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A Brief History of the Plastic Pollution Crisis and How Community Can help Solve it

A Brief History of the Plastic Pollution Crisis and How Community Can Solve it In 1907 Plastic was invented. For the first time a synthetic polymer was synthesized cheaply enough to be a viable material of creation for ‘all types of articles.’ Leo Baekeland had created Bakelite, and the rest is history. Though the real growth in plastics happened post WWII, through the 50s and finally exploding into the 60s with basically plastic everything, plastic had useful value from day 1. Albatross Designs thinks it is an important, and often not conceded, point: plastics [and oil for that matter] have been able to benefit humanity in significant ways.  In the most logical of chronologies, the history of the Plastic Pollution...

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Cranking Up the Volume: 5 Things You Can Do to Use Community as a Sustainability Tool

        Tell your friends. All of them. If you have friends, talk to them about all the ways the environment matters! Offer solutions. Be nice to their views too, but question false points about the task at hand, say, “Not being worth it” or “Doesn’t make a difference” or “The climate’s always changing” or “It’s already ruined so what’s the difference now.”       Strike Up conversations with strangers. It goes without saying, but not the really creepy ones. Nevertheless, we are constantly meeting people in our daily lives, many of whom would be receptive to sustainability ideas, but never heard of, say, the Zero Waste Movement or Ocean Acidification. They might love oysters, but never...

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Education's Impact on the Environment: And, how you can help.

We found this school with a sailboat painted on it, and thought How Cool! It also got us thinking about Education and the Environment. What’s the connection? Well let’s just say “Education” has an immense impact on how quickly the world can transition to a point of sustainability. There are of course many different types of education we people can get. Schools like the one in this photo should undoubtedly form the foundation of any modern education-- this is where we #learn about formal concepts and knowledge that explain how the world actually works. Your science, your government, your economics, etc. Sadly, in much of the world primary school curriculums are being manipulated to, say, deny Climate Change. This isn’t...

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New Realities: What we learned from Montreal in winter

This past holiday season Albatross traveled to Montreal, Quebec, Canada for one of our annual design pilgrimages. We chose Montreal because it typically embodies a strong winter environment that is a heck of a lot colder than coastal California. Winter is a time where there are a great deal of small actions that have magnified impacts on sustainability. For example, we’ve all heard the old: You can save 10% on your heating bill by lowering your heat 1 degree C. It’s actually true. There are many more tricks like this. Montrealers likely know many of these out of necessity (e.g., put film over your windows to stop a draft). There are many other cultural, governmental, and foundational forces present that...

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[Zero] Waste Wednesday (our 6 day Anti-Black Friday Holiday)

[Zero] Waste Wednesday:  The anti-Black Friday? Black Friday has many shortcomings, not least its effect on the environment.  It is the biggest shopping day of the year, the day when the most “stuff” is sold.  Much of that “stuff” is actually superfluous, and quite quickly becomes waste.  For example, the average kid’s toy gets used for only 2 weeks before it becomes waste.  Add to this the fact that Black Friday often exposes us to the worst parts of our Hyper-consumerist economy (YouTube it for examples). Well, we’re saying this doesn’t have to be the case!  Look, we get gifts as much as anyone, and yes, we like showing others we are thinking of them at the holidays too.  But… What if...

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