First Ever Solar Sidewalk Installed

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You no doubt have seen or own solar-powered ambient lights for your garden and/or driveway. Those are cool and all, but they aren’t solar-powered sidewalk cool. That title belongs to the students at George Washington University, who recently installed a 100-square-foot stretch of solar-sidewalk covered entirely in solar panels. How’s that for a recruiting tool? The solar panels will collect power during the day, and convert it into electricity for the 470 kilowatt-hours of electricity needed to light the sidewalk up at night. The 450 LED lights inside the panels are sure to create an awesome light show after sundown…. read more

9 Storey Building Made From Plastic Bottles

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In mid 2011 in Taipei, the capital city of Taiwan, there was an unusual building built. The EcoArk Pavilion was built out of 1.5 million recycled plastic bottles. The nine storey tall structure was built from Polli-bricks. Polli-bricks are a revolutionary building material made from 100% recycled Polyethylene Terephthalate Polymer. It is translucent, naturally insulated, and durable. The bricks are a 3-D honeycomb of interlocking bottles composed from recycled plastic bottles.  The Polli-brick panel can sustain lateral force up to 1.5 times the worst hurricane recorded without any damage. Polli-brick can be integrated with solar powered LED lights. These embedded solar powered… read more

Manhole Covers Will Soon Charge Your Car

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New York, the city where literally everything cool, fascinating, and/or groundbreaking happens (Hollywood told me, so it must be true), has gone ahead and stepped up their reputation as innovators by installing new eco-friendly technology for electric vehicles. The innovation in question is high-tech manhole covers that wirelessly charge your car while it sits parked above them. The pilot program for this technology is slated to begin in New York next year. Depending on its success and dependability, it could see a major rollout, possibly even nationwide. HEVO, a New York city startup company, came up with the idea and is… read more

World’s First Floating Bicycle Roundabout

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Oh, Netherlands, what isn’t there to love about you? Sure, you’ve got freezing winters, scary-high mountains, and relative isolation from the rest of the world, but aside from that, you’re pretty amazing. What’s that? You’ve just created and built the world’s first floating bicycle roundabout? Why shucks, you’re making it harder and harder for me to justify not taking up permanent residence (side note: that is a total jk. I very much like the U.S., and if anything, I’d move to Australia or New Zealand, but I digress). Yes, The Netherlands, famous for all sorts of environmental breakthroughs and technologies,… read more

Solar-Powered Flatpack Refugee Housing from IKEA

Solar-Powered Flatpack Refugee Housing from IKEA

Most widely known as the purveyor of stylish home furnishings that are shipped flat and assembled at home, IKEA is pioneering another type of product: refugee housing. Prototypes of IKEA’s Refugee Housing Units (RHU) offer 18 square meters of living space for refugees, in the shape of lightweight plastic panels attached to a steel pole frame, which comes in the iconic flatpack format that the furniture giant is known for. The huts include a top that can absorb the sun’s heat during the day and radiate it to the inside space at night, and a small modular solar panel capable… read more

Purina Makes Eco-Friendly Pet Food Packaging

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These days, more and more people, companies, and organizations are doing their part to make the world a better place. Why should a beloved pet food maker be any different? Purina, one of the largest manufacturers and distributors of pet food, made headlines when they came out with their ‘Purina ONE’ brand of pet food. It’s eco-friendly, 100% recyclable, and costs the company less to make than their regular packaging. Take a look: What do you think? Will this make you more or less likely to purchase from Purina in the future?

The World’s First Awesome Trash Incinerator

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Denmark. Home of beautiful landscapes, freezing temperatures, awesome people, and now the world’s most awesome trash incinerator. Going way above and beyond the call of duty, they’re creating an incinerator complete with an epic light show, a ski slope, futuristic-aesthetics, and lasers that will project a pie chart of the plant’s fossil-fuel quota into the night sky. Architecture firms of the world, take note–this is how you build things.  In a design that makes certain that no square footage will go to waste while simultaneously making the world of ecology fun and hip again, this is likely to take the… read more

Future Student Housing Is A “Hobbit Hut”

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Tired of the boring old dorm complex most universities have adopted? Looking to spice up your student years and hit the books in style? Is sustainability something that keeps you up at night? Then boy, this housing concept may be the stuff for you. A 33-square-foot hut developed by Swedish firm Tengbom Architects has been generating buzz this past week. It has about 5 different housing aspects built into its tiny frame, though the question on everyone’s mind is: will it actually work? The concept was initially created for the students at the University of Lund. Everything inside either folds,… read more

The Living Cube

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Till Konneker rented a studio apartment that didn’t have any built-in storage, which was of little concern to him, as he’d already made plans to transform the place into a livable den. Putting his creativity to work, Konneker designed and built “The Living Cube” to hold his storage items, as well as his television, books, media, and more. You can message Konneker at his website if you’d like the blueprints to make your own, or you can purchase a pre-built cube from his online store.   We’re in love with Konneker’s space-saving design, and his terrific use of minimalism. What… read more

Driving Options For All

The Wheel Chair Accessible Car

For most wheelchair users a modified vehicle costing up to $80,000 is their only option. Such financial challenges have barred many wheelchair users from driving a car at all, and eco-friendly transport was surely out of the question. Then along came the Kenguru, the first low-speed electric vehicle designed specifically for wheelchair users. The Kenguru (pronounced “kangaroo”) can accommodate one passenger seated in his or her wheelchair for a range of up to 60 miles. The Kenguru has only a single door to the rear of the vehicle for direct wheelchair access. It’s opened by remote control. Inside the driver… read more