Sunday, January 31, 2016

Plastic Bottles in Flint


 

Flint does have a recycling program, but not a lot of people use it

        
Donations of bottled water have been flooding into Flint.
Making sure people have safe drinking water is the top priority in Flint right now. But some people are wondering about one side effect of the water crisis: where all those empty bottles are ending up.

Khalid Iqbal helps run the Flint Muslim Food Pantry. He gives food and bottled water to anyone who needs it in Flint.
Last weekend, Iqbal went around door to door handing out water.
But he says he and many others were concerned about where the empty water bottles would end up. He says he asked residents what they planned to do with the empty bottles.
“And they have no clue, no answer,” he says. “And I’m afraid it’s going to end up in the dumpsters.”
Iqbal tapes signs on the cases of water he gives out. They say, “Please recycle empty plastic bottle. Do not throw in trash.”
He says his food pantry is taking empty bottles back to recycle if people bring them in.

 

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Trash into Treasure

She Was Ready To Throw Away Her TV Stand, But She Turned It Into THIS Instead...

Don't throw away that bookcase just yet. With a little creativity, even the ugliest old junk can fit your decor perfectly! These DIY furniture hacks show you how.
The line between trash and treasure is thinner than you think.Pix HD

The line between trash and treasure is thinner than you think.

When your home needs a makeover, forget the furniture store. What you need is probably in your house already!

Old shelves, torn-up coffee tables, and ugly dressers are easy to revamp. Here are a few ways to make your old stuff into stylish new furnishings. Your pieces will be completely unique, AND you can brag about making them yourself.
Kate's Creative Space
The first step might be the most important: making a plan. You can't make something if you don't even know what you're looking for. Decide what furniture changes are top priority, then you can take stock of what you've already got laying around the house.

You'll have to take size, shape, and construction into account, but don't forget: as long as you have the tools, you can change anything you want.

A great project to start with is a child's play set. Kids don't care that much about little fiddly aesthetic concerns, so you can focus more on the making and less on the way it looks. Just make sure not to leave any sharp edges!
Dorothy Sue and Millie B
Smaller dressers or television stands are perfect for this. Most kids would love to have their own kitchen or tool bench, making it the perfect project with which to begin your DIY journey.

A play kitchen or tool bench doesn't have too many complicated parts, so you can get away with minimal modifications to the original piece of furniture. Once the changes are complete, you can add as many or as few accessories as you like!

The main point is to have fun creating something by hand that you can enjoy for a long time. Give it a shot!

Friday, January 29, 2016

An ecodesign rocking chair made from recycled plastic bottles.

An ecodesign rocking chair made from recycled plastic bottles.
A rocking chair made of upcycled plastic bottles and sustainable spruce is a guilt-free way to kick back.
France-based, eco-friendly home decor company Plastiketic unveiled the Kuskus, a rocking chair made from 36 upcycled PET bottles.  The bottles are slightly inflated with air to ensure maximum comfort and, if problems arise, they can be easily replaced at home.
Designed by Grégory Hoogstoel, the Kuskus is usable both indoors and outdoors. The frame of the rocking chair is made from sustainable spruce collected from a sustainable wood forest in France.
“All our products are eco-designed, limit the impact on the environment, and are enrolled in a process of upcycling, a process that involves transforming waste into a new product of superior quality,” says the company website.
Plastiketic sees plastic waste as a useful building material to create superior quality products that have the capacity to increase the aesthetics of a home. The Kuskus chair is within the company’s overarching mission to promote sustainability through reuse and upcycling. 

