Dirty Clothes and No Grid Access? No Problem!

Sustainability Technology: Yirego Corporation has developed a quick way to do laundry without using electricity.  With a holding capacity of up to 2kg (4.4 pounds), the Drumi, can do a load of lightly soiled clothes within about 5 minutes.  Pedal operated, the Drumi can handle 5L of water for each load.

Sustainability Issue: An estimated 1.2 billion people or 16% of the global population do not have access to electricity and most of them live in rural areas in sub-Saharan Africa and developing Asia meaning without a significant change in infrastructure, they are unlikely to get grid access any time soon.  Doing laundry in the developing world is very time consuming and takes a lot of physical energy as well.  The laundress (or launder) has to find a water source, soak then scrub the clothes, wring them dry, and carry the clothes back to be dried out in the sun.  On top of all this, the harsh scrubbing process can compromise the structural integrity of the clothes being washed.  The Drumi drastically cut down on the time and physical activity.  The water can be collected separately, which is probably already a daily task, and the cleaning can be done at home.  With just a 5 minute cycle, approximately 5-6 loads (including hanging) can be done in one hour. Admittedly, the Drumi, at $140 is probably too expensive for some households, and financing would most likely be necessary, but a cost benefit analysis would likely show that it is a useful investment.

Sustainability Stakeholders: 

  • Families with limited or No Access to the Grid
  • Launders/Laundresses in Developing countries
  • Developmental Organizations
  • Rural Communities
  • Avid Campers
  • Mobile Home Residents
  • Urban Residents without Washer/Dryer

Implementation Steps:

  • Research a community in sub-Saharan Africa with a need for a better laundry system.
  • Find funding through a development grant using the research as a basis for need.
  • Establish a public/private partnership with Yirego
  • Work with local community and establish a working partner in region who can train, maintain, and distribute Drumi systems to families in the region.
  • Offer a financing package through the grant and private partnership
  • If successful, create the same model with other developing communities.

Sources:
http://laundry.reviewed.com/features/drumi-tiny-washing-machine-needs-no-electricity
http://www.yirego.com/drumi
http://opensourceecology.org/w/images/d/dd/Laundry.pdf

Comment on Other Blog Post:
https://makeasmartcity.com/2017/10/12/all-electric-mining-truck-produces-more-energy-than-it-consumes-via-regenerative-breaking/comment-page-1/#comment-1190

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Designer Davorin Mesari turns city residents into farmers

Sustainability Technology: Designer Davorin Mesari has created an indoor garden made up of 16 individual growing pods, allowing city dwellers with minimal space to grow fruits and vegetable. The growing units are stackable, so output can be doubled without compromising precious urban space.

Sustainability Problem: Access to Healthy Foods

According to Harvard’s School of Public Health’s website, “A diet rich in vegetables and fruits can lower blood pressure, reduce risk of heart disease and stroke, prevent some types of cancer, lower risk of eye and digestive problems, and have a positive effect upon blood sugar which can help keep appetite in check.”  They confirm that while all fruits and vegetables contribute to health benefits, “green leafy vegetables such as lettuce, spinach, Swiss chard, and mustard greens” are some of the most important health contributors.  Despite these findings, many urban dwellers find themselves too busy to cook a healthy meal and rely instead on take out, delivery, or processed foods which are often unhealthy.  More often than not, these items are packaged in such a way that contribute to negative environmental impacts. Davorin Mesari’s innovative product, aptly named ‘Indoor Garden’  allows city residents to grow produce healthy food in the comfort of their apartments. This inventive technology creates an indoor modern garden that is powered by fluorescent lighting which mimics the natural solar spectrum allowing urban denizens to grow their own healthy vegetables and greens at home without creating unnecessary waste, and thus making the production of a healthy meal not only easy but more accessible.

Davorin Mesari’s state-of-the-art technology could be implemented in a central setting, such as a school or community center, as an urban agricultural project offering locally grown produce into a food desert, or area where there is limited access to healthy, fresh food. One issue with urban farming is finding the land on which to farm and ensuring that the soil is not contaminated.  With ‘Indoor Garden,’ you don’t need to find land on which to farm or worry about soil as the units come with growing pods and are stackable to maximize indoor space. Moreover, these units can serve as educational devices, and, once installed, can showcase the cultivation, harvesting, and the preparation of healthy meals.

Technology Stakeholders:

  • Urban Residents
  • Schools
  • Community Centers
  • Urban Farmers
  • Farm to Table Enthusiasts

Process of Implementation: 

Step 1: Introduce this new technology through an educational workshop to a community group or school and describe the feasibility of implementation.

Step 2: Based on local interest and available funding, establish a site for implementation.

Step 3: Work with local businesses to attract further financing (if necessary) by creating excitement around the new technology.

Step 4: Once funds are raised and site is established, buy 5 units for testing and establish a protocol to ensure maintenance of product.

Step 5: Collect feedback from community group/school and establish ways to enhance the next phase or implementation at a second site.

Source: 

Yanko Design’s ‘Cultivation in the City by Troy Turner

The Nutrition Source (Vegetables and Fruits)

Starting A City Farm

Lucid’s BuildingOS will reduce energy consumption in city-owned buildings

Solution:

Lucid’s BuildingOS is a data and analytics program that helps optimize building performance by providing increased visibility and streamlining the data into one platform.

Sustainability Problem: Energy Consumption in Buildings

Buildings consume 40% of energy in the United States. This problem needs to be addressed in order for cities to become more sustainable. The smartest way to bring down energy consumption in buildings is to reduce use for heating, cooling, and lighting. BuildingOS’s secure platform uses real time data, analytics, and charts to enable building managers access to both present and historical data in order to benchmark progress. The program can be integrated with multiple utility bills, building systems, and sub-metering data to track both energy demand and consumption. Moreover, the building data can be normalized to varying weather conditions so the data can be compared over different time periods in a more exact way. The Lucid platform also provides financial analysis tools to show cost benefits to energy reduction over time and across building systems.

Stakeholders:

  • Commercial Building Owners
  • Management Companies
  • Commercial Tenants
  • City Utility Companies

Process of Implementation For New York City Owned Buildings in order to meet PLANYC 2030 goals:

  • Establish a public-private partnership between New York City, Con Edison and Lucid Energy Solutions in order to implement use of BuildingOS in city-owned buildings.
  • Identify several city-owned buildings for initial roll-out and testing with special attention paid to security of the platform, functionality with existing building systems, and usability by custodial and management staff.
  • After step 2 is implemented and tested for 6-12 months, if successful, initiate further rollout across the city, working one borough at a time. In order for this initiative to be effective, trainings and workshops will be held simultaneously to prepare building operators and managers on the use of the new platform.
  • Use BuildingOS in all city-owned buildings to manage and benchmark energy reduction progress and to help the city achieve the energy goals set out by PLANYC 2030.

Company Website: https://lucidconnects.com/