Why is sustainability important? • Currently we’re consuming the Earth’s resources such as oil, coal, timber and metal ores at an alarming rate. • We’re unable to replace these resources at the rate in which we’re consuming them. • Consuming these resources produces CO2 emissions which contribute to global warming. • The waste of these products in landfills also creates environmental hazards.
Materials. Polymers: • Oil is mined and extracted from the Earth. • Scars the Earth. • Cellulose – naturally occurring material found in plants. • Used for furniture, toys, sellable products. • Oil is a non-renewable source, so we need to find a new way of producing plastic that is less harmful to the environment. Metal Ores: • Mined from the Earth. • Scars the Earth. • Expensive to mine and process. • Used for Building material, jewellery, tools. • Metal ores are a non renewable source and cannot be replaced, however we’re able to recycle metals so that they can be used more than once. Timber: • Trees are cut down. • Affects natural habitats. • Affects oxygenation of the atmosphere. • Used for furniture, as fuel and for buildings. • Timber doesn’t grow at the rate we use it however it is renewable through, Sustainable Forests.
Disposal Methods. Timber: • Landfills - biodegradable. • Burnt – produces carbon emissions. Polymers: • Landfills – non-biodegradable. • Burnt – produces carbon emissions. Metal Ores: • Landfills – non-biodegradable • Burnt – produces carbon emissions (biodegradable when made from renewable raw materials) (can be melted down and recycled)
The 3 R’s! Reduce! Reuse! Recycle! Reduce: • Reduce the amount of materials and energy used in manufacturing, and the amount of energy the product produced uses. Reuse: • Ensure the materials and components of a product can be used again in a new product. • E.g. printer cartridges can be refilled, coffee machine and vacuum filters can be cleaned. Recycle: • Take the a product and ensure they can be separated, cleaned and used as part of a new product. • E.g. Sustaining the use of materials by using 10% of recycled material with 90% of new material. This also contributes the reduction of materials produced and used.