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How Waste equals Food

If you’re much of a green, you’ve no doubt heard of William McDonough. The following video talks about some of his work. When I saw the title, “Waste is Food,” it seemed even crazier than what I was talking about here, so I had to watch the video. Things I found particularly interesting:

  • McDonough talks about buildings being made to imitate nature, beyond just vegetating them. No matter how it’s done, thinking of buildings as creating oxygen, fixing carbon, changing colors with the season (!) is a really useful way of looking at the possibilities. Fixing carbon on its own would help restore the balance. Changing colors with the season is interesting as well. It reminds me of sitting in a lecture and listening to my biology professor remarking how nobody’s really quantified the impact of how much heat absorption happens because of asphalt, how much we’ve paved.
  • Nike has a line of shoes and clothing, Nike Considered, devoted to better design. I’m definitely going to see how available the products in this line are locally. If you do watch the entire video, it’s useful to look at the current lineup, because the shoes don’t all look like the ones shown in the video, and good thing too, since buyers of shoes such as those are no doubt a limited group in today’s marketplace. Unfortunately there’s no direct link to the line on the U.S. site, so you have to use the search function. Bit of an oversight there.
  • In the last three minutes of the film, chemist Michael Braungart talks about how even 5% of the population can cause change if they speak up, simply by the ripple effects. I’m not always so confident in this, but I definitely try to practice it. I’ve written my local government, scientists for information, and power companies just in the last year. Voting with your wallet or at election time isn’t enough. People with power need more specific information than that about what’s expected of them.

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