Sunday, October 19, 2008

Green Printing - Recyled Paper vs. E-Paper

One kind of industry rarely discussed among environmental movements is the paper business.

It seems like such an obvious industry – paper is made from trees, after all.

The consensus seems to be that there are two options facing the future of paper: make recycled paper or make it electronic. Recycled paper, obviously, is paper made from paper that has already been used and recycled. This can be extremely efficient; the first recorded instance of making recycled paper in the United States was 1690 and has only been improved since then. Most paper today is actually used for packaging, so using recycled paper only makes more sense.
Electronic paper (e-paper) is a little more interesting. This has been most visible the past few years in e-book readers (notably the Amazon Kindle) and electronic billboards. The debate is still up on whether or not it is green. It saves trees – but what about the chemicals? For example, most plastic used in computers is made from petroleum. That leaves me at least to conclude that recycled paper is much more efficient than e-paper.

How can recycled paper be made more efficient?
• Paper waste must be recycled
• Printing facilities can be closer to where you live (this one’s arguable; building another facility arguably creates more emissions that it saves – it depends)
• Use soy based inks rather than petroleum based ones

One printing company I’ve found to have truly green printing is PsPrint. It does everything I’ve bulleted above.

Of course there are plenty of other green companies, but none are as local for me as PsPrint. It does brochure printing and everything, which is especially good for the business I’m in. They are also involved with or members of several eco-friendly organizations! :)

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Accidentally Discovered Material, Black Silicon, Twice as Efficient As Regular Silicon

Harvard (TGW) – SiOnyx is using a material, “black silicon”, Harvard scientists accidentally discovered almost 10 years ago that is 100 to 500 times more sensitive to light than traditional silicon.

The silicon is produced by placing ordinary silicon into a vacuum chamber together with sulfur hexafluoride gas and exposing it to ultra-intense laser pulses equivalent to the collective strength of the total sunlight hitting Earth concentrated on a surface area that's about the size of a human fingernail.

The treated silicon can absorb twice as much visible light as regular silicon and unlike standard silicon is sensitive to invisible infrared light. It can absorb approximately 96 to 98 percent of visible light.

SiOnyx, a three year old startup with $11 million in the bank, has licensed the material.

Black silicon could radically change the solar industry. Furthermore, black silicon can be manufactured using the same equipment used today.

Via :: Good Clean Tech

Monday, October 13, 2008

Carnival of the Green (Links Fixed!)

Hello, and welcome to Carnival of the Green #149!

I’d just like to quickly thank Treehugger for sponsoring this, and remind everybody that last week’s Carnival of the Green was at Sustainablog and next week’s will be over at The Good Human!

Your ready to go?

This week around the green blogosphere:

Katrina Cain presents What is a Dual Flush Toilet? posted at Were You Wondering....

Mike presents The 104 Most Fuel Efficient Cars for 2009 posted at Hybrid Car Review.

Woman Tribune presents Good for Your Vagina, Good for the Environment posted at Woman Tribune.

In the eco-spiritual genre, Betsy presents A Brachah for Letting Go of Stuff posted at To Till and to Tend.

Steve Faber presents Why is Diesel More Expensive Than Gas? posted at super gas saver.

Tiffany Washko presents Celebrate Green! posted at Natural Family Living Blog.

Nimic presents 8 Products You Didn’t Know Were Made From Oil posted at The Green Routine.

Beth Terry presents Information Overload posted at Fake Plastic Fish.

Jamie McIntosh presents Save Money with Organic Gardening posted at Jamie's Blog.

Sally Kneidel presents Ecotourism can buffer the effects of poverty posted at Veggie Revolution.

Squawkfox presents 10 Reasons the Diva Cup Can Change Your Life posted at Squawkfox.

Grace presents What does your garbage say about you? posted at Face to the Sun.

The Digerati Life presents Will Green Food Saver Bags Make Food Last Longer? posted at The Digerati Life.

Kate presents Mestew, our New Friend posted at Green Thinking Blog.

Jeff McIntire-Strasburg presents Urban Farmer in Milwaukee, Founder of Nonprofit, Receives MacArthur Genius Grant : Sustainablog posted at Sustainablog.

Indian presents 2009 Horoscope - Astrology posted at DecisionCare.