Dutch company develops a self-cleaning paint – a sustainable innovation

Painting house exterior

Homeowners know that the exterior paint job on their home will only last so long – about ten years or so. Then it’s time to do it all again!

But Dutch chemical and coatings company AkzoNobel has been working on the problem and they’ve come up with an innovative solution. One of the company’s product developers, Dr. Peter Greenwood, figured out that by adding colloidal silica to its paints, it would last up to 16 year – 25 percent longer than the standard product.

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Darden – a green leader in the restaurant industry

News reports tout Walmart’s apparent focus on sustainability. In the food service industry, however, Darden Restaurants Inc. is taking giant strides to be in the forefront of sustainability. And they’re leaving companies like Walmart in the dust.

Darden is the parent company of popular restaurants Olive Garden, Red Lobster and Longhorn Steakhouse, as well as The Capital Grille, Seasons 52, Eddie V’s, Bahama Breeze and Yard House restaurants. Five years ago, spurred on by requests from many of its over 185,000 employees, Darden Restaurants launched widespread sustainability efforts.

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Pacific Garbage Patch may be converted into diesel

Over the past year, pictures of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch have made global news. Discussions of what to do about this country-sized plastic debris in the North Pacific Gyre.led to a study to chart it and to Electrolux’s forthcoming limited edition Vac from the Sea. Still, the larger issue of how best to remedy or eliminate the steadily growing garbage “dump” remained.

Now a partnership between Covanta Energy and Project Kaisei – a collaboration brokered by the Clinton Global Initiative – could result in the discarded garbage being processed into diesel fuel. Both Covanta and Project Kaisei  are members of CGI’s Rethinking Waste subgroup, which works on creative solutions to waste management.

This exciting venture is still in the planning stages due to both technological and financial issues. Though an actual expedition is likely years away,the possibility that there is a viable solution to this shameful marine wasteland is both hopeful and enticing. Producing fuel from the Vortex is definitely a story to keep an eye on.