Archstorming announces winning proposals for a school made of recycled plastic in Mexico

October 11, 2019 by  
Filed under Eco, Green, Recycle

Architectural competitions platform Archstorming recently presented the winners of its “Tulum Plastic School” competition that sought proposals for a school built of plastic for the NGO’s MOM I’M FINE Project and Los Amigos de la Esquina in Tulum, Mexico. From 230 submissions, an international jury selected three winning projects that draw attention to the problem of plastic waste in Mexico and found imaginative ways to reuse common plastic objects. First prize was awarded to Daniel Garcia and William Smith from Harvard University. The duo used the international plastic pallet as the building block for their proposed school . Instead of melting down plastic and reforming the material, the designers took advantage of the stability of pallets to create the school’s exterior walls and its very steep roof. The transparent, recyclable and corrugated plastic facade not only allows light into the school, but it also protects the school from the elements and can glow like a beacon when illuminated at night. Related: Passive solar school in Indonesia celebrates the natural landscape Malaysian designer David Nee Zhi Kang was awarded second place for his proposal of a school scaled and designed for children. The multifunctional school could also be opened up for community use. Rather than use processed plastic materials, the conceptual building is constructed from common plastic waste materials, such as recycled plastic bottles, and assembled with simple tools without the need of heavy machinery. The vision is for a building that can inspire the residents of Tulum to adopt similar recycling and building practices. In third place, Argentinian designers Iván Elías Barczuk, Matías Raúl Falero, Agustín Flamig and Adrián Eduardo Mendez proposed a modular design to reduce waste and for quick assembly with non-specialized labor. Each modular panel would be built from recycled, shredded-plastic liners and reconstituted wood. To further reduce the environmental footprint, the school can be equipped with vertical gardens, a rainwater collection system and photovoltaic panels. “The result of this contest shows that there are new, very attractive ways of designing a school using recycled plastic and that it is possible to introduce this material into architecture,” Archstorming said. + Tulum Plastic School Images via Archstorming

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Archstorming announces winning proposals for a school made of recycled plastic in Mexico

When in Rome, recycle more to earn free metro and bus travel tickets

October 10, 2019 by  
Filed under Eco, Green, Recycle

Rome’s Mayor Virginia Raggi recently unveiled an eco-friendly pilot initiative that is gaining popularity in the Eternal City. Called “Ricicli + Viaggi” (or the “Recycle + Travel” program), consumers who recycle empty plastic bottles earn credits toward free public transportation travel tickets. How does it work? Commuters who recycle empty plastic bottles via a designated compactor will then earn accrued credit-points, redeemable as free digital travel tickets. For a standard ticket, one must recycle 30 empty plastic bottles. That same standard ticket, which is good for one metro ride or 100 minutes on a Roman bus, costs about 1.50 euros. Related: Indonesia accepts plastic bottles in exchange for free bus rides The environmentally friendly campaign is widely appealing for good reasons. Empty plastic bottles no longer have to accumulate on Roman streets, and the travel tickets awarded are digital rather than paper. In other words, litter is minimized. Many Romans approve of this new way to save cash, and it couldn’t come at a more critical time. A 2017 study, conducted by consultancy group Expert Market, found that Italy ranked fourth among The Most Wasteful European Countries. The Eternal City has gained notoriety for its dysfunctional waste management. With only three major landfills — one that shut down in 2013 and the other two ravaged by frequent fires — Rome has since been spiraling into decline with refuse spewing all over the streets after years of neglect. Both tourists and residents have long complained about the garbage littering ancient monuments, the burgeoning vermin infestations and the lack of sanitation strategy as successive mayors from different parties have struggled unsuccessfully to resolve the Italian capital’s waste crisis. Prior to the trash-for-tickets program, recycling was patchy and very inefficient. “The situation has been quite disastrous,” president of environmental group Legambiente Stefano Ciafani said. “Rome has failed to create an efficient system for differentiated waste collection, as Milan has done, and it has not built the recycling plants that are fundamental for a city where three million people live.” But there has been a ray of hope ever since Raggi entered office in 2016 as the first female mayor in Roman history. While Raggi has had a stormy start battling deeply entrenched ways, this new pilot initiative of swapping plastic for transit credits is a step in a more positive, eco-friendly direction. Of course, with Ricicli + Viaggi still in its infancy, there are at present only three public transportation metro stations in Rome offering the recycling compactor machines. Despite that, more than 350,000 bottles have been recycled so far, and it is hoped the numbers will continue to rise. Raggi happily shared, “We are the first major European capital to present this innovation.” The Eternal City’s roll-out follows at the heels of similar programs already in place in both Beijing and Istanbul. + Ricicli + Viaggi Via BBC and Phys.org Image via Juan Enrique Gilardi

