Ideas to save the planet

We are all anxious about the future of our home. Fortunately, there are some innovative initiatives that can make us feel a little better.

by Mark Tungate , Adforum

To paraphrase David Bowie: “Planet Earth is blue – and there’s nothing we can do.” But what if there is? As the debate about climate change heats up, we went in search of smart ideas that might make a difference.

Here’s one from Swedish “fintech” company Doconomy. It’s a new app-linked credit card that makes users aware of the carbon emissions related to all their purchases, and can even limit their consumption. The card itself is climate-friendly, even if the energy-burning servers powering the app presumably are not…

Fashion has an outsized impact on the environment, not least because making a single t-shirt requires over 2700 litres of water. Here’s an ad for a company that makes t-shirts out of recycled cotton. The twist is that the film is also made of recycled materials.

Want to have an immediate impact on air pollution, just by doing something as pleasant as painting a picture? Try this unusual brand of paint, which apparently sucks nitrogen oxide out of the air as effectively as a mature tree.

One of the cleverest climate-linked ideas of recent months is the #NoBuildChallenge from French agency We Are Social and the WWF. It drew on an element of the massively popular game Fortnite to make fans think about the way we use our planet’s natural resources.

Talking of depleted natural resources, a project from McCann Paris hit the French in a sensitive area – wine. In association with a group of climate-concerned journalists, it created Bordeaux 2050. In other words, a bottle of Bordeaux representing the probable taste of the iconic wine in 30 years’ time, after the region is forced to adjust to a new climate reality. The critics were not keen.

It’s a neat idea – and here’s the down-to-earth British version, which of course featured fish and chips.

Ocean plastic is one of the most visible and talked-about effects of mankind’s impact on the planet. This next idea comes from Havas London, in association with beer-maker Sharp’s Brewery and its Atlantic Pale Ale. They created a vinyl record made of recovered plastic waste, teamed up with composer Nick Mulvey, and made it available for sales – with all proceeds going to Surfers Against Sewage.

Can storytelling help save the planet? If so, this touching film – also from Surfers Against Sewage – may have an impact. It’s a little long, but immersive and rewarding. Like a dip in a non-polluted ocean.