Throughout the years, as technology and manufacturing bloomed and prospered, mankind's imprint on the planet, similarly, grew exponentially. Initially very little was understood about the adverse effects of pollution and waste, and even as information came to light, it was often met with indifference. Recently though, particularly the last few decades, a concerted effort has been made to reverse the detrimental impact humans have had on the environment. In keeping with this trend, designers have focused on creating sustainable, eco-friendly solutions that not only won't harm the wellbeing of the planet, but may even improve it. Below is just a sampling of the 2016 Core77 Design Awards honored projects that incorporated sustainability into their design.
Inverting the traditional relationship of a typical tree bench, where one sits with their back to the tree, Outside-In instead refocuses the viewer's attention toward the Heritage's cherished tulip tree, creating an intimate space between the viewer and what is being viewed. Waste wood trimmed from logs in the normal milling process as they are rough sawn into lumber, is then cut, rotated, and reassembled to form Outside-In's basic structural unit.
Outside-In is a proposal for the Secret Shelters Exhibition at the Heritage Museum and Gardens in Sandwich, Massachusetts. The project rests on the theme of inversion—inverting the bench to point inward, toward the tree, and inverting the bark on the bench material to face the center. In this way, those sitting on the bench are offered a more intimate experience with not only the tree, but with those they share the bench with. Most importantly, as the designers detail: "Outside-In was created entirely from waste resulting from the manufacturing and processing of commercial timber products. Traditionally when a tree is processed into building material, approximately 38% of the processed log is waste that is then used in the creation of low-quality secondary wood products. [Outside-In] aspires to maximize this renewable resource and divert this waste material, instead upcycling it into a viable building product, with the added benefit of locking additional atmospheric carbon within the fibers of the material rather than allowing its re-release into the environment."
Paper Water Bottle is based on global patents that integrate specialized materials and manufacturing processes to the highest level of compostable performance specifications available. The Paper Water Bottle exoskeleton pulp material is made from 100% organic and sustainable combinations of plant-based fibers including bagasse, bulrush, wheat straw and bamboo.
Paper Water Bottle is a drinking vessel made entirely from organic plant fibers. The aim of the designers was to reduce the negative effect of waste on the environment, and create a more biodegradable and compostable product. The pulp material from which Paper Water Bottle is made is a promising alternative to plastic, which, as the designers detail, "is made from nonrenewable petroleum and lingers far too long" and only thrives because "the market lacks a viable substitute." Paper Water Bottle hopes to be that substitute, a container that "addresses the growing concern over plastic, both its petroleum sourcing and its disposition in landfills." Still in its first generation, Paper Water Bottle continues to develop to become more practical and sustainable in its effort to become ubiquitous.
The basic cornerstone was to keep it simple, ecofriendly and designed for our own children. Brum Brum balance bike was designed to have natural suspension which greatly helps little rider to make his first steps to riding experience.
Brum Brum is a bicycle designed for children that uses a wooden frame to maximize eco-friendliness. Brum Brum is a fun, light-weigh alternative to traditional metal-centric bikes, and utilizes 'finger-safe', puncture-proof wheels to reduce the risk of injury and eliminate the need to maintain tire pressure. As the designers detail, the frame is made from the "highest quality Baltic birch and oak plywood to ensure the durability and natural suspension we get from bended frame." To reduce potential waste "all parts holds together with just one construction screw." All told, Brum Brum is an inventive blend of simple, elegant design and environmental consideration.