Problem: Carbon emissions
People love to eat shrimp, but some estimates place their carbon impact as higher than even beef, mostly due to the destruction of natural habitats near shrimp farms.
Technology: Algae Shrimp
New Wave Foods has developed a highly realistic synthetic shrimp that is made out of algae, which is ubiquitous and solidly occupies a bottom rung on the food chain.
Algae needs only sunlight, water and CO2 to grow. In contrast shrimp are fed wild-caught fish. Producing 1 pound of shrimp is estimated to use up three pounds of fish.
Algae uses CO2 to perform photosynthesis, serving to convert carbon into useable, sequestered energy (food calories).
Scientists analyzed and mimicked the molecular structure of shrimp flesh in order to create a realistic substitute out of red algae.
The shrimp industry globally utilizes a lot of slave labor, particularly for removing the shells and appendages. Algae shrimp does not require anything preening, which could eliminate the worst labor practices.
Early adopters including Google’s cafeteria
New Wave Foods
Steps to implementation:
1) Run pilot at Google cafeteria.
2) Perform sustainability analysis of algae farms and production plants.
3) Develop campaign to fight misconceptions of algae as food.
Substantial waste is created by our consumer society; capitalistic economy is founded on the unrestrained sale of goods and services to the buying public for continuous growth.
A majority of goods are intended for limited use and are frequently discarded prior to their lifespan; clothes are often discarded after one wearing.
Most of this waste is sent to refuse centers—ending in landfill—or sent to developing nations that have limited ability to manage the tsunami of products dropped on their shores.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, Americans generated 254 million tons of solid waste in 2013; the waste leads in increase greenhouse gas emissions.
Developed Nations produce and buy more than we need, which drives the economy of developing and emerging markets.
Summary of Seoul Sharing City Executive Summary 2015
Seoul Metropolitan Management (SGM) has designated and supported 57 sharing organizations and businesses, and will promote 300 additional businesses, into their Sharing City initiative.
5M Won ($4K) per company has been dedicated to sharing business strategy within Seoul, and 3.5M Won ($3K) for surrounding areas. Car sharing alone accounts for 400,000 members.
Sharing City includes 2,000 parking spots in 7 districts, 8,000,000 articles of children’s clothing, 230 daycare centers, a reduction of single-person households, and other businesses that might target the emerging Korean middle class.
Since implementation in 2014, Seoul has saved 12 Billion won annually, created 1,280 jobs, and reduced almost 30 thousand tons of CO2 emissions by reducing landfill.
Locally developed application allows Koreans to share products and services to reduce the overall footprint/cost of the population.
Continued adoption of crowd-sharing services will reduce car production through ride-sharing, Uber, Lyft), parking spots, children’s clothing, and material goods (local application of shared services).
Many applications have been launched successfully in Korea and have spread globally with reduced engagement. Additional resources will need to be provided to upsell shared services to the US and European markets.
The increase in pollution has increased the need to produce food to sustain this growth. Growing livestock produces high levels of ammonia concentration in the barns. This has a negative impact on the quality of the air in the vicinity of the farm.
Ammonia polluted air enters the biofilter.
There is also a heat exchanger that captures some of the heat and transfers it back into the barn along with fresh air.
The prototype has been proven successful in a farm with 5,000 chickens.
People living around farm land
Steps for deployment:
Start by deploying technology is farms with more than 5,000 chickens
Approach national brands, because they have resources to implement technology
Global greenhouse gas emissions are leading the world to a temperature increase between 2ºC and 4ºC, which could cause an environmental collapse in our planet. Moreover, the air is being polluted by toxic emissions from cities and industries.
The Hand Tree is a wristband that offsets your carbon footprint. It purifies the air around you, turning CO2 equivalents, other pollutants and even dust into oxygen. In other words, this bracelet works like a plant in your arm.
The Hand Tree was designed by Alexandr Kostin for the Electrolux Design Lab competition, were students were challenged to create a technology to address the issue of global pollution.
