Modular and Sustainable Walkways

by Justin Thomas •

There’s too much concrete in the world and most of it is unnecessary. Here’s one alternative that you may have seen at the beach: low-impact, modular walkways made out of sustainable timber. The company, Mister Boardwalk, even makes “roll out” walkways that simply roll out on top of grass, wood chips, sand, gravel or old concrete. The company specifies that …

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Seaweed Clothing and Bedding: SeaCell

by Justin Thomas •

Want a bit of the ocean in your clothing or in your bed? Seacell is a fabric made out of Lyocell (a 100% wood pulp fiber) and seaweed. The theory is that your skin will absorb nutrients from the seaweed, which is quite mineral- and vitamin-rich. From what I can gather, Seacell incorporates 5% seaweed content. The manufacturer, Zimmer AG, …

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Clothes Drying Racks: Effective

by Justin Thomas •

If you dry your clothes on these racks instead of a clothes dryer — they will smell fresher and last longer. In many homes, the clothes dryer is the number two electricity consumer, after the refrigerator. Used in combination with a Spin-X: metaefficient. GreenFeet sells clothes drying racks made of reclaimed wood. The Vermont Country Store sell large racks made …

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Agalia: Plant-Based Paints

by Justin Thomas •

Agalia Paints are plant-based paints produced by the Germany company Beeck’sche Farbwerke. All Agalia products are 100% natural. They are made with unique combinations of plant oil and minerals. Here is a full list of ingredients (PDF file) used in their paints. They also produce wood finishes called Aquasol. The finishes are an alternative to solvent-based products. These natural oil …

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Efficient Wood Burning Stoves

by Justin Thomas •

Woodstoves can indeed be a metaefficient way to heat your home. Modern woodstoves are an economical and environmentally sound choice for home heating. Wood has a much higher BTU capacity than gas, and wood is a renewable resource. Older, conventional woodstoves emitted between 30 and 80 grams of particulate matter (smoke) per hour, while the new EPA-approved stoves have reduced …

Metaefficient Wood Stains

by Justin Thomas •

Napier Environmental is a company in British Columbia that sells non-toxic wood stains that replace the hazardous products widely used to treat wood today. An example of one of their products is Natural Desk Oil, a waterborne blend of natural oils designed to penetrate deep into wood, and protect it like the true oils found in wood. You can buy …

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Reclaimed Wood Funiture

by Justin Thomas •

These very attractive tables and chairs are designed by Scrapile. They are made of reclaimed scraps of wood from local wood shops. The unique texture comes from the combination of the various types of wood that is recovered. Scrapile is run by Brooklyn-based designers Carlos Salgado and Bart Bettencourt. For more information contact: Carlos Salgado

Whitepod: HyperEfficient Alpine Retreat

by Justin Thomas •

Whitepod is a zero-impact camp for ten guests situated over 1700m high in the Swiss Alps. It consists of five portable pods on platforms, which are removed in spring and leave absolutely no trace. The emphasis is on comfortable accomodation close to nature without negative environmental impacts. Access is by ski or snowshoes only. There are no cars. No buses. …

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Non-Toxic Infant Toys and Teethers

by Justin Thomas •

Infants absorb chemicals more easily than adults — their bodies run at a higher metabolic rate, and their skin is ten times thinner. Infant toys and teether made of PVC plastic often leak phthalates (pronounced “thay-lates”) and other toxic substances (see more details in this report on 2003 PVC Report Card on Kid’s Toys Manufacturers).