Cheyenne Schuit

Integrated Product Design master student. Completed bachelor in Industrial design engineering

Unsustainable habits

The most unsustainable habit is our take-make-waste system (lineair system). Besides that it is not sustainable it is also not economic beneficial on the long term. For metals for examples the amount of effort to get metals are increasing, while ore grades are dwingling in quantity and quality. The problem is that most materials and designs are not made for high grade recycling and need to be redesigned completely. The transition towards a circular economy can therefore take a century, but we have to start now.

Sustainability hero's

My sustainability hero is the Ellen Macarthur foundation who is succesfull in raising attention for a circular economy in society. Unlike other sustainable design strategies and organisations,the Ellen Macarthur foundation is able to get companies enthusiastic about this idea by pointing out the economic advantages. Another sustainability hero is Leyla Acaroglu. With her TED movie she stimulated me to look at sustainability differently. Sustainable materials do not exist, since it differs per application and lifecycle stage. This means that with every product or system you have to analyse the total life cycle and look at the environmental impact of every phase to make a decision on which material is the most sustainable for that product. The same counts for renewable energy technology systems. Solar panels and wind turbines require more metals for the infrastructure than systems of fossil fuels. A small solar cell on a small device, which you cannot take back to reuse again is therefore not sustainable. Again it depends on the application if something is sustainable or not. Gunter Pauli, who stimulates the blue economy, is a sustainable hero as well for daring to take a different direction by stimulating local economies and stimulates citizens to put it into practice instead of only talking about it.