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When in Rome, recycle more to earn free metro and bus travel tickets

This 1973 Airstream could be yours for $68,900

October 10, 2019 by  
Filed under Eco, Green

A clean, modern design. Plentiful storage. An abundance of natural light. What more could you want in a tiny home on wheels? Renovated by DIY experts Nate and Taylor, from Augustine Along the Way, this 1973 Airstream has a new life as Mattox . Mattox is a 25-foot Airstream trailer with a gorgeous interior design featuring bamboo hardwood floors and plenty of plants. The ambitious duo put a ton of work into renovating the old Airstream , and now, the shiny little home can be yours for just $68,900. Inside and out, Mattox is a beautiful example of a DIY Airstream renovation. Starting with the trailer’s signature aluminum exterior, Taylor and Nate polished its formerly dull facade into a gleaming, mirrored finish. The Airstream even comes with a retractable rolling awning that provides a shaded, open-air place to dine or simply enjoy the fresh air just outside the front door. Related: A dull, 26-year-old Airstream becomes a bright, cozy home on wheels Although Mattox’s gleaming exterior is impressive, its interior design is what shines the brightest. The compact living space feels bright and open thanks to an abundance of windows and a fresh coat of white paint on the walls and ceiling. Contrasting nicely with the all-white background, beautiful and ultra-durable bamboo hardwood floors with eucalyptus backing run the length of the interior. Just across the front door, the kitchen sits at the middle of the Airstream. The kitchen includes everything one would need to create culinary masterpieces, including a two-burner stove and a new refrigerator. The Zellige tile backsplash adds an earthy touch. Facing the kitchen and beside the entrance is the lounge area, which comes complete with a custom, built-in couch with storage underneath. In fact, most of the furniture in the Airstream was custom-made to use every inch of space strategically . This includes the two-person, drop-down walnut dining table and small desk area complete with book storage. In the back of the classic trailer is a bedroom big enough for a full-sized bed. This space also fits in plenty of storage both underneath the bed and in a small closet near the entrance. For those adventurers out there who would like to take Mattox on the road, rest assured that the Airstream’s mechanical systems have also been completely renovated. New tires, brakes, bearings, propane hook-ups, fresh water hook-up and more will give you peace of mind while you are exploring. + Augustine Along the Way Via Tiny House Talk Images via Augustine Along the Way

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This 1973 Airstream could be yours for $68,900

