Tag Archives: recycling

The Looming Solar Panel Waste Crisis

solar panel waste

Sustainability is about more than just finding renewable energy sources. We’ve all heard the statistics: renewable energy is expected to overtake fossil fuels in terms of volume by 2026. Solar panels offset about 50 grams of CO2 per kilowatt-hour of electricity produced. The planet could temporarily reach 1.5 degrees of warming compared to pre-industrial levels…

Eco-Friendly Ways to Manage Industrial Waste

Regardless of the specific type, industrial waste can create hazards for you, your company and your community as well as the environment. Industrial chemicals and liquid waste create a hazardous situation but even dry waste such as metal, building materials and more, can create problems such as offering pests a refuge, being risk-laden and more….

Cellulose Insulation – The ABCs of Green Building Materials

Made from consumer paper products, cellulose insulation typically contains about 85 percent recycled content. Using this green building material can effectively lower the carbon footprint of your home or business property. Essentially, this is because cellulose insulation is plant cell matter that is still storing the carbon sequestered when it was alive. Responsible management of…

Blocks – The ABCs of Green Building Materials

Blocks used for residential and commercial construction employ a wide variety of green building materials in their composition. The most popular and commonly used is the standard hollow concrete block, but there are many variations in shape, weight, and composition. Sand, cement, gravel, and water are the most commonly used elements in blocks, but there…

Aluminum – The ABCs of Green Building Materials

Used in a wide variety of ways in the building construction market, aluminum is a very versatile green building material, especially when it’s recycled. Everything from huge external building structures to delicate window blinds can be manufactured from this lightweight, durable, and corrosion-resistant metal. Doors, windows, and awnings are popular products made from this material,…

Panama Jungle Features Plastic Bottle Village

Far south, a few degrees north of the Equator, the plastic bottle is being smartly repurposed as a residential building insulation material. We visit Panama, where on an 83-acre jungle locale, 90 to 120 planned homes will be insulated by thousands of plastic bottles which have been recovered from the waste stream. The individual behind…

High-tech Fiberboard Made from Waste Fiber

There’s a new green building material on the market that is light, strong, and flexible, and can be made into just about any shape, including complex molded shapes, without the need for any glues, harmful chemicals, or toxic ingredients. This material, called ECOR, is a high-strength fiberboard made using only water, heat, fiber, and pressure,…

Turning Old Beer Cans into a Shiny New Roof

Whether you’re building a backyard chicken coop or a DIY storage shed, you’ll want a roof that keeps your stuff out of the elements and that looks good, too. If you’re lucky, that new roof would even be made of something that was cheap and readily available. Even better: that new roof could be made…

Waxed Cardboard Insulation Comes From Produce Boxes

Students at Portland State University have developed a new insulation material made from shredded waxed cardboard produce boxes.  The insulation helps local grocery stores sustainably dispose of the boxes and could provide low-cost energy savings. PSU assistant architecture professor Margarette Leite heard that many local grocery stores were looking for a way to sustainably dispose…

Sauna Box Gives Shipping Container a New Life

Set yourself up with a steam room pretty much anywhere you want with the Sauna Box($41,000). Built into a shipping container, this semi-portable sauna is designed to be completely self-sufficient, with solar panels providing the power and a wood-burning stove. Features include a red cedar interior, integrated iPod stereo, electric guitar hookup, Castor stool, a magnetic truck light, and bronze antlers.

Zero Waste Systems; A Cycle Following Nature’s Design

It is crucial that we implement more recycling and reuse programs into our everyday practice because if everyone on the earth consumed resources at the rate that Americans do, we would currently need five earths to keep up and this ratio will continue to grow as the population continues to grow. But we have the abilities and the technologies, already in existence to change this. We need to implement into our everyday lives zero waste system practices.

GUEST POST: Lou Dobbs v. The Lorax

I liked what I read in this guest post from Sarah Parker, challenging the audacious proposition from commentator Lou Dobbs that green policies have far less to do with liberal or conservative leanings, and far more to do with the planet we leave for our children to inherit.

A Trash Bash’s Goal of Zero Waste, Soon to be Reached?

The events that make the biggest impact on the attendants do not have to leave an impact on the earth. Executive Director, Jan Hamilton with the CARTM Recycling Center in Manzanita, Oregon, developed an event which produces almost entirely no waste.

They started it in 1998 and on Friday, May 20, 2011 it will be their 13th annual Trash Bash. This is a community party with dancing, art and a fashion “Trashion” show all dedicated to recycling, re-using, and the non-wasting of materials.

Building with Reclaimed Lumber and Recycled Materials

One of the most sustainable ways to acquire materials for building a house is to collect parts from soon-to-be demolished homes. You can save money from buying new lumber, which in turn will prevent deforestation, and you can recycle other materials like doors, windows, and bricks that would otherwise continue to fill up landfills. But…