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Galileo IIIC

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Federal Minister for the Environment Sussan Ley has unveiled a new $10 million state-of-the-art tyre recycling facility at Erskine Park in Western Sydney.

Tyrecycle CEO Jim Fairweather said the plant will be able to sustainably process the tens of thousands of tonnes of tyre waste that were previously being sent offshore to poor environmental outcomes.

“It represents a massive win for the environment and for Australia’s circular economy, in that end-of-life tyres will now be given a new lease on life,” Fairweather said.

The plant will transform the waste tyres into quality products for re-use, including tyre-derived fuel and rubber crumb for use in roads, tile adhesive and sporting surfaces.

The plant has the capacity to produce 10,000 tonnes of rubber crumb and generate 40,000 tonnes of tyre derived fuel (TDF).

“It reflects a significant step forward in Australia responsibly dealing with its own tyre waste, driving strong environmental and economic outcomes.”

Construction of the plant was supported by a $1.5 million grant for phase 1 and a further $2.9 million for phase 2 from the Recycling Modernisation Fund, as part of the transformation of Australia’s waste and recycling capacity.

“The Morrison government’s $190 million commitment is being matched by states and territories, and business is backing it in with unprecedented spending,” Minister Ley said.

“Australians are doing their bit through domestic recycling, but as a nation we need to create more opportunity for recycled content and better ways of processing.

“Tyrecycle’s new plant will process some of the 56 million tyres that reach their end of life on Australian roads each year.

“The Morrison government is sending a clear signal for change with the third tranche of our waste export ban last week closing the door on the shipping of seven million baled tyres to overseas markets each year.”

Image credit: ©stock.adobe.com/au/Rolandas

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ABB Australia has been named the winner for Excellence in Sustainability at the 2020–2021 Swedish Business in Australia Awards for the way its products and solutions for smart cities, manufacturing and transportation are enabling the transition to a low-carbon society.

The award judges said ABB is a global leader in technologies that will make the world more sustainable. “It’s so good that their offering of products, technologies, skills and know-how is applied to the Australian market, be it in smarter buildings, energy production or transport.”

The group is supporting sustainable mobility across the entire e-mobility value chain, offering a complete range of solutions for the electrification of buses, commercial vehicles, passenger cars, ships and railways. ABB provides not only electric vehicle (EV) charging stations, but also critical EV charging network components, such as substations, energy storage systems and eco-friendly switchgear. For industrial, commercial and residential environments, applying ABB’s smart building technology enhances energy efficiency and reduces electricity consumption in industrial, which when fully implemented can deliver a 30% reduction in energy costs.

In a statement, ABB said that in Australia, the group has demonstrated a number of ‘firsts’ when it comes to applying its technology to projects leading the way in sustainable design and engineering: South Australia’s first 10-Star rated home; Western Australia’s first electric bus route; and the largest healthcare building automation project in the Southern Hemisphere with Calvary Adelaide Hospital.

David Sullivan, head of ABB Australia’s Electrification business, said, “We are very proud to be acknowledged by the Swedish Australian Chamber of Commerce for our genuine focus on sustainability through the application of our technology and expertise.

Image credit: ABB

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The Milton Ulladulla ExServos Club is hoping to reduce power consumption by half and save $70K a year in energy costs with the installation of a 215 kilowatt/peak (kWp) Enphase-equipped solar system.

The system was installed by Bawley Point NSW-based Enphase partner SunnyAfternoons, an Enphase Platinum Partner which supports customers from the NSW South Coast to Gippsland in northeast Victoria.

SunnyAfternoons installed the 100 kWp first stage of the system in December 2020 and the remaining 115 kWp in the middle of this year. The complete system contains 581 370-watt mono perc solar panels, each equipped with Enphase IQ7+ microinverters.

Milton Ulladulla ExServos Club CEO Darryl Bozicevic said the club invested in the solar PV system to reduce energy consumption and to demonstrate corporate social responsibility. “We’d looked at it for a number of years and, from a pricing point of view, decided it was time to move,” he said.

“We’ve budgeted on a three-year payback for the cost of the system. In November alone, our power bill was reduced by $10,000 — down 58% from November 2020. We were involved in the decision to use Enphase, assisted by an external consultant. Although microinverters are more expensive, I think we were more comfortable with them as part of the SunnyAfternoons proposal.

“Microinverters provide us with monitoring of each solar panel, so we can see how well it is working and easily identify a problem with a panel. With 1000–2000 people visiting the club on many days, safety was an important part of our decision, which also encouraged us to choose Enphase.”

SunnyAfternoons Managing Director Glenn Cooper said he had recommended Enphase microinverters because of their superior performance, accessibility and safety. “The club is a large operation that uses a fair bit of power during the daytime, so this solar system will deliver them huge savings on a sunny day,” he said.

Enphase offers the advantages of module-level reporting that provides remote monitoring of what is going on for each panel, so there is more uptime even when there are minor failures, which means lower maintenance costs for the whole system, Cooper said.

Enphase microinverters convert DC energy produced by the panels to AC energy right on the panel, so there are no high-voltage DC cables running through the roof, which reduces the risk of fire, he said.

Image caption: Enphase-equipped solar panels on the Milton Ulladulla ExServos Club.

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Aurecon’s Lisa Currie is one of three water leaders in New South Wales to be named a Legend of Water by the Australia Water Association (AWA).

Currie, who is Aurecon’s Client Leader for Sydney Water, was honoured at the annual AWA NSW event on 1 December 2021 alongside Wayne Beatty, Water and Sewerage Manager at Orange City Council, and David Kirby, Utilities Manager at Brewarrina Shire Council.

Currie is known for her passion towards creating more sustainable, climate-resilient and livable places through water sensitive urban design and integrated water cycle management.

“Water plays such an essential role in our lives — it’s not just about providing clean and safe water and sanitation services but also in protecting our waterways and greening and cooling our communities so they are great places to live,” Currie said.

Currie has worked in the Australian water industry for more than 20 years. With qualifications in both engineering and business administration, she has held a variety of technical, project delivery and management roles in both the private and public sector.

Her experience spans the drinking water, wastewater and recycled water process engineering, project delivery and operations sector, as well as water strategy and policy development, water sensitive urban design, sustainability, advocacy for regulatory reform and organisational change management.

“I’m extremely honoured to receive this award and to be recognised by my peers for my contribution to the industry and the communities we serve,” Currie said.

