488 Eco-design

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Eco-design

The evidence is piling up that we need to be more green and eco-friendly for the benefit of everyone’s health and the world as a whole. With this being the case, those led by their conscience have began and for some time been creating countless environmentally sustainable designs for the home.

The idea of eco-design is that a product is environmentally friendly and ethical for the duration of its life cycle, from manufacturing, right up to its disposal.

So, what exactly makes a design an eco-design?

From start to finish, products are conceptualized and manufactured with sustainability and the environment in mind. A table, from recycled or salvaged woods and metals, rebuilt in a renewable or low-energy emitting manufacturing plant would be an eco-design, for example. The general rule is that products limit the use of either fossil fuels or other non-renewable materials within their production cycle, and can then be ethically disposed of, leaving as little a footprint on the Earth as possible.

Are there any directives which outline how to identify eco-design?

Yes, there is the EcoDesign Checklist. The checklist sets out a number of questions that need to be answered before a product can be truly considered an eco-design. There are five stages of the EcoDesign Checklist, along with questions and strategy ideas for each phase.

- Stage 1 regards the production and supply of materials and components, asking, What problems arise in the production and supply of materials and components? Stage 1 strategy includes, selecting low-impact materials, and/or reducing material usage.

- Stage 2 concerns in-house production, noting, What problems can arise in the production process in your own company? Stage 2 strategy includes, optimization of production techniques.

-Stage 3 incorporates the distribution process, with the question, What problems can arise in the distribution of the product to the customer? Stage 3 strategy suggests a reduction of material usage and/or optimization of the distribution system. 

-Stage 4 outlines product utilization and questions What problems arise when using, operating, servicing and repairing the product? Stage 4 strategy notes to implement a reduction of impact in the used stage and/or optimization of initial lifetime of the product. 

-Stage 5 is the final phase, regarding recovery and disposal of the product, asking brands to consider What problems arise in the recovery and disposal of the product? Stage 5 strategy simply concerns optimization of the end-of-life system.

Where can I find eco-designers?

Look no further than homify! With thousands of registered professionals, and a community willing and ready to answer your queries, you really don’t need to go anywhere else. Either search for an eco-designer with your zip-code and browse professionals and their completed projects close to your home. Or, if you still can’t find what you’re looking for simply post a topic on our discussions tab and you’ll receive responses from both experts and regular users of homify.

Is eco-design expensive?

It depends on the project, but buying eco products is becoming more and more affordable as further players enter the market and more manufacturers implement ecological processes to their production methods, which brings the cost of ensuring the whole product’s life cycle is reduced.

Eco-design is a sure fire way of reducing your own carbon footprint, and also leave you feeling less guilty about the products you own. Search homify for eco-designers and the products that they offer today. Or begin a discussion around the subject of eco-design to find out more from experts or other users with experience of eco-products.