In nature nothing is ever wasted. When a plant dies it decomposes and becomes the nutrients for new life. Upcycling mimics this natural process.
Upcycle TerraCycle® definition: Using every aspect of waste as value… Typically a piece of waste can be seen as two things: the material it’s made from and the shape it is in. For example a chip bag is made from plastic and is in the form of a bag. If one were to upcycle a chip bag one would be leveraging both aspects and not destroying any part of it. While if one were to melt a chip bag into a plastic product it would be considered recycling vs. upcycling. terracycle.net/upcycling TerraCycle ® upcycles and recycles traditionally non-recyclable waste (including drink pouches, chip bags, tooth brushes and many more) into a large variety of consumer products.
Upcycle Wikipedia definition: The process of converting waste materials or useless products into new materials or products of better quality or a higher environmental value… Upcycling reduces the consumption of new raw materials when creating new products. Reducing the use of new raw materials can result in a reduction of energy usage, air pollution, water pollution and even greenhouse gas emissions… Upcycling is the opposite of downcycling, which is the other half of the recycling process. According to this concept, recycling, as we know it through our traditional waste management systems, would actually be considered downcycling. Downcycling involves converting materials and products into new materials of lesser quality. Most recycling involves converting or extracting useful materials from a product and creating a different product or material. – en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Upcycle
Upcycled Candy wrappers: Pochette – Coke Zero from Ecoist.com $49
Upcycled Drink Pouches
TerraCycle 3-ring Binder Pencil Case: $2.99. Made from waste drink pouch material.
TerraCycle Backpack – Honest Kids. Made from waste drink pouch material.
Upcycled pop tops
Upcycled plastic bottles
Upcycled water bottle wall Recyclart
upcycled light bulb vase via touchn2btouched.tumblr.com
Upcycled bottle caps
Upcycled Beer Cans
Click here to see a surfboard made by upcycling beer cans here:
Upcycling in Art
Tom Dininger uses uses a variety of discarded materials to create many amazingly intricate pieces of exceptional artwork
An amazing story involving upcycling
- One man’s rubbish is Terracycle’s bounty (money.cnn.com)
- You’re the Boss: Should Green Companies Work With Giant Companies? (boss.blogs.nytimes.com)
- Partnering With Companies That Sell Alcohol, Guns and Tobacco (boss.blogs.nytimes.com)