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weLOG #17 Forests and Dishwashing?

There is an item most likely all of us have in our houses, which we use every day.


Yes! A dishwashing sponge!


Preparing for this weLOG I got curious about this seemingly, very ordinary item.

Now, you might be wondering what that has to do with weMORI and forests - well, stay with me, and you'll find out! :D


As we know it now, the typical sponge was invented in the 1930s by Otto Bayer, a German chemist. He developed polyurethane which is a synthetic material most sponges are made from. More goes into this product - it may also contain sulfates and other chemicals and be treated with bleaches. Sponges, labeled as antibacterial, go through even more chemical processing.


So how long would it take a sponge to decompose after we're done with it?

52,000 years, many pages suggest, although there's no reference to the source of where this number comes from.

Nevertheless, considering what sponges are made of, I can be pretty sure it takes longer than my lifetime. And how many sponges have I disposed of by now? I can't even imagine! PLENTY! All that is either burned or sitting in a landfill somewhere in the world…


Now why the exploration of this item in the first place?


The reason is the collaboration that came to life just recently, which we announced on our blog.

COLLAB!

weMORI came together with the ecomfortHouse and created a sponge free from chemicals and one that decomposes in just a couple of months!

How exciting is that!


AND on top of that, every product purchased supports tree planting initiatives in Borneo!!


Check the details of this fantastic creation on our blog page HERE :D



There's a lot more happening within weMORI, as well in the world - so many significant initiatives and projects - addressing pressing issues, expanding our knowledge and experience of this astounding world, improving our lives, giving us space for more informed choices, and inspiring us to continue growing.



AROUND THE WORLD 🌏

by Kenny


BRIDGING THE WAY TO A REGENERATIVE FUTURE

Fabricating a bridge from living trees? Yes, that is a possibility. Indigenous groups in north-east India have been doing this for centuries. We’re used to having mammoth concrete structures able to withstand weight in tons but ancestors from the remote villages of Syiemlieh had other ideas for bridges. The village periodically suffered during monsoon season and so they trained living aerial roots of Indian rubber fig trees to form bridges across flooding rivers.

These living root bridges do more than provide a pathway for villagers, and researchers have found that they have regenerative effects on the immediate environment. Root bridges are now being looked at in more detail and all the benefits, such as combating urban heat islands, that come with what can be considered an archaic architecture.

Scientists hope this concept of indigenous living architecture can be adapted by modern cities and positively contribute to climate change.



FIND THE FUNGI

While fungi may seem like a nuisance to some, they form an important part of the ecosystem. Fungal networks underground, not only provide nutrients but help store huge quantities of carbon. It’s noted that the fungal networks have basically been a ‘blind spot’ when it comes to conservation and different climate agendas, but there is help right beneath our feet, we just need to look.

Recently, a team of scientists embarked on an initiative to map the world’s fungi. The goal is to understand the relationship between these fungi and the eco-systems and how they help to keep more carbon in the soil.



MUSIC IS LIFE

As Louis Armstrong said “Music is life itself” and the music industry is uniting to pump life into the planet. Some of the world’s biggest record labels have come together to sign the Music Climate Pact and tackle the environmental challenges we face. The companies have pledged to do their part in creating ‘cleaner futures’ and achieving net-zero emissions.

Those involved have a choice of one of two schemes, the Science-Based Targets or the SME Climate Commitment. Those committing to the cause are required to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050 and a 50% reduction by 2030.

With major labels and musicians putting their weight behind such a cause, there could be positive changes in the near future due to the reach of this industry.




There you have it, dear friends!


Wishing you meaningful New Year celebrations!


Have a day, month, and a year that matters.


Joanna Arai


🖤

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