The NSW Legends of Water awards recognise the achievements of water industry leaders who have not only been committed to creating a more sustainable water future but have dedicated their careers to promoting the importance of water in their respective fields.

Aurecon’s Water Capability Leader Kevin Werksman said the water community was incredibly proud of Currie, who is an advocate for water sensitive cities, and who, in a previous role as Manager of Water Strategy at City of Sydney, led the council’s approach to making Sydney a more blue/green city.

Image caption: Lisa Currie (third from the right) receiving the award.

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Sustainable Outdoor Clothing Brands

Spending time in nature is such a special way to remind ourselves of the beauty of this planet, and our responsibility to care for it and those living on it. That being said, many of the clothes that make spending time in the great outdoors more comfortable can often be harmful to the planet, as well as the people who made them, and animals. Luckily, there are some excellent sustainable outdoor clothing brands.

What makes outdoor clothing unsustainable?

Synthetic Fibers

The clothes that are made to keep us comfortable outside are often made of both virgin synthetic material and animal-derived materials. If we start with synthetics, here’s what we know: virgin synthetic fibers used to make leggings, rain jackets, coats and thermals, as well as winter warmers like fleeces, are made from plastic. 

In fact, about 60% of clothes made today are made from petroleum. Even before we talk about what this means when it comes to washing our clothes, this is a problem. These synthetic, petroleum-based materials fund the incredibly environmentally harmful mining industry. In 2015 alone, more than 330 million barrels of oil were used to make cheap nylon, polyester, acrylic and other synthetic fibers. So when we talk about the need to move away from fossil fuels for the sake of the climate, that means in the fashion industry, too.

Synthetics are an issue too, because they shed non-biodegradable, plastic microfibers into the waterways, and ultimately the ocean, when we wash them. 

Animal-derived materials

When it comes to animal-derived materials like wool, leather and down used in thermals, jackets, coats and accessories, environmental issues are also largely tied up in climate impact and greenhouse gas emissions. The Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations says that the farming of animals is one of today’s most serious environmental problems, requiring urgent action. Animal-derived materials are the most harmful to our climate, according to the best available data.

This is not only due to the fact that farmed animals and their waste release methane into the atmosphere, but because animal agriculture is land-intensive, requiring more land to be cleared to produce less material than could be made with plant-based, recycled, bio-based or in the future, lab-grown materials. When we clear land, we release carbon, and we also stop carbon from being sequestered (soaked in and stored) by the vegetation that could have been growing there.

Mass Production

The last thing to consider around sustainability in the realm of outdoor clothing is mass production. Brands that are producing endless amounts of clothing – no matter what they are made of – aren’t sustainable, as 33% of clothing made every year is sent unsold, directly to landfill. Here, clothes break down, releasing more greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere.

What makes outdoor clothing unethical?

When we think about outdoor clothing that is sustainable, we also need to consider the ethics of how they are made – because we can’t sustain the unjust treatment of garment workers, or the exploitation of animals in fashion. 

Some outdoor brands continue to use even the most controversial animal-derived materials, like fur, to line their coats and jackets, while materials like down and wool are far more common. These materials are all made in industries which harm and ultimately kill animals – even wool, despite common misperception. 

Many outdoor clothing brands also use unjust and exploitative labor. Around the world, just 2% of garment workers are paid a living wage that covers their basic needs like food, clean water, shelter and medical care. Garment workers are also often made to work in unsafe conditions, and in a workforce made up largely of women of colour, unfortunately incidences of harassment and assault are common, too. It’s important we consider not only what our outdoor clothes are made of, but who made them.

Luckily, there are plenty of excellent outdoor clothing brands that consider and respect the planet, and everyone living on it! Below are some of the clothing brands that we love most for when we need some great clothes to suit the great outdoors.

Outdoor clothing brands we love:

1) Patagonia

Patagonia is one of those brands almost everyone knows of, and for good reason. The brand, which offers a wide range of outdoor clothing and gear, has long been a trailblazer for the sustainable and ethical fashion movement.

Having written a living wage standard into their code of conduct for the sake of garment workers, and using recycled and organic materials, including many which are clearly labelled to be animal-free, Patagonia has great options. Some of their quilted jackets are filled with PrimaLoft, the most sustainable, recycled jacket filling available, while many of their Fair Trade fleeces are made of recycled materials, too.

Shop Patagonia

2) Outerknown

Pro surfer Kelly Slater is behind this Fair Labor Association accredited brand which makes garments that 90% of the time, are made of recycled, organic and ‘regenerative’ materials.

The brand, which has lots of animal-free and sustainable options, has fleeces, rain jackets, activewear like leggings, joggers and shorts, and a bunch of other great garments.

Shop Outerknown

3) Ecoalf

This brand caters to people of all genders, and children, too! The brand uses a whole range of sustainable materials like those made from recycled plastic bottles, fishing nets and tires, as well as recycled cotton, nylon and more. Talk about champion recyclers! 

This brand labels which of their garments are vegan, has certifications to show their social responsibility and safe work environment for garment workers, and is all round cool. We particularly love their range of 100% recycled puffer jackets, and comfortable basics.

Shop Ecoalf

4) Embassy of Bricks & Logs

This brand offers a range of quilted jackets, raincoats, and basics. The brand, which offers feminine and masculine styles, prides themselves on producing ‘premium ethical attire’. 

Designing for longevity with recycled, organic and other more sustainable, animal-free materials. Made ethically across small factories in China and Germany, this brand is dedicated to continually becoming more transparent and fair.

Shop Embassy of Bricks & Logs

5) Save the Duck

Using recycled and innovative materials, this brand has created advanced outdoor clothing that has seen the top of Mount Everest. A certified B-Corp, this ethical, animal-free and sustainable brand is ticking all the boxes.

The brand offers clothes for men, women and children, like rain jackets, puffer jackets, ‘athleisure’ and more.

Shop Save the Duck

6) Finisterre

Finisterre is a pioneering, sustainable outdoor brand, built to inspire a love of the sea and anchored in exceptional product.’ This brand is B-Corp certified, and extremely transparent about their ethical manufacturing processes. 

Using lots of great materials worth looking for in their collection like Tencel, organic and recycled cotton, hemp, and recycled synthetics, the brand makes base layers, basics, rain jackets, puffers, beanies and more.

