A New (Re)Purpose: Innovations to Reduce Waste


Post by: Fiona Wren, EPt

“Waste not, want not” is an adage as old as the hills (thanks, Benjamin Franklin), but it’s becoming a mainstay of innovation for scientists and environmental industry professionals who are out to curb the amount of junk cluttering our landfills or filling our oceans.

Here are some exciting new advancements – from names you might recognize, but many you may not.

Adidas Makes Shoes from Ocean Plastic

Late this year, the shoe manufacturer will launch a line of running shoes made entirely from plastic dredged from the ocean and collected from beaches. Adidas has found a way to weave gill nets, plastic bottles, bags, and other refuse into shoes — and they’re pretty sure they’ll have no problem finding enough material to make a whole line.

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A House Built with Bricks Made from Industrial Waste

In Amsterdam, two architecture students built a house with a tiny footprint (it’s an infill in an already crowded city). The most popular exterior finish in the Netherlands is brick, and these two partnered with a company who manufactures brick made entirely from industrial waste.

The project was a test case for both groups, and if it catches on could mean another exciting option for sustainable house building.

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Food-Waste Fashion

Take Apart magazine takes a closer look at companies that are transforming coffee grounds, salmon skin, coconut husks and more into wearable items, hoping to curb the need for unsustainable textiles and wasted food byproducts.

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Reform Studio Turns Plastic Bags in to Furniture

Egyptian furniture design firm Reform Studio has found a way to weave plastic bags into upholstery fabric, which they then use to manufacture designer furniture. The project started as a project at the German University in Cairo in 2014; the company now sells chairs in Cairo and London.

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Have you got a story about an environmental innovator you’d like to share? Drop us a line at info@eco.ca.

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