the Active Classroom, the energy-producing classroom stands as a shining example of what is possible as the U.K. and other nations attempt to transform their energy systems in response to climate change. The building was designed by experts at SPECIFIC, a U.K. Innovation and Knowledge Center led by Swansea University, whose “research focuses on developing solar technologies and the processing techniques that take them from the lab to full-scale buildings,” according to its research director Dave Worsley . Currently, 40 percent of British energy is consumed by buildings. The Active Classroom incorporates several different technologies and design features to achieve its net positive energy status. The roof is curved and lined with laminated photovoltaic panels , while a thermal photovoltaic system is installed on the southern facing wall of the building, capable of producing heat and energy from its sun -exposed location. To store this energy, the classroom harnesses lithium ion batteries and a 2,000 liter water tank specifically for storing solar heat. Related: Magical new classroom reconnects children with nature in the UK The Active Classroom stands next to the Active Office, a similar structure built by SPECIFIC. “The Active Office and Classroom will be linked together and able to share energy with each other and electric vehicles , demonstrating how the concept could be applied in an energy-resilient solar-powered community,” Worsley said. These buildings are designed to be simple and quick to assemble, taking only about a week to set up. “It’s difficult to overstate the potential of developing a building that powers itself,” explained Innovate U.K. executive chair Ian Campbell . “The concept could genuinely revolutionize not only the construction sector but completely change how we create and use energy.” + SPECIFIC Via ScienceDaily Images via SPECIFIC

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UK’s first energy positive classroom produces 1.5x the energy it uses

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