Top 10 eco & sustainability business ideas in 2006
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- Hailing a hybrid: The Toyota Prius, the world’s most popular hybrid car, emits half as much carbon dioxide as a traditional black cab does. This made it an obvious choice for greentomatocars, an environmentally friendly cab service in London that was launched on 1 March 2006 and was founded by two young ex-City lawyers. Hybrid cars have an electrical engine that takes over from the petrol engine when the car is moving slowly, which eliminates toxic fumes and noise. More »
- Consumer generated power: Until fairly recently, wind turbines were huge structures that were only available for commercial use in turbine parks or empty rural areas. No longer so. Consumers can now choose from various wind turbines for residential use. For GBP 25,000, consumers can purchase beautifully designed, ‘elegant’ wind power from Quiet Revolution. More »
- Household recycling plant: When discussing insperiences (the trend of bringing professional grade products and services into the domestic domain), one thinks of plush home cinemas and chef-worthy kitchens. An indoor recycling plant doesn’t immediately spring to mind. But that could change with the arrival of the Ecopod. Created in partnership with BMW DesignWorksUSA, Ecopod’s E1 Series is a household recycling center that aims to change the way consumers take out their trash. More »
- Green rentals: EV Rental Cars is the first US rental car company whose entire fleet consists of hybrid vehicles. The Los Angeles based firm doubled its fleet over the past two years, and now offers fuel-efficient wheels for rent in eight cities in the Western US through a partnership with Fox Rent A Car. More »
- Eco-chic entrepreneurs: Two stylish opportunities from the world of sustainable fashion: ECOIST Known as the candy wrapper handbags, Ecoist’s bags (USD 28-58) are made from misprinted or discontinued snack bags, soda labels and candy wrappers. A family business based in Miami, the company believes that consumers should be able to enjoy a modern lifestyle, buying their favourite things, while also doing good to the Earth. Material that would otherwise end up in landfills is folded into straps and woven into bags and clutches by Mexican artisans. More »
- Innovative olive farmers: Following in the footsteps of vineyard sharing concepts like WineShare and St. Helena Winery’s Adopt-A-Vine, Nudo lets customers adopt an olive tree. Founded by two former British television producers who decided to ditch the rat race for a farm in rural Italy, Nudo is an olive grove that offers trees for adoption. More »
- Retail approach to recycling: Whether ignorant or just plain lazy, plenty of consumers and businesses don’t make the effort to recycle electronics. Which is why Green Citizen’s drop-off center and pick-up service are great concepts – they make it convenient for people to recycle unused electronic equipment. In their own words: “we want to make recycling electronics so easy that you’ll make it a part of your everyday routine.” More »
- Carbon offsets by sms: World Land Trust, which was founded in 1989 to preserve the world’s most ecologically important and threatened lands, recently created a new way for concerned citizens to help the earth. The foundation now offers carbon offsets by sms/text message. Every time a consumer texts “WLT CARBON” to number 87050 (within the UK), World Land Trust will offset 140 kilograms of CO2 through its Carbon Balanced Program. More »
- Zen approach to cleaning industry: Looking to stand out in a lackluster industry? Learn from ZENhome Cleaning! This Brooklyn based home cleaning company, founded by a former model, changed hum-drum home cleaning into something special. The company only uses non-toxic, environmentally friendly cleaning products, appealing both to ecologically aware consumers and people with allergies. More »
- Hot nightclub, minus global warming: Kicking off in Rotterdam’s Off_Corso on October 14th is the Sustainable Dance Club. The kick-off party will feature biological beer on tap and fair-trade clothing brand Kuyichi helping clubbers customize their clothes. The end concept will go much further. Enviu, an environmental NGO for young people, is working together with architectural firm Döll to create a truly sustainable nightclub. More »
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