Shop Finisterre

About the Author
Emma Håkansson is the founder and director of Collective Fashion Justice which seeks to create a total ethics fashion system that prioritizes the life and wellbeing of non-human & human animals, as well as the planet, before profit & production. She has written countless articles on ethics, sustainability, and fashion, and has two books due out over the next two years.


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WANT MORE SUSTAINABLE BRANDS? VISIT OUR BRAND DIRECTORY!

Our Brand Directory is home to hundreds of sustainable brands, from makeup to cleaning supplies, from underwear to shoes. We have broken everything down by category for easy shopping, along with discount codes unique to Sustainably Chic viewers.

Shop the Sustainable Brand Directory

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image from Whimsy & Row

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliated; we may earn a small commission if you click through and make a purchase.We only ever add brands & products we truly believe in!

What is modal?

Over recent years, as we’ve become more aware and interested in the fabrics that make our clothes, you may have noticed a lot of new types of materials being talked about. Especially within the sustainable fashion world where materials are constantly battling to be named the most sustainable. One such fabric that you may have heard about is modal, but what do we actually know about it? 

You may have spotted modal in your favourite activewear brand’s new collection, or even in the sheets and pillowcases of a bedding brand, and it has rapidly increased in popularity within sustainable brands. Known for its silky-smooth texture and being incredibly lightweight, modal has the versatility brands crave, and a sustainable accreditation to go with it only makes it more desirable. But it’s worth having a more in-depth look at modal to determine what the true sustainability factors are, and what is simply greenwashing.

When we’re deciding if an item of clothing is sustainable or not, we need to know what fabric it’s made of, what goes into making that fabric, and whether it’s been produced ethically. Being informed on the facts behind our fabrics helps us make better decisions when we shop, so let’s get to know modal a bit better!

The science behind the fabric

Modal was first developed in Japan in 1951 but was then produced by an Austrian company called Lenzing Fibers (now Lenzing) in 1964. The fabric belongs to the “rayon” family and is considered an upgrade to the fabric “viscose”. Originally, modal was developed in order to refine viscose by imitating the properties of cotton. Modal is known as a semi-natural fiber, as the original source it is made from is beech trees, but the process of turning the wood pulp into yarn requires chemicals. Because of this combination, modal fibers are also called “regenerated cellulosic” fibers.

The process of creating modal requires the harvesting of beech trees, which are then turned into small chips and then purified to extract their cellulose content. This cellulose is formed into sheets and immersed in vats of chemicals such as sodium hydroxide and carbon disulfide before being broken down again and forced through a ‘spinneret’ to create fibers. These fibers are then woven together to make the modal fabric, which can be used on its own or in a textile blend with other materials like cotton. 

In 1977, Lenzing invented a process of bleaching the wood pulp in a more environmentally friendly way. Today, Lenzing’s modal is made of wood pulp sourced from beech trees which are harvested in sustainable forests under the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification schemes (PEFC). 

Where do you find modal? 

To this day, the largest producer of modal fabric worldwide is still Lenzing, which is based in Europe but has factories all over the world, with some of their biggest modal fabric factories being in China. A variety of other companies also make modal rayon, and most of these companies are based in China, which is why China is now the world’s largest exporter of modal. 

Originally, the fabric was used to create scarves as it was thought of as the perfect alternative to silk. Now modal is mostly used in underwear, nightwear, sportswear, t-shirts, and even bedding. In clothing modal is often used as an alternative to cotton or silk, as it has the same lightweight and breathable feel. Many sustainable brands have opted to use modal in their products as it’s also an eco-friendly alternative to viscose, and it can be marketed as a ‘plant-based material’. 

In terms of the benefits of using modal as a fabric for clothes, the list is pretty long. Modal is stretchy, soft, breathable, water absorbent, durable, drapes well, doesn’t pill, color fast, shrink-resistant, doesn't crease, and is biodegradable. It’s no wonder that sustainable fashion designers were keen to start using this fabric in their collections! 

You’ll often see that modal is blended with other fibers like cotton and spandex for added strength. Modal is considered a luxurious textile due to both its soft feel and high cost, as it is more expensive than either cotton or viscose. For this reason it is often favoured by more high-end designers, adding to the luxury appeal of their brand. 

Sustainable brands across the world have also adopted the use of sustainably-produced modals within their collections, such as Amour Vert, TAMGA Designs, and Whimsy and Row.

What makes modal unsustainable?

There has been confusion over whether or not modal could be classed as a sustainable material. At a basic level, modal is made from trees which would suggest that, if sourced from sustainably-managed forests, it would be an eco-friendly material. However, the chemicals and processes involved to turn the wood chips into fibers have caused people to question it’s sustainability accreditations.

Forests

The main raw material for producing modal is wood from beech and softwood trees. However, due to the rise in popularity of modal, we’ve seen an increase in unregulated production, which has added to the global issue of deforestation. In a report by Canopy Planet, several producers of modal were sourcing trees from ancient or endangered forests. The Rainforest Action Network even ran a global campaign called ‘Out of Fashion’ to pressure fashion brands away from their use of unsustainable modal, rayon and viscose.

As with any material created from trees, there needs to be external audits carried out and certifications awarded to suppliers and brands who are following the appropriate guidelines to ensure sustainability. It can be incredibly difficult to trace back materials to their original source, so transparent supply chains are also crucial in sustainable modal production.

Chemicals 

Another common objection to modal is the use of several chemicals involved in processing the fiber. Modal requires many toxic chemicals such as sodium hydroxide, sulfuric acid, and carbon disulfide. The latter is a well-known neurotoxin that can enter the water or air through the processing of modal if it’s not manufactured in a closed-loop process. This then affects wildlife, aquatic life and humans, who can experience critical medical problems ranging from liver damage, blindness and even death. 

image from Amour Vert

Can modal be sustainable?

While there are unsustainable fiber producers, not all modal is created equal. Lenzing currently produces the most sustainable modal called TENCEL Modal®. They operate under a global certification system and have developed environmental processes for their modal, which are not currently commercially available to others. Lenzing’s technologies are less-toxic and have a high rate of recovery for process ingredients, meaning fewer chemicals end up being wasted. They also source their trees from PEFC or FSC accredited forests which have sustainably managed beech tree plantations. The environmental footprint of TENCEL Modal® is carbon-neutral, requires much less land per tonne than cotton fibers, and requires 10-20 times less water than cotton does. 

