Saving the Planet, One Innovation at a Time

If you want to trust everything you see on the news, read in the papers or online then you will either believe that the world is dying and there is nothing we can do about it, or that there is nothing wrong with our planet and it will live forever.

Regardless of your stance, recycling and making the most of what we produce and discard on a daily basis is something that permeates the media. We are being charged for using plastic bags at supermarkets, we are warned every day about the growing problem threatening our oceans, and we are encouraged to separate our waste into recyclable and non-recyclable dustbins.

Countries all over the world are fighting to reduce the carbon footprint created by us every day. Climate change is a subject that inspires debate on both sides of the argument. We want to live in a healthier world and repair the damage caused by the generations before us and ourselves, too.

And so, companies, nations, politicians, and the general public are striving to discover and innovate solutions toward fixing the planet. Some of these solutions are obvious – renewable energy with wind farms and electric cars, for example. Others, however, are more unique. They are more imaginative; they are ideas that have previously not been considered, perhaps even believed to be a waste of time and energy. However, the results tell a far different story.

For years now, trucks, lorries, and other heavy-duty vehicles have polluted our air, being responsible for over 60% of all air contamination due to carbon emissions. While transporting goods across the country and the globe is a necessity, the adverse effects caused by hauling such heavy vehicles filled with all sorts of products on a day-to-day basis is causing unnecessary issues for the planet’s atmosphere.

To combat this, businesses and nations have taken steps towards tackling and disrupting the status-quo through altering how trucks are used and goods are transported. And it is not just transportation that is experiencing a shift from the old ways and stepping into the future.

Waste of all kinds is something that we can reduce, but it is too easy to merely throw it away and expect someone else to deal with it. But it is those companies and organisations who are doing the discarding that are the ones to be thankful to.

Businesses that place emphasis on recycling and sustainability have been cropping up for the past twenty years or so, yet there is still ignorance in the general population that requires these companies to continue their fight.

One of these companies is Amalgamated Scrap Metal, which endeavours to help you discard of any of your scrap metal (surprisingly). Metal is one of the more difficult things to know what to do with, but instead of merely leaving it to rust and decay, patrons and citizens can seek out local scrap metal dealers to take it off their hands and put it to good use.

Some of these uses include freeing up space, which is something everybody needs, but more importantly, recycling your scrap metal helps towards boosting the economy, creating more jobs throughout the world and, perhaps more vital than anything else, creating a healthier planet for all.

Furthermore, waste in the agricultural sector is also being put towards a greater good. Take the likes of Canvas, which uses the spent grain from breweries to create a sustainable vegan-friendly milk source as opposed to farming cows. Beer is something that most of us enjoy after a long day, but we never consider what happens to all the grain that is left at the end of the cycle, this is where Canvas comes in, using the grain and not merely dumping it where it will be someone else’s problem.

Technology has proven to be both a blessing and a curse, depending on who you talk to. That being said, it cannot be denied that the innovations that technology has granted us are responsible for where we find ourselves today, both positively and negatively.

With a substantial emphasis on helping people who are less fortunate than us, there are startups which are looking to get rid of the excess plastic waste – the notorious enemy of the planet – to instead use it for good.

Reports of startups using 3D printers to tackle poverty by improving the lives of those who have no choice but to undertake picking through waste to earn a living. This is done through taking the plastic waste and transforming it into something that can be used again and again and again as a filament for 3D printers.

In addition to all of this, there is still so much more that has been achieved or is being worked towards to improve the way we treat the planet. People in countries all over the world are inventing, testing, and modifying different solutions for making the world a more sustainable place to live and improving the environment every day.

Some of these include a temple made from beer bottles, bridges made of recycled paper tubes, shipping containers as modern living spaces, and the trend of upcycling. While these ideas may seem a bit odd at first, you never know if something works until you try it.

Although it seems as though it will take more than just a couple of bright and unique ideas to solve the problems of the past to save the future, the intent to achieve this is still there. Those who continue to search for further innovation to do what is best to save the planet have only just begun. From here, we can expect further improvements regarding streamlining processes and discovering new and exciting ways to make the world a healthier place for us all.

We have been blessed with a planet that has put up with nearly everything that humanity and its creations have thrown at it. Now it seems is the time to work towards fixing it all and starting anew, otherwise we could find ourselves in a hole that will be difficult to dig ourselves out from, one where we won’t strike gold, but something much, much worse.

Salman Zafar

Salman Zafar is the Founder of Cleantech Solutions, and an internationally-acclaimed blogger, journalist, consultant, advisor and ecopreneur. His areas of expertise includes waste management, renewable energy, waste-to-energy, environment protection, resource conservation and sustainable development.
Salman is a prolific environmental writer, and has authored more than 300 articles in reputed journals, magazines and websites. He is proactively engaged in creating mass awareness on renewable energy, waste management, sustainability and conservation all over the world.
Salman can be reached on salman@cleantechloops.com.

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