Sustainable design

Scientists Use ACS Sci-Mind: Case Study to Examine Biopolymers Industry

Read the full post at the ACS Green Chemistry Blog.

The field of Biopolymers is growing rapidly and with that growth comes renewed debate on what exactly constitutes a biopolymer. In addition, in today’s fast-paced chemical industry, it is crucial for a scientist to be able to quickly assess real industry issues and have hands-on experience to be able to solve real-world problems. Sci-Mind™ Biopolymers, launching this October, is bringing  together experts from different backgrounds and opinions to help scientists, engineers and business professionals learn more about the latest developments in the field.

In Sandy’s Wake, BIG U Promises Lower Manhattan Upped Coastal Protection

Read the full post at the Climate Law Blog.

In 2013, President Obama’s Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force devised the Rebuild by Design Competition.  Applicants were to design a “fundable and implementable” infrastructure project to mitigate the dangers of rising sea levels and increasingly frequent extreme weather events in New York and New Jersey coastal regions.  In early June 2014, the United States Department of Housing and Development (HUD) announced the six winners.[1]  The most ambitious of the project winners is the “BIG U,” which would circle around 10 continuous miles of Lower Manhattan shoreline, using a mix of natural and physical infrastructure to protect the city’s most vulnerable stretch of coast.  HUD Phase 1 funding for the project will be $335 million, the largest Rebuild by Design award.  The Lower East Side section of the BIG U promises integrated flood protection and upgraded “social infrastructure,” such as parks and walkways, for an area that suffered extensive damage from Sandy.

3p Weekend: 7 Companies Investing in Sustainable Packaging

Read the full story at Triple Pundit.

With a busy week behind you and the weekend within reach, there’s no shame in taking things a bit easy on Friday afternoon. With this in mind, every Friday TriplePundit will give you a fun, easy read on a topic you care about. So, take a break from those endless email threads, and spend five minutes catching up on the latest trends in sustainability and business.

As waste continues to pile up in our landfills, a growing number of companies are taking a second look at product packaging and devising creative ways to cut back. From mushrooms and potatoes to the quest for a recyclable toothpaste tube, this week we’re tipping our hats to seven companies that are leading the charge in sustainable packaging design.

Coca-Cola crowdsources 8 ways to reinvent recycling

Read the full story in GreenBiz.

After an 11-week challenge in partnership with design and innovation platform OpenIDEO, the eight winning ideas for Coca-Cola Enterprises’ brief to encourage consumer recycling are as simple as an illustrative sticker and as complicated as a dedicated app.

It’s all in a bid to close the recycling gap, helping consumers develop habits and the inclination to recycle when the packaging materials are designed to be used again.

The agony and ecstasy of a life-cycle design mentality

Read the full story in GreenBiz.

Make every decision with the future in mind. In essence, that’s the definition of sustainability. It means doing our part to ensure that our great-grandchildren — and their great-grandchildren — will have the resources they’ll need to maintain a high quality of life.

But for such a simple concept, sustainability requires considerable effort, far more than most people realize. Easy choices are propagated through advertising and media, helping consumers feel good about simple actions such as buying a hybrid SUV or using compostable cups at the coffee shop.

Such actions can offer advantages over traditional alternatives, but they’re just one piece of the sustainability puzzle. Hybrid vehicles do use less fuel per mile, but that benefit can be lost if you drive more because you have an efficient vehicle. Compostable cups are great, but only if they’re actually composted.

To truly understand the pros or cons of our decisions, we must weigh them against other options and measure impact over time. Making sustainable choices requires learning about products — where they come from, how they’re made and where they go when we’re done using them. We have to look holistically at the full life cycle.

Why American Eagle, H&M, Nike and Puma want your hand-me-downs

Read the full story at GreenBiz.

There’s only so far that community or family hand-me-downs can go to address the booming issue of textile waste, so I:Collect (aka I:CO) created a global collection network to keep discarded clothing and shoes out of landfills.

The five-year-old organization, which pioneered its program in Europe and brought it to the United States three years ago, already has forged several high-profile partnerships with the likes of H&M, PUMA, Levi Strauss & Co. and American Eagle Outfitters, which is rolling out collections in all 823 of its stores in the United States and Canada. I:CO is also involved with the zero waste initiative in San Francisco.