To be clear, Tencel is a brand name that produces certain types of modal and lyocell. Check out our guide to Tencel and some of our favorite brands that use it!

Micromodal is a more recent version of modal that is even more lightweight and soft, rivaling even the highest quality of silk. In addition, it is considered to be more environmentally friendly than modal as it is highly homogenous, with only one company currently producing micromodal. Micromodal also requires far lesser concentrations of caustic soda during the processing of the fiber. 

Sustainable modal production should encompass, at minimum, these main aspects:

  • Closed loop production. This means any chemical used once in the process is not discarded in the environment, and is instead reused. The only small amount that is discharged is also non-hazardous. Many rayon manufacturers have started to use “chemical scrubbers” or machines to trap the chemicals before they make their way into the ecosystem, further reducing harm. 

  • Sustainably-sourced wood. Sustainable modal should be made of wood pulp sourced from beech trees which are harvested in sustainable forests.

  • Low water consumption. Modal requires a surprisingly low consumption of water during its production. Compared to cotton, its water consumption is about 20 times less. This means the Modal’s carbon footprint is also much less than other fabrics. 

  • Biodegradable status. Although semi-synthetic, modal fiber is completely biodegradable. The production chemicals that are used are also biodegradable.

Sustainable alternatives to modal

If you can’t find TENCEL Modal®, there are other sustainable alternatives to look out for if you’re after something with a similar weight or feel to modal. 

TENCEL™ Lyocell is a more sustainable alternative to modal as it is a completely organic form of rayon. It is made using an organic solution that replaces the sodium hydroxide used in modal production. 

According to the ‘Environmental Benchmark for Fibres’ from materials experts Made-By, there are several materials that are classed as more sustainable than modal. These include organic hemp, organic linen, recycled wool and recycled cotton. Depending on these fabrics' thread count, they could be perfect alternatives to modal. 


About the Author:

Sarah King is a freelance writer with a focus on vegan fashion, sustainability and ethically made clothes. She campaigns for change in the fashion industry through her blog and on her Instagram page.


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my baby boy, Elliott - 3 years ago!

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliated; we may earn a small commission if you click through and make a purchase. This post is also sponsored in part by Made Trade & Little Lentil Clothing. We only ever add brands & products we truly believe in!

A Sustainable Baby Registry Guide

Baby registries can be daunting. You are most likely new to the baby world and don’t know what you really need to add to a registry. You probably also want to make sure you are picking safe and sustainable products. Luckily, many organic baby brands are creating healthy, eco-friendly products you will love to use. When I first was pregnant, I didn’t know where to start, but now that I have a toddler, I can create the perfect sustainable baby registry for others to use!

Always Look for Secondhand Items First

You can probably knock out many of these with hand-me-downs from your family and friends. I know we all want to have the best, eco-friendly products, but it's always a sustainable choice to go with something pre-loved, especially since you won't be using these products for long. Most of my son's clothing is secondhand, and it's saved us a lot of money. However, if you have something specific in mind or don't have the best secondhand options, we have all the sustainable alternatives listed below.

Why Choose Sustainable Products For Your Baby?

If you are new to this blog and found us on a quick google search, you will learn that sustainability is very important to us in all aspects of our lives - not just fashion. Not only do sustainable products last longer, but they respect the planet and the people who are making them. When purchasing new sustainable items for your baby, you want quality products you can pass down instead of throwing them in the landfill.

A last note, not all of these products will be useful to everyone. It’s easy to go overboard with your first, but if you don’t feel like you really need it, then you probably don’t.

Now, to our Sustainable Baby Registry Guide:

Visit littlelentilclothing.com for all the cuteness!

Clothing

People love to gift baby clothing. I would tell your family and friends to make sure to look for ‘organic cotton’ when shopping and check out second-hand places like Once Upon a Child. There is this excellent sustainable baby clothing brand called Little Lentil Clothing. Their pieces are made from 100% G.O.T.S. certified organic cotton and non-toxic & earth-friendly dyes. What’s unique about this brand, they have a ‘send-back program,’ which allows you to send back your clothing when you’re done for them to resell (& you get 20% off your next order!). Also, make sure to check out our post featuring our favorite baby clothing brands here.


A Cute Pair of Booties

While babies definitely don’t need any shoes - no matter how adorable a pair may be - they do need something covering their little feet. Elliott always had socks or a pair of booties on, and I’ve never seen any as cute as these!

Made Trade has a collection of over 20 handmade animals to cover your baby’s feet. This wonderful online marketplace is also great for decorating your nursery with its gorgeous baskets.

Plus, they have an option to create your own registry through their actual site.


Stroller

There are my top 3 stroller recommendations:

Greentom: Made from recycled plastic bottles, this stroller weighs less than 15 pounds! We love how the stroller grew with Elliott from bassinet to his older toddler years.

Bumbleride: This one is also made from recycled plastic bottles & is amazing for our neighborhood/beach walks. The big tires are made for rougher terrain, so no getting stuck!

Bombi: If you need something more compact, this is your stroller! It is made from 50% recycled plastic bottles and is exceptionally lightweight. It’s also a more affordable option at $199.


Car Seat

I would have loved to afford the Nuna Exec car seat when Elliott was a baby because it probably is the most sustainable and eco-friendly of them all. Personally, I went for the Graco 4-in-1 because the price was in my budget, and it goes from newborn to booster (so I know I would get my use out of it).

You can find fantastic deals on Facebook Marketplace, and we found a car seat for Elliott for $10 when we visited my parents overseas. For Elliott’s first 6 months, we did buy a newborn car seat that was adaptable to our strollers (makes life a lot easier transferring from car to stroller!).


Baby Carrier

Elliott did not like to be carried in a baby carrier. He loved having his legs out, dangling care-free to one side, so there was only way for me to hold him - like a baby, and it was exhausting. I bought the cutest baby carrier from Happy Baby, and barely used it. Maybe the next baby, right?! Their baby carriers are pretty popular (usually sold out) and made from eco-friendly materials like Tencel, Linen & Cotton.

You can also check with Scandiborn to see which carriers they are keeping in stock. I really love this baby site for quality, conscious products.


p.s. super cute organic crib sheets can be found here

Crib

For the crib, you’ll need 3 things - the crib frame, the mattress & the crib sheets. No bumpers or anything fancy.

