Waste

About: <h1>Waste, refuse, recycle: towards a circulair economy</h1> <p>Waste is something unwanted or are materials we cannot use anymore. Waste is any material or product which is worthless, defect or of any use. In the near past it had hardly any economic value anymore but nowadays there are plenty people and organisations which are recycling waste and make from the regained parts again valuable material for reuse. The Circular Economy at work.</p> <p>Even better is a zero waste environment. That means no waste send to landfills. A zero waste lifestyle means: using less resources, eating healthier, saving money and less negative impact on the environment. Go for the 5 R&rsquo;s: refuse, reduce, reuse, recycle and rot.</p> <p>By reducing waste we can make a big difference. If there was an urge to come up with waste reduction ideas and sustainable recycle solutions and share these topics globally it&rsquo;s now! WhatsOrb Global Sustainability X-change Platform is for you, storytellers and influencers to write about waste reduction your experiences and expectations for the future at home and globally.&nbsp;</p> <p>Global Sustainability X-change, that&rsquo;s what you can do together with WhatsOrb.&nbsp;<a href="https://www.whatsorb.com/newsletter/your-shared-sustainable-ideas-make-our-earth-a-better-place">What's in for me?</a></p>
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Dumpster Diving: Hobby Which Combats Food Waste
Dumpster diving. The term alone is guaranteed to put a smile on your face - whether it is one of actual enjoyment or disbelief, I am not sure.  Dumpster Diving: Food Perfectly Good Thrown Away Yet this phenomenon, where people sometimes quite literally ‘dive’ in the dumpsters in their neighborhood to hunt for thrown-away treasures, is seeing an uptake after some of its most famous proponents recently made headlines again. When was the dumpster invented? The word "dumpster", first used commercially in 1936, came from the Dempster-Dumpster system of mechanically loading the contents of standardized containers onto garbage trucks, which was patented by Dempster Brothers in 1935. Recommended:  Vegan Food You Need To Develop Your Muscles: Protein Power With the loot varying from hundreds of left-over desserts to household equipment and sometimes even cash, it is not hard to see why some have turned this somewhat peculiar hobby into a way of life. A fact is that we, as the collective world population, are throwing away too many perfectly good things. From food to clothes and from electronics to toys: consumerism has taken a turn for the worse, now that we discard items once we are ‘done’ with them, rather than after they have been used thoroughly. {youtube}                                                    Dumpster diving: free food, free flowers, free fun  Take the issue of food waste. Every year, an average of one-third of the food that is produced in the world for human consumption is wasted. Simply thrown away. I don’t want to risk sounding too condescending, but the old mom-trick is painfully relevant here: "You should eat your dinner, poor children in Africa would kill for it."   And while it is a cliche of the worst kind, it, unfortunately, rings true. While some of us are having the luxury of discarding perfectly good food items, others are starving. The world’s wealth has always been distributed unequally - but so has the food supply. The billions and billions worth of food thrown out in the western world, simply because it is a day past the expiration date, is inexcusable.   Recommended:  Super Food Designed To Match Your Genome: Star Trek Reality Dumpsters? Can you take stuff from it? Is Dumpster Diving Illegal? It is generally considered legal for people to rummage through trash that has been left in a public area such as a curb for pickup. Once the garbage is placed in such a place, the person has basically forfeited their ownership rights to the items, as the property is now in the public domain Dumpster Diving: 'So Many People Are Struggling To Get By' Coming back to dumpster diving. A lot of people are claiming that they are doing it as a way of showing their outrage with consumerism and waste. Others just say that it is fun and addictive. There’s this Dutch guy, Theo Vreugdenhill, who claims that he merely tries to ' save perfectly good food from the trash.'  As he says, “I simply cannot stand by idly if good food is thrown away, only because there is a tiny dent in it, happens to be slightly damaged, or is nearing its expiration date. Especially when I look around and see how many people are struggling to get by. ” He is not doing it for himself, quite the contrary. He is a preacher in a local church and takes two full crates with him to service on Sunday, for those who are unable to provide in their own needs. The products that he finds? Quite diverse, actually: from cheese to beer, butter, yogurt, fruit drinks, feta cheese, salads, and fruit. Although he has also come across perfectly good vacuum cleaners and laptops in the past, which just goes to show how careless we are in what we throw away. Not everything can be found in the dumpster: most divers will agree that it is mostly perishable items, such as vegetables, fruit, and bread. So you probably should not entirely be ready to give up the day job and spent your days as a full-time dumpster diver: products like rice, peanut butter, soda, dish soap, and detergent are pretty hard to come by.   Would you still want to try and find your inner dumpster diver and fill your fridge with leftovers? Then you can quite literally take the dive and plunge in the bins headfirst, although you could also try to talk to some shop owners yourself. Especially if your good cause stretches beyond feeding your immediate family, they might be very willing to hold on to that day’s excess for you and hand it to you in a bag instead of making you scour for it. What is a freegan lifestyle? Freeganism is a practice and ideology of limited participation in the conventional economy and minimal consumption of resources, particularly through recovering wasted goods like food through dumpster diving. The word 'freegan' is a portmanteau of 'free' and 'vegan'. Dumpster Diving. Hints, Shared By Experienced Dumpster Divers: Do not wear your Sunday’s best for the dumpster diving part - while it is not nearly as gross as many people suspect, it is not something that you want to do in your favorite shirt and jeans either. Only go dumpster diving at night, preferably after the shops are closed. This way, you avoid awkward situations with shoppers walking out of the store while you are digging around in the trash. Do not climb any fences or force open gates when dumpster diving. Trespassing is not appreciated nor legal, so stay off private property. Stick to the curb-side. Always clean up after yourself. Leaving behind a mess of torn apart bags and scattered trash is bad taste and will most likely set some bad blood. Be a good neighbor and make sure that the people whose trash you are raiding do not mind. Be open about what it is that you are doing: you might get some funny looks from passerby's, who might even think of you as some homeless person. Talk to people who spotted you and explain what you are doing and what you have found.   Very practical: use a headlight when dumpster diving, so that you can freely use your hands while digging; and make sure to bring plenty of bags and boxes and, preferably, a way of transporting your newfound treasures. Recommended:  Superfood! Murnong Gets Back To Our Plates: Australia Not quite ready to go out and dig in your community’s trash bins yet? Then you can do other things to cut back on your food waste. To actively encourage you to do so, you will be happy to find that there are quite a few apps that remind you to do so and give helpful hints. One of those apps is Too Good To Go , designed explicitly for bargain hunters: businesses can post their leftovers in the app at steep discounts (adding up to at least 50-75%), after which shoppers can come in to collect the relatively fresh food at a great price.   Recommended:  Helpful tools and supplies for Dumpster Divers Combat Food Waste: Apps Another popular app is Olio , which allows you to share food with your local community. Handy if you are going on holiday, for instance. Your leftover food can be listed, along with a preferred pick-up point and pick-up time, and people in your community will be able to take it off your hands.   Unsung kind of does the same as Olio, except that it works with volunteers, in a charitable set-up. After posting your ‘offer,’ one of the Unsung volunteers will come to pick it up and deliver it to a local food bank or homeless shelter. The volunteers are the delivery guys who pick up your food and drop it off with people who need it the most. Finally, Eat Me prevents your food from going bad: it creates a timer for all the food that you have in your fridge. Scan the food as you put it in the refrigerator, after which it will alert you if it is about to go bad. A fun fact: this app was the idea of two teenage girls, who are still involved in the company. Look, I don’t care if you are digging through trashcans or donating your leftovers through one of the apps listed above. The essence remains the same: avoiding a situation where you have to throw away food while someone else in your community might be going hungry. And that is something worth fighting - or dumpster diving - for. By: Metro/Sharai Hoekema Original article in Dutch  Before you go! Recommended:  Getting Healthier By Eating Sustainable Food And Taking Exercise Did you find this an interesting article, or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write your article about food? Click on  'Register'  or push the button 'Write An Article' on the  'HomePage.'
