These pendant shades shine a light on recycled materials

May 18, 2020 by  
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Innovative companies around the world are looking at everyday objects in a new light, and custom lighting fabrication and design studio LightArt is no exception. In fact, LightArt is moving “from waste to watts” with its newest line of pendant light shades made from recycled materials . The process began with the question, “What can we do with falloff material?” Finding the answer took over two years of research and development investment, but the result is a line of light-cover pendants made using additive manufacturing, also known as 3D printing.  Related: This lovely lampshade is made from cabbage Relying on 3D printing , the team at LightArt found the initial trials to be less than elegant. Ryan Smith and his team explained, “This is where things started to get really challenging. When we first started, it did not look polished — it looked like what you might expect when you’re trying to turn garbage into something beautiful. But we kept following the promise of the process and made something we’re so proud of.” Based out of Seattle, Washington, the team worked with parent company 3form and other companies involved in polymer development across the country to hammer out the finer details for the shade designs.  For now, LightArt is recycling waste materials from inside the plant, using new technology to sort out the black and white pieces for the desired look. With this upcycled waste, the company created seven shapes in each of the two shade colors. Diameters change with each shape but range from 8 inches to 12 inches. Called the Coil Collection, the pendants have a matte finish and a touch and feel that resembles handmade pottery. In addition to recycling cast-off materials, the company used PVC-free cord and TGIC-free powder coat for the canopy and interior hub for each of the pendant shapes. LightArt plans to continue in its efforts to produce quality, custom lighting options that are sustainable. According to the company’s website, “Under the guidance of Align, we aim to create net-positive products that will leave our planet in better condition than when we started.” + LightArt Images via LightArt

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These pendant shades shine a light on recycled materials

How to cultivate employee fulfillment on your team

July 10, 2019 by  
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Driving more organization-wide support for sustainability starts with building self-awareness about your team’s purpose and the impact of the work they do.

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How to cultivate employee fulfillment on your team

How cleaning your closets can change your company’s culture

March 8, 2019 by  
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As a leader, circularity is going to be a key concept that you will want your team to understand. But how do you create a culture of circularity?

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How cleaning your closets can change your company’s culture

Here are the companies that use social media best for sustainability marketing

February 1, 2019 by  
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What your team can learn from Microsoft, Marks & Spencer, Autodesk and other socially savvy companies.

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Here are the companies that use social media best for sustainability marketing

Even fish can eat Nuatan, the bioplastic that could answer the plastic pollution crisis

October 1, 2018 by  
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A potential solution to the world’s plastic pollution crisis has recently been unveiled at the London Design Festival. Crafting Plastics Studio, established by design duo Vlasta Kubušová and Miroslav Král, created the all-natural alternative, which is made from corn starch, sugar and cooking oil. According to the team, who researches and constructs cutting-edge materials for their avant-garde designs, Nuatan has the possibility to “replace all the packaging we know,” because it is so safe that even fish can eat it. At a glance, Nuatan may seem elementary in its composition, however, Kubušová and Král spent six years conceiving the bioplastic with material scientists at the Slovak University of Technology. This is time well spent, considering that the composition is enduring, rapidly degradable and safe to ingest. More durable than previous bioplastic samples, the material can last up to 15 years and withstands temperatures over 212 degrees Fahrenheit (100 degrees Celsius). Related: This edible, plastic-free packaging is grown from kombucha starter “For the first time, a fully bio-based, biodegradable material can be considered as a competitor in terms of properties and processability,” the designers explained. Nuatan’s applications are limitless, because the poly-blend is not restricted to blow-forming like traditional plastics are. Crafting Plastics Studio designed the material to succeed in any production chain. “We’re using it for 3D printing , injection molding and other plastic manufacturing technologies,” the team said. Approval of a food-safety certificate would mean that Nuatan could realistically replace all packaging , because the material is biodegradable. Industrial composters would have no trouble breaking down the substance. The possible solution to replacing single-use plastics such as plastic bags, plates, straws, water bottles, cutlery and others is found in the patented combination of naturally derived Polyacid Acid (PLA) from corn starch with Polyhydroxybutyrate (PHB), which is corn starch that has been processed by microorganisms. Because Nuatan’s composition is not formulated from carbon-based raw materials, “it degrades inside the human body or animals,” Kubušová explained. This biocompatible feature, along with Nuatan’s durability, means that it can be used in nearly everything except heavy-duty situations, such as vehicle construction. At a lower energy and resource consumption value than traditional petroleum-based plastics, Nuatan ticks all the boxes regarding environmental sustainability and climate change relief. Faced with a high cost of production, there is still some time before the new bioplastic will see widespread use. But increased demand could help drive the cost of materials down to affordable levels. “We are hoping to find collaborators who want to include it in the right products, and not combine it with other materials, so it’s a mono-material,” Kubušová said. Faithful to their ethical and capable inception, the team made a very valid point — “If we can find the right collaborators, it can change things a lot.” For a lot of people, a lot of animals and a lot of places on Earth… + Crafting Plastics Via Dezeen Images via Adam Šakový, Andrej Andrej and Lucia Scerankova / Crafting Plastics

