Ideas for sustainable design projects

Our world is consumed by the need to consume. People attempt to counteract this with every new fad rolls our way. However, the word “recycled” is extremely loose in terms of the lasting effects materials have on our environment and ecosystem.

Here are some ways we can change that.

Coffee Cups

Our worlds are moving faster by the day. Before we know it, we’ll be double fisting coffee cups instead of beers. While coffee passes through our digestive systems before we arrive to work in the morning, a styrofoam cup is leaving its carbon footprint on this planet. Hydro-flasks and other reusable options for our “adult juice” not only keep coffee warm in the winter but fresh in the summer as well. Refills, minus the landfills.

Pool/Beach Floats

Every day, our oceans face pollution due to toys that are no laughing matter for our aquatic wildlife. While education needs to continue to prevent this problem altogether, biodegradable floats will allow for a break down of materials that will not harm reefs and animals if they reach inhabited areas.

Play with your Paint.

Sherwin-Williams has released a line of paint called “little ones”. A range of eco-friendly paint that sits in a childproof container made of biodegradable materials. The intent was to create something that children can contribute to in terms of creativity, and learn and understand the fundamentals of reusing readily available materials once the project is complete — combining creativity and knowledge.

Sun Screen

Sun screen. A lotion or spray that protects us from UV rays destroys the places we stay during vacations and summer months. New formulas created by companies from Banana Boat to Loving Naturals have been created to not only protect our bodies but the planet as well. They are a bit on the pricier side, starting at $9.95, to Suntegrity Natural Mineral Sunscreen priced at $45.00.

Laptop/Cellphone Cases

The devices we use regularly keep us connected to the rest of the world, but the cases define our personalities. It’s no surprise that they get recycled as quickly as our clothing. Ideally, the best case would be one that is made from a sustainable material that biodegrades when it no longer serves its purpose. The most popular of these is wood, since it is sturdy and capable of keeping personal products and Mother Earth intact.

Happy Earth Day. Everyday.