Thursday, January 28, 2016

86it.com



86it.com

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Oscar the Grouch Lives in a Recycling Bin Now

Oscar the Grouch Lives in a Recycling Bin Now

 
Image Sesame Workshop
Sesame Workshop
When Sesame Street returns on Saturday, expect to hear a lot of G-words. The gang all got new digs, and goodness gracious, they’re gorgeous. Growth is great! But gosh, these guys are going gonzo. For this season, the first following the show’s move to HBO, Sesame Street is being brought to you buy the letter “G”—G as in gentrification.
Elmo, for example, has moved on up to 123 Sesame Street, the brownstone at the corner of their particular intersection in New York City. (Leading theories place Sesame Street in Queens, East Harlem, and at 64th and Broadway.) This historic brownstone would seem to be a great spot, adjacent to an (impossible) A, B, 1, and 2 stop and lots of retail.
How did Elmo afford it? Sure, he’s got a high-profile Times Square job and all. But I’d peg Elmo as a high-earner-not-rich-yet renter. Maybe Bert and Ernie finally bought the building together and have split it into rental units. If Elmo’s smart and he did buy—if he could afford the down payment, unlike so many Millennials—then he bought while interest rates were still at all-time lows.
La la la-la, la la la-la, real estate. (Sesame Workshop)
Then there’s Oscar the Grouch. Sure, it looks as though he’s still living in a metal trashcan. It’s only an affectation. In fact, his new accessory dwelling unit tucked in front of Elmo’s building includes recycling and composting receptacles. And this is only one of his micro-units on Sesame Street. Oscar is now splitting his time between his classic vintage-themed can and newer interconnected recycling and composting bins around the neighborhood. (And nothing was the same. Does Oscar even love trash?)
Fortunately, gentrification on Sesame Street hasn’t necessarily been matched by displacement. Hooper’s Store is still standing. (It appears that it has been renovated, with an eye toward historic preservation.) Cookie Monster has moved upstairs over the shop. Despite his struggles with addiction, Cookie Monster has been able to find and keep housing; he has even become a locavore evangelist in recent years. Grover, who remains homeless and performs itinerant odd jobs where he is needed, can still call the neighborhood his home, thanks to the high quality of its social services.
Still, there are signs of unease on Sesame Street. A new development by Big Bird appears to be one giant nest, drawing criticism from those who think that pop-up housing is inappropriate for Sesame Street. Some worry that larger nests are changing the character of the neighborhood.
Let’s hope that as Sesame Street enters its 46th season, it can hold on to the qualities that drew so many muppets to the neighborhood in the first place, while upzoning to make room for all.
Single-bird zoning on Sesame Street. (Sesame Workshop)
Mixed-use retail on Sesame Street prioritizes local business first. (Sesame Workshop)
The new community center on Sesame Street. (Sesame Workshop)
Abby is experimenting with urban gardening. (Sesame Workshop)