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Even fish can eat Nuatan, the bioplastic that could answer the plastic pollution crisis

This scarf protects against air pollution, allergens and viral infections

October 1, 2018 by  
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Air pollution is a major problem around the world, but one company is helping people stay safe no matter where they live. Bioscarf has created a stylish accessory that doubles as a safety mask for people living in places with high concentrations of pollution. These handy scarves help fight against air pollutants, allergens and viral infections, like the cold and flu. Bioscarf offers its product in a handful of colors, including white, black, green and a camouflage print. Each scarf is made from high-quality polyester and carries the company’s logo. They are roughly 7 feet long and just under a foot wide, making them ideal for burying your face into when cold winds breeze by you. While these scarves are fashionable , they also protect against allergens and viral infections. This includes the cold and influenza, both of which are common infections that become a problem every year in larger urban areas. Related: Scientists find air pollution leads to significant decline in cognition The scarves work by filtering out more than 94 percent of contaminants in the air , keeping you just as healthy as a traditional safety mask. According to the company, testing showed that the Bioscarf filtered nearly 100 percent of airborne particulates with a size 0.1 or larger, including pneumonia, step throat, influenza, tuberculosis, animal dander, pollen and cigarette smoke. Co-founder Hazel Solle was inspired to create the scarf after a vacation to China with her family. Her husband, Carlton, got sick overseas, and a doctor told them it was likely because of the air pollution. The doctor recommended they wear masks, inspiring the couple to think of a better solution. Hazel also recalled growing up in Costa Rica and making tiny scarves out of leftover materials for her dolls. The idea hit her that scarves could double as fashion pieces and air pollution masks. In addition to its scarf lineup, the company also has a special program where it donates a scarf to charity for each one it sells — a great incentive for consumers who want to help those in need. “Experts say that over 2 billion kids around the world are breathing toxic air and nobody is talking about it,” Hazel said.“It’s time to not only raise awareness about this issue, but to more importantly give many of the people at risk who don’t have the means to protect themselves something to help them combat air pollution on a daily basis.” + Bioscarf

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This scarf protects against air pollution, allergens and viral infections

Southern California is losing its clouds, increasing the risk of more intense wildfires

May 31, 2018 by  
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The elevated summer temperatures in California  are causing decreased levels of the low-atmosphere clouds that were once common throughout the southern coastal regions of the state. A new study has found that because these clouds are dissipating from the increased heat, the region is now facing an increased risk of wildfire . “Clouds that used to burn off by noon or 1 o’clock are now gone by 10 or 11, if they form at all,” bioclimatologist and study lead author Park Williams told Phys.org . Due to a warming climate and an expanding urban heat island, cloud cover is trapped in a positive feedback loop where less clouds mean higher temperatures, and higher temperatures mean less clouds. Published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters , the new study concludes that there has been a 25 to 50 percent decrease in low-lying summer clouds since the 1970s. “ Cloud cover is plummeting in southern coastal California,” said Williams, “and as clouds decrease, that increases the chance of bigger and more intense fires.” The low-lying stratus clouds in the area typically form in the early morning in a thin, wet layer of coastal air that exists between land and drier air masses. The increased heat from climate change and the urban heat island effect has caused the clouds to dissolve earlier in the day, leaving little cover during the hottest parts of the afternoon. Related: The growing wine industry is threatening California’s Napa Valley To study the changes in cloud cover, Williams and his team analyzed hour-by-hour cloud data gathered by California airports over the past several decades. The data was then compared with vegetation moisture data from the U.S. Wildland Fire Assessment System. This comparison enabled the team to conclude that the decreased cloud cover has led to an increased wildfire risk. “Even though the danger has increased, people in these areas are very good at putting out fires, so the area burned hasn’t gone up,” Williams explained. “But the dice are now loaded, and in areas where clouds have decreased, the fires should be getting more intense and harder to contain. At some point, we’ll see if people can continue to keep up.” +  Geophysical Research Letters Via Phys.org Images via Depositphotos (1, 2)

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Southern California is losing its clouds, increasing the risk of more intense wildfires

Podcast, May 7, 2018: Sustainability in Your Ear

May 8, 2018 by  
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On this week’s Sustainability in Your Ear podcast, the Earth911.com team … The post Podcast, May 7, 2018: Sustainability in Your Ear appeared first on Earth911.com.

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Podcast, May 7, 2018: Sustainability in Your Ear

To chart the course of sustainability, grab the right map

September 29, 2017 by  
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What are the best assessment tools for your team? Here’s a review of some of the best.

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To chart the course of sustainability, grab the right map

Do the Gilmore Girls Recycle?

November 25, 2016 by  
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As the four-part Gilmore Girls revival debuts on Netflix today, countless fans are tuning in to answer the burning questions they’ve had since the series ended in 2007. How are Lorelai and Luke? Who is Rory dating? (For the record, we’re on Team…

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Do the Gilmore Girls Recycle?

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