The world’s largest vertical garden blooms with 85,000 plants in the heart of Bogota

May 11, 2017 by  
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Behold: the largest vertical garden in the world. Located in Bogota, Colombia, the Santalaia building is completely covered with a lush layer of 85,000 plants that span 3,100 square meters (33,368 square feet). A vertical garden of this size can produce enough oxygen for more than 3,100 people every year, process 1,708 pounds of heavy metals, filter more than 2,000 tons of harmful gases and catch more than 881 pounds of dust. The record-setting vertical garden in Bogota was completed in 2015 after over a year of planning. Paisajismo Urbano ‘s Colombia-based franchise Groncol designed and installed the vertical garden using the innovative F+P system, patented by Ignacio Solano. Related: Posh new Vietnamese hotel with a lush green facade brings guests closer to nature This system is based on a series of pillars – each with its own vegetal cover – installed vertically over the facade . Various endemic species were included in the design of the vertical garden to boost biodiversity . + Paisajismo Urbano + Groncol

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The world’s largest vertical garden blooms with 85,000 plants in the heart of Bogota

Uber inks deal to demonstrate on-demand flying taxis at the 2020 World Expo in Dubai

April 26, 2017 by  
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Getting from point A to point B in a car traveling on the ground is so 2017. Instead, Uber is working on a future where people will zip across cities in the sky. The company plans to test their on-demand flying car service, called Uber Elevate, in Dallas and Dubai by 2020. Uber wants customers to be able to press a button and summon a high-speed flying vehicle to transport them around a city through a Vertical Take-Off and Landing (VTOL) network. They claim their zero-emissions vehicles will be electric and quiet, taking off and landing vertically – like a helicopter . Uber is developing the vehicles with five partners , including aviation companies like Bell Helicopter and Embraer . Related: Uber is working on flying electric cars to disrupt transportation again And they’ve already got a few cities on board. Uber has an agreement with Dubai Roads and Transport Authority, including a joint study into pricing, routes, and people movement. Uber aims to launch an Uber Elevate Network demonstration at the 2020 World Expo in Dubai. They also aim to initiate a pilot program in Dallas the same year before full-scale operations in Texas in 2023. Uber Chief Product Officer Jeff Holden said, “What started as a simple question: ‘Why can’t I push a button and get a ride?’ has turned, for Uber, into a passionate pursuit of the pinnacle of urban mobility – the reduction of congestion and pollution from transportation, giving people their time back, freeing up real estate dedicated to parking and providing access to mobility in all corners of a city.” The BBC noted the technology isn’t proven yet, but Uber thinks their flying car service could cost around the same as their car transportation system. Regulation and safety are two other major hurdles Uber must leap before their technology can take to the skies. Via the BBC and Phys.org Images via Uber ( 1 , 2 )

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Uber inks deal to demonstrate on-demand flying taxis at the 2020 World Expo in Dubai