Made in a GOTS-certified facility, this Savvy Rest organic mattress is made of a single, solid 5" layer of firm natural Dunlop latex in an organic casing. It’s luxury for our little ones.

Our crib we found on Wayfair, but I made sure it was FSC Certified wood. I put a lot of effort into having his crib be an eco-oasis for him to only have him end up co-sleeping with us. He still used it a little, but if you plan to co-sleep, try finding this all secondhand.


Bassinet

I highly recommend getting a bassinet because babies sleep randomly throughout the day, and it’s nice to be able to put them down in whatever room you are in at the time - instead of having to place them in the crib and check up on them every so often.

You can definitely find bassinets secondhand easy. I constantly see them at the kids store down the street. However, if you want something to add a little charm to your house, definitely check out the bassinets from Home by Design Dua!


Play Mat

A great play mat is a highly recommended bonus - especially for tummy time, which my son hated.

The Loverly Play Gym kept his interest for several hours at a time, and I see other babies in the family loving it, too. They are designed by child development experts, and use materials like sustainably harvested wood, organic cotton & water-based, non-toxic finishes! You can make it into a little tent for when they get a bit older, and it comes with activities to help them develop throughout their first year.


vegan, waterproof lined & has a bottle holder!

Diaper Bag

I do not think this is essential! I ended up using my tote bags I already had to put all of Elliott’s daily things in there. I always carried a couple diapers, wipes, pacifier, toy, and a small changing station - I couldn’t find an eco-friendly version so we had a tiny skip hop changing pad which we put to really great use. It was sustainable for me because it’s a small bag that fits your diapers & wipes so you can just throw it into your existing tote. It folds out so you can lay your baby down & change them. Highly recommend! However, if you have more to carry - like some bottles & clothing - check out Eba Totes!


Diaper Station

Another thing I don’t think is super essential, but they do come in handy. There is a certified organic changing pad from Naturepedic that is a little more pricey ($99), but it’s non-allergenic and easy-to-clean. My mom used to always say she just changed me on the bed with a towel, so really this is about preference and what brings value into your life.

That beautiful bassinet brand from earlier also has changing stations, if you are going for a handmade aesthetic.


Diapers

I will be very honest with you, I did not like my experience with cloth diapers. We were living in a small apartment, I was constantly behind on laundry & I could never get the smell out. I applaud anyone who has the patience & time for them, but I know it isn’t realistic for every lifestyle. I think you should try it out, but if it doesn’t work, try Honest Diapers. They never gave him a rash, they have amazing leak protection, and they are non-toxic and plant-based. Truly the best option for a disposable - and you can save $ on subscriptions.


one of the only plastic-free baby bottles from Pura

Pump & Bottles

I found this out recently, but check with your insurance and see about them sending you a pump for free before you go out to buy one yourself. You can also check with friends - that is how I got mine! I did buy myself a manual one which I would take around with me, and it was extremely handy. Pumps and bottles are a preference thing for mama and baby so I would do your own research or talk to your doctor.

However, I HIGHLY recommend buying nursing pads. I used them everyday, and now they are nail polish removers.


Towels & Bath Time Accessories

For towels, you can use what you already have. We had a couple little organic towels for when he was really little, but around 6 months we started to just use the ones we use. Burt’s Bees has really affordable organic towels if you do want to grab a few for the newborn days. I do suggest purchasing some washcloths specific for babies, and these ones from Scandiborn are too cute.

I don’t really feel they need their own bathtub, but we did love the Blooming Bath Lotus for the sink.


Muslin Swaddles & Bibs

I usually don’t say ‘you can never have enough’, but I could for this one.

We had a stack of muslin blankets and bibs because you go through many in a day. You need one in your car, in your bag, in your stroller, in each room… & all the ones we have were incredibly easy to clean so he has baby cousins using them, now!

Here’s a list of organic ones from Scandiborn, & then you can find a ton at BuyBuyBaby from brands like Honest & Burt’s Bees.


Mealtime

Hands down, our favorite products when it comes to eating are from EZPZ!

All of their products are made from 100% food-grade silicone that is naturally unbreakable and toxin-free. You can put them in the dishwasher and microwave, and they come in so many different colors and styles. They’ve made eating so much more fun and manageable. Elliott started getting his teeth around 4 months so by 6 months, he was eating several foods. These mats have a good grip on the table so don’t worry about food flying off!


our baby Elliott <3

A Few Extras

I’m just going to add links for products we loved, and some are eco-friendly and others were just super practical.

Ecopiggy Natural Pacifier (use code Natalie10 for 10% off)

Combat Ready Baby Balm

Silicone Teether

A good sound machine

a pack and play for travel (easy to find secondhand)

If you’ve had a baby before, do you have any products you absolutely loved having on hand? It’s always fun to create registries and stock up on the best for a newborn, but so many of these things listed you can get secondhand. I definitely encourage that first; however, don’t feel guilty wanting to have fun either!! These really are the sweetest days <3


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Former MP and leader of the New South Wales Liberal Party Kerry Chikarovski AM has joined Papyrus Australia as Executive Director of Government Relations.

Chikarovski will help raise awareness of Papyrus’s waste technology. The company’s patented technology takes banana tree agri-waste and converts it into a fibre which can be used in a wide range of sustainable alternatives to fibrous bioplastics and forest-sourced fibre.

The work Papyrus is doing presents many exciting opportunities to make a meaningful difference by displacing plastic and providing a sustainable alternative to forest -sourced wood-based products in our everyday lives, Chikarovski said.

“The Papyrus process uses banana tree trunk, a renewable, biodegradable and fully sustainable waste material, as a natural replacement for single-use plastic food packaging, bio plastic feedstock, furniture and building products.”

On average, a hectare of banana plantation produces 220 tonnes of waste annually and there are approximately 10 million hectares of banana plantain worldwide. This agri-waste creates methane, a greenhouse gas which is harmful to the environment.

Papyrus’s zero-waste, chemical-free process of converting this globally available agri-waste into products not only helps reduce the creation of methane but also creates products that are sustainable alternatives to plastic, forest wood and chemicals.

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Australia Post has welcomed the first of 20 electric trucks to its national delivery fleet, with three Fuso eCanters now delivering parcels to customers in Melbourne ahead of Christmas.

The eCanter adds to Australia Post’s existing electric delivery fleet of more than 2100 electric delivery vehicles and 1400 electric bicycles, and follows the successful trial of the Daimler-developed truck in late 2019.