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

19 weird and wonderful turtle and tortoise species

19 weird and wonderful turtle and tortoise species

common snapping turtle
Photo: ARSimonds/Shutterstock
It's not hard to love turtles and tortoises. They're often cute in their own weird, sometimes freaky way and always fascinating. But despite how much we think we know about these reptiles, many species can take us by surprise with particularly strange adaptations and remarkable abilities. Here, we celebrate 20 species of strange and adorable turtles and tortoises.
1. African helmeted turtle (Pelomedusa subrufa)
african helmeted turtle
Photo: Bildagentur Zoonar GmbH /Shutterstock
It's hard not to smile back at this grinning guy. But don't let that goofy smile fool you. This species is omnivorous and will eat just about anything it can get its jaws on, including carrion. People have even watched groups of these turtles snag and drown doves and other relatively large prey, dragging them to the depths of the pond to dine. They look cute, but they're stone cold killers.
2. Mata mata turtle (Chelus fimbriatus)
mata mata turtle
Photo: J. Patrick Fischer/Wikipedia
Nope, that's not a collection of rocks and rotting leaves at the bottom of the pond -- that's a mata mata turtle. This South American species is perfectly camouflaged for its preferred habitat of slow-moving streams, stagnate pools and marshes. With a carapace that looks like bark and a head and neck that look like fallen leaves, the fish that swim close enough to be sucked up for lunch never have a chance to see what's coming. The species has a particularly long snout that it uses like a snorkel, sticking it just out of the water to breathe.
mata mata turtle
Photo: Stan Shebs/Wikipedia
3. Red-bellied short-necked turtle (Emydura subglobosa)
red-bellied short-necked turtle
Photo: Bong Grit/Flickr
This adorable turtle species is popular in the pet trade. It features a bright red belly when it is young, which fades to orange or yellow as it ages. Native to tropical Australia and New Guinea, it grows to about 10 inches long and can make for a hardy pet with the right care.
4. Spiny softshell turtle (Apalone spinifera)
spiny softshell
Photo: USFWSNortheast/Flickr
This is one of the largest freshwater turtles found in North America, and females can grow a carapace of up to about 18 inches long. Found from Canada to Mexico, these turtles are long-lived. They don't reach sexual maturity until 8-10 years of age, and can live to be more than 50 years old. The species gets its name from the small spines that project from the upper front portion of its carapace, making it look even more like its long lost dinosaur relatives!
spiny softshell face
Photo: Tim/Flickr
5. Roti Island snake-necked turtle (Chelodina mccordi)
Roti island snake-necked turtle
Photo: fivespots/Shutterstock
Talk about strange-looking! This is one of several species of turtles with particularly long necks. The Roti Island snake-necked turtle's carapace can reach between 7-9 inches long, and its neck can be equally as long. But this species is critically endangered -- it is one of the most sought-after turtles in the pet trade, which has led to serious declines of wild populations. The two or three populations left are in a tiny area of Rote Island, and they are still often illegally captured for trade. Thus, collection by humans is tipping this species toward extinction.
6. Radiated tortoise (Astrochelys radiata)
radiated tortoise
Photo: Rob Hainer /Shutterstock
Native to Madagascar, this beautiful tortoise species is critically endangered due to habitat loss, poaching and collection for the pet trade. The species grows to a length of about 16 inches, and they can weigh about 35 pounds. Like many tortoise species, the radiated tortoise can enjoy a long life. In fact, the oldest radiated tortoise on record was Tu'i Malila, who died at an estimated 188 years of age!