Dumpster diving. The term alone is guaranteed to put a smile on your face - whether it is one of actual enjoyment or disbelief, I am not sure.  Dumpster Diving: Food Perfectly Good Thrown Away Yet this phenomenon, where people sometimes quite literally ‘dive’ in the dumpsters in their neighborhood to hunt for thrown-away treasures, is seeing an uptake after some of its most famous proponents recently made headlines again. When was the dumpster invented? The word "dumpster", first used commercially in 1936, came from the Dempster-Dumpster system of mechanically loading the contents of standardized containers onto garbage trucks, which was patented by Dempster Brothers in 1935. Recommended:  Vegan Food You Need To Develop Your Muscles: Protein Power With the loot varying from hundreds of left-over desserts to household equipment and sometimes even cash, it is not hard to see why some have turned this somewhat peculiar hobby into a way of life. A fact is that we, as the collective world population, are throwing away too many perfectly good things. From food to clothes and from electronics to toys: consumerism has taken a turn for the worse, now that we discard items once we are ‘done’ with them, rather than after they have been used thoroughly. {youtube}                                                    Dumpster diving: free food, free flowers, free fun  Take the issue of food waste. Every year, an average of one-third of the food that is produced in the world for human consumption is wasted. Simply thrown away. I don’t want to risk sounding too condescending, but the old mom-trick is painfully relevant here: "You should eat your dinner, poor children in Africa would kill for it."   And while it is a cliche of the worst kind, it, unfortunately, rings true. While some of us are having the luxury of discarding perfectly good food items, others are starving. The world’s wealth has always been distributed unequally - but so has the food supply. The billions and billions worth of food thrown out in the western world, simply because it is a day past the expiration date, is inexcusable.   Recommended:  Super Food Designed To Match Your Genome: Star Trek Reality Dumpsters? Can you take stuff from it? Is Dumpster Diving Illegal? It is generally considered legal for people to rummage through trash that has been left in a public area such as a curb for pickup. Once the garbage is placed in such a place, the person has basically forfeited their ownership rights to the items, as the property is now in the public domain Dumpster Diving: 'So Many People Are Struggling To Get By' Coming back to dumpster diving. A lot of people are claiming that they are doing it as a way of showing their outrage with consumerism and waste. Others just say that it is fun and addictive. There’s this Dutch guy, Theo Vreugdenhill, who claims that he merely tries to ' save perfectly good food from the trash.'  As he says, “I simply cannot stand by idly if good food is thrown away, only because there is a tiny dent in it, happens to be slightly damaged, or is nearing its expiration date. Especially when I look around and see how many people are struggling to get by. ” He is not doing it for himself, quite the contrary. He is a preacher in a local church and takes two full crates with him to service on Sunday, for those who are unable to provide in their own needs. The products that he finds? Quite diverse, actually: from cheese to beer, butter, yogurt, fruit drinks, feta cheese, salads, and fruit. Although he has also come across perfectly good vacuum cleaners and laptops in the past, which just goes to show how careless we are in what we throw away. Not everything can be found in the dumpster: most divers will agree that it is mostly perishable items, such as vegetables, fruit, and bread. So you probably should not entirely be ready to give up the day job and spent your days as a full-time dumpster diver: products like rice, peanut butter, soda, dish soap, and detergent are pretty hard to come by.   Would you still want to try and find your inner dumpster diver and fill your fridge with leftovers? Then you can quite literally take the dive and plunge in the bins headfirst, although you could also try to talk to some shop owners yourself. Especially if your good cause stretches beyond feeding your immediate family, they might be very willing to hold on to that day’s excess for you and hand it to you in a bag instead of making you scour for it. What is a freegan lifestyle? Freeganism is a practice and ideology of limited participation in the conventional economy and minimal consumption of resources, particularly through recovering wasted goods like food through dumpster diving. The word 'freegan' is a portmanteau of 'free' and 'vegan'. Dumpster Diving. Hints, Shared By Experienced Dumpster Divers: Do not wear your Sunday’s best for the dumpster diving part - while it is not nearly as gross as many people suspect, it is not something that you want to do in your favorite shirt and jeans either. Only go dumpster diving at night, preferably after the shops are closed. This way, you avoid awkward situations with shoppers walking out of the store while you are digging around in the trash. Do not climb any fences or force open gates when dumpster diving. Trespassing is not appreciated nor legal, so stay off private property. Stick to the curb-side. Always clean up after yourself. Leaving behind a mess of torn apart bags and scattered trash is bad taste and will most likely set some bad blood. Be a good neighbor and make sure that the people whose trash you are raiding do not mind. Be open about what it is that you are doing: you might get some funny looks from passerby's, who might even think of you as some homeless person. Talk to people who spotted you and explain what you are doing and what you have found.   Very practical: use a headlight when dumpster diving, so that you can freely use your hands while digging; and make sure to bring plenty of bags and boxes and, preferably, a way of transporting your newfound treasures. Recommended:  Superfood! Murnong Gets Back To Our Plates: Australia Not quite ready to go out and dig in your community’s trash bins yet? Then you can do other things to cut back on your food waste. To actively encourage you to do so, you will be happy to find that there are quite a few apps that remind you to do so and give helpful hints. One of those apps is Too Good To Go , designed explicitly for bargain hunters: businesses can post their leftovers in the app at steep discounts (adding up to at least 50-75%), after which shoppers can come in to collect the relatively fresh food at a great price.   Recommended:  Helpful tools and supplies for Dumpster Divers Combat Food Waste: Apps Another popular app is Olio , which allows you to share food with your local community. Handy if you are going on holiday, for instance. Your leftover food can be listed, along with a preferred pick-up point and pick-up time, and people in your community will be able to take it off your hands.   Unsung kind of does the same as Olio, except that it works with volunteers, in a charitable set-up. After posting your ‘offer,’ one of the Unsung volunteers will come to pick it up and deliver it to a local food bank or homeless shelter. The volunteers are the delivery guys who pick up your food and drop it off with people who need it the most. Finally, Eat Me prevents your food from going bad: it creates a timer for all the food that you have in your fridge. Scan the food as you put it in the refrigerator, after which it will alert you if it is about to go bad. A fun fact: this app was the idea of two teenage girls, who are still involved in the company. Look, I don’t care if you are digging through trashcans or donating your leftovers through one of the apps listed above. The essence remains the same: avoiding a situation where you have to throw away food while someone else in your community might be going hungry. And that is something worth fighting - or dumpster diving - for. By: Metro/Sharai Hoekema Original article in Dutch  Before you go! Recommended:  Getting Healthier By Eating Sustainable Food And Taking Exercise Did you find this an interesting article, or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write your article about food? Click on  'Register'  or push the button 'Write An Article' on the  'HomePage.'
Dumpster Diving: Hobby Which Combats Food Waste
Dumpster Diving: Hobby Which Combats Food Waste
The Fourth Of July. What About The Fireworks?