2017 Goldman Environmental Prize recognizes 6 activists who risk life and limb to protect the environment

April 26, 2017 by  
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The winners of the 2017 Goldman Environmental Prize show you don’t have to be a celebrity or politician to make a change. The award, commonly called the Nobel Prize for the environment , recently recognized six inspiring individuals, ranging in age from 32 to 83, who have labored for environmental justice in their various communities . Read their stories after the jump. Rodrigue Katembo, Democratic Republic of the Congo Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of the Congo is the oldest national park in Africa and a UNESCO World Heritage site, but it’s still been targeted by oil companies. Central sector warden Rodrigue Katembo, 41, faced down threats when London-based SOCO International pursued oil drilling in Block V of the park. He worked to expose their illegal activities, amassing evidence over a three-year period; in the process he was arrested and tortured in 2013, two days after he refused to allow SOCO officials to work inside the park as they lacked legal authorization. He appeared in the 2014 documentary Virunga , which Leonardo DiCaprio executive produced and helped turn public opinion against SOCO. They were accused of funding violence and bribery and withdrew in late 2015; Katembo now fights illegal coltan extraction in Upemba National Park. Related: This courageous Baltimore teenager shut down America’s largest incinerator Uroš Macerl, Slovenia Uroš Macerl, 48, has been fighting air pollution in his town of Trbovlje, Slovenia for over a decade. He took over his family’s farm in his twenties, but due to environmental degradation couldn’t grow fruit on the land and raised sheep instead. Then French company Lafarge Cement (now Switzerland-based LafargeHolcim after a 2015 merger) took over a cement kiln in Trbovlje in 2002. Macerl began filing legal complaints after Lafarge applied to incinerate petcoke and industrial waste at their facilities, and found out the government had fast tracked Lafarge’s permits without environmental assessments. So he went to the European Commission. Around five years later the European Commission Inspectorate finally shuttered Lafarge’s activities in Trbvolje, but the fight isn’t over – the company keeps applying for permits and according to Goldman Environmental Prize Slovenian government members are trying to change laws to overlook environmental standards. Macerl continues the battle as president of community organization Eko Krog , or Eco Circle. Wendy Bowman, Australia 83-year-old Wendy Bowman is a sixth-generation farmer in New South Wales (NSW), Australia . Bowman has watched coal mining sprawl across the region, with the support of the NSW government, for decades. She began Minewatch NSW in the early 1990’s to gather information and put the government’s technical statements into understandable language. In 2010 Chinese company Yancoal aimed to expand a mine to Bowman’s 650-acre farm, and she said no. With the Hunter Environment Lobby, she filed a lawsuit and the court said Yancoal could move forward only if they owned the land. Yancoal continues to try and appeal. According to Goldman Environmental Prize, 16.5 million tons of coal have not been mined thanks to Bowman’s determination, and she continues to speak out against coal mining in her community. mark! Lopez, United States mark! Lopez, 32, earned a bachelor’s degree in environmental studies from the University of California, Santa Cruz before returning to his hometown in East Los Angeles . There he fought against a neighborhood battery smelter which released arsenic and lead into the community. A 2016 analysis from California’s Department of Public Health found children living near the smelter, owned by Georgia-based Exide Technologies , had higher levels of lead in their blood than children who didn’t live nearby, as reported by The Los Angeles Times . And that’s after Exide finally closed the recycling plant in 2015. That small victory wasn’t enough for Lopez, who’d worked to mobilize the community with the East Yard Communities for Environmental Justice (EYCEJ). He wanted Exide to pay for cleanup . Last year California Governor Jerry Brown approved $176 million for cleanup and further lead testing – Lopez thinks contamination could have crept further than the 1.7 mile radius tested. Now Executive Director at EYCEJ, Lopez continues to push for safe cleanup and justice. Rodrigo Tot, Guatemala The Q’eqchi people dwell in the Guatemalan highlands, but the land of the Agua Caliente community and other Q’eqchi communities is under threat from corporations who wish to expand the Fenix Project , a nickel mine. First owned by the government, the mine was sold to Canadian company HudBay Minerals , who later sold it to Switzerland-based Solway Investment Group . Security forces for the mine have attempted to evict people, burned houses, and raped women. Agua Caliente community leader Rodrigo Tot, 57, who has labored since 1972 to obtain land titles for his people, worked with the Indian Law Resource Center and Defensoría Q’eqchi in a legal battle to secure official recognition of Q’eqchi ownership, and the country’s highest court, the Constitutional Court of Guatemala, ruled in their favor in 2011. But the government hasn’t enforced the ruling. In 2012 one of Tot’s sons was killed and another injured in what looked like a staged robbery. Tot continues to fight for the health of his community with a watch group that has held back security forces. Mining has contaminated Lake Izabal, a source of water and food for locals, with toxic metals like cadmium and chromium. Prafulla Samantara, India In India , the Odisha State Mining Company (OMC) and London-based Vedanta Resources reached an agreement on a $2 billion bauxite mine in the Niyamgiri Hills. But they didn’t inform the indigenous Dongria Kondh people, who reside in the hills – along with many endangered species – and hold the land sacred. Odisha native and activist Prafulla Samantara, 65, found out about it. In the face of harassment from state police and Vedanta personnel, he organized the people in non-violent demonstrations and filed a petition with the Central Empowered Committee of the Supreme Court. The legal battle went on for a dozen years, but in 2013 the Supreme Court determined Dongria Kondh village councils should make the decision about Niyamgiri Hills mining. Each of the 12 councils unanimously voted against the mine. OMC petitioned the outcome but the Supreme Court denied them in 2016. According to Goldman Environmental Prize, the case established a precedent in India that village councils should determine mining activities in their localities. + Goldman Environmental Prize Images courtesy of Goldman Environmental Prize

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2017 Goldman Environmental Prize recognizes 6 activists who risk life and limb to protect the environment