James Dixon, Australia Post General Manager Networks, said, “We’ve trialled a range of electric trucks previously, but the Fuso eCanter is the first we’ve found that suits both Australian conditions and our unique operational needs.”

Australia Post Chief Sustainability Officer Susan Mizrahi said expanding the current electric fleet was an important part of Australia Post’s 2020–22 Corporate Responsibility plan and its science-based target to reduce emissions by 15% by 2025.

“This is an important milestone for our business. We know that every delivery has a carbon footprint which is why we’re committed to reducing our emissions through growing our electric fleet and increasing our renewable energy production to help power these new vehicles,” Mizrahi said.

The Fuso eCanter is the only Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) electric truck available in Australia and uses the latest technology from the Daimler Truck group.

The remaining 17 eCanters will hit the streets delivering in major capital cities from early 2022, with the rollout of the new vehicles supported by Australia Post Fleet Management Provider SG Fleet.

Australia Post is currently two-thirds of the way through its 2020-22 Group Corporate Responsibility Plan, Everyone Matters: Our plan for inclusive and sustainable prosperity.

Image credit: ©stock.adobe.com/au/ymgerman

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Sustainably Chic | Sustainable Fashion and Living Blog | Ethical Alternatives to Anthropologie.jpg

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliated; we may earn a small commission if you click through and make a purchase. This post is also sponsored in part by Made Trade, Rare & Fair and Shades of Green. We only ever add brands & products we truly believe in!

Ethical & sustainable Alternatives to Anthropologie

Ethical clothing and home decor alternatives to Anthropologie do exist - so you don’t have to give up that gorgeous aesthetic completely! 

Why I don’t Support Anthropologie

When I was in high school during the early 2000s, I was IN LOVE with Anthropologie. Of course, I usually shopped the sale sections, and even in college, I worked right across from one in the mall. I spent a lot of my money - and time - in that store. I still own several pieces from the brand and enjoy browsing their stores whenever I get the chance. Unfortunately, they aren’t a company I support anymore because their transparency is, well… not really a thing. There is no indication for a regard of the environment or the people behind the clothes. They’ve also been scrutinized several times in the past for racial profiling with shoppers and even staff. 

What about their parent brand urban outfitters?

The same goes for Urban Outfitters and Free People - although many have said Free People clothing is more transparent and ‘ethical.’ Personally, I don’t trust any label under the overarching company URBN. There are so many other brands you can support where your money will better benefit the makers and planet.

I figured many of you also love Anthropologie, so I thought I would put a list together of sustainable & ethical brands I think reflect their overall aesthetic. I hope you enjoy it & let me know if you feel any should be added to the list! 

Our Top Ethical Alternatives to Anthropologie:

1) Made Trade

Inviting, wonderfully organized, and lovely to look through, Made Trade is one of the best online stores for ethical and sustainable goods! It’s inclusive of many different price points, sizes, styles, and values so no matter where you are in your sustainable journey, you’ll be sure to fall in love with something. 

Made Trade verifies that each product adheres to one (or more) of these values: fair trade, sustainable materials, recycled/upcycled materials, person/people of color-owned, woman/women-owned, USA made, vegan, and handcrafted.

They make sure each product covers one {or more} of these values - Sustainable, Fair Trade, Heritage, USA Made & Vegan. Each value has a little symbol that is placed right next to the product so you know exactly what category it falls under.

From home decor and bedding to apparel and jewelry, Made Trade offers sustainable, ethically made, and beautiful goods for the modern home and wardrobe.

Shop Made Trade
Sustainably Chic | Sustainable Fashion Blog | Ethical Alternatives to Anthropologie | Rare & Fair.jpg

2) Rare & Fair

This ethical brand is just lovely! Rare & Fair, based out of the UK, is a boutique slow fashion brand promoting handmade clothes and accessories by artisans using natural, sustainable materials. The gorgeous yellow dress pictured is made of pure Ikat sustainable silk. I’ve always been a big fan of story telling, and this is the type of fabric that does this perfectly. Ikat weaving, also known locally as “Mudmee”, is a traditional tie-dye method and the oldest form of pattern weaving in Thailand. You can learn a lot from their clothing, & add special stories to your closet!

Shop Rare & Fair
Sustainably Chic | Sustainable Fashion Blog | Ethical Alternatives to Anthropologie | Shades of Green.jpg

3) Shades of Green

Here is your replacement for Anthro’s home decor and kitchen goods! Shades of Green is quickly going to become your new favorite for all things sustainable home. Their carefully curated collection goes through a vigorous product evaluation so you can be confident you are buying a lasting, quality product that is easy on the planet. From recycled hand-blown glass drinking glasses to Colombian palm leaf bread baskets, every piece they have placed in their shop has a story and makes for a lovely aesthetic.

Shop Shades of Green
Sustainably Chic | Sustainable Fashion Blog | Ethical Alternatives to Anthropologie | Christy Dawn.jpg

4) Christy Dawn

This brand has some of the most beautiful dresses. I love looking at their pieces online, and one day, I’ll buy one!

What I thought was super impressive was their total price transparency so you know exactly why their dresses are priced where they are.

Besides their lovely dress collection, they also have cozy sweaters, tops, bottoms and even some sweet little face masks!

Shop Christy Dawn
Sustainably Chic | Sustainable Fashion Blog | Ethical Alternatives to Anthropologie | Mata Traders.jpg

5) Mata Traders

I’ve always loved this brand. They make such beautiful dresses with lots of fun, lovely prints. All of their dresses are made by artisans in India and Nepal, which help provide a stable source of income for families in economically disadvantaged communities.

“A love affair with India has evolved into Mata Traders – a design driven, fair trade fashion brand helping to end global poverty & inspire consumers to change the fashion industry.” Mata Traders

Shop Mata Traders
Sustainably Chic | Sustainable Fashion Blog | Ethical Alternatives to Anthropologie | People Tree.jpg

6) People Tree

Definitely a favorite amongst the sustainable fashion community, this brand has been making ethical clothing longer than most. Their newest collection is just stunning, too, and I’m loving these fun stripes for summertime.