Animal husbandry is responsible for more than 14% of greenhouse gas emissions; 65% of those emissions come from raising cattle for beef and dairy.
Producing one kilogram of beef uses 15,000 liters of water and adds 300 kilograms of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere.
Livestock and livestock feed occupies up to 30% of the earth’s ice-free land; 1-2 acres of rainforest are clear-cut every second to raise animals; the majority of crops raised are used to feed livestock, not people.
335 million tons of animal waste is generated annually in the US alone. Animal waste is one of the main contributors to water pollution and of dead-zones in rivers and oceans.
The world’s population is projected to grow to 9.5 billion by 2060; the global diet has shifted to include more animal protein.
Description of Synthetic or Cultured Meat
Although fake meat has been around for decades, it has never successfully entered the market because many products are unpalatable and expensive. The complexity of meat, including the flavor and texture, is difficult to replicate.
An emerging method is to grow “animal free” meat. The process begins with the slaughter of an adult cow to extract stem cells, which is use to culture the muscle tissue, and a cow fetus to obtain a serum used to grow the tissue. The DNA from these two animals will be used to grow enough synthetic meat to replace herds of slaughtered cows.
Stem cells are fed into a broth consisting of around 100 synthetic nutrients combined with a serum extracted from the cow fetus. As the cells split over the course of a week they form sheets a few millimeters thick. The end result is mixed with other organic compounds, including beet juice, to simulate the texture of beef.
Science has not been able to recreate anything resembling steak or chicken, however a beef broth has been produced; it could help feed the world’s growing appetite for animal protein.
Following additional investments into R&D, “animal free” meat can be produced anywhere using significantly less resources that traditional animal husbandry.
The emerging industry’s goal is to create a 25,000 liter bioreactor, large enough to provide meat for up to 10,000 people per year.
There are two significant obstacles: the current process is prohibitively expensive and large-scale adoption of replicated meat will take a shift in culture/tastes.
Greenhouse gas emissions are a large contributor to global warming. As the world is trying to stay under the 2 degree mark, we will need to find a way to drastically reduce our GHG emissions.
The China South Rail Corp developed the world’s first hydrogen powered tram, which just finished production in April. The tram’s only emissions will be water, it can be recharged in about 3 minutes, and has a 100km range. Not only will this tram be more environmentally friendly, but it will also reduce operation costs for the company.
See more: http://www.alternative-energy-news.info/hydrogen-powered-tram/
China South Rail Corp (CSRC)
City, regional, and national government (transportation authorities)
CSRC should negotiate with other neighboring cities to develop trams that can replace the current ‘dirty’ trains.
As China also pledges to formally adopt the paris climate agreement, the country could decide to implement clean transportation nationally- CSRC should negotiate with the government to be the official producer of trams for such a project.
Increase investment so that the CSRC can produce trams at greater scale
Sustainability Problem: Increasing anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions in the atmosphere causes global warming
Areas of Sustainability: Energy, Water, Waste, Safety, Health
Artist’s conception of the Columbia researchers’ artificial trees. Photo credit: Stonehaven Productions Inc.
Technology: Artificial Trees
In Yale Climate Connections article “Artificial Trees as a Carbon Capture Alternative to Geoengineering,” Richard Schiffman explains the “carbon capture” project of Columbia University Earth Institute scientists Klaus Lackner and Allen Wright. The technology aims to to absorb carbon dioxide using sodium carbonate in the streamers of artificial trees that look like shag rugs and scrub brushes. The researchers would like to make carbon capturing “forests” using artificial trees.
Each “tree”, approximately as big and with roughly the same production cost as a car, can absorb carbon produced by 36 cars in a day. It will take 10 million of these “trees” to capture 12 percent of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions per year. A gentle flow of water can release carbon dioxide from the artificial trees. Carbon dioxide can then be buried underground or can be used for industrial purposes.
This technology is not geoengineering. “It does not actively interferes with the dynamics of a system you don’t understand” according to Lackner.
Artificial tree proved to be one of the first technologies to be able to “remove vehicular carbon emissions from the air”.