Ecodesign: Sustainable products for a sustainable Planet
From the right to repair to an off-grid home, thinking sustainable is the way forward.
Factories aren’t slowing down, but they can be more sustainable. Ecodesign has been on the rise since Y2K. It works hand in hand with a growing eco-conscious movement, and it’s even European law. But what counts as ecological design?
What is ecodesign?
Ecodesign is a school of thought where the creation of a product takes into account its environmental impact. Ecological design is an umbrella term that encompasses diverse fields of study, including sustainable agriculture, intelligent urbanism, and ecological engineering.
To put it simply, ecodesign tries to diminish the environmentally destructive impacts of a materialistic world. When a product is created under ecological design it might be made from more sustainable raw materials, use biodegradable packaging, have easily repairable systems, or reduce energy cost.
The establishment of a circular economy is a mainstay of ecological design. Products made from recycled materials, or that can be recycled themselves, help reduce waste, hence, they’ve been eco-designed.
Where can I find ecodesign?
It’s all around you, and some of it might go unnoticed. Ecodesign can be applied at every stage of production: the extraction of raw materials, the manufacturing of the product, the distribution to stores, its use by the consumer and what happens to it when it’s no longer in use.
Farmer markets are an example of historical ecological design. Locally sourced produce, grown in season, by family-run businesses, have a much smaller environmental impact than the fruits and vegetables sold at the supermarket.
Solar panels for water heating or energy production greatly diminish the use of fossil fuels and help families work towards an off-grid home. Maintaining a water recycling system or reusing sullage can be a way to further a household’s sustainability efforts.
Bottles made from recycled materials, rechargeable batteries, reusable coffee capsules, boxed water, LED light bulbs, and organic cotton sportswear, are all examples of ecodesign.
What’s the impact of ecodesign?
Sustainability, pure and simple. If the right to repair is applied to smartphones, as the European Union has been discussing, we’ll simply be making fewer cell phones, because the one which we already have will last longer. Less production is a net gain for the environment.
By using fewer materials and energy to create something, companies can reduce their environmental impact whilst maintaining current production rates. Using biological and biodegradable materials helps the environment both before and after a product is in use.
The European Commission estimates say that since 2015, ecodesign has stopped the emission of 306 metric tons of CO2 and the waste of 2545 million liters of drinking water. The ecological design also saved European consumers 63 billion euros and created 930 thousand jobs. By 2030, these results should improve by 60%.
That all helps bring down CO2 emissions and the destruction of habitats for raw materials. Ecodesign impacts climate change. By setting energy efficiency standards, for example, consumers can be better informed and decrease their carbon footprint.
How can I support ecodesign?
By putting your money where your mouth is. Buy from eco-conscious brands, look up a company’s environmental track record and make sure you understand the impact of your purchasing decisions.
Don’t buy disposable products, avoid single-use plastics and work eco-friendly habits into your routine. Keeping house plants, taking your bag to the grocery store, or sowing your clothes instead of throwing them out are all small changes that can make a big difference. Check here 10 easy ways to live a more sustainable lifestyle!
Some changes can even be a quality of life improvement. You can subscribe to products like The Bam&Boo’s zero-waste and vegan cotton buds, or CO2-compensated bamboo toothbrushes. They’re both shipped for free worldwide within biodegradable packaging. Because at The Bam&Boo ecodesign do matter!
A small step for us but a big step for our Planet 🌎
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