The Rozalia Project Wants You to Stop Polluting the Ocean

Read the full story in Boston Magazine.

Whether you know it or not, you’re polluting the ocean.

Each time you wash clothes made with synthetic materials—think polyester, rayon, nylon, and the like—as many as 1,900 tiny microfibers break off, flow through your washing machine drain, and continue on to waterways. Once in the water, they’re ingested by all forms of marine life, threatening both their health and yours. Consider this: In a 2015 study, 67 percent of species purchased from a California fish market were found to contain microfibers, meaning there’s a very real chance that plastic is ending up on your plate.

There’s not conclusive data about what, exactly, microfibers do to human health, but Rachael Miller, co-founder of the New England-based ocean conservation group Rozalia Project, says it’s safe to assume they’re not a desirable part of your seafood spread.

In India, Eco-Friendly Cremation Is Easy — But It’s A Tough Sell

Read the full story from NPR.

Is it possible to shrink the carbon footprint of the dead? An organization wants to persuade Indians to adopt “green” cremations and make an important Hindu death rite more environmentally friendly.

Open-Source, DIY Machine Recycles Household Plastic Into New Products

Read the full story in Shareable.

Plastic has been described as a lot of things, but precious? That’s a new one. However, one team in the Netherlands is working to change how we view plastic, taking it from a waste product that is clogging up our oceans, landfills and animals, and reframing it as a valuable resource.

Precious Plastic brings plastic recycling down to the household level by putting recycling tools into the hands of everyday people rather than just industry giants. As the website states, you can create “your own little plastic recycling workshop.”

The Internet at the eco-village: Performing sustainability in the twenty-first century

Download the paper.

Is the digital infrastructure and its footprint an ideological blind spot for recently emerging ecological communities, including eco-villages? This paper examines how a group of people who are concerned with environmental issues such as peak oil and climate change are orchestrating a transition toward a more sustainable and resilient way of living. We studied a Swedish eco-village, considering how computing in this community contributes to defining what alternative ways of living might look like in the twenty-first century. Drawing on a social-ecological perspective, the analysis illustrates, on the one hand, that the Internet, along with the digital devices we use to access it, capitalizes and mobilizes values, knowledge and social relationships that in turn enhance resilience in the eco-village. On the other hand, the analysis shows that an explicit focus on ecological values is not sufficient for a community of individuals to significantly transform Internet use to conform to ecological ideals. This work contributes to a deeper understanding of the imbrication of social technologies with practices that are oriented to perform sustainable and resilient ways of living.

Taking the Stigma Out of Buying Used Electronics

Read the full story in the New York Times.

GameStop’s refurbishment of video game consoles underlines how a used electronic sold by a reputable brand can often be as good as buying new. While a used product may lack the original packaging or there might be some scuffs on it, the quality of many of the devices remains high and people who buy the gadgets do the world a favor by putting more use into the energy, metals, plastics and human labor invested in creating the product, said Carole Mars, the senior research lead for the Sustainability Consortium, which studies the sustainability of consumer goods.

Baths to washing machines: welcome to the (almost) waterless home of the future

Read the full story in The Guardian.

Domestic products that eliminate the need for water could mean you’ll never have to get wet in the bath or boil an egg again.

How to Travel the Earth And Protect It, Too

Read the full story in the New York Times.

So you want to see the world without messing it up? There’s no easy way to do that. Simply going on a trip makes you something of a carbon hog, unless you’re planning to walk, bicycle or sail to your destination. That said, there are ways to make your trip as harmonious with the earth as possible. To give you guidance, we have bypassed the thicket of greenwashing prevalent in travel marketing, and instead asked experts at leading environmental groups how they approach travel. Based on their advice, we’ve put together a guide to traveling while keeping your footprint light.