Save the Duck introduces new winter line of outerwear

October 10, 2019 by  
Filed under Eco, Green, Recycle

When you’re wearing clothing made from fur or leather, it’s hard to ignore the fact that it comes from an animal, but even vegetarians and vegans have an easier time closing their eyes to what’s hidden inside winter’s ubiquitous puffy jackets. Fortunately, brands like Save the Duck are making it possible for humans to stay warm and stylish without causing ducks pain and suffering. This month, the Italian clothing brand is revealing new designs. They’re kicking it off with a special brand dinner hosted by stylist Rachael Wang at the eco-luxury 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge . The collection features cruelty-free outerwear, including faux fur coats and feather-free down puffer jackets. Some of the new jackets are also waterproof. Save the Duck rounds out the collection with tees and sweats. The company promises, “In addition to providing animal free, ecological fabric, Save the Duck‘s penchant for bold color combines seamlessly with clean silhouettes and genderless, unisex pieces this fall.” You can choose basic black, but why not light up the winter in a bright yellow hooded puffer vest or a deep red fake fur coat? Related: The 2019 Redress Design Awards showcased the very best of emerging eco-designers Down is the soft feathery layer that grows closest to a duck’s skin, mostly on the chest. Manufacturers love the ease of working with these feathers, since they lack quills. Usually feathers are removed during slaughter, but ducks and geese being raised for foie gras or meat are sometimes plucked repeatedly while they’re alive. Save the Duck developed a synthetic down from recycled polyester they call Plumtech. The company designs all its jackets to be lightweight and easy to pack, as well as to spare the suffering of birds . The company Forest SRL owns the Save the Duck brand. Its roots go back more than a hundred years, to when tailor-turned soldier Foresto Bargi started experimenting with a water-repellent material he learned about during his time in the First World War. Now his grandson Nicolas Bargi runs the company. He launched the Save the Duck brand in 2011 to address people that are sensitive to environmental issues and sustainable living. One of his great victories was partnering with Kuntai A. Joisher, the first vegan Indian climber to reach the top of Mount Everest. Save the Duck managed to design a jacket that would withstand sub-zero temperatures and wicked winds. Even better, at press time the company estimated they helped save 17,975,456 ducks so far. + Save the Duck Images via Save the Duck

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Save the Duck introduces new winter line of outerwear

Earth911 Podcast, Sept. 30, 2019: ISRI’s State of the Recycling System

September 30, 2019 by  
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Explore the state of U.S. recycling with Joe Pickard, chief … The post Earth911 Podcast, Sept. 30, 2019: ISRI’s State of the Recycling System appeared first on Earth911.com.

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Earth911 Podcast, Sept. 30, 2019: ISRI’s State of the Recycling System

What to Do When You Have Bad Water at Home

September 30, 2019 by  
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Alarm over the United States’ dirty water crisis is growing. … The post What to Do When You Have Bad Water at Home appeared first on Earth911.com.

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What to Do When You Have Bad Water at Home

To increase recycling rates, empower consumers and skip the guilt trip

September 26, 2019 by  
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Messaging has to change.

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To increase recycling rates, empower consumers and skip the guilt trip

Tooth: the eco-friendly toothbrush made from recycled and biodegradable materials

September 26, 2019 by  
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As ubiquitous as morning coffee is the practice of brushing your teeth. We know you’re conscientious about water consumption by turning off the faucet while you brush, but there’s that seldom-discussed issue of toothbrush waste, mostly plastic , that equates to around 1,000,000,000 toothbrushes heading to the landfill annually, and that’s just in the United States. Luckily, some passionate designers from London have decided to develop a sustainable option to divert waste from landfills. They call it Tooth, a last-for-a-lifetime toothbrush handle with replaceable heads. Unlike the 98 percent of toothbrushes that are not biodegradable, the Tooth replacement heads will break down. The main portion of the brush head is made from locally sourced sugar beets that have been turned into Floreon. The bristles are made from Nylon 4; both products are 100 percent biodegradable . Related: Your guide to eco-friendly toothpastes The handle is contoured out of recycled aluminum , a durable metal that eliminates the need to create virgin aluminum and the carbon emissions that come with it. The handles are also 100 percent recyclable when they are no longer useful. Tooth has a lifetime guarantee as long as you remain a subscriber. Select one of four colors including ash, charcoal, rose, or gold, and choose from three bristle firmness options. You can also get a recycled steel stand to keep your Tooth aired out and to avoid contact with germs lurking on countertops. There’s also a travel case that protects the Tooth and stores up to three additional replacement heads. Dentists recommend changing your toothbrush every three months, so with a subscription, Tooth will automatically send a replacement head directly to your house every three months; you can go ahead and cross that chore off the list. Because the company is sustainably focused, your shipment will arrive in eco-friendly packaging. With recycled cardboard , plastic-free labels and a flat design, everything can go into the recycling upon receipt. Tooth is currently an active and fully funded Kickstarter campaign , due to expire on October 18. Shipments are expected for April 2020. + Tooth Images via Tooth