7. Leatherback sea turtle (Dermochelys coriacea)
leatherback sea turtle
Photo: IrinaK/Shutterstock
The leatherback is the rock star of the sea turtles. This species is the largest of them all, dives the deepest, and travels the farthest. They're also real tough guys, actually fighting back and chasing away predators like sharks. They may have a face only a mother could love, but in terms of sheer amazingness, this species has it in spades. Unlike other sea turtles, it doesn't have a shell; instead its back is covered with skin and oily flesh. And yet, like most sea turtle species, the leatherback is endangered and still declining. From being caught on fishing lines by commercial fisheries to ingesting plastic mistaken for jellyfish, humans are having a troubling effect on this ancient turtle species.
8. Cantor's giant softshell turtle (Pelochelys cantorii)
Cantor's giant softshell turtle
Photo: Dementia/Wikipedia
There's a reason this species has "giant" in its name. It can grow up to 6 feet long! The strange-looking turtle has a very broad head, with eyes placed close to its snout. It spends about 95 percent of its life buried in the sand or mud at the bottom of freshwater rivers and streams, lying motionless in wait for prey that it ambushes. It surfaces only twice a day to take a breath. Otherwise, it simply stays put, waiting for a careless crustacean or fish to swim by and become lunch. Like so many species, the Cantor's giant softshell turtle is listed as endangered.
9. African spurred tortoise (Geochelone sulcata)
african spurred tortoise
Photo: Eric Isselee /Shutterstock
As if straight out of a comic book or a dinosaur cartoon, this species of tortoise rocks some impressive "spurs" along its forelegs. Found along the southern edge of the Sahara desert, it is the third largest tortoise species in the world, and the largest mainland tortoise (both the larger Galapagos tortoise and Aldabra giant tortoise are island-dwellers). They can grow to 2-3 feet long over their 50- to 150-year lifespan. Because they're popular in the pet trade, they are often removed from the wild and are listed as a species vulnerable to extinction.
10. Indian flapshell turtle (Lissemys punctata)
indian flapshell turtle
Photo: L. Shyamal/Wikipedia
The species name says it all. The Indian flapshell is known for its many folds of skin that cover its limbs when it retreats into its shell. Whether or not this helps protect it from predators is unknown, but it sure does make it look a little bit like it has a couple snails tucked up into its shell. As an omnivore, this turtle dines on anything from frogs and fish to flowers and fruit. And while it prefers living in streams and ponds, it can tolerate a certain level of drought by burrowing and traveling to other water holes. Those flaps of skin also help it survive through dry weather.
11. Alligator snapping turtle (Macrochelys temminckii)
alligator snapping turtle
Photo: Norbert Nagel/Wikipedia
The largest freshwater turtle in the world based on weight -- they can weigh well over 150 pounds -- the alligator snapping turtle is found in the southeastern United States. It gets its name both through its primitive, 'gator-like looks as well as through its ambush-style hunting technique. It's mouth is camouflaged and has a worm-like appendage on the tip of its tongue to lure in prey, which can be anything from fish to snakes to water birds to other turtles. Lying completely motionless with its mouth wide open, it literally just waits for an animal to get close to its mouth, which it then snaps shut with incredible speed.
alligator snapping turtle
Photo: Ryan M. Bolton /Shutterstock
12. Big-headed turtle (Platysternum megacephalum)

