Ever dreamed of a notebook that never ran out and held your secrets for eternity? Have you wondered where to get cool shoes that don’t have a huge carbon footprint? Want to get a new phone, knowing that your shiny new tech has been made by happy workers getting a fair wage…
Happily, all of this, and more has become a reality. Although making changes as just one person can’t make a huge dent in carbon emissions, we can all make a little effort and make small changes to help preserve and conserve our planet. You can do your little bit to help out the planet with these three nifty gadgets that are full of eco-friendly credentials.
Fairphone – The phone that dares to be fair
This is a smartphone with a difference, having been manufactured with a super ethical supply chain that uses conflict-free materials like tin, tungsten, tantalum, and Fairtrade certified gold. Even the plastic they use is from recycled sources. It’s also been designed to be modular, meaning that any part that fails can be replaced on its own, without having to replace the whole handset – reducing waste and hassle.
They’re not stopping there; Fairphone is working on improving their sourcing of cobalt that goes into the lithium-ion batteries and has poor mining conditions that violate miners’ human rights. A recycling initiative is also in place in certain countries, so when you buy the Fairphone 3 you can give your old handset and the components will be broken down to be reused. On top of these cool schemes, Fairphone is also striving to get better health and safety conditions for the factory workers making the phones, a great contrast to some of the scandals faced by other phone makers.
Now for the tech specs: there’s a full HD display that’s 5.7 inches, the rear camera packs 12 megapixels and the selfie cam is 8 megapixels. They use the Snapdragon 632 processor from Qualcomm and you get 5GB of RAM and internal storage topping out at 64GB. The battery is slightly limited, with just 3000 mAh, but it can be removed and replaced easily so you can get a new one when it starts to lose capacity. Shipping for the ethical smartphone has started in November and preorders are being taken on the official website.
Step lightly with Rothy’s recycled shoes
Walking on trash is most people’s idea of a nightmare, but the women of New York City and San Francisco are going mad for the trend. These comfy and cool flats from Rothy’s are made out of recycled water bottles and comes in three styles: The Flat ($125), The Point ($145), and The Loafer ($165). Although the designs are rooted in classic footwear styles, there are some twists that make them more modern and great for conscientious consumers. You can wear your beliefs on your feet and show your commitment to your style that also contains the substance.
Post-consumer plastic water bottles are hot washed, sterilised, and then processed into a fiber that’s knitted into a yarn which then is used as the upper material for the shoes. So far, over 12 million water bottles have been upcycled by the company, and they join the fast paced trend of bottle repurposing – you can get sneakers, watchbands, and even leggings made from plastic bottles.
It’s not just the upper that aligns with your values; the insole of the shoe is fashioned from recycled foam and are completely carbon free, and the adhesives used in the processes are non-toxic and vegan friendly. Even the packaging has been considered, it’s biodegradable and made of post-consumer recyclables.
The manufacturing process means the shoes from Rothy have a unique feel and have other functional advantages. No seams in the shoes means no edges so no pinch points, and the 3D printing process reduces waste because it’s perfectly accurate with its use of materials. They’re also light and flexible, as well as moisture wicking which can reduce blisters and make walking in the rain less uncomfortable. You can get your feet into a pair here, at the official website.
Nuka – The Eternal Notebook From Ukraine
In just one day on the crowdfunding platform Kickstarter, Nuka, a Ukranian startup, raised all of their $20,000 requirement on April 30. The company was started by Mykyta Vladykin and Kateryna Mykhalko, a pair of seventeen-year-olds, along with 20-year old Eugeno Shylo. Mykhalko said they had been in preparation for the campaign launch for over two years and there were a total of 9 postponements before they finally got things going!
There are two products the team are bringing to market; an eternal notebook and an eternal pencil. The notebook can be used with normal pens as well as their special pencil with the help of magnetic fasteners, and you can write on it forever and even spill liquids all over it – it’s waterproof so your thoughts are going nowhere. The pages can’t be torn out, the pencil uses a specially formulated metal alloy that oxidizes on the pages but can still easily be erased with the built in rubber.
The website for the company says the notebook will never get too packed; you can easily get rid of the notes that you don’t want anymore and the important stuff can get synchronized with their smartphone app. Using the Nuka app, you scan your scribblings and they get transformed into digital records for you to keep forever. The app lets you organise things into virtual notebooks, meaning you can have a book for sketches, ideas, study notes, or the random 3am thoughts you just needed to record. Everything is safe, organised, and always on hand, and the pencil is strong and clean – no carbon fingerprints and endless sharpening as well as no more junking a pencil when it gets too short to use.
The campaign is still running on Kickstarter and you can get a set with a hefty $30 discount, at a cost of just $59. Delivery is set for the end of 2019, with hope for a November shipping date.
Switching up the simple things in life to make them more environmentally friendly, safe, and green can help every individual contribute to a healthier planet. Here, we’ve given you the inside track on some of the most innovative and sustainable gadgets on the market at the moment for your to consider as part of your lifestyle changes.
You can walk around with your head held high, knowing your feet are clad in stylish waste, ping off an email on a smartphone that is also smart about its environmental and human impact, and scribble away the old-fashioned way in a notebook and still know you’re not using too many resources.
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