Plant-covered Mobile Green Living Room travels through Europe

September 7, 2016 by  
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The Mobile Green Living Room is constructed from living wall modules (WABA-system) attached to an Abroll-Container platform. A wide variety of plants are grown on the wire-cube modules to show off the versatility and beauty of living walls. These freestanding 3D living walls provide shade, create a cooling microclimate , and help purify the air. Each semi-autonomous Mobile Green Living Room can be easily transported via truck and is equipped with an onboard water tank with a weeklong capacity and irrigation system. Related: Solar-powered Elevate Structure is wrapped in a living, breathing wall of green “Green Living Rooms are an example of how one of the green comfort zone solutions can be realised in high-density urban areas on heavily sealed surfaces where competition for usable space is at a premium,” says TURAS. “The Green Living Room represents an example of a new hybrid type of project. Rather than tackling climate change on a city-wide strategic level, they provide oases for communities at the heart of the most in-need areas.” The Mobile Green Living Room is currently touring Europe and is headed to Frankfurt after a brief stint in London. + TURAS Images via TURAS

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Plant-covered Mobile Green Living Room travels through Europe

LEED for vertical farms? Defining high-tech sustainable food

August 15, 2016 by  
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The Association for Vertical Farming aims to create the first sustainability standard for towering indoor food systems.

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LEED for vertical farms? Defining high-tech sustainable food

LEED for vertical farms? Defining high-tech sustainable food

August 15, 2016 by  
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The Association for Vertical Farming aims to create the first sustainability standard for towering indoor food systems.

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LEED for vertical farms? Defining high-tech sustainable food

Grow Food at Home with Lettuce Evolve’s Compact Aquaponic Garden

November 25, 2014 by  
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Would you love to grow your own vegetables but think it’s too much hassle? Well, a company in Dallas may have a solution that’s just perfect for you. A new aquaponic planter created by Lettuce Evolve could make fertilizing and harvesting your vegetables simple, green and clean. Read the rest of Grow Food at Home with Lettuce Evolve’s Compact Aquaponic Garden Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: aquaculture , aquaponics , chemical free , compact garden , Gardening , grow your own , hydroponics , Lettuce Evolve , vertical farming

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Grow Food at Home with Lettuce Evolve’s Compact Aquaponic Garden

Unit Fusion’s Moveable Modules Could Be the Future Neighborhoods of Hong Kong

November 15, 2014 by  
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Read the rest of Unit Fusion’s Moveable Modules Could Be the Future Neighborhoods of Hong Kong Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: adjustable modular homes , eco design , green design , Hong Kong , modular architecture , plug-in housing , Prefab , prefabricated architecture , sustainable design , Unit Fusion , Vertical high rise , vertical living , Y Design Office

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Unit Fusion’s Moveable Modules Could Be the Future Neighborhoods of Hong Kong

Get Away From it All With the Nutshell Cocoon-on-the-Go

November 15, 2014 by  
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Wish you could take a moment to get away from it all even when you can’t actually get away? Design student Eden Lew has just the solution with the Nutshell. It’s a fold-out fabric shell that you can use to wrap yourself in a private cocoon so that you can get a peaceful break even in the middle of a crowd. And if that wasn’t enough, the shell also connects to an app that can help guide you through a peaceful, meditative getaway, all without leaving your chair. READ MORE >  Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: cocoon , ecouterre , Eden Lew , Eden Lew Nutshell , mobile getaway , Nutshell , personal cocoon , personal getaway , privacy , privacy cocoon , privacy shell , protective shell , wearable technology

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New Vertical Garden Showcases Super Tasty Foods Served at Barcelona’s Organics Restaurant

September 5, 2014 by  
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Urbanarbolismo and Unusualgreen just unveiled one of their latest vertical gardens, this time at the entrance to the Organics Restaurant in Barcelona. Low maintenance design and operation plus hardy plants makes for a delicious looking installation. The lush vertical garden is the perfect complement to the restaurant’s menu, which features slow food dished up fast! Read the rest of New Vertical Garden Showcases Super Tasty Foods Served at Barcelona’s Organics Restaurant Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “living wall” , “sustainable architecture” , Barcelona , eco design , green architecture , Green Building , green design , living design , organic restaurant , organics restaurant , Sustainable Building , sustainable design , unusualgreen , urbanarbolismo , vertical garden

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New Vertical Garden Showcases Super Tasty Foods Served at Barcelona’s Organics Restaurant

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