The Fourth of July—also known as Independence Day or July 4th—has been a federal holiday in the United States since 1941. Festivities ranging from fireworks, parades and concerts to more casual family gatherings and barbecues. The Fourth Of July. History The tradition of Independence Day celebrations goes back to the 18th century and the American Revolution. On July 2nd, 1776, the Continental Congress voted in favor of independence, and two days later delegates from the 13 colonies adopted the Declaration of Independence, a historic document drafted by Thomas Jefferson. From 1776 to the present day, July 4th has been celebrated as the birth of American independence. Fireworks: Is It Still Ok? Fireworks are mesmerizing, dreamy, and very romantic. But at the same time, they are not exactly great for the environment. Whether you opt for looking out from behind the relative safety of your window, gawking at the professional show amidst thousands of others in a crowded square.  Recommended:  India’s CO2, Pollution, Artificial Rain: How To Survive? Fireworks, Made in China And while it will not be a thing most of us are wanting to hear about fireworks, because 'it is tradition and a symbolic way of celebrating the fourth of July' Well, just hear me out if you want to optimize the number of future celebrations will get to enjoy it as well. Where did fireworks originally come from? Some think that fireworks first originated in China around 2,000 years ago. The most popular legend has it that fireworks were discovered by accident when a Chinese cook working in a field kitchen happened to mix charcoal, sulphur and saltpeter (which were all common kitchen items at the time). The fireworks colorful, artistic lights flickering in the sky, accompanied by rhythmic booms reverberating in our hearts, will fill us with joy. With happy and perhaps not so happy memories. It will fill us with love and with good intentions.  And with harmful particulates and elements. {youtube}                                                       Fourth of July Fireworks NYC 2019 from Brooklyn Bridge Park                                                            U nfortunately, all the things that make fireworks so pretty and attractive are exactly those things that make them so bad for us. Gunpowder will help it lift off and reach the sky. Metallic compounds give it its gorgeous colors. All of these elements are made up of carcinogenic and hormone-disrupting substances, that can make its way into our soil, air, and water. Recommended:  Climate Change Efforts On Reducing CO2 Why Not Recycle It? Fireworks and it's 'dirty' chemistry How are fireworks produced? When a firework explodes mid-air thanks to the bursting charge and the black powder, the gas and the heat that are produced ignite the stars. The atoms of the metal powders in the stars absorb that heat energy and their electrons rearrange from their lower-energy ground state to a higher-energy 'excited' state Some of those really bad guys that are present in commonly used fireworks include perchlorates. These are responsible for the explosion, as they feed oxygen in the charcoal-sulfur fuel that powers up the explosive, serving as the so-called oxidizers. The pyrotechnics industry is particularly looking at two types of perchlorates for this: potassium perchlorate and ammonium perchlorate.   Fancy names for something so inherently bad, as they can cause all kind of health problems, most significantly hypothyroidism: an illness that limits the thyroid’s ability to ingest iodine, which will lead to a lack of hormones in the human body - hindering all kind of bodily functions and potentially giving rise to all kind of disorders, especially in children.   Recommended:  Fossil Fuel Will Dominate Energy Use Through 2050: Globally Fireworks have bad effects on children's health Then there are particulates in fireworks. These can be found in the smoke resulting from the burned charcoal and sulfur and will make their way to our lungs. This could pose an instant danger for those suffering from asthma-related diseases. Merely looking at an air-quality monitor spiking out in the hours after a fireworks show should get you concerned about the air that you are breathing.   Do fireworks make it rain? Nonetheless, fireworks are not found to be an actual cause for rain. The concentration of chemicals during even the busiest of firework nights alone are not enough to open the floodgates of the sky. The problem with the argument is that fireworks won't go high enough to introduce the particles into the clouds Fireworks which have been exploded There are even more rather ominous-sounding elements that can be found in your firecrackers, flares, and Roman candles. Strontium, aluminum, copper, barium, rubidium, cadmium: terms that you might remember from your chem class as being rather delicate and dangerous substances, yet that are freely used to color our fireworks. All of them carry nasty side-effects when ingested in high doses, including impairment of bone growth, mental disorders, Alzheimer’s, cancer, skin diseases, paralysis, heart problems, and - in the worst case - death.   Is the smoke from fireworks toxic? Depending on the effect sought, fireworks produce smoke and dust that contain various heavy metals, sulfur-coal compounds, and other noxious chemicals. Barium, for instance, is used to produce brilliant green colors in fireworks displays, despite Fireworks: You Will Be Breathing Highly Toxic Particles Some will object at this point, claiming that it cannot be that bad. Fireworks are, after all, not an everyday event (that is unless you work in Disney World). And are those one or two days per year that we shoot all kinds of garbage up in the atmosphere really something worth worrying over? Especially as the industrial sector keeps on regurgitating substances that are seemingly identical on a daily basis?   Admittedly, the chances of attracting any of the diseases given above for the volumes going up in the air on the fourth of July are so small that they could be considered insignificant. Yet we should not just think about ourselves but consider the impact on our environment as well. Some cities will experience more smog and air pollution on the fourth of July alone than in the previous year as a whole. That is a fact.   Recommended:  Sustainable Polluting Eating Tree Is Cleaning Cities Air Fireworks, distribution case These toxins will get in the atmosphere, in the soil, in the water. Aquatic life will suffer, cows eating polluted grass will pass it on to us through our hamburgers. With every piece of firework launched, toxic rain will fall down on our lands that will impact all living beings. And the worst part? The majority of these chemicals are persistent, which means that they will not break down in nature, but stay in our ecosystems indefinitely.   Are fireworks bad for animals? Research studies show that the loud sounds of fireworks do have an adverse effect on wild animals as well as domestic animals. ... This fear often causes them to flee into roadways which results in more vehicle damage (from large animals such as deer) and an increase in dead animals. And no, there has not been enough research performed yet to be able to state with certainty that fireworks do actually pose an instant, immediate danger to us and the world around us. But the evidence as given above will, if anything, make it perfectly clear that it cannot possibly be any good.   Only clinging onto it for the sake of tradition, would be silly - and hugely negligent. Recommended:  How An Artificial Leaf Sucks CO2 And Makes Fuel. Amazing! Did you find this an interesting article or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write your own article about 'fireworks'? Click on  'Register'  or push the button 'Write An Article' on the  'HomePage'
The Fourth of July—also known as Independence Day or July 4th—has been a federal holiday in the United States since 1941. Festivities ranging from fireworks, parades and concerts to more casual family gatherings and barbecues. The Fourth Of July. History The tradition of Independence Day celebrations goes back to the 18th century and the American Revolution. On July 2nd, 1776, the Continental Congress voted in favor of independence, and two days later delegates from the 13 colonies adopted the Declaration of Independence, a historic document drafted by Thomas Jefferson. From 1776 to the present day, July 4th has been celebrated as the birth of American independence. Fireworks: Is It Still Ok? Fireworks are mesmerizing, dreamy, and very romantic. But at the same time, they are not exactly great for the environment. Whether you opt for looking out from behind the relative safety of your window, gawking at the professional show amidst thousands of others in a crowded square.  Recommended:  India’s CO2, Pollution, Artificial Rain: How To Survive? Fireworks, Made in China And while it will not be a thing most of us are wanting to hear about fireworks, because 'it is tradition and a symbolic way of celebrating the fourth of July' Well, just hear me out if you want to optimize the number of future celebrations will get to enjoy it as well. Where did fireworks originally come from? Some think that fireworks first originated in China around 2,000 years ago. The most popular legend has it that fireworks were discovered by accident when a Chinese cook working in a field kitchen happened to mix charcoal, sulphur and saltpeter (which were all common kitchen items at the time). The fireworks colorful, artistic lights flickering in the sky, accompanied by rhythmic booms reverberating in our hearts, will fill us with joy. With happy and perhaps not so happy memories. It will fill us with love and with good intentions.  