Reducing & recycling innovations

Last year I remember reading about TerraCycle, a company that was featured in National Geographic because it had found a way to recycle cigarette butts and transform them into remarkably useful things like park benches. At the time I didn’t read up on the company, but now I have after watching an episode of Al Jazeera’s programme “earthrise” that features them. I am so moved by the way they seem to have found a method for taking every non-recyclable item and recycling it into something usable. Watch for yourself:

There are a lot of other great initiatives that can and should be replicated that “earthrise” features on each episode. One is about the concept of repair cafes:

Another features an innovative company called The Remakery, which takes old objects or trash and makes them into wonderful new items:

There are lots of other environmentally-related themes on the show so If you’re interested in the subject I highly recommend it. There have been lots of other interesting ideas in the news of late, especially in The Better India:

♼ There is a new website (mostly geared towards the English and Americans) called Buy Me Once. It catalogues products that are durable enough to not be replaced.

♼ A new initiative has created edible cutlery!  Based in Hyderabad, the company, Bakey’s, makes various flavours which are made out of nutritious millet. Of course, the best method of reducing  is to eat with your hands, but if you’re trekking or some such thing, this is a terrific product. There is a crowdfunding campaign to get the company off the ground, so donate if you can!

♼ An Udupi college is collecting used cooking oil from area hotels and using it to make biofuel for its buses!

♼ In Germany an anti-packaging–especially in supermarkets–movement seems to be afoot! It makes me long for the days when I shopped at the Boise Coop and could buy my food in bulk. I wish organic markets in India gave you that option–or indeed any market–so I could forego the plastic packaging in particular!

♼ And my city, Bengaluru, has officially banned the plastic bag!  The only problem is: how ill they enforce it? And can we get people to shift back to using steel, copper, and glass for various purposes rather than plastic?




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