The World Steel Association today pointed out that materials such as carbon fiber, aluminum and magnesium give off 5-to-20 times more greenhouse gases during manufacturing than does steel. Therefore, when car manufacturers build these materials instead of steel into their vehicles, they are increasing their carbon footprint from a total life cycle perspective, worldsteel claims.
But my Swiffer-related angst is about something a little more than that. It’s about prioritization and personal motivations. The fact is that while No Impact Man and the Moneyless Man may go to laudable extremes to cut their own carbon footprint, the majority of the world (myself included) are only going to have so much brain capacity, time and motivational energy to devote to personal green lifestyle choices.
If all of the plastic sent to United States landfills each year were diverted to waste-to-energy facilities, it could produce 52 million MWh of electricity annually, according to a report by Columbia University.
Nike’s mission statement is to inspire and innovate on behalf of the athlete. So the sustainability questions for Nike included how to incorporate materials great for performance but that are also regenerative and recyclable; how to transform the supply chain; and finally balance this new mindset with pushing products quickly to market. The cool company in Portland found itself needing to align more closely with agriculture, chemistry, and now must learn from other industries–plus balance a new way of designing and manufacturing products with materials that come from many time zones away.
We frequently expound on why bikes are an energy-friendly and clean form of city transportation, yet rarely get to report on innovations that take leaps in making bicycle production more sustainable and energy-efficient.
The smart cover for the iPad is nice and all. But you know what is even smarter? Making a much cheaper, customized cover yourself. We have eight of the best tutorials from around the web that show you how to craft your own unique case or cover for your iPad with materials from around the house you can re-purpose.
As the small wind industry grows, it’s becoming easier to buy certain models of turbines online and from big-box retailers. For example, Southwest Windpower offers the Skystream 3.7 through Home Depot and now offers the Whisper 100 through Lowe’s. Whisper 100 can produce up to 100 kWh a month in moderate to high winds, according to Southwest Windpower.
Built for the Safe Haven orphanage in Thailand, a bamboo screened bathhouse provides basic sanitation for children of Karen ethnic minority.