And with harmful particulates and elements. {youtube}                                                       Fourth of July Fireworks NYC 2019 from Brooklyn Bridge Park                                                            U nfortunately, all the things that make fireworks so pretty and attractive are exactly those things that make them so bad for us. Gunpowder will help it lift off and reach the sky. Metallic compounds give it its gorgeous colors. All of these elements are made up of carcinogenic and hormone-disrupting substances, that can make its way into our soil, air, and water. Recommended:  Climate Change Efforts On Reducing CO2 Why Not Recycle It? Fireworks and it's 'dirty' chemistry How are fireworks produced? When a firework explodes mid-air thanks to the bursting charge and the black powder, the gas and the heat that are produced ignite the stars. The atoms of the metal powders in the stars absorb that heat energy and their electrons rearrange from their lower-energy ground state to a higher-energy 'excited' state Some of those really bad guys that are present in commonly used fireworks include perchlorates. These are responsible for the explosion, as they feed oxygen in the charcoal-sulfur fuel that powers up the explosive, serving as the so-called oxidizers. The pyrotechnics industry is particularly looking at two types of perchlorates for this: potassium perchlorate and ammonium perchlorate.   Fancy names for something so inherently bad, as they can cause all kind of health problems, most significantly hypothyroidism: an illness that limits the thyroid’s ability to ingest iodine, which will lead to a lack of hormones in the human body - hindering all kind of bodily functions and potentially giving rise to all kind of disorders, especially in children.   Recommended:  Fossil Fuel Will Dominate Energy Use Through 2050: Globally Fireworks have bad effects on children's health Then there are particulates in fireworks. These can be found in the smoke resulting from the burned charcoal and sulfur and will make their way to our lungs. This could pose an instant danger for those suffering from asthma-related diseases. Merely looking at an air-quality monitor spiking out in the hours after a fireworks show should get you concerned about the air that you are breathing.   Do fireworks make it rain? Nonetheless, fireworks are not found to be an actual cause for rain. The concentration of chemicals during even the busiest of firework nights alone are not enough to open the floodgates of the sky. The problem with the argument is that fireworks won't go high enough to introduce the particles into the clouds Fireworks which have been exploded There are even more rather ominous-sounding elements that can be found in your firecrackers, flares, and Roman candles. Strontium, aluminum, copper, barium, rubidium, cadmium: terms that you might remember from your chem class as being rather delicate and dangerous substances, yet that are freely used to color our fireworks. All of them carry nasty side-effects when ingested in high doses, including impairment of bone growth, mental disorders, Alzheimer’s, cancer, skin diseases, paralysis, heart problems, and - in the worst case - death.   Is the smoke from fireworks toxic? Depending on the effect sought, fireworks produce smoke and dust that contain various heavy metals, sulfur-coal compounds, and other noxious chemicals. Barium, for instance, is used to produce brilliant green colors in fireworks displays, despite Fireworks: You Will Be Breathing Highly Toxic Particles Some will object at this point, claiming that it cannot be that bad. Fireworks are, after all, not an everyday event (that is unless you work in Disney World). And are those one or two days per year that we shoot all kinds of garbage up in the atmosphere really something worth worrying over? Especially as the industrial sector keeps on regurgitating substances that are seemingly identical on a daily basis?   Admittedly, the chances of attracting any of the diseases given above for the volumes going up in the air on the fourth of July are so small that they could be considered insignificant. Yet we should not just think about ourselves but consider the impact on our environment as well. Some cities will experience more smog and air pollution on the fourth of July alone than in the previous year as a whole. That is a fact.   Recommended:  Sustainable Polluting Eating Tree Is Cleaning Cities Air Fireworks, distribution case These toxins will get in the atmosphere, in the soil, in the water. Aquatic life will suffer, cows eating polluted grass will pass it on to us through our hamburgers. With every piece of firework launched, toxic rain will fall down on our lands that will impact all living beings. And the worst part? The majority of these chemicals are persistent, which means that they will not break down in nature, but stay in our ecosystems indefinitely.   Are fireworks bad for animals? Research studies show that the loud sounds of fireworks do have an adverse effect on wild animals as well as domestic animals. ... This fear often causes them to flee into roadways which results in more vehicle damage (from large animals such as deer) and an increase in dead animals. And no, there has not been enough research performed yet to be able to state with certainty that fireworks do actually pose an instant, immediate danger to us and the world around us. But the evidence as given above will, if anything, make it perfectly clear that it cannot possibly be any good.   Only clinging onto it for the sake of tradition, would be silly - and hugely negligent. Recommended:  How An Artificial Leaf Sucks CO2 And Makes Fuel. Amazing! Did you find this an interesting article or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write your own article about 'fireworks'? Click on  'Register'  or push the button 'Write An Article' on the  'HomePage'
The Fourth Of July. What About The Fireworks?
Your Future After Death: Weird And Eco Friendly
People are trying to live a more durable life, so it is not a surprise that green death is a more discussed topic. More than 80 percent of the British choose cremation over funerals, due to the premiums of space. But they have to know that with each cremation, about 250 kg of carbon dioxide emits into the atmosphere. Become Plant Food We all work towards a greener life. People have been searching online for green burials or natural funerals. New innovators and companies rise to meet this demand. Take an example from Beverly Hills star Luke Perry. He died in 2019 and got buried in a so-called mushroom suit. A mushroom suit burial is a remarkable eco-friendly gift to nature. The suit is made of organic cotton and lined with specialist mushroom spores. The person wearing it will soon be covered with growing mushrooms. Their remains will feed the fungi which rapidly decompose organic matter and remove toxic substances from the environment, in turn providing nutrients to the soil and surrounding plants. Become A Coral Reef In the late 1980s, artificial reefs, made of natural concrete, became an option for cremation. In the United States of America, you have Eternal Reefs, living legacies that memorialize our loved ones. Cremated remains of our loved ones are mixed with concrete to create a so-called 'pearl.' Loved ones can engrave the pearl with plaquettes and inscriptions, while the concrete is still wet. Then, the pearl is left at the bottom of the ocean, to be a new habit for fish and other sea life. We destroyed a lot of natural reefs, and with the artificial reefs, we can restore the damage humans made. Recommended:  Agriculture Under Water: Farming Deep At Sea In Italy Photo by: Francesco Ungaro Become The Earth Washington is the first place in the United States, where human composting remains is allowed. The concept is that when there are only natural elements in an enclosed area, such as wood chips, straw, and other greenery, bodies decompose faster than in a coffin. The process claims an 80% reduction in CO2 emissions than cremation. {youtube}                                                                             How natural burial works Within a month, bodies will become nutrient-rich soil in a warm, oxygenated environment. The resulting ground gets returned to the family of the departed, which is the perfect end for enthusiastic gardeners. Or it can be donated to nature conservation groups. Recommended:  CO2 Footprint Reduction: 5 Innovative Solutions Become A Tree The Italian designers Raoul Pretzel en Anna Citelli created a new funeral option that gives the body back to the world. They created the Capsula Mundi, which means 'world capsule' in Latin, is an egg-shaped, organic coffin in which the body gets buried in the fetal position. Once in the ground, the biodegradable shell breaks down, supplying nutrients to a tree planted just above the capsule. Bodies sealed in a coffin cannot create fertile soil. In this way, it is possible, and the tree above helps to purify the air. Be Washed Down The Drain Only in Canada and the US, there is an option for water cremation. The body gets placed in a steel container filled with a solution of alkaline and potassium hydroxide. Then it is being heated to approximately 180C. That is 800C cooler than the 980C reached during traditional cremation. Soft tissues and organs of the body get broken down into a suspension of aqueous molecules that get washed down the drain. The remaining bones are giving back to the family of the deceased. It claims to reduce co2 enormously compared to a regular cremation. The only by-product is sterile liquid. The UK has concerns about the antiseptic liquid, while the US flushes it down the drain. Before you go! Recommended: g ardening Organic Is Good For You, The Soil, Flora, And Fauna . Did you find this an interesting article, or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write your article about eco-friendly products? Click on  'Register'  or push the button 'Write An Article' on the  'HomePage.'
