Solatubes: Power-free lighting solution

If you’re looking for an innovative and highly energy efficient daylighting system, Solatube may be the answer. These sunlight tubes combine art and science to provide beautiful and functional daylighting. This technology has actually been tauted as one of the most technologically advanced daylighting products available today. The combination of creative component integration along with … Continued

AskPablo: About Plastic Recycling

This week I got the following question from Barb: My community as well as all other surrounding cities here in Ohio only accept plastic with a #1 or #2 to recycle. Why can’t the other numbers be recycled? Is there any effort among businesses to use the most oft recycled plastics (i.e. only use #1-4) … Continued

Taking on the E-Waste Problem

The amount of electronic waste and scrap people toss into the waste stream is growing much faster than nascent efforts to deal with what is a complex and global problem. The UN StEP program is a step in the right direction, but closing the product lifecycle loop to include recovery, reuse and recycling is going to require a major change in consumers’ mindset and behavior.

Hypercar: The car that pays you to drive it

The car of the future is not only going to come standard with a hybrid powered engine; rather, the whole concept of a car from the ground up will be an entirely redeveloped mobility machine. A fine example is the Hypercar, a vehicle designed in reverse; featuring ultra light construction, hybrid-electric drive, low-drag design and … Continued

Biodegradable Caskets: Composting your relatives?

Green goes under ground, six feet under and currently being spear-headed in Oregon by and environmentally-friendly funeral products dealer by the name of Cynthia Beal. She is the founder of The Natural Burial Co. in Portland, Oregon, the healthy way to recycle yourself and your casket upon taking the inevitable dirt nap. Cynthia herself wishes … Continued

Alex Steffen: Inspired Ideas for a Sustainable Future

Alex Steffen is the co-founder and executive editor of WorldChanging.com. I found this video on Hugg.ca (another blog to which I have the privilege of contributing ) with Alex speaking at the TED conference in Monterey (click here for a list of other great speakers on a host of topics). I think you’ll find Alex’s … Continued

Builder reduces its carbon footprint: Pays Off

So how would a builder profit in the current rough and tumble real estate market? Build a high quality home using green practices without cutting any corners that’s how. David Hall of Deltec Homes has successfully led his company along this path and the profits continue to grow even in these hard times for builders … Continued

Bright Green Consumers and the Scourge of Greenwashing

A couple of news items I’ve come across lately regarding green consumers and the marketers that market to them: First is a recent Forrestor Research study entitled “In Search of Green Technology Consumers” that find an increase in consumers the profess an active concern for the environment and a willingness to spend extra for green products from an … Continued

Holiday Reading: Gaia’s Revenge and Lovelock on Nuclear Power

Being acquainted only indirectly and mostly through media snippets with James Lovelock and colleagues’ work developing the Gaia Hypothesis, now Theory, I expected to learn a lot and be intrigued enough to dig deeper into the literature dealing with climate change, systems science and energy. I haven’t been disappointed…but I unexpectedly have found a source of seemingly dispassionate insight into the issue of nuclear power…

Bye bye fertilizer, let your waste work for you.

Surprisingly, the two largest components in a landfill are food and paper, both biodegradable substances. In fact, statistics clearly show that nearly 50% of all municipal solid waste is consistent of only food and paper products. The EPA clearly states that food waste is the #1 least recycled material. The problem with landfills pertaining to … Continued

AskPablo is taking a break

AskPablo is on vacation this week. I would like to wish you and your family happy holidays and all the best for the new year. May you be safe, happy, and sustainable. Pablo Päster Sustainability Engineer www.AskPablo.org

Ecopod: The Smart Compactor

Whether you’re a seasoned veteran or a recent convert to eco-friendly products, you’ll love the 21st centuries’ answer to the “old-school” trash compactor. Meet the Ecopod, recently made available this past fall, this innovative appliance provides an efficient way to crush, store and redeem recyclable beverage containers, particularly plastic bottles and aluminum cans. The design … Continued

Does Increased Tech Efficiency Lead to Greater Resource Use?

When companies decide to cut their carbon emissions, one of the easiest and most effective steps they can take is to implement eco-efficient technology. But does this increased efficiency lead to greater energy/resource use? Put another way, does cheaper/cleaner energy lead to more energy consumption? This conundrum is known as the Jevons Paradox, named after … Continued

The Sustainable Circus

If you haven’t been fortunate enough see one of the many productions of Cirque du Soleil, either in Las Vegas or one of their touring shows criss-crossing the globe, you’ve missed out on a real treat. In terms of production value, Montreal-based Cirque du Soleil upholds the highest possible standards. The stated mission of the organization is to bring those … Continued

Plantic: Plastic you can eat

A few years back, as a student at the sustainability focused MBA program at Presidio, we were doing a project to create a mock proposal/presentation to Ghirardelli Chocolates on how we saw them introducing an organic, fair trade line. My component was the packaging. At the time I recommended Plantic, an organically based, biodegradable plastic … Continued