Archive for November, 2012

A Great Way to Reuse!

Wednesday, November 28th, 2012

It seems as if printed/developed pictures are becoming a thing of the past. However, there will always be a demand for nicely printed and framed pictures in our homes and workplaces. A young couple from Virginia posted in their blog/website a unique way to have nicely framed pictures by using their used jewel CD cases. They express that ever since they started using the increasingly popular photography tool, Instagram, they have wanted to find a fun way to showcase their family photos. They realized after ordering the printouts of their photos, with a small trim these photos fit snugly into the front of a jewel case. Not only does this solution protect photos as they hang, but should a problem arise these easy-to-come-by picture frames cost less than a dollar to replace. Not only is this an economically friendly craft to spruce up your home, but it is a great way to re-use a product that would inevitably sit in a landfill otherwise.

 

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GreenBlue Appoints Nina Goodrich Executive Director

Wednesday, November 21st, 2012

GreenBlue is a nonprofit that equips businesses with the science and resources to make their products and packaging more sustainable. The organization is excited to announce that the GreenBlue Board of Directors has appointed Nina Goodrich as the Executive Director. Along with the newfound responsibilities, Goodrich will continue in her current role as the Program Director for the GreenBlue flagship project, the Sustainable Packaging Coalition. The Board is thrilled that Goodrich is taking on this role and looking forward to the expertise and innovation she has to bring to the table. Nina Goodrich is an internationally recognized leader who has specialized in sustainability, innovation, and organizational development. She was previously Program Director for PAC NEXT inTorontowhich is an initiative of the Packaging Association that strives toward a “world without packaging waste”. Goodrich is working towards a world where business leaders are environmentally conscious- where products are design with sustainability in mind from the get-go. GreenBlue has earned a scientifically credible reputation through successful projects such as SPC, CleanGredients, the Forest Products Working Group, and Advisory Services. Nina Goodrich sees the new position as an opportunity to work towards the GreenBlue vision of making products more sustainable and share the vision of developing sustainable strategies in the production process.

Source: GreenBlue

Ecovative “Breaks it Down” with Mushrooms

Wednesday, November 14th, 2012

The majority of packaging materials are made from polystyrene and other synthetics. These materials are made from petroleum and also use up a lot of energy in the production process. Although many Americans do not take this into consideration, Ecovative Designs is a company that takes this issue quite seriously. Ecovative is currently working to develop a line of environmentally friendly packaging materials. These materials are made from mushrooms and other agricultural byproducts. The company was founded by a pair of engineers. They are not only trying to replace the traditional styrofoam packaging “peanuts” but also home insulation and kitchen counters. Sue Van Hook, Ecovative’s resident mycologist, shows that mushrooms and other fungi that grow in the wild can be adapted to grow into packaging materials. In nature, fungi’s primary role is decomposition. Break down fallen leaves and twigs so they do not overrun the forest. Ecovative is working to capture this natural process. They need less than one square centimeter of organic material to jumpstart this process. Therefore, they clone the material so it can continue to multiply as needed. Ecovative also demonstrates their value to the packaging industry by comparing a piece of plastic trash to their mushroom-based materials. The plastic takes decades to decompose while Ecovative material will vanish in 3-4 months.

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Fast Food Gets Eco-Friendly

Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

In the late 1980s, McDonald’s, the iconic American restaurant chain, was facing mounting pressure for their ubiquitous Polystyrene packaging that housed the fast food giant’s burgers and sandwiches. Seeing an opportunity to do right, McDonald’s partnered with the Environmental Defense Fund to clean up their packaging act. Today, McDonald’s continues to work with EDF to find ways to lighten the packaging load. The report (pdf), “Greening Fast Food Packaging: A Roadmap to Best Practices,” published by North Carolina-based environmental group, the Dogwood Alliance, identifies a framework for evaluating packaging sustainability, highlights examples of industry best practices and offers guidelines for improving sustainability in packaging. The report highlights several positive steps fast food restaurants have taken to improve sustainability in packaging, from Quizos’ embracing of recycled materials to Subway’s unprecedented national in-store recycling program.

 

Source: Earth &Industry