People are trying to live a more durable life, so it is not a surprise that green death is a more discussed topic. More than 80 percent of the British choose cremation over funerals, due to the premiums of space. But they have to know that with each cremation, about 250 kg of carbon dioxide emits into the atmosphere. Become Plant Food We all work towards a greener life. People have been searching online for green burials or natural funerals. New innovators and companies rise to meet this demand. Take an example from Beverly Hills star Luke Perry. He died in 2019 and got buried in a so-called mushroom suit. A mushroom suit burial is a remarkable eco-friendly gift to nature. The suit is made of organic cotton and lined with specialist mushroom spores. The person wearing it will soon be covered with growing mushrooms. Their remains will feed the fungi which rapidly decompose organic matter and remove toxic substances from the environment, in turn providing nutrients to the soil and surrounding plants. Become A Coral Reef In the late 1980s, artificial reefs, made of natural concrete, became an option for cremation. In the United States of America, you have Eternal Reefs, living legacies that memorialize our loved ones. Cremated remains of our loved ones are mixed with concrete to create a so-called 'pearl.' Loved ones can engrave the pearl with plaquettes and inscriptions, while the concrete is still wet. Then, the pearl is left at the bottom of the ocean, to be a new habit for fish and other sea life. We destroyed a lot of natural reefs, and with the artificial reefs, we can restore the damage humans made. Recommended:  Agriculture Under Water: Farming Deep At Sea In Italy Photo by: Francesco Ungaro Become The Earth Washington is the first place in the United States, where human composting remains is allowed. The concept is that when there are only natural elements in an enclosed area, such as wood chips, straw, and other greenery, bodies decompose faster than in a coffin. The process claims an 80% reduction in CO2 emissions than cremation. {youtube}                                                                             How natural burial works Within a month, bodies will become nutrient-rich soil in a warm, oxygenated environment. The resulting ground gets returned to the family of the departed, which is the perfect end for enthusiastic gardeners. Or it can be donated to nature conservation groups. Recommended:  CO2 Footprint Reduction: 5 Innovative Solutions Become A Tree The Italian designers Raoul Pretzel en Anna Citelli created a new funeral option that gives the body back to the world. They created the Capsula Mundi, which means 'world capsule' in Latin, is an egg-shaped, organic coffin in which the body gets buried in the fetal position. Once in the ground, the biodegradable shell breaks down, supplying nutrients to a tree planted just above the capsule. Bodies sealed in a coffin cannot create fertile soil. In this way, it is possible, and the tree above helps to purify the air. Be Washed Down The Drain Only in Canada and the US, there is an option for water cremation. The body gets placed in a steel container filled with a solution of alkaline and potassium hydroxide. Then it is being heated to approximately 180C. That is 800C cooler than the 980C reached during traditional cremation. Soft tissues and organs of the body get broken down into a suspension of aqueous molecules that get washed down the drain. The remaining bones are giving back to the family of the deceased. It claims to reduce co2 enormously compared to a regular cremation. The only by-product is sterile liquid. The UK has concerns about the antiseptic liquid, while the US flushes it down the drain. Before you go! Recommended: g ardening Organic Is Good For You, The Soil, Flora, And Fauna . Did you find this an interesting article, or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write your article about eco-friendly products? Click on  'Register'  or push the button 'Write An Article' on the  'HomePage.'
Your Future After Death: Weird And Eco Friendly
Your Future After Death: Weird And Eco Friendly
Solar Panel Recycling: Photovoltaics Rebirth
The energy sector has gone through a drastic change, and the gradual transition to renewable energy sources is more than visible. But what may look durable, does not stay that way. This is at least the most occurring concern concerning photovoltaic (PV) solar panels. The Lifetime of Solar Panels Solar panels glimmering in the sun are an icon of all that is green. But while generating electricity through photovoltaics is indeed better for the environment than burning fossil fuels, several incidents have linked the manufacture of these shining symbols of environmental virtue to a trail of chemical pollution. And it turns out that the time it takes to compensate for the energy used and the greenhouse gases emitted in photovoltaic panel production varies substantially by technology and geography. Recommended:  Tiny House WikiHouse With Solar Panels On Roof And Walls They are a long-lasting source of energy, only dependent on solar radiation, and able to supply electricity to our homes. But what happens to solar panels if they don't work efficiently? Discover their journey through the process of recycling in the infographic below: What is the lifespan of solar panels? A lot of people ask this question when they consider solar panels. Research has shown that the lifespan of solar panels is about 30 years before they are dismantled. A 20 percent reduction in power can occur during the lifespan of photovoltaic panels. The maximum reduction is 10 percent between the first 10 and 12 years. This would be 20 percent when the PV panels reach 25 years. In reality, the efficiency of solar panels will decrease by only 6 to 8 percent. So, the lifespan of solar panels could be longer than officially stated. Disposal of Solar Panels From a regulatory point of view, PV panel waste still falls under the general waste classification. At the EU level, there is a single exception, where PV panels are defined as e-waste in the Directive on Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE). The management of waste from photovoltaic panels is regulated by this Directive, as a complement to other regulatory frameworks. Photo by: Ricardo Arduengo. Solar panel debris lies scattered in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in Humacao, Puerto Rico Manufacturers of solar cells are legally obliged to fulfil specific legal requirements and recycling standards to ensure that solar panels are not becoming a burden to the environment. Photovoltaic manufacturers have been working with government agencies and have thought of several ways to deal with the waste from solar energy. Solar Panel Waste We need to recycle because otherwise there would be 60 million tons of Photovoltaic panels waste lying in landfills by 2050. The solar cells contain a specific amount of toxic substances, and that would not be a sustainable way to generate energy. {youtube}                                                                Will renewables end up as more landfill? It is a myth that solar panels are not recyclable. It needs time and research to see the full potential of adequate recycling of all solar panel parts. This is why it is necessary for recycling and designing work closely together so that the ability to recycle is guaranteed by using mindful eco-designs. Recommended:  Waste: The Netherlands Creates New Material From Sewage Solar Panel Recycling Processes There are two different main types of solar panels. They both need a different recycling approach. You have solar panels bases on silicon and based on thin-film. At this moment, solar panels based on silicon occurs more often, but that would not imply that the materials of thin-film cells would not be of significant value Research has shown that there are a lot of technologies in recycling solar panels. Some of them show a result of 96% recycling efficiency. They strive to do better in the future. Recommended:  Wind Turbines: Waste From These Blade Runners? Silicon Based Solar Panel Recycling The process of recycling silicon-based PV panels starts with the disassembly of the actual product to split the aluminium and glass parts. You can reuse almost every piece (95%) of the glass, while all the exterior metal parts are used for the repainting of cell frames. The other materials are heated at 500°C in a thermal processing unit to facilitate bonding between the cell elements. Due to the extreme heat, the embedded plastic evaporates, making the silicon cells ready for further processing. The supported technology makes sure that even plastic is not wasted and is therefore reused as a heat source for further thermal processing. Thin-Film Based Solar Panel Recycling Thin-film based panels are processed more drastically in comparison to silicon panels. First, you need to place them in a shredder. That ensures that the particles are no bigger than 4-5mm. At this size, the lamination holds the inner materials together, breaks and can, therefore, be removed. The remaining material exists of both liquid and solid substance. A rotating screw is used to separate these remaining materials. Recommended:  Designing Business Models: Reciprocity And Circularity Liquids undergo a dewatering and precipitation process to guarantee their purity. The resulting material goes through metal processing to completely separate the different semiconductor components. However, on average, 95% of the semiconductor material is reused. Solids are polluted with so-called interlayers, which are lighter in weight and can be eliminated by a vibrating surface. The Future Benefits of Solar Waste Management We know now solar panels are recyclable. But are there any other benefits for the economy? Recycling Photovoltaic panels will create more green jobs. PV recycling will recover around £11 billion in recoverable value by 2050. This makes it possible to produce 2 billion new panels, without investing in raw materials. As a result of the ongoing price reductions of solar energy, more households and companies are choosing to invest in solar energy systems. This will create even more economic opportunities in the solar cell recycling sector. Before you go! Recommended:  Gravitricity: Fast, Versatile Energy Storage Solution, UK Did you find this an interesting article or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write your own article about recycling of renewables? Click on  'Register'  or push the button 'Write An Article' on the  'HomePage'
