Products good for the planet

Three cool new things that will keep you warm, keep you on time and keep others fed

Every so often, someone comes up with a really clever idea, or perhaps just a really good idea.

Good for the planet, that is.

Here are a few we’ve come across recently:

Green time

You’ll never miss your wake-up call, even in a power failure, because this clock isn’t plugged in.

The Bedol Water Clock comes in several different shapes, including a water droplet, and runs on water! It features a transparent, PVC-free water reservoir for the visually intriguing ion-harvesting mechanism that powers the digital clock. Remarkably, it really runs on water (no batteries) and goes for about four months between changes of water. It comes in plain charcoal as well as funky green, pink, blue and purple. It also has an alarm.

It’s $30 at Grassroots Environmental and Bergo Designs in Toronto. Check here for other outlets.

Hot seat

How often have you frozen your posterior at a concert or sporting event because the weather was unseasonably cool? Kyle Smith decided to do something about it, so he invented the Chaheati All-Season Heated Chair.

It looks like a standard collapsible canvas chair, but cordless carbon fibre, non-wire heating elements throughout keep you toasty warm, with four temperature settings ranging from 37° to 60°C. Safe, low-voltage heating technology has digital circuit protection and a high efficiency, lithium-ion rechargeable battery provides up to six hours of heat per charge. The fabric is rugged yet comfortable and is designed to be fire- and water-resistant.

The seat is oversized, accommodating up to 280 lbs. And it will last for more than 500 uses. That’s a lot of games! $89.99 on the web. (An AC car adapter charger is also sold separately.)

Wear beads

In a real fashion statement, glitterati like Randy Jackson, Marcia Cross and President Obama’s envoy to Sudan, Scott Gration, are swapping diamond bracelets for beads.

Relief Beads is a grassroots campaign raising money and awareness for Relief International’s humanitarian efforts to combat epidemic levels of child malnutrition in Darfur and southern Sudan.

Malnutrition rates for children in the region are higher than the World Health Organization’s 15 percent “emergency threshold”. And the United Nations has reported that roughly one out of three children under five is underweight.

Relief Beads are handmade African bracelets, crafted in Ghana and Darfur, that support the livelihoods of many people. One Relief Beads bracelet feeds a malnourished child for one week, and five can bring a malnourished child back to good health.

The mission is to build a therapeutic feeding centre for malnourished children and to fund an entire nutrition team for one year. Previously, Relief Beads supported the only Women’s Development Centre in Darfur and employed women refugees to make
Relief Beads bracelets.

Relief Beads cost $10, and are available here and in stores.


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Posted: Mar 24 2011 1:22 pm
Filed in: NEWS
Edition: Toronto
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