Named for rather obvious reasons, the big-headed turtle's head is so big, it can't retract it into its shell for protection. But it makes up for this failing by readily protecting itself with its powerful jaws (so, don't try to poke it). It also uses those strong jaws as well as its rather long tail to climb trees and bushes. It has no problem navigating the obstacles it comes across in rivers and streams. Unfortunately, humans view this turtle as a tasty meal. Between being caught for food markets as well as caught for the pet trade, the species is now listed as endangered and is disappearing from the wild.
13. Yellow blotched map turtle (Graptemys flavimaculata)
yellow blotched map turtle
Photo: fivespots/Shutterstock
This colorful species is one of several species of map turtle, called so because of the map-like markings on their carapace. Map turtles also all have in common the noticeable ridge running along the back of the shell, which is how they get their other common name of saw-backed turtles. This species has a very small range -- it is only located in the Pascagoula River of Mississippi and most of its tributaries. A combination of its small range, as well as a low reproduction success rate due to human disturbance and crow predation, has led to this species being listed as vulnerable to extinction. Unfortunately, several species of map turtle are also listed as threatened or endangered including the newly discovered Pearl River map turtle.
14. Galapagos giant tortoise (Chelonoidis nigra)
galapagos tortoise
Photo: Benjamint /Shutterstock
The giant Galapagos tortoise is perhaps one of the most famous terrapins in the world. It is the world's largest living species of tortoise, and lives for over 100 years in the wild. In fact, one captive Galapagos tortoise lives to be 170 years old! The biggest Galapagos tortoises on record reached 880 pounds and over 6 feet long. The species is native to the Galapagos islands, and subspecies are found on seven of the islands in the archipelago. Humans caused species numbers to dive, due to hunting, habitat loss and introduction of non-native species. But recovery programs have helped to bring numbers back. Even so, the species is still listed as vulnerable to extinction. And in case you were wondering whether a giant reptile could be cute -- why yes, yes they can:
galapagos tortoise sleeping
Photo: BlueOrange Studio /Shutterstock
15. Hawksbill Sea Turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata)
hawksbill sea turtle
Photo: Rich Carey/Shutterstock
Hello, hawksbills! These sea turtles are found in coastal waters in the Pacific, Atlantic and Indian oceans. They get their name from the sharp point at the end of their upper jaw, resembling a raptor's bill. This helps them get food from the crevices of coral reefs. They also have a unique feature apart from other sea turtles -- a claw on each of the front flippers. Despite their critically endangered status, their eggs are still collected for food, and they are still caught for meat and for their beautifully colored shells which are made into jewelry and trinkets. There are only around 20,000 nesting females left -- and hawksbills don't reach maturity until about 30 years of age and only nest every 2-4 years. Their slow reproduction rate means that juveniles and adults need far more protection from humans to avoid extinction.
16. Malayan softshell turtle (Dogania subplana)
malayan softshelled turtle
Photo: Wibowo Djatmiko/Wikipedia
Here is another turtle species with a face you won't forget. Found in fresh, fast-running water, the Malayan softshell turtle loves to dine on snails and other small mollusks. Like many softshell turtle species, it has a snout that can be stuck up above the water like a snorkel while it stays submerged and somewhat hidden. But overall, its profile looks almost more like a fish than a turtle.
malayan softshell turtle
Photo: Ryan M. Bolton /Shutterstock
17. Ploughshare tortoise (Astrochelys yniphora)
ploughshare tortoise
Photo: Ryan M. Bolton /Shutterstock
This species, also known as the angonoka tortoise, is native to Madagascar and is also critically endangered. With fewer than 600 left in the wild and still declining, it is considered the rarest tortoise in the world. It is thought it could become extinct in the wild within two decades. The fact that they may disappear entirely in a matter of years is not a deterrent to determined poachers -- in March of 2013, smugglers were caught in an airport, carrying a single bag containing 54 ploughshare tortoises and 21 radiated tortoises -- possibly as much as one tenth of the entire population of this species.
18. Pig-nosed turtle (Carettochelys insculpta)
pig-nosed turtle
Photo: reptiles4all /Shutterstock
We'll give you one guess as to how this turtle got its name. It's not just the nose that makes this turtle species unique. It is also the only freshwater turtle with flippers like sea turtles. It is found in freshwater streams, lagoons and rivers in the Northern Territory of Australia and also on New Guinea. Sadly, the species has experienced a population decline of about 50 percent in the last two decades, due mainly to the exotic pet trade. The species is known for its territorial behavior and thus high levels of aggression when in captivity, so captive breeding isn't necessarily an option for most owners. Mostly just leaving them alone in the wild is what's needed to protect them from further decline.
19. Leopard tortoise (Stigmochelys pardalis)
leopard tortoise
Photo: Ecoprint/Shutterstock
This gorgeous tortoise is known for its amazing markings on its carapace. The distinct markings are most defined when young, and fade as the individual ages. Found in the savannas of eastern and southern Africa, it spends its days grazing on grasses and succulents. It may look like it is carrying quite a burden with that large shell on its back but it actually is quite nimble. Leopard tortoises are speedy, and can even climb. Their toenails provide them with a solid grip on pourous surfaces like wood and rough stone. They can also go underwater for up to 10 minutes. Never underestimate the abilities of a tortoise!