The energy sector has gone through a drastic change, and the gradual transition to renewable energy sources is more than visible. But what may look durable, does not stay that way. This is at least the most occurring concern concerning photovoltaic (PV) solar panels. The Lifetime of Solar Panels Solar panels glimmering in the sun are an icon of all that is green. But while generating electricity through photovoltaics is indeed better for the environment than burning fossil fuels, several incidents have linked the manufacture of these shining symbols of environmental virtue to a trail of chemical pollution. And it turns out that the time it takes to compensate for the energy used and the greenhouse gases emitted in photovoltaic panel production varies substantially by technology and geography. Recommended:  Tiny House WikiHouse With Solar Panels On Roof And Walls They are a long-lasting source of energy, only dependent on solar radiation, and able to supply electricity to our homes. But what happens to solar panels if they don't work efficiently? Discover their journey through the process of recycling in the infographic below: What is the lifespan of solar panels? A lot of people ask this question when they consider solar panels. Research has shown that the lifespan of solar panels is about 30 years before they are dismantled. A 20 percent reduction in power can occur during the lifespan of photovoltaic panels. The maximum reduction is 10 percent between the first 10 and 12 years. This would be 20 percent when the PV panels reach 25 years. In reality, the efficiency of solar panels will decrease by only 6 to 8 percent. So, the lifespan of solar panels could be longer than officially stated. Disposal of Solar Panels From a regulatory point of view, PV panel waste still falls under the general waste classification. At the EU level, there is a single exception, where PV panels are defined as e-waste in the Directive on Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE). The management of waste from photovoltaic panels is regulated by this Directive, as a complement to other regulatory frameworks. Photo by: Ricardo Arduengo. Solar panel debris lies scattered in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in Humacao, Puerto Rico Manufacturers of solar cells are legally obliged to fulfil specific legal requirements and recycling standards to ensure that solar panels are not becoming a burden to the environment. Photovoltaic manufacturers have been working with government agencies and have thought of several ways to deal with the waste from solar energy. Solar Panel Waste We need to recycle because otherwise there would be 60 million tons of Photovoltaic panels waste lying in landfills by 2050. The solar cells contain a specific amount of toxic substances, and that would not be a sustainable way to generate energy. {youtube}                                                                Will renewables end up as more landfill? It is a myth that solar panels are not recyclable. It needs time and research to see the full potential of adequate recycling of all solar panel parts. This is why it is necessary for recycling and designing work closely together so that the ability to recycle is guaranteed by using mindful eco-designs. Recommended:  Waste: The Netherlands Creates New Material From Sewage Solar Panel Recycling Processes There are two different main types of solar panels. They both need a different recycling approach. You have solar panels bases on silicon and based on thin-film. At this moment, solar panels based on silicon occurs more often, but that would not imply that the materials of thin-film cells would not be of significant value Research has shown that there are a lot of technologies in recycling solar panels. Some of them show a result of 96% recycling efficiency. They strive to do better in the future. Recommended:  Wind Turbines: Waste From These Blade Runners? Silicon Based Solar Panel Recycling The process of recycling silicon-based PV panels starts with the disassembly of the actual product to split the aluminium and glass parts. You can reuse almost every piece (95%) of the glass, while all the exterior metal parts are used for the repainting of cell frames. The other materials are heated at 500°C in a thermal processing unit to facilitate bonding between the cell elements. Due to the extreme heat, the embedded plastic evaporates, making the silicon cells ready for further processing. The supported technology makes sure that even plastic is not wasted and is therefore reused as a heat source for further thermal processing. Thin-Film Based Solar Panel Recycling Thin-film based panels are processed more drastically in comparison to silicon panels. First, you need to place them in a shredder. That ensures that the particles are no bigger than 4-5mm. At this size, the lamination holds the inner materials together, breaks and can, therefore, be removed. The remaining material exists of both liquid and solid substance. A rotating screw is used to separate these remaining materials. Recommended:  Designing Business Models: Reciprocity And Circularity Liquids undergo a dewatering and precipitation process to guarantee their purity. The resulting material goes through metal processing to completely separate the different semiconductor components. However, on average, 95% of the semiconductor material is reused. Solids are polluted with so-called interlayers, which are lighter in weight and can be eliminated by a vibrating surface. The Future Benefits of Solar Waste Management We know now solar panels are recyclable. But are there any other benefits for the economy? Recycling Photovoltaic panels will create more green jobs. PV recycling will recover around £11 billion in recoverable value by 2050. This makes it possible to produce 2 billion new panels, without investing in raw materials. As a result of the ongoing price reductions of solar energy, more households and companies are choosing to invest in solar energy systems. This will create even more economic opportunities in the solar cell recycling sector. Before you go! Recommended:  Gravitricity: Fast, Versatile Energy Storage Solution, UK Did you find this an interesting article or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write your own article about recycling of renewables? Click on  'Register'  or push the button 'Write An Article' on the  'HomePage'
Solar Panel Recycling: Photovoltaics Rebirth
Solar Panel Recycling: Photovoltaics Rebirth
Waste Your Electronic Waste At A Repair Cafe
The outrage is real. As electronic devices are becoming like a fifth limb to our plugged-in bodies, we discard them at an increasingly worrying rate. We are eager to get our hands on the latest iPhones, Samsungs, and latest fads in tablet-land, even if it means abandoning ones that are still working just fine. Waste Your Electronic Waste: Manufacturers Planning Obsolesce Manufacturers know this perfectly well, and are even actively designing their electronics to work for only a limited period of time before the battery runs out or software becoming outdated and no longer supported. This concept has been known as planned obsolescence, and it is a shameless attempt to get us to buy another $1000 phone with an equally limited lifecycle. Deliberately designing and manufacturing a phone that you know fully well to have some inferior components is one thing. Using up scarce and damaging resources to do so is another. The worst part? As long as consumers keep on falling for it, the manufacturers will continue to do so. It is all about their bottom line, and this undoubtedly benefits that little number below the line. Of course, they will never really own up to it, but most of us know it to be so. Just look at the scandalous array of recently released products that are no longer being updated. Or the ways in which a phone, tablet or laptop suddenly turns into a practically useless ‘brick’. Recommended:  Sustainable Bicycle Is Made From Recycled Plastic In Brazil Electronic Waste Bricks: All Around The World And what we do with those 'waste bricks'? Well, we get rid of them. Obviously. We throw them in the trash, to eventually end up in landfill. Even if we decide to take it back to a manufacturer for recycling, chances are it will still end up on that large pile of e-waste. Recent estimates have put this number at more than 50 million tonnes worldwide, with less than 20% of it being recycled. The remainder just lays around somewhere. This includes large household appliances, heating and cooling devices, and a bunch of smaller electronics such as