Recycling your old electronics is about to become a lot easier in NYC. This week, New York City Sanitation Commissioner John J. Doherty announced the launch of new residential electronics recycling program “e-cycleNYC” in partnership with Electronic Recyclers International (ERI). Unfortunately, that means you’ll probably miss out on lugging your broken 42’’ plasma on the subway in an attempt to make it to an e-waste drop off event, but we don’t think you’ll mind too much, right? The free recycling service will be provided to buildings with 10 or more apartment units in each borough, so you can save your strength for more important things like planting trees and composting.
All New Business Ideas in Society & Environment
Plant-in City is a collaboration between architects, designers, and technologists who are building new ways of interacting with nature. Our 21st century sculptural terrariums combine modular architecture, basic laws of physics, embedded technologies, and mobile computing to construct a “Plant City” where the aesthetic meets the pragmatic.
Each frame is made with cedar wood and copper piping, with digital sensors and integrated lighting controlled by smartphone app. The plants live in an artful structure that’s nearly self-sustaining. After all, plants improve our quality of life and nurture us on an everyday basis; we think it’s only fair to nurture them in return.
Aiming to create a sustainable and iconic communication point for modern urban environment, Solbooth is an eco phone-booth that uses solar energy. Design is created with a concern for transparency, especially for touristic areas where product almost blends in with urban space with see-through surfaces. Also emphasizes accessibility, it is an all-in-one point of communication for phoning and info getting on city. Unfolding spaces in interior are provided for easy usage.
The denim industry has a phenomenal impact on the environment. Traditional cotton jeans carry a substantial carbon footprint with each single pair requiring 42 liters of water, along with up to 15 dyeing vats full of harmful chemicals to produce. But Dawn Ellams, a PhD researcher at Scotland’s Heriot-Watt University believes she has come up with a less destructive and surprising alternative — denim made from sustainably sourced wood pulp. Spun into a cotton-like fabric, which is marketed under the name Tencel, the wooden jeans require only one fifth of the water, energy, and chemicals of their conventional counterparts.
Concerned about the lack of fresh water in the developing world, designer Gabriele Diamanti wanted a solution to desalinate water that was available to households rather than relying on giant, centralized plants. He also wanted it to be something inexpensive that could be made by local craftsman. The result is a ceramic solar still called the Eliodomestico that operates like an “upside-down coffee percolator”.
High in the northern mountains of Guatemala, near the ancient city of Quetzaltenango, there’s an unusual new venture that is helping transform the way local communities think about the garbage they throw into landfills. It’s also reforming the way people think about nature’s most industrious ecologist: the worm.
María Rodriguez, founder of Byoearth is teaching women the value of the red wiggler worm and the use of vermicomposting to support sustainable farming. It’s a concept she believes in passionately and is having increasing success selling to both local farmers and non-profit aid organizations throughout Latin America.
Vermicomposting uses worms, rather than chemicals to create fertilizer.
As demand for clean power generation to meet the world’s growing energy need increases, Siemens Wind Power has the answers. With highly efficient, robust and reliable wind turbines, Siemens has a demonstrated history in delivering proven solutions to onshore, coastal and offshore sites. Siemens Wind Power’s service team is dedicated to keeping the turbines running optimally throughout their entire lifecycle. Siemens also offers integrated solutions and services that meet the demands of the entire wind energy conversion chain.
Adding to the combined knowledge gained from fieldtesting a vast fleet of multi-megawatt offshore wind turbines, Siemens continually strives to acquire in-depth understanding of every element in the wind turbine system.
Wind turbine design evolution is affecting far more than just the design itself. The Siemens turbine’s manufacturing, assembly and installation processes are prepared with genuine industrialization in mind, creating a scalable production model that will reduce both delivery times and costs throughout the value chain.
Advertorial presented by Siemens
At this year’s Tent London, UK-based Australian designer Jay Watsonbroke away from the mold and released numerous new pieces that use interesting and curious sustainable materials like old newspapers and socks.
Leading a sustainable life is a noble aspiration, but a tricky one to have if you’re living in a small apartment. Take compost, for example. Aside from being a messy process, it requires space we don’t always have. Luckily, designers do think about these things and come up with ideas. Here is one from London based design student Fanny M.E. Nilsson – a portable waste processor that turns your food leftovers into a liquid fertilizer. The piece, aptly called Re-Feed, is no bigger than a toaster. The idea is to throw the leftover food into the machine, close the lid, push a button and walk away. No fiddling with soil, no sacrificing units of space for bulky containers. “Inspired by lacking food waste recycling infrastructures in flats and high-rise housing in central London, the Re-Feed provides a simple alternative to sending waste to landfill or composting.,” – says Nilsson. When the fertilizer is ready – it can be fed to a plant through the convenient nuzzle. Re-Feed is fitted with the rechargeable battery, so it can be easily moved to any room. The piece is only a concept at this point. Can’t wait to see it produced.
DecoBrick is a decorative product in which used plastic cups are employed in an environmentally friendly way. DecoBrick has come to life as an answer to the question ‘How can we use this plastic waste of cups and pet bottles in the most efficient way?’. This design uses 4 to 6 pieces of plastic waste that are placed in a simple plastic mold, which later form a 3D brick system. The system can be used at building walls, gardens and in many different areas.
Designer Matteo Cibic, after noticing a disharmony in Milan’s lack of tree-shaded areas and its abundant traffic, asked himself, “If you can pay to park your car in front of your house or office, why can’t you also pay to have a tree there?” This prompted his idea for portable Tree Trolleys that could fill empty parking spots. Anyone could pay a small amount to have one rolled up outside their building, introducing greenery as well as amenities like charging stations, benches and WiFi.