In terms of water and food supply, simple and easily applicable solutions can make a huge difference for local communities. To provide access to safe drinking water for even the world's most underdeveloped areas, Basic Water Needs (BWN) produces water filters for people worldwide. The filter offers a sustainable and affordable solution for access to safe drinking water that can be implemented by individuals and households. The product is straightforward and simple to use, and through BWN's extensive network, it is widely available.
WakaWaka addresses energy poverty in the developing world, and the socio-economic challenges that accompany it. WakaWaka develops off-grid solar-powered lamps and chargers that are high-tech, yet low-cost. They market their product primarily in the developing world for bottom of the pyramid consumers for whom electricity is often not available. In these areas, WakaWaka's products - based on patented solar technology - can replace highly inefficient and dangerous paraffin lamps. Regular access to electricity raises people's standard of living; WakaWaka accomplishes this in terms of health, environmental benefits, improved social cohesion and education, and economic impact through cost savings.
How can driving on a road become more safe, sustainable and an experience? Heijmans and designer Daan Roosegaarde have addressed this challenge with Glowing Lines. The Glowing Lines absorb light during the day and glow at night, marking out the edge of lanes. This increases visibility and safety, especially in rural areas. The Glowing Lines can be experienced every night at the N329 in Oss in the Netherlands.
The supply chain of electronics as well as their product life cycle have a long way to go in terms of fair trade, sustainability, and waste reduction. Fairphone is a social enterprise that is building a movement for fairer electronics, starting with the mobile phone. Fairphone is making a positive social and environmental impact across the value chain in mining, design, manufacturing and life cycle, while expanding the market for products that put ethical values first. The Fairphone 2 design is focused on longevity and reparability to extend the phone's usable life and give buyers more control over their products.
The agricultural sector's many waste streams resulting from harvesting and processing crops, contain valuable chemicals. Phytonext is a novel technology that is particularly suited for selective extraction of phytochemicals from natural material, such as vegetables. Many of these phytochemicals have functional properties that can substitute synthetic chemicals currently in use. These phytochemicals can thus provide natural solutions for the food, cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries. It not only extracts selectively, it is capable of 'engineering' particles in a controlled manner. Advantages are: enhanced selectivity of the extraction, no acidification of extract, low pressure and low energy consumption.
New Hondsbossche Dunes replaced existing dikes with state-of-the-art techniques to reinforce the Dutch coast. Upon completion it became the longest uninterrupted dunescape in Europe, with a total length of 5.5 km. In addition, New Hondsbossche Dunes serve a multitude of functions relating to recreation and biodiversity. There is more space for wildlife, and there are bike lanes and nature trails for pedestrians. Entrepreneurs are also encouraged to engage, and to set up their businesses in the area. The New Hondsbossche Dunes is a prime example of flood defence that at the same fulfills prominent social and economic functions.
Packaging material contributes heavily to the global production plastic waste, of which only a low percentage is recycled. Dutch firm Rodenburg and Taghleef have found a method of producing flexible packaging material. In order to accomplish this, their process combines potato starch with polylactic acid (PLA) waste, which is a biodegradable polymer made of plant starch. The result of this is a food grade polymer film that is biodegradable and takes only a third of energy to produce compared to oil-based alternatives. Thus the technology has considerable economic benefits and reduces waste streams in the process.
Worldwide we face many challenges involving water. For hundreds of years the Dutch have lead the world in water defence technology, which is why Amillarah's developers Dutch Docklands are expertly placed to develop these luxury, Floating Islands. Not only are the size, shape and style of the island customizable, the location can also be chosen. Amillarah Private Islands are self-sufficient, scarless developments with the latest state-of-the-art green technology, which keeps their environmental impact at a minimum. Dutch Docklands globally cooperates with Christie's International Real Estate and famed oceanographer Jean-Michel Cousteau's Ocean Futures Society charity.
Making cities a place to live in which welfare is accompanied by wellbeing requires sustainable solutions. To respond to the urban sprawl in a truly intelligent manner, CitySense is a sensor-guided lighting system that adjust light intensity to the presence of pedestrians, bicycles and cars in the area. When there is no traffic, the lights are dimmed, and when traffic is detected light intensity increases. The system still ensures safety as well as conventional lighting does, but comes with 80 percent reduction in energy use. In addition, operational costs are up to 50 percent lower because the integrated sensors alert system managers when maintenance is necessary.
The Netherlands has traditionally embraced the threat of the might of the sea instead of confronting it. The key is to work with nature by using the natural flow of the sea. The Sand Engine is a primary example of 'building with nature': a novel approach to sand supplementation, which is cost-effective and allows beaches to enlarge. Rather than spraying sand on the beaches, wind, waves and currents are given free rein. Nature's forces are embraced to spread the sand along the shore, thereby reinforcing the coastline and creating a dynamic area for nature and recreation. Mexico and the Netherlands are cooperating in coastal zone development through the concept of Building with Nature. Mexico also uses the Dutch technique of giving room to the river to manage high water levels.
Everyday approximately 750.000 men search online for webcam sex with children, a rapidly growing industry. By creating a fictional, virtual 10-year old Filipino named Sweetie Terre des Hommes has unmasked over a 1.000 of these felons. It also gained worldwide attention for webcam child sex tourism: the UN has placed the subject on its agenda for human rights. Sweetie has shown the world a new way of tracing felons of this type. Six men have been prosecuted to date.
In populated and urbanized areas, noise disturbance from cars increasingly becomes a problem. Whisstone by 4Silence reduces noise pollution from traffic by means of diffraction. Whisstone is a concrete panel embedded in the ground next to road. In this panel grooves of different depths absorb and redirect noise in upward direction. This creates a noise barrier that reduces pollution in areas adjacent to the road. Whisstone is easy to implement and takes up little space. It can be used in combination with other noise reducing techniques, or independently at locations where sound walls cannot be placed.