Category Archives: Plants

Partners in Green

Although not the first of it’s kind, this carbon-dioxide absorbing billboard does mark a first for the Philippines, a country that doesn’t have the greatest environmental track record. Created as a collaboration between Coca-Cola Philippines and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the Fukien Tea Plant Billboard helps alleviate air pollution in the surrounding area. The Fukien Tea plants, embedded in over 3000 discarded Coca-cola bottles are each capable of absorbing up to 13 pounds of carbon dioxide in a year.

So that’s all great, but where does Coca-cola come into all of this? More and more, corporations are pouring time, money and resources into their CSR ambitions. Are we naive enought to believe that billboards like this one are conceived purely for the good of the planet? Of course not, but as a tool for improving brand image, it will certainly make the head honchos at Coca-cola sleep a little better. From WWF’s point of view, they’re able to clean up pollution and promote their agenda with all the power and might of the Coca-cola marketing arm.

In future, we think that we can expect to see more of these mutually beneficial campaigns, where advertising can serve the aims of two very different organisations, to the advantage of both.

(source: www.digitaljournal.com)

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Rubbish Island

Dutch architect Ramon Knoester is making the best of a trashy situation (pun intended, ha). He has plans to construct the world’s only fully-sustainable island built out of garbage. In the northern Pacific Ocean, a gargantuan garbage pile has accumulated in an area estimated to be twice the size of Texas. Knoester’s island will be about the size of Hawaii, and is planned to feature a single family home with a solar roof, compost toilets, blue energy from wave motion, and a sustainable agricultural system. We think is a very cool way to deal with our planet’s excess of trash , are incredibly envious of anyone who gets to visit it, and hope to see more of these in the future!

For more information on what is dubbed the Great Pacific Garbage Patch this video, which is quite depressing, sheds light on the capacity of this phenomenon.

On a lighter note, it’s Friday! Our advertising this week comes from Mother New York for Target and features an amazing light show done at the Standard Hotel in New York City. The event actually happened last year, but we just came across this video today, and had to share. Watch below:

Though the extravagance of the lights wholly distracted us from the clothing featured, we thought this was a great ploy on Target’s part. As evident in the video, people all over NY got to see the show, even if they weren’t planning on it. This seems like something a major fashion house would do, so kudos to Target for executing it so well.

Happy Friday!

(source: Dvice)

Nature’s Music

You know those albums featuring the sound of rain falling, or waves crashing, that are meant to be calming and meditative? Well this is much more interesting. We came across this video today of sound designer/composer Diego Stocco playing a tree. By tuning the branches of a tree in his backyard with a pencil and plucking, bowing, or stethoscope-ing them, Stocco created a full song:

We were so intrigued that we sought out some more Diego Stocco productions, and this is what we found:

The most awesome part of the video above? Diego invented the instrument he is playing in it! It’s called the Experibass, and Diego was inspired to create it in order “to hear the sound of violin, viola and cello strings amplified through the body of a double bass.”

We love that Diego combines his artistically toned ear and appreciation for nature to create such beautiful music. He has an admirable ability to hear the beauty in things that  others hear without a second thought everyday.

(Sources: Boing Boing and DSSessionVideos)

Making CO2 Emissions Tangible

Do you know how much 350 grams of CO2 is? We can’t really imagine a solid image of how much CO2 that is, or how much it is affecting our environment when released into the atmosphere. Nitipak Samsen, a graduate of the Royal College of Art, acknowledged this intangibility and created the ATREEM (Automated Tree-Rental for Emission Encaging Machine) in order to make carbon emissions and carbon trading more understandable for everyone. He does this by creating a credit card operated tape measure that translates the amount of CO2 absorbed by the tree to that of the amount emitted by doing certain activities.

Turns out, 350 grams of CO2 is equivalent to a 10 minute ride on the tube. The tree shown above takes 2 days and 10 hours to offset that amount. How many times per week do you take a tube ride that is 10 minutes long? Maybe more like 45 minutes? Samsen wants to change the way the public thinks daily–how big is your carbon footprint in terms of the life of a tree?

While developing the ATREEM, Samsen also developed a Tree Tape for Kids. The tape acts as an arts and crafts project with a real learning experience behind it. Children, or anyone, can download the PDF for the file, follow the easy instructions, and voila! The tape compares the amount of CO2 absorbed in the tree (according to its type and width) to that of a more tangible amount –  from air travel and breathing to cheeseburgers and pints of lager.

We think these are two great ways to show children and adults the reality of our carbon footprint on a smaller, relatable scale. It’s also a very innovative combination of creative and scientific design that we commend for its modernity and simplicity.

(Sources: Dezeen and dotmancando)

Shenzhen’s Logistic City

We are in awe of Julien de Smedt Architects’ new project, and it’s definitely not for its looks.

They plan on building a city tower in Shenzhen standing 1,111 metres high. This will be gigantic! Just looking at the pictures gives us a bad case of vertigo. At the moment, the world tallest structure, Burj Khalifa in Dubai, is ‘only’ 828 metre tall.

Not only will the structure be ridiculously tall, but also self-sustained. Plants will abound in the tower: along paths, gardens, etc., working towards the re-forestation of the city. And as opposed to a standard skyscraper, the building will mostly be open, letting plenty of wind and sunlight to the core. The use of solar panels is still being debated, but wind turbines will be integral part of the tower.

And just like any city, it will have housing, stores, offices, and its own public transport network, with trams resembling roller coaster connecting levels.

And they haven’t forgotten water. Watering plants so high up would definitely require a lot of energy, hence why the top tier sections of the structure will be adorned with systems that will store and recycle water.

This project just seems great. We like that sustainability increasingly becomes a concern for development.

(Source: Inhabitat)

The beauty of fractals

Fractals are fascinating things. In mathematical-like language, it all sounds like that:

By iterating or repeating fractal-generating equations many times, random outputs create beautiful patterns that are unique, yet recognizable. (Wired)

Simply put, a fractal is made of smaller versions of itself, in turns made of smaller versions, and so forth. The repetition of chaos creates order. If you look closely at a cauliflower, it will all make sense: a cauliflower is basically the assemblage of mini-cauliflowers.

What is so cool about fractal patterns is that they are not just mathematical concepts, but are everywhere in nature. And they are just stunning.

Snowflake

Thunder

Waterfall

Broccoli

Clouds

Peacock

River Delta

(Source: Wired)

One idea a day

For over two months now, young designers Matteo Sangalli und Erika Zorzi have entertained design aficionados with their blog, where they come up with peculiar, but utterly simple, designs.

The concept is simple but audacious: one idea a day, turning common and often boring items into exciting ones.

Selecting our favourites turned out to be a rather difficult task though, as most of their ideas are just brilliant! And not only is it all creative and fun, but it’s also accessible and cheap.

So next time you need a coat hanger and a pizza slicer, don’t go Ikea, just recycle an empty egg box and a scratched vinyl!

You can check more of their crazy work on their blog.

(Source: ignant)