Ecobrickable Design

Introducing the Ecobrickabe Designator Logo– a simple concept, for a profound shift. 

The vast majority of products today are manufactured without thought to where they will go once consumed.  Many products are also designed to fail within a certain period– known as planned obsolescence.  This design ethic, (or lack of it) is the inadvertent, yet direct, cause of todays plastic strewn beaches, overflowing landfills, and micro plastic ocean gyres.  Learning from nature, its time to shift to a fully circular design ethic.  Designing and designating a product as ‘Ecobrickabble’ is solid first step.

white designator icon previewNature operates in perfect cycles of localized reuse. Elements in nature find a new life at their end.  Just as the gazelle nourishes the lion, the fallen great oak becomes the meal of a thousand fungi– while the fallen leaf helps the next oak grow.  In this way, nature operates in overlapping circles of re-purposed energy and utility, with every element infinitely recyclable within its surrounding ecology.

We can learn from nature.  We can design similar cradle-to-cradle circles of utility.  In this way, when a product come to its end, it can begin its new journey, in a new and recycled form.  For non-biodegradeable materials, this involves creating closed “technical nutrient cycles” or circles of valuable material that are reused over and over– just like nitrogen or oxygen molecules are used over and over in plant ecologies.

For many companies making the switch to this type of thinking requires a massive investment and complete restructuring of manufacturing, material sourcing, and implementing new systems to reabsorb their dead products.  The transition can be daunting.

Ecobricks, provide a valuable intermediary step in this transition.

Ecobricks are essentially a catch-all technical nutrient cycle of non-biodegradable materials.  Ecobricks, mimicing nature, transform dead-end plastic, into a cycle of indefinite local reuse.  Ecobricks allow companies and designers to make their first step to cradle-to-cradle design.  With a little forethought and advance planning, their product can be made easily and effectively Ecobrickable.

Ecobrickable Design Guidelines:

  • Product does not contains substances that will corrode PET plastic over time.
  • The product does not contain any primary or secondary biodegradable material.
  • Product can be easily disassembled, broken or cut into parts that can fit within the 22mm diameter neck of a standard PET bottle.
  • The products design maximizes the ease of disassembly for this purpose.
  • The product contains no sharp protrusions that could puncture an Ecobrick from within while it is being packed down.
  • The product contains no reactive chemicals, or if so, these components are clearly marked as un-Ecobrickable.

The Global Ecobrick Alliance team is on had to review your product and assist with making it as ecobrick-friendly as possible.  Once reviewed and confirmed, our icons can be used on the packaging/product to direct consumers to Ecobrick.



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