Monday, January 25, 2016

How to Stay Eco-Friendly While Cleaning the Kitchen

24

How to Stay Eco-Friendly While Cleaning the Kitchen

For homeowners concerned with their impact on the environment, there are a number of changes throughout the home they can make to reduce their ecological footprint. One way is to focus on the kitchen and the steps to keep it spotlessly clean. There’s no reason why you can’t use eco-friendly techniques throughout the chore of cleaning. The following are several tips on how to keep your kitchen as clean as possible with the environment in mind:
  1. Look at the Label
    A lot of cleaning products contain a long list of chemicals, some of which are potentially toxic and harsh on the skin. But for homeowners who are environmentally conscious or have young children in the home, green cleaning products are an attractive option. There are a variety of green cleaning products available on the market, made with safe and natural materials. If green cleaning products are a bit too expensive, then water, soap, and baking soda can also do the trick.
  2. Avoid Plastic
    Over time, the chemicals used to make plastic degrade and break down, possibly leeching into your food or drink. Heat from microwaves or cleaning can worsen this issue, contaminating other items throughout your kitchen. Therefore, switch out of your plastic containers, cups and utensils for alternatives such as stainless steel or glass. Not only will you decrease the chances that plastic taint your food, you’ll also be able to build a more eco-friendly environment.
  3. Start Composting
    Do you end up with a fair amount of scraps and plant waste after every meal? If so, you may want to consider composting, instead of simply dumping them in the trash. Composting consists of placing organic matter into a pile and allowing them to rot naturally, turning it into a rich, soil-like material. This process is especially useful for gardeners, as it allows you to save on the costs of fertilizer and dispose of trash in an eco-friendly way.
  4. Opt Out on Paper
    Homeowners frequently use paper towels to clean their counters, dry any spills and wipe away messes. However, using paper towels can be very wasteful and costly in the long run. Instead, opt out on paper in favor for reusable cloths. Not only will you be able to get more uses with every cloth towel, you can simply throw it into your laundry to clean it. Every paper towel roll avoided will allow you to work towards saving both the environment and your wallet.
  5. Alternatives of Appliances
    Many homeowners rely on dishwashers in order to avoid the effort of washing on their own. However, they take up a considerable chunk of your electricity bill, driving up the prices to the hundreds. Instead, look for energy-efficient alternatives, which are designed to be eco-friendly. Not only do they save electricity, they’re also efficient in the use of water, saving gallons of water in a dishwasher’s lifetime. While shopping for energy-efficient dishwaters, make sure you look for an “energy saver” label, denoting its eco-friendly status.
Christine Cooney is a writer at The House Designers, writing articles on DIY and award winning floor plans on The House Designers blog. She loves learning about architecture, home décor, and house plan designs.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Way to Recycle!

                          
Minnesota college student builds colorful igloo so he can spend more time outside:
Embedded image permalink

