Ford Motor is playing a major role in promoting environmentally friendly auto parts, and one way they’re doing that is by using recycled plastic bottles for underbody shields on all cars and SUVs, and wheel liners on F-Series trucks – up to 250 bottles per vehicle. Recycled bottles are used to manufacture parts that can help improve vehicle aerodynamics and reduce cabin noise. In the past decade, aerodynamics has driven the need for underbody shields, and the use of plastics in vehicle parts is used globally, and has grown exponentially – Ford uses about 1.2 billion recycled plastic bottles per year – about 250 bottles per vehicle on average.
When plastic bottles are thrown into a recycling bin, they are collected with thousands of others, and shredded into small pieces. That’s typically sold to suppliers who turn it into a fiber, by melting the bottle and extruding it. Those fibers are mixed together with other various types of fiber in a textile process and used to make a sheet of material – which is formed into the automotive parts. Due to its light weight, recycled plastic is ideal for the manufacture of underbody shields, engine under shield and front and rear wheel arch liners that can help improve vehicle aerodynamics. These shields also help create a significantly quieter environment on the all-new 2020 Ford Escape.
Environmentally, using recycled plastics on vehicle parts helps reduce the amount of plastic that can end up in dangerous situations, such as the Pacific gyre, for example – a floating mass of plastic bigger than the size of Mexico in the Pacific Ocean.
Can your old clothes be recycled to create new ones? Why not? In fact, your old t-shirts could be repurposed to make a swanky pair of jeans. That’s just what Levi’s and Evrnu worked on together. The company had earlier shown initiative in creating jeans from recycled nylon waste and bottles but conjuring up a new piece of clothing from cloth itself will surely be more achievable and cost effective. Evrnu has devised a technique where five old t-shirts can be used to create the new pair of jeans by consuming just 98 percent less water than regular cotton production. Evrnu has a patent-pending technology that breaks down cotton, thus enabling swifter production. Levi’s has recognized that water conservation finds a great opportunity in the way cotton is dealt with and this amazing new move is just what the doctor ordered for an ailing, fashionable planet.
Fishing nets are aplenty in the oceans of the world. Mostly, discarded nets end up in balls of tangles often to disappear into landfills. They also prove to be a visible threat to marine life. So, why not put them to good use? In jeans may be? Levi Strauss & Co. are taking their sustainability actions to the next level by introducing closer to home than their previous venture with water-recycled processes in their Chinese factories. The brand has tied hands with an Italian nylon manufacturer, Aquafil, to leverage the latter’s nylon regeneration prowess. The denim manufacturer has recognized the shortage of cotton when compared to the demand and has joined hands with Aquafil to create clothing made from recycled nylon waste.
H&M has commenced its initiative entitled World Recycle Week and to get the message across all the 61 worldwide markets and 3,900 stores it has commissioned recording artist, M.I.A. to take the message across. The aim of the campaign is to collect a total of 1,000 pieces of garments from consumers across the globe. Clothing that heads to the landfill leads to its own share of the overall burden of waste. By recycling large volumes of clothing, we can rid the earth of unnecessary, wasted and unusable old garments that are discarded in tons. The artist will be a part of a new music video that will bring the issues of discarding clothing in the limelight and focus on how recycling can help improve the way we deal with old clothing.
It goes without saying that when it comes to electronic waste and with the large usage of smartphones, all eyes automatically fall on the biggest manufacturers and sellers. That’s why Apple is in everyone’s focus and there’s much expected from them on this front. The good news is that the company has announced a bunch of exciting new products and with it, the promise of a new research and redevelopment program that sees the recycling initiatives of the company in action. Called, Apple Renew, the program is set to encourage users to recycle their devices by sending them back to Apple, free of cost. The company has commissioned a robot called Liam to salvage the best it can from the returned goods. The move is a welcome breather for environmentalists who worry about the growing pile of discarded devices, each time a new upgrade is announced.
Ever wondered what happens to all the chewing that’s chewed and thrown away? One thing’s for sure, it doesn’t all combine to be a giant ball of gum that swallows the planet. So what does it do? Not much, really. So, we have an English designer, Anna Bullus take things into her own hands and create the incredible Gumdrop Bin. Bullus spent eight months experimenting at the University of Brighton chemistry lab where she finally came out with a solution for the world’s mounting chewing gum problem. All the deposited gum is collected by Gumdrop LTD and processed to create Gum-Tec products. A single, full bin can create three more bins and Gum-Tec products such as an Americano Mug, Guitar Pick, Bicycle Spoke, Rulers, Sports Cones, Frisbee and Boomerang, Door Stop, Meal Mate, Lunch Boxes and Combs.
They may be the overlords of junk food but when it comes to saving the environment from unnecessary pollutants, McDonald’s seems to fit snuggly in with the good guys. The brand will be rolling out eco-friendly carry-out bags, fountain drink cups and sandwich boxes in over 36,000 worldwide outlets, this year. The campaign will begin with the US outlets of the brand and will gradually branch out. The company has already committed to sourcing all its fiber-based packaging from recycled sources by 2020. This is the company’s first redesign since 2013 and clearly indicates that McDonald’s isn’t giving fashion and style a blind eye. Matt Biespiel, Senior Director, Global Marketing, said, “We’re proud of the progress we’ve made and initiatives like this are important to our customers who care about the planet.” As if the packaging wasn’t enough, the brand has also partnered with The Cabrera/Bentancourt organization to create fashion accessories that are themed around the packaging.
Fashion brand Hennes & Mauritz, more popularly known as H&M, may be the world’s second largest garment manufacturer but they’re soon to make a name for themselves among the eco-friendly. The brand is promoting recycling of garments after critics pointed out that the damage being caused by a throwaway culture has been the key influencer in rising clothing sales. The Swedish giant is now launching a line of jeans that contain recycled cotton, in the coming week. The company is also allocating a million Euros as prize money for those who come up with innovative means to innovate and recycle clothing. “No company, fast-fashion or not, can continue exactly like today,” said CEO, Karl-Johan Persson. “The largest potential (of this endeavor) lies with finding new technology that means we can recycle the fibres with unchanged quality.”
It isn’t fair for erstwhile skateboards to spend the remainder of their existence, planted on walls as showpieces. They’ve known action and they should continue to see the light. Nick Pourfard, a 22-year old artist, musician and skateboarder managed to find his calling in creating a wonderful use for old skateboards. He converts them to retro-packed, brilliant guitars. Nick is a San Francisco-based Industrial Design student and the mastermind behind Prisma Guitars. Each guitar is 100% handmade and created using former skateboards. His greatest achievement till now is creating a guitar for legendary bass player, Steve Harris (up the Irons!) from Iron Maiden.
Telling someone that they’d have a chance to live surrounded by beer bottles would make them gleam with delight. Li Rongjun from China went on to live this dream, albeit his bottles were devoid beer and were recycled. It took him a total of 8,500 bottles to make this possible. With the aid of his father, Li created a sturdy, beautiful structure from the discarded bottles. Beer stands in third position among the planet’s most beloved beverage, which means that we have more than enough bottles to handle. The office is 300 square feet in size and seems to act as the best possible sales pitch, vouching for his talent to prospective clients.