TVs, computers, smartphones and tablets. Most of those are definitely not beyond repair. A cracked screen may be annoying, but definitely not a reason to throw something perfectly good away. Right? Waste: Legislation Must Force A Change Of Behaviour Throughout the world, more and more institutions are recognising the problem. Apple, for instance, has paid massive fines in both the United States and France, in settlement cases that alleged that their software updates slowed down their older models significantly. Although they claimed to have done so to ‘get the rumour out of the world’ and insisted that they have never done anything wrong, it seems pretty obvious that there was some serious issue here. {youtube}                                                        Repair Cafes (UK/Europe/(Global) - BBC News   The European Union is now working on legislation that will force companies to produce electronics that are, quote, recyclable, repairable and designed to last longer. Vague enough to be played around with by manufacturers, yet doing a decent job at flirting with the idea of reducing electronic waste. Recommended:  Waste Canals Amsterdam Recycled Into Sustainable Furniture Companies ought to work on creating electronics that are not designed to break down. Furthermore, transparency is key - about their firmware, spare parts, and tutorials. Although expecting any of this to change anytime soon is nothing short of an illusion. And if it does, chances are that it is a result of the Corona crisis instead of a deliberately chosen strategy. Repair Cafe: Impossible To Get As Second-Hand Items Isn’t it just funny how this Corona-plague seems to highlight many issues that have been plaguing our planet for years and years? People only start to notice how bad pollution and emissions have gotten when they notice the cleaner air and water around them. Similarly, companies only now start to notice how inconvenient it is when these components used in their electronics are suddenly becoming unavailable as China’s industry has ground to a halt. If this situation goes on much longer, there will not be enough components to create the latest iPhone - and the existing ones are designed to break down sooner rather than later. See what the problem is? At the same time, demand has increased, with more and more people working from home and children relying on laptops or tablets for their school work. A lot of people are looking at purchasing those kind of products second-hand, only to run into problems when finding that although they now owned the hardware, it did not come with the required software or licenses, rendering the items pretty much useless. Another reason why we have always opted for new models instead of getting someone’s hand-me-downs. Recommended:  Sustainable Minimalist Lifestyle: Green, Less Money, Luck Planned Obsolesce As A Strategy This is not a new idea, thought up in the boardrooms of 21st century giants like Apple or Samsung. The American marketing guru Justus George Frederick already wrote about it back in the 1920s, suggesting that people would have to buy an ever-increasing variety of things, not to use them but to activate commerce and discard them again after only a short period of time. His thoughts seem to have been taught at business schools around the world, as most companies implemented a strategy based on it. The whole thought of planned obsolesce is equally terrifying as it is fascinating. Just look at the numbers: the average person only uses a smartphone for two to three years. And, even more hauntingly, desktop printers have an average lifetime of five hours (five hours!), of which only four minutes are actually spent printing (four minutes!). The pace at which new software and new updates are released are quickly rendering relatively new products useless, leaving them with only one suitable purpose - somewhere in the back of your kitchen drawer. Even if you consider the idea of recycling it, you would be surprised to find that it is not even that much better than rotting away somewhere. If you were to recycle one smartphone, for instance, it appears that less than 20% of materials can be re-used. The remaining 80% is useless and still considered to be waste. Current Efforts A Drop In The Ocean The industry giants claim to be doing ‘great’ things, including using recycled cobalt from iPhone batteries to create brand-new Apple batteries (or so Apple says), and having set up an extensive refurbishment and trade-in program designed to give electronics a valuable second life (or so Amazon says). When factchecking those claims for accuracy and effectivity, it quickly appears that they are the figurative drop in the ocean. The real problem lies with the barricades and hurdles these companies put up when it comes to repairing and refurbishing their devices. Apple, for instance, is notorious for not allowing any refurb or repair shops to procure components or parts. And as soon as they notice any repair activity not performed in one of their approved repair facilities, all warranties are voided.   That is, even if any unauthorised repair shops are willing to try their hand at fixing a smartphone, tablet or laptop from a company known to obscure their repair procedures and use obscure parts - even screws! - that are impossible to source. Most repair shops flatly refuse to repair smartphones, with very few taking on other electronics. Not worth the hassle, or so they claim. Manufacturers Need To Change What is needed is a new mindset, one that needs to flow down from manufacturers. They need to come out and tell us that it is OK to get yourself a second-hand iPhone and sure, they will make any spare components or parts available to those wanting to repair damaged ones. When software updates will no longer turn your smartphone into a brick and purchasing a printer does not mean that you have to get a new one a few months later, this is when real change can happen. And it must, as the materials used in electronics are amongst the most energy-costly and resource-wasting ones out there. We can save the planet, one smartphone at a time. Electronics are not a commodity, nor are they a disposable item. Once this message gets across, perhaps we will allow our smartphones to outlive our favourite pair of jeans. Recommended:  Over 10 Of The Best Ethical Brands Repair Cafe: Customization And Conscious Reuse In A Retro Atelier Photo by: Ingrid Verkuil. Shop:  Retro Atelier Gaaf Kind  Uilenpad 8-10, Bilthoven, Netherlands Why Retro? Retro is hip again. Young people use the colors orange, brown, yellow, purple and green again in their interior. For a nice price, this new generation buys Retro stuff from us Consciously because they are tired of the throwaway company. It's so nice to see what people know about it at home! Creativity reigns supreme. Some take it very far! So cool! In this way - together with my team - I try to contribute to Conscious Reuse of Retro materials. Photo by: Ingrid Verkuil. Shop:  Retro Atelier Gaaf Kind  Uilenpad 8-10, Bilthoven, Netherlands Gifts of the older generation War, poverty and a recession made our older generation use and manage their things economically. Many of these items end up as gifts at Retro Atelier ‘Gaaf Kind’, in Bilthoven, the Netherlands. Customization People who need custom work, work in the Atelier. They refurbish old furniture, lamps and accessories and/or learn to do business in practice. This way nobody is left out and they contribute to a better world. My hope is for more companies to follow. Ingrid Verkuil Shop: Retro Atelier Gaaf Kind Uilenpad 8-10, Bilthoven The Netherlands [email protected] Coverphoto by: Ingrid Verkuil Before you go! Recommended:  Waste Recycling Refined: Waste Into High-Quality Products Did you find this an interesting article or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write your own article about sustainable packaging? Click on  'Register'  or push the button 'Write An Article' on the  'HomePage'
The outrage is real. As electronic devices are becoming like a fifth limb to our plugged-in bodies, we discard them at an increasingly worrying rate. We are eager to get our hands on the latest iPhones, Samsungs, and latest fads in tablet-land, even if it means abandoning ones that are still working just fine. Waste Your Electronic Waste: Manufacturers Planning Obsolesce Manufacturers know this perfectly well, and are even actively designing their electronics to work for only a limited period of time before the battery runs out or software becoming outdated and no longer supported. This concept has been known as planned obsolescence, and it is a shameless attempt to get us to buy another $1000 phone with an equally limited lifecycle. Deliberately designing and manufacturing a phone that you know fully well to have some inferior components is one thing. Using up scarce and damaging resources to do so is another. The worst part? As long as consumers keep on falling for it, the manufacturers will continue to do so. It is all about their bottom line, and this undoubtedly benefits that little number below the line. Of course, they will never really own up to it, but most of us know it to be so. Just look at the scandalous array of recently released products that are no longer being updated. Or the ways in which a phone, tablet or laptop suddenly turns into a practically useless ‘brick’. Recommended:  Sustainable Bicycle Is Made From Recycled Plastic In Brazil Electronic Waste Bricks: All Around The World And what we do with those 'waste bricks'? Well, we get rid of them. Obviously. We throw them in the