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Bags Made With 95% Recycled Material

by Justin Thomas •

I’ve been testing a new line of bags called Terraclime by Lowepro. I was impressed by the fact that 95% of the material used to make these bags is recycled content. The fabric is made with recycled PET bottles (i.e. post-consumer plastic). The hooks and zippers are made from plastic salvaged from the factory floor, and reground.

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A Round-Up Of 100% Electric Cars

by Justin Thomas •

Electric Cars Making A Comeback in 2011

See our updated report on Electric Cars In 2011. At MetaEfficient, I am a strong advocate of car-free living (see my review of the books How To Live Well Without Owning A Car and Car-Free Cities). However, clean, electric vehicles can be useful in some situations. If you recharge them using a renewable energy source such as solar power, they …

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Icebreaker: Efficient Wool T-Shirts For Warm Weather

by Justin Thomas •

Icebreaker, a New Zealand company, is proving that wool can be worn in warm weather. They have released a new line of  “ultra-fine” merino wool T-shirts.  I’ve been testing their Tech T Lite while biking, it has performed quite admirably in the heat — it keeps you cool, and retains less odor than a cotton shirt. I am prone to …

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Bamboo Hangers

by Justin Thomas •

We’ve featured quite a bit of optimal and sustainable clothing over the years, but what about those devices you use to hang up your clothing? We mentioned the bioplastic hangers, available from Earthsaver. Now, the Great American Hanger Company has launched a new line of bamboo hangers, and these hangers really show off the beauty of bamboo (see the close-up …

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The Solar Ark: A Unique Solar Building In Japan

by Justin Thomas •

In Gifu Prefecture, Japan, there is an unusual solar building called the Solar Ark, built by Sanyo. It’s one of the most impressive solar buildings in the world. Passengers on high-speed bullet trains can’t help but notice the edifice as they ride past on a nearby railway line. The building was built to symbolize the goal of becoming a “clean …

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The World’s First Soy Carpet

by Justin Thomas •

The world’s first soy carpet has been produced by an Australian company, Customweave. Frank Ricco, the developer of a luxury line of rugs and carpets, describes the texture as a combination of cashmere, velvet and alpaca. Like most other products made with soy, the fiber comes from the “waste” left after processing soy beans. China produces about 14 million tonnes …

2Faced by Lees Carpets

by Justin Thomas •

Lees Carpets is introducing a new line of eco-friendly carpets called 2Faced, which were recently chosen as product of the month by Architectural Record. 2Faced carpets are tufted in such as way that they appear to change colors, depending on your perspective (see photo above).

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Nike Releases “Considered” Footwear Line

by Justin Thomas •

Nike has released a new line of footwear called “Considered”, which they claim is produced using sustainable manufacturing practices, quite different from the way most athletic shoes are currently made, and quite efficient if their claims are true. Some examples: 80% less solvents and glues used; simpler designs involving fewer production steps including less stitching; materials are sourced closer to …

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100% Corn-Based Packaging Now In Use

by Justin Thomas •

Cargill Dow’s innovative line of 100% corn-based bioplastic “NatureWorks Packaging” is now being used by a number of food companies to package fresh produce and salads. Dow Chemicals, a partner in the Cargill Dow company, has a questionable environmental and ethical track record. However, the Natureworks product is making breakthroughs for bioplastic into the food packaging marketplace. Del Monte Fresh …