“Contemporary, versatile designs and playful, exclusive prints inspired by the V&A archives create stylish, innovative and affordable fashion while respecting people and the planet.” - People Tree

Shop People Tree
Sustainably Chic | Sustainable Fashion Blog | Ethical Alternatives to Anthropologie | Sezane.jpg

7) Sezane

If there was one brand that I would want to fill my closet with, it would be this one. I’m just always so impressed by every collection, and feel like they knew what I wanted.

“Sézane was born from a desire to offer all women high-quality, perfectly-cut pieces that can be worn forever. Born in Paris & crafted using the expertise of the best ateliers: we offer luxury quality at a fair & accessible price. Je ne sais quoi for all.” - Sezane

Shop Sezane
Sustainably Chic | Sustainable Fashion Blog | Ethical Alternatives to Anthropologie | Thought.jpg

8) Thought

For years, whenever someone would ask me for an alternative to Anthropologie, I would say this one first. Their look really is so similar, but done with a conscious, transparent flair. Thought carries a variety of clothing, from dresses you can wear to the office to loungewear and comfy socks if you’re chilling (or working) at home. They use mostly eco-conscious materials like organic cotton and use zero plastic in their packaging. Their also known for having some of the best prints on their clothing!

Shop Thought
Sustainably Chic | Sustainable Fashion Blog | Ethical Alternatives to Anthropologie | tonle.jpg

9) Tonle

This brand makes zero-waste look so good, and they make an awesome alternative to Anthropologie brands.

Every design from Tonle is made from dead stock fabric. Besides their great eco fashion practicies, Tonle believes in hand made and creating fair work for their Cambodian makers. Their site even breaks down the impact you’ve made from buying a piece of their clothing - like how much water you saved, as well as emissions and pesticides avoided.

Shop tonle

10) WVN

A B-Corp certified brand, WVN is inspiring the fashion industry by showing caring for the planet will not compromise style and quality. They launched just this year, and are already a fan favorite of many sustainable fashion lovers online. They work with Fair Trade Certified factories to adhere to rigorous social, environmental, and economic guidelines.

Shop WVN
Sustainably Chic | Sustainable Fashion and Living Blog | Ethical Alternatives to Anthropologie | The Citizenry.jpg

11) Citizenry

The team at The Citizenry personally travel to each country where their goods are made so that they can use only local materials and establish sustainable relationships with artisans. But doing this themselves and cutting out the middleman, they’re able to offer high-quality, handmade goods at more reasonable prices than traditional luxury boutiques.

You can learn more about each individual artisan partner on their website.

Shop Citizenry
Sustainably Chic | Sustainable Fashion and Living Blog | Ethical Alternatives to Anthropologie | Ten Thousand Villages.jpg

12) Ten Thousand Villages

This store has been putting people and planet first for over 70 years - and you may have even visited one of their shops in person before! More than just a store, this market-to-market movement is connecting us to some of the most talented artisans all over the world. Our purchase is directly contributing to sustainable livelihoods, and keeping crafts original. Every product celebrates culture and the planet, so you know not one is compromised for the other.

Shop Ten Thousand Villages

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WANT MORE SUSTAINABLE BRANDS? VISIT OUR BRAND DIRECTORY!

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image by Pact

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliated; we may earn a small commission if you click through and make a purchase. This post is also sponsored in part by Opok & Maggie’s Organics. We only ever add brands & products we truly believe in!

Sustainable Socks & Underwear for Men

It’s incredible how many ethical brands are making sustainable socks and underwear for men today! These are 14 places we think you’ll love, and a lot of the prices are pretty affordable. From organic cotton to hemp to Tencel, we know you’ll be living in comfort with whatever choice you make. You can even find a few styles here for those who are a bit more adventurous and would benefit from performance garments.

What Makes underwear & socks ‘Sustainable’?

Sustainable underwear & socks are created from eco-friendly fabrics made by people who are paid a fair wage. You want your underwear to last through many washes and be comfortable to wear, as well, so quality is hugely important.

What Types of Fabrics You Should Look For

The most popular fabric for sustainable underwear & socks is organic cotton, but you can also find great styles in Tencel, Modal, Hemp, Silk, Recycled Polys, and Bamboo. Each of these fabrics has their unique characteristics and create a different feel. If you prefer ultra-soft, Tencel and Bamboo might be a good fit. If you need more of a performance pair, go for recycled polyester. Whatever you pick from this list, you are choosing a much more sustainable product than what you find in conventional stores!

Our Top Picks for Sustainable Mens Underwear & Socks:

Sustainably Chic | Best Sustainable Fashion Blogs | Sustainable Eco Friendly Underwear for Men | Opok.jpg

1) Opok

Products | Boxer Briefs
Price | $30
Materials | Organic Cotton & Organic Pigments

Created by twin brothers and ex-professional athletes, Opok is dedicated to providing organic clothing that is extremely soft and built for working out, going out, and everything in between. They are very passionate about helping the environment and practice GOTS-certified sustainable manufacturing and donate a portion of their proceeds to saving the bees and coral reefs. When you choose Opok, you can feel confident knowing that your clothing is safe from toxins & is sustainable for you & the planet.

Shop Opok
Sustainably Chic | Best Sustainable Fashion Blogs | Sustainable Underwear for Men | Maggie's Organics.jpg

2) Maggie’s Organics

Products | Boxer Briefs

Price | $28 (2-pack)

Materials | Organic Cotton

These silky-soft, featherweight boxer briefs are made from organic cotton and are certified Fair Trade. They’re supportive and breathable for all-day comfort and feature a snug, no-feel fit with flat-lock seams, a wide elastic waistband, and a double-layer front panel.

Shop Maggie's Organics

*use code SustainablyChic20 for 20% off

3) Pact

Products | Boxer Briefs, Extended Boxer Briefs, Briefs, Trunks, Knit Boxers and Short & Crew Socks

Price | $12-60

Materials | Organic Cotton

If you are looking for affordable socks & underwear made from organic cotton, look no further!

Pact offers some of the best deals around, and their quality is excellent.

Shop Pact

4) Boody

Products | Boxers, Briefs, No-Show, Ankle, Sports, Sneaker, Boot & Work Socks

Price | $9-27

Materials | Bamboo

This brand has several different styles of boxers and socks for men. Everything is made out of bamboo, which is usually not a fiber we have on the blog, but this particular bamboo is created within a closed-loop system where solvents are constantly recycled. Bamboo does make such a soft fabric, & we know people love it!

