Read the full story in HuffPost Green.
Most of us see old milk jugs as something for the recycle bin (or, in the case of one blogger, the makings of a D.I.Y. Storm Trooper helmet). But for toy maker Green Toys, the plastic jugs become the start of something fun: toys.
Green Toys’ line — which ranges from kitchen sets to vehicles piloted by little bears — is made completely from recycled milk jugs. To date, the company has recycled over 24,000,000 jugs. The plastic that milk jugs are made out of is called high-density polyethylene. Since this type of plastic is used for food storage, it is also safe for children. Green Toys products pass several safety tests, including the FDA regulation for food contact.
Read the full story in Fast Company.
Strapped to the bottom of your car like a colostomy bag full of dinosaur goo, oil filters are disgusting. Worse? They’re biohazards. Because they’re disposable, Americans go through Americans throw out more than 400 million oil filters every year, each still containing between 4 and 8 ounces of dirty oil that can leech into the soil or bleed into our water supply. “Oil filters are just biological nightmares,” says Dan Harden, president and principal designer of Whipsaw, a Silicon Valley-based industrial design and engineering firm.
The Hubb Lifetime Oil Filter is something different. Designed and engineered for mass production by Whipsaw based upon technology created by Hubb, the Lifetime Oil Filter is a stainless steel oil filter that you never have to throw out. It doubles the amount of time you can go between oil changes by maximizing both filter size and filtration efficiency, and it improves any car’s fuel efficiency by a minimum of 2%, according to Whipsaw. All with a sleek industrial design that looks like someone just broke a piece off a race car, and dropped it in your engine.
Read the full story in the Champaign-Urbana News-Gazette.
A company plans is rolling out a new line of tissues and paper towels this month that incorporates wheat straw and bamboo, which it hopes will provide a rapidly renewable and environmentally friendly source of fiber for its products while giving farmers a new market for what remains after the grain is harvested.
Read the full post at Consumerist.
If you see a product tagged with a “sustainability leaders” badge on the Walmart website, you might think this is an indication that this item is more environmentally friendly than others. And you might be correct; but you might also be mistaken. Because the truth is that this badge has virtually nothing to do with the product being advertised.
In a piece for Grist.org, co-director of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance Stacy Mitchell cites the example of this 150′ roll of bubble wrap that is tagged with the sustainability badge.
Given the availability of more sustainable and eco-friendly packaging options, it seems odd that this particular product, which doesn’t appear to be substantially different from other bubble wraps, would be singled out for this label.
But the key to that answer lies in the full wording of the badge: “made by Sustainability Leaders.” (That’s not a typo. The actual design of the badge has “made by” in lower case.) It’s not about the product, but about the company that makes the product.
Read the full story in Gizmodo.
Once the use of toxic mercury in household batteries was eliminated a couple of decades ago, it finally became safe to just toss dead AAs in the trash. But if deep down you actually felt guilty about not being able to recycle them, Energizer’s here to help your conscious with its new EcoAdvanced AAs made with four percent recycled battery material.
Read the full story from Purdue University.
A new catalytic process is able to convert what was once considered biomass waste into lucrative chemical products that can be used in fragrances, flavorings or to create high-octane fuel for racecars and jets.
A team of researchers from Purdue University’s Center for Direct Catalytic Conversion of Biomass to Biofuels, or C3Bio, has developed a process that uses a chemical catalyst and heat to spur reactions that convert lignin into valuable chemical commodities. Lignin is a tough and highly complex molecule that gives the plant cell wall its rigid structure.
Mahdi Abu-Omar, the R.B. Wetherill Professor of Chemistry and Professor of Chemical Engineering and associate director of C3Bio, led the team.