Articles Posted in the Transport category

Ford uses soya to make greener car seats

July 16, 2007
Posted in Transport

Ford seems to be doing quite a bit to green up its seating arrangements. There are lots of reports on the Internet about Ford’s plans to use soya-based foam in its car seats, starting with its 2008 Ford Mustangs. Soya is a renewable resource so the new seats will be far more environmentally friendly than the petroleum-based foam that is normally used in car seats. Also, the foam has up to 24 percent renewable content, takes less energy to produce and cuts carbon dioxide emissions, said Ford in a press release, adding that it gives the company the “opportunity to conserve natural resources and reduce our environmental footprint”.

Debbie Mielewsk, technical leader for Ford’s materials research and advanced engineering department, said that each vehicle produced today contains an average of 13,5kg of petroleum-based foam. “The total annual worldwide market for the foam is 9-billion pounds (4-billion kilograms),” she said, therefore, “research and development of renewable, more environmentally friendly materials to produce the foam, could have a significant environmental impact”. Source: Ford website
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Food for thought

June 25, 2007
Posted in Food

If you haven’t yet seen Peter Menzel’s extraordinary photographs from the book “Hungry Planet: What the World Eats”, now’s your chance. Time magazine online has created a photogallery using 15 of his images. They’re fascinating shots of ordinary families from around the world – from California to China to Chad – surrounded by the food they eat in a week. The captions tell how much each family spends a week on food: from the refugees in Chad’s $1.63 to the German family of four’s $500. These pictures say more about what’s happening to people’s diets in the modern world than any number of words could. Briefly, it would appear that the more “westernised” the family, the harder it is to spot a fresh fruit or vegetable among their weekly shopping – and the more the packaging mounts up. To see the pics go to Time’s website.

“Hungry Planet: What the World Eats” by Peter Menzel and Faith D’Aluisio, Ten Speed Press, 2005.