Shop Boody

5) BN3TH

Products |Trunks, Boxer Briefs, Full Length

Price | $25-75

Materials | Tencel, Recycled Bottles

BN3TH was the first to create underwear with a three-dimensional pouch with their patented MyPakage Pouch Technology™. This underwear is made to keep you comfortable from the mountains to the office.

Shop BN3TH

6) Organic Basics

Products | Boxers, Boxer Shorts, Long Johns, Active Boxers and Ankle, Active & Tennis Socks

Price | $15-70

Materials | Organic Cotton, Tencel, Recycled Nylon

This brand uses eco-friendly materials to create ethical, comfortable, and design-forward underwear and socks. Committed to transparency, you can check out their yearly impact report, which outlines their progress and goals. They now even have a low impact website, which has a lower carbon footprint than a regular website!

Shop Organic Basics

7) MeUndies

Products | Boxers, Briefs, Trunks, Boxer Briefs and No-Show, Ankle & Crew Socks

Price | $9-25

Materials | Supima Cotton

If you love prints and color, MeUndies is the brand for you!

All of their socks are ethically made from Supima cotton and low-impact dyes. Besides all the fun prints and colors, MeUndies has an awesome membership where you pick out one pair of undies each month for a discounted price!

Shop MeUndies

8) Patagonia

Products | Boxers, Boxer Briefs, Anklet & Crew Socks

Price | $18-32

Materials | Recycled Nylon, Tencel, Merino

If you are looking for more of a performance sock and underwear, this is the place to go! A lot of their products are moisture-wicking, keeping you more comfy. Patagonia has been a leader in sustainability from the beginning when it was started back in 1973.

Shop Patagonia

9) Ably

Products | No-Show, Ankle, Performance & Hiking Socks

Price | $12-45

Materials | Performance Cotton/Nylon

These are made for an active lifestyle.

From their hiking to their running socks, they are all quick-drying, odor-free, stain-resistant, and require less washing.

Ably’s clothing is ‘built for the doers, the movers, and the shakers’.

Shop Ably

10) Allbirds

Products | Boxer Briefs, No-Show, Quarter, Tube & Running Socks

Price | $12-24

Materials | Tencel, Wool & Recycled Polyester

We love that Allbirds has started making socks to pair with their awesome sustainable sneakers. They even have a pair of underwear for the guys, too! Their socks help minimize odor and wicks moisture away to keep you comfortable during workouts.

Shop Allbirds

*use code SUSTAINABLYCHIC20 for 20% off

11) Conscious Step

Products | Ankle & Crew Socks

Price | $14.95

Materials | Organic Cotton

Conscious Step’s entire supply chain is GOTS and Vegan certified. This cotton is never treated with herbicides, insecticides, pesticides and is not genetically modified. Because about 80% of the world’s organic cotton is grown in India, they have decided to manufacture there to benefit from their expertise and support small cotton farmers. Plus, every pair gives back to a cause you care about!

Shop Conscious Step

12) Wama Underwear

Products | Briefs, Boxers, Boxer Briefs & Trunks

Price | $24

Materials | Hemp, Organic Cotton

Protect your private parts naturally!

Because of hemp’s moisture-wicking properties, this line of underwear is breathable and comfortable. Hemp is also resistant to mold and UV light and retains color better than cotton. It’s also anti-bacterial, anti-microbial, and has anti-odor properties.

Shop Wama Underwear

13) Harvest & Mill

Products | Ankle & Crew Socks

Price | $9-10

Materials | Organic Cotton

We LOVE how Harvest & Mill only uses organic cotton that is grown in the USA!

They are supporting American organic cotton farmers and helping keep our soil, water, and air clean. It’s one of the few brands using regenerative materials. Their socks look so comfy and practical for every day!

Shop Harvest & Mill

14) Warp +Weft

Products | Boxer Briefs

Price | $25

Materials | Modal

We know these are super soft!

Warp + Weft’s new line of underwear was born from years of wear testing their jeans.

They have a “soft, smooth, unbranded waistband that will hold itself up without pinching or sagging, and a seamless backside for an undetectable look.”

Shop Warp + Weft

15) Thought

Products | Ankle, No-Show & Crew Socks

Price | $7-15

Materials | Bamboo, Cotton, Recycled Polyester

These socks have to be some of our favorites! They are incredibly soft and -besides the basics- come in many different prints and colors. We know you will have many years of wear from Thought socks!

Shop Thought

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WANT MORE SUSTAINABLE BRANDS? VISIT OUR BRAND DIRECTORY!

Our Brand Directory is home to hundreds of sustainable brands, from makeup to cleaning supplies, from underwear to shoes. We have broken everything down by category for easy shopping, along with discount codes unique to Sustainably Chic viewers.

Shop the Sustainable Brand Directory

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Sydney Water operates 16 wastewater treatment plants. Between them, they collect over 1.3 billion litres of wastewater from homes and businesses across Sydney, the Illawarra and the Blue Mountains. This wastewater is treated before re-use or discharge into rivers and oceans following strict protocols and monitoring.

The challenge

The Warriewood wastewater plant had a daily problem with foam. In fact, there were times when the plant’s operators were knee deep in foam. Not only was this a safety concern for workers, the foam left a residue which could impact the electrical equipment used to operate the plant.

The foam was generated during the treatment process when a treating chemical was added to the agitated liquid.

Spray nozzles had been installed previously but they were ineffectual as they were prone to blocking and required lots of maintenance.

The solution

Sydney Water contacted Tecpro Australia in search of a turnkey solution. The Tecpro team recommended and installed a ring of special blockage-resistant nozzles inside the treatment pit. For the Sydney Water environment, these nozzles spray course droplets which break up the foam by bursting the bubbles during the agitation process. This prevents foam growth and build-up.

Foam control pit sprays.

In the plant room gantry, another set of blockage-resistant spray nozzles was installed directly above the pit to prevent foaming incidents in extreme conditions (such as after heavy rain where process volumes increase).

Tecpro managed the whole process — from designing the system to implementation. For Sydney Water, it was a turnkey solution.

The outcome

Two months after installing the new foam suppression system, Tecpro Australia contacted Katie Shield, a Production Officer for Sydney Water, to see how things were going at the Warriewood plant. Katie’s response was:

“It has been working brilliantly! No complaints from our team at all. In fact, we haven’t had a foaming incident since!”

Top image caption: Sydney Water foam control overflow sprays.

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