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Tooth: the eco-friendly toothbrush made from recycled and biodegradable materials

Recycling Identifying Device takes the guesswork out of figuring out what’s recyclable

September 6, 2019 by  
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The ability to recycle materials has been around for generations, and as an increasing number of residential and commercial facilities take on the metal, plastic and glass, it has become a common task to put your recycling at the curb on garbage pick-up day. But as mainstream as recycling is, the rules are ever-changing, so the Recycling Identifying Device (R.I.D.) was created to streamline the process. The R.I.D, designed by U.K.-based company Cohda, scans materials to let the user know whether an item is recyclable or not. It uses near-infrared (NIR) spectroscopy to identify what the item is. Software allows the R.I.D. to match the item with the parameters of accepted items at the local recycling plant. In other words, the software can tell you if the item is accepted locally. Related: Renewlogy turns low-grade plastic into usable fuels The simple-to-use, handheld device is intended for use by waste organizations; the goal is to have the waste facility provide the device to each household. The device will help keep recyclable items out of the landfills and the oceans. Almost as bad as misdirected recyclable items are the materials that end up in the recycling bin where they don’t belong. These disallowed containers can contaminate other items on the recycling line, causing them to be thrown out. Most people have good intentions when it comes to recycling, but every township seems to have its own regulations regarding what is and what isn’t acceptable. Even at that, the list changes frequently. With this in mind, the R.I.D. accepts updates as they are released to keep the consumer informed. The device even has a system in place to release updated information in a way that anyone can access it easily. R.I.D. doesn’t require software, a computer or a smartphone; instead, when an update becomes available, a rewritable RFID card is attached to the household waste bin. Consumers then touch the R.I.D. to the RFID card to transfer the update automatically. Because the entire project is focused on reducing waste and cleaning up waste systems, the R.I.D. can be disassembled and recycled at the end of its lifecycle. + Cohda Images via Cohda

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Recycling Identifying Device takes the guesswork out of figuring out what’s recyclable

Naturalis Biodiversity Center reopens with a sustainable, future-proof renovation

September 6, 2019 by  
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After nearly a year of renovations, the Netherlands’ prized Naturalis Biodiversity Center — a museum and research center with one of the largest natural history collections in the world — has just reopened to the public. The redesign was led by Rotterdam-based architectural firm Neutelings Riedijk Architects , which expanded and renovated the facility to “future-proof” standards that include 100 percent LED lighting , solar panels, green roofs and an energy-efficient climate control system. The complex also better accommodates more than 200 researchers who aim to contribute solutions to global issues such as climate change, the decline of biodiversity and food supply challenges. Located in Leiden, the Netherlands, the Naturalis Biodiversity Center was originally founded in 1820 by King Willem as a museum for natural artifacts. Subsequent mergers with other museum collections over the years has led the museum to amass approximately 42 million specimens that range from insects and fossils to a wide variety of books and photographs. To better serve the public and researchers, the Naturalis Biodiversity Center appointed Neutelings Riedijk Architects with the task of renovating approximately 18,000 square meters of the existing center and adding 20,000 square meters of new construction.  Related: Carbon-neutral science museum in Sweden will be powered by bicycles The renovated Naturalis Biodiversity Center now combines all departments — including the research activities, the collection and the museum — under one roof. The existing buildings and new extensions are connected with a new central hall with an eye-catching, honeycomb-like, white concrete facade inspired by the museum’s collections. Designed by the famous Dutch fashion designer Iris van Herpen, the curvaceous exterior is fitted with glass to create a sunny atrium that connects the existing offices and depots with the newly built museum and laboratories. In addition to the addition of sustainable features, such as solar panels and geothermal heat pump system, the renovated Natural Biodiversity Center was constructed with a robust natural materials palette to ensure longevity. The highly textured materials — that include natural stone, oak, concrete, glass and steel — will develop a patina over time to show the passage of time. + Neutelings Riedijk Architects Photography by Scagliola Brakkee Fotografie via Neutelings Riedijk Architects

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Naturalis Biodiversity Center reopens with a sustainable, future-proof renovation

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