2014 Paris Motor Show highlights

Environmentally-friendly

Researchers at Ford and Heinz are developing a method of manufacturing car parts from toma...

Tomatoes are already found in soup, ketchup, and most Italian dishes, but researchers at Ford and Heinz may have discovered the secret sauce to making car parts from them. The companies' boffins are currently investigating the potential use of waste tomato peel for the manufacture of interior car parts, such as wiring brackets, and dashboard-based storage.  Read More

The Liam F1 Urban Wind Turbine is said to be considerably more efficient than most convent...

Although it's getting increasingly common to see solar panels on the roofs of homes, household wind turbines are still a fairly rare sight. If Rotterdam-based tech firm The Archimedes has its way, however, that will soon change. Today the company officially introduced its Liam F1 Urban Wind Turbine, which is said to have an energy yield that is "80 percent of the maximum that is theoretically feasible." That's quite the assertion, given that most conventional wind turbines average around 25 to 50 percent.  Read More

Powerhouse Kjørbo has been renovated to become the 'world's most environmentally-friendly ...

An office building in Norway has been renovated to produce more energy that it consumes. Powerhouse Kjørbo is located near Oslo, and according to Powerhouse, it is Norway’s first energy-positive building and the first in the world to be renovated into an energy-positive structure.  Read More

The Nannup Holiday House, by Iredale Pedersen Hook Architects (Photo: Peter Bennetts)

The Nannup Holiday House, by Iredale Pedersen Hook Architects, strikes a careful balance between allowing its owners to get in touch with nature, while preventing nature from taking over completely. Raised on stilts to help avoid hazards which include local wild pigs, venomous snakes, and floods, the home also features sustainable technology such as solar panels and grey water recycling.  Read More

Farmer's Fridge is a healthy food kiosk

If you associate vending machines with sugary fizzy drinks and waist-expanding food, think again. The growing appetite for healthier snacks and on-the-go food has opened up a new market catering for the health-conscious and environmentally aware. Now an entrepreneur in the American Midwest has raised the bar further with Farmer’s Fridge health food kiosks.  Read More

Unwanted toilets may soon have new life, as a component of cement  (Photo: Shutterstock)

An international team of researchers has discovered a potential new use for discarded toilets, along with other ceramic waste such as basins, stoneware and bricks. It turns out that they can be made into a more eco-friendly form of cement.  Read More

Park Passive House is Seattle's first certified Passive House (Photo: Aaron Leitz)

Well, it could theoretically be heated by a hairdryer, at least. While that attention-grabbing headline needn't be taken too literally (it appears to refer to the equivalent energy required for heating), in Park Passive House, NK Architects has produced an energy-efficient and attractive modern family home. It also happens to be Seattle's first certified Passive House, and so will hopefully provide inspiration for more similarly efficient homes to be built in its wake.  Read More

The Quiet Treehouse is currently installed at this year's Ideal Home Show in Earl's Court,...

Luxury treehouse manufacturer Blue Forest has teamed up with noise abatement specialist Quiet Mark and UK retailer John Lewis to produce the Quiet Treehouse. Constructed for this year's Ideal Home Show, the cosy retreat packed with noise-reduction technology and low-noise home appliances. Once the show is over, it will be installed in the Chestnut Tree House Children’s Hospice, West Sussex.  Read More

Samples of Fraunhofer's wood foam insulation

Insulating your home may help the environment by lowering your energy usage, but unfortunately the petroleum-based foam that's typically used as insulation isn't all that eco-friendly itself. Researchers at Germany's Fraunhofer Institute for Wood Research, however, have developed a reportedly greener alternative that they claim works just as well – it's foam made from wood.  Read More

Don't throw those eggshells away – they could be made into ceramics (Photo: Shutterstock)

According to the US Department of Agriculture, every year approximately 455,000 tons (412,769 tonnes) of discarded eggshells must be transported and disposed of in the US alone. Now, however, scientists at the University of Aveiro in Portugal have developed a method of using such eggshell waste in the production of ceramic goods.  Read More

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