20 November, 2015

Could these five inventions help save our planet?

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From used coffee grounds to recycling seashells, here are 5 interesting inventions that could help save our planet! As UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said, “Climate change has happened because of human behaviour, therefore it’s only natural it should be us, human beings, to address this issue.” We think this list of inventions definitely gives us a glimpse into the potential of individuals everywhere to change climate change. :)

1. Art meets technology in the shape of Kirigami-inspired solar cells
Combining the ancient Japanese art of paper-cutting (Kirigami) with modern day technology, a team of researchers at the University of Michigan developed solar cells that cut through the inefficiencies of the conventional, flat solar panels. With the ability to track the sun across the sky, these new solar panels capture up to 40% more energy, giving a bright future to solar technology!

 

© Aaron Lamoureux

2. Coffee, a daily savior for many, could also save the planet!
Researchers from the Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology in South Korea have recently discovered a way to save our planet with used coffee grounds, giving us yet another reason to love coffee!

According to their research, coffee could help ease global warming by helping to capture methane, which is the second most abundant greenhouse gas in our atmosphere and 25 times worse than carbon dioxide. :o

So the next time you feel guilty about having yet another dose of caffeine, just remember this - you could be saving the Earth. ;)
 

 


© Stéfane Mauris / WWF

3. Teen's invention waves goodbye to undersea oil spills
Almost half of our marine life has disappeared in the last four decades and that’s why our oceans, natural heroes in the fight against climate change, need all the help they can get! 18-year-old Karan Jerath of Friendswood, Texas, invented a device that could stop a spill and prevent an ecological catastrophe by collecting spewing oil, gas and water from broken wells on the seafloor.

The gadget could provide a safety net for our marine life while the world shifts toward renewable energy.  :)

 


© Jürgen Freund / WWF

4. Living in a container to contain one’s ecological footprint!

Does living in a shipping container sound absurd to you? Hold on to that thought before you say yes, because Dutch startup Sustainer Homes is on its way to showing the world that with a little imagination and remodeling, used shipping containers could become the ultimate green home!

Set in a converted shipping container, these repurposed homes come complete with a bedroom, bathroom, full kitchen, and a living room, that’s all constructed from wood-free, Eco-board panels. The best part? The entire thing costs approximately $78,000 – a fraction of what most people would have to fork up for a home.

Looks like the folks at Sustainer Homes just proved that sometimes thinking outside the box could mean living inside one. ;)

 

© Fast Company

5. Shoring up support for our oceans on the shore

The importance of our oceans is simply unquantifiable. To name a few, they produce half the oxygen we breathe, play an integrate role in our fight against climate change, and absorb 30% of the carbon dioxide we produce. Unfortunately, that’s exactly what’s causing its acidity levels to rise and thus impacting marine life.

However, this Google Science Fair project suggests that the ocean itself, truly a treasure trove of wonders, could hold the key to easing its rising acidity levels as well. The secret ingredient? Recycled seashells! Almost entirely made up of calcium carbonate, recycled seashells could act as an alkaline buffer to reduce the acidity levels of oceans. Pretty amazing, don’t you think?
 


© Martin Harvey / WWF

Do you know of other interesting innovations that could help our planet? Tweet us or drop us a message on Facebook!