trash, to eventually end up in landfill. Even if we decide to take it back to a manufacturer for recycling, chances are it will still end up on that large pile of e-waste. Recent estimates have put this number at more than 50 million tonnes worldwide, with less than 20% of it being recycled. The remainder just lays around somewhere. This includes large household appliances, heating and cooling devices, and a bunch of smaller electronics such as TVs, computers, smartphones and tablets. Most of those are definitely not beyond repair. A cracked screen may be annoying, but definitely not a reason to throw something perfectly good away. Right? Waste: Legislation Must Force A Change Of Behaviour Throughout the world, more and more institutions are recognising the problem. Apple, for instance, has paid massive fines in both the United States and France, in settlement cases that alleged that their software updates slowed down their older models significantly. Although they claimed to have done so to ‘get the rumour out of the world’ and insisted that they have never done anything wrong, it seems pretty obvious that there was some serious issue here. {youtube}                                                        Repair Cafes (UK/Europe/(Global) - BBC News   The European Union is now working on legislation that will force companies to produce electronics that are, quote, recyclable, repairable and designed to last longer. Vague enough to be played around with by manufacturers, yet doing a decent job at flirting with the idea of reducing electronic waste. Recommended:  Waste Canals Amsterdam Recycled Into Sustainable Furniture Companies ought to work on creating electronics that are not designed to break down. Furthermore, transparency is key - about their firmware, spare parts, and tutorials. Although expecting any of this to change anytime soon is nothing short of an illusion. And if it does, chances are that it is a result of the Corona crisis instead of a deliberately chosen strategy. Repair Cafe: Impossible To Get As Second-Hand Items Isn’t it just funny how this Corona-plague seems to highlight many issues that have been plaguing our planet for years and years? People only start to notice how bad pollution and emissions have gotten when they notice the cleaner air and water around them. Similarly, companies only now start to notice how inconvenient it is when these components used in their electronics are suddenly becoming unavailable as China’s industry has ground to a halt. If this situation goes on much longer, there will not be enough components to create the latest iPhone - and the existing ones are designed to break down sooner rather than later. See what the problem is? At the same time, demand has increased, with more and more people working from home and children relying on laptops or tablets for their school work. A lot of people are looking at purchasing those kind of products second-hand, only to run into problems when finding that although they now owned the hardware, it did not come with the required software or licenses, rendering the items pretty much useless. Another reason why we have always opted for new models instead of getting someone’s hand-me-downs. Recommended:  Sustainable Minimalist Lifestyle: Green, Less Money, Luck Planned Obsolesce As A Strategy This is not a new idea, thought up in the boardrooms of 21st century giants like Apple or Samsung. The American marketing guru Justus George Frederick already wrote about it back in the 1920s, suggesting that people would have to buy an ever-increasing variety of things, not to use them but to activate commerce and discard them again after only a short period of time. His thoughts seem to have been taught at business schools around the world, as most companies implemented a strategy based on it. The whole thought of planned obsolesce is equally terrifying as it is fascinating. Just look at the numbers: the average person only uses a smartphone for two to three years. And, even more hauntingly, desktop printers have an average lifetime of five hours (five hours!), of which only four minutes are actually spent printing (four minutes!). The pace at which new software and new updates are released are quickly rendering relatively new products useless, leaving them with only one suitable purpose - somewhere in the back of your kitchen drawer. Even if you consider the idea of recycling it, you would be surprised to find that it is not even that much better than rotting away somewhere. If you were to recycle one smartphone, for instance, it appears that less than 20% of materials can be re-used. The remaining 80% is useless and still considered to be waste. Current Efforts A Drop In The Ocean The industry giants claim to be doing ‘great’ things, including using recycled cobalt from iPhone batteries to create brand-new Apple batteries (or so Apple says), and having set up an extensive refurbishment and trade-in program designed to give electronics a valuable second life (or so Amazon says). When factchecking those claims for accuracy and effectivity, it quickly appears that they are the figurative drop in the ocean. The real problem lies with the barricades and hurdles these companies put up when it comes to repairing and refurbishing their devices. Apple, for instance, is notorious for not allowing any refurb or repair shops to procure components or parts. And as soon as they notice any repair activity not performed in one of their approved repair facilities, all warranties are voided.   That is, even if any unauthorised repair shops are willing to try their hand at fixing a smartphone, tablet or laptop from a company known to obscure their repair procedures and use obscure parts - even screws! - that are impossible to source. Most repair shops flatly refuse to repair smartphones, with very few taking on other electronics. Not worth the hassle, or so they claim. Manufacturers Need To Change What is needed is a new mindset, one that needs to flow down from manufacturers. They need to come out and tell us that it is OK to get yourself a second-hand iPhone and sure, they will make any spare components or parts available to those wanting to repair damaged ones. When software updates will no longer turn your smartphone into a brick and purchasing a printer does not mean that you have to get a new one a few months later, this is when real change can happen. And it must, as the materials used in electronics are amongst the most energy-costly and resource-wasting ones out there. We can save the planet, one smartphone at a time. Electronics are not a commodity, nor are they a disposable item. Once this message gets across, perhaps we will allow our smartphones to outlive our favourite pair of jeans. Recommended:  Over 10 Of The Best Ethical Brands Repair Cafe: Customization And Conscious Reuse In A Retro Atelier Photo by: Ingrid Verkuil. Shop:  Retro Atelier Gaaf Kind  Uilenpad 8-10, Bilthoven, Netherlands Why Retro? Retro is hip again. Young people use the colors orange, brown, yellow, purple and green again in their interior. For a nice price, this new generation buys Retro stuff from us Consciously because they are tired of the throwaway company. It's so nice to see what people know about it at home! Creativity reigns supreme. Some take it very far! So cool! In this way - together with my team - I try to contribute to Conscious Reuse of Retro materials. Photo by: Ingrid Verkuil. Shop:  Retro Atelier Gaaf Kind  Uilenpad 8-10, Bilthoven, Netherlands Gifts of the older generation War, poverty and a recession made our older generation use and manage their things economically. Many of these items end up as gifts at Retro Atelier ‘Gaaf Kind’, in Bilthoven, the Netherlands. Customization People who need custom work, work in the Atelier. They refurbish old furniture, lamps and accessories and/or learn to do business in practice. This way nobody is left out and they contribute to a better world. My hope is for more companies to follow. Ingrid Verkuil Shop: Retro Atelier Gaaf Kind Uilenpad 8-10, Bilthoven The Netherlands [email protected] Coverphoto by: Ingrid Verkuil Before you go! Recommended:  Waste Recycling Refined: Waste Into High-Quality Products Did you find this an interesting article or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write your own article about sustainable packaging? Click on  'Register'  or push the button 'Write An Article' on the  'HomePage'
Waste Your Electronic Waste At A Repair Cafe
Waste

Waste, refuse, recycle: towards a circulair economy

Waste is something unwanted or are materials we cannot use anymore. Waste is any material or product which is worthless, defect or of any use. In the near past it had hardly any economic value anymore but nowadays there are plenty people and organisations which are recycling waste and make from the regained parts again valuable material for reuse. The Circular Economy at work.

Even better is a zero waste environment. That means no waste send to landfills. A zero waste lifestyle means: using less resources, eating healthier, saving money and less negative impact on the environment. Go for the 5 R’s: refuse, reduce, reuse, recycle and rot.

By reducing waste we can make a big difference. If there was an urge to come up with waste reduction ideas and sustainable recycle solutions and share these topics globally it’s now! WhatsOrb Global Sustainability X-change Platform is for you, storytellers and influencers to write about waste reduction your experiences and expectations for the future at home and globally. 

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