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Friday, January 22, 2016

Backpack Made From Plastic Bags

This nifty backpack is made from a whole bunch of recycled plastic bags

Onward Bag, Gabriella Jacobson
Tech accessories come and go ... this one, made from organic cotton and recycled plastic shopping bags, can be fully composted and recycled when it's no longer wanted/needed. (Illustration: Cradle to Cradle Product Design Challenge)
Just leave it to a forward-thinking student designer armed with a hair straightener, a clothes iron and a spool of thread to breathe new life into the ban-worthy blight on the environment otherwise known as the plastic shopping bag.
And I’m not just talking a single recycled shopping bag but around 60 or 70 of them, fused together with organic cotton canvas to create an insulated backpack-cum-briefcase — a “conscientious tech bag” in the words of the designer — that can be deconstructed and recycled/composted at the end of its life.
Conceived in response to the plastic waste that clogs our oceans, pollutes our beaches and harms marine wildlife while also doubling as a spot to stash tech gear while on-the-go, Onward Bag was recently named winner of the Cradle to Cradle Product Design Challenge in the Best Student Design category. The student designer behind Onward Bag — a design “capable of reducing overall plastic waste and reducing C02 waste by taking advantage of the embodied energy in the already once processed plastic bags" — is Gabriella Jacobson, a senior at Virginia Tech.
At the conclusion of last year’s inaugural Cradle to Cradle Product Design Challenge, the top prize in the Best Student Design category also went to a bag: Tjitte de Wolff's Venlo Bag, a “glue-less, self-assembling bag that is 100 percent biodegradable." And interesting enough, last year's winning design in the Best Use of Autodesk Fusion 360 category (3-D engineering software giant Autodesk is a presenter of the Challenge in partnership with the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute) was a water-conserving public restroom faucet concept from Virginia Tech student Cole Smith.
Plastic bag floating in oceanOnward Bag was designed in reaction to the staggering number of discarded plastic shopping bags polluting the world's oceans and waterways. (Photo: Andrew/flickr)
Funny how that works out.
As for Onward Bag, it’s a utilitarian and straightforward-looking tech accessory designed to accommodate a couple of laptops along with books, documents and whatnot. As mentioned, Jacobson designed Onward Bag so it can easily be deconstructed at the end of its useful life: The bag’s organic cotton components are compostable while the high density polyethylene (HDPE) padding made from a few dozen compressed plastic shopping bags is, of course, meant to be recycled at a grocery store plastic bag drop-off or another location. The bag’s owner just to needs follow a set of basic directions — and own a pair of scissors — to separate the two fabrics (the HDPE and the cotton canvas) and take it apart for recycling/composting.
It’s a neat and tidy closed-loop cycle in which nothing goes to the landfill. As Jacobson notes in her proposal, the bag, which is also made with biodegradable mineral-based dyes, sports a Reutilization Score of 100 making it eligible for C2C certification.
In addition to boasting serious zero-waste cred, the design of Onward Bag subtly reflects its sea trash-banishing mission. Jacobson explains:
While deciding the overall design and size of the bag I thought about how I was going to include the story of sustainability into the bag in a meaningful manner. I discovered that a pattern pressed into the recycled plastic bags was the best, and most energy efficient, way. The pattern used in this design is based on ocean waves, creating a connection between the user and natural elements.
What’s more, Jacobson, who is currently developing a prototype Onward Bag, envisions all manufacturing and material sourcing to be confined to the United States to minimize the product’s unavoidable carbon footprint. Packaging, naturally, would be on the minimal side and while assembly would ideally take place at a facility supporting workers with disabilities.
Onward Bag, Gabriella JacobsonUnfussy and durable, Onward comes complete with a carrying strap and wave-like pattern. (Illustration: Cradle to Cradle Product Design Challenge
As for Jacobson’s overall business model, it’s nothing short of solid:
The Onward bag adds value to the market in several ways. Consumers can benefit from enhancing their green image. Through design the bag will connect consumers to elements of sustainability, and teach them how easily product disassembly and recycling can be. The bag will also function as a regular tech bag: protecting the consumer’s electronics from falls, hard surfaces, and extreme weather. The interesting design will generate profit from sales through stores and online distributors. The use of recycled material, and reduced manufacturing means the bag will be cheaper to produce and can be priced and sold more competitively than other tech bags. This product will raise overall market demand for recycled bags, which will lead to an increase in recycling programs. Overall this will lead to less plastic waste in our oceans and waterways, and a healthier planet.
In terms of production challenges, Jacobson notes that “the largest challenge I see is that the current recycling system is unable to meet the demands of the public for more sustainable/recyclable materials. We need to create more established and creative recycling channels so that the materials of plastic bottles, plastic bags, etc., can stay within the recycling systems time and time again. There is also a problem of perception: already social media and the Internet is educating the population on the importance of recycling, but we need to begin to look at sustainability not just as a consumers choice but as something we must do to protect our futures.”
She adds: "I see my design education as my secret superpower, in which I am able to enact real positive change in the world around me... It is not enough anymore to 'just design a computer bag'. One must ask, 'why should this computer bag exist?' and 'where in our product system does the life of this computer bag fit?'"
With the goal of “eliminating the concept of ‘waste’ by designing products with materials that may be perpetually cycled to retain their value as nutrients to fuel growing global economies,” this year’s Cradle to Cradle Product Design Challenge attracted submissions from students and young design professionals hailing from 18 countries.
In addition to Onward Bag taking top spot in the Best Student Design category, other winning designs include a cork-lined unisex cycling helmet specifically designed for bike share programs (Best Professional Design); a nifty broom with a detachable bristle head (Best Use of Autodesk Fusion 360); and a public transportation seat made from recycled aluminum, recycled plastic and recycled bamboo plywood (Best Use of Aluminum).
Each of the Challenge's four winners received a $2,000 cash prize. Submissions for the next Cradle to Cradle Product Design Challenge are now being accepted. Have any planet-improving ideas?

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Home Electronics Disposal

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