ORGANIZATION NAME: Kasetsart University Architecture
LOCATION: Bangkok, Thailand
SUMMARY: SCRAP LAB is a mission, aiming at using scientific discoveries, art and design to combat wastes creatively and collectively. 9-steps upcycling-process was developed and applied to manufacturers, communities and building-contractors throughout Thailand to upcycle wastes into new products and supports them with Upcycle-certification-scheme (world’s first) to verify their reduced carbon-emissions.
PROBLEM SPACE: Waste overflow is a gargantuan problem for any nation. With the continual increase of wastes, waste minimization and management have clearly been ineffective. Solving waste problems has not included designers or consumers in the process despite the fact that they are at the root of waste- and off-cut problems. While natural resources are limited, 10-300% of wastes and scraps are generated in order to make new products. These off-cuts are then prematurely landfilled or incinerated. Economically, this leads to the increasing cost for waste disposal and is adding on environmental pressures from limited land for landfilling and air pollution from incineration. Notwithstanding, there is a critical need to explore the best use of such wastes and scraps to achieve green and circular economy. Several designers have been turning scraps into one-of-a-kind items but without adequate symbiosis among waste generators, such an effort will not solve the growing waste volumes. An Ecology for Upcycling must be developed and is fundamental to solving the overflowing waste problems as well as to creating green, circular and creative economy.
SOLUTION: “SCRAP LAB is an Upcycle Ecology. It emerged after realizing that the commercial success of OSISU (www.osisu.com) could not lead to sustainability in waste minimization. SCRAP LAB was established at Kasetsart University Architecture (Bangkok) as a place to nurture future designers to collectively combat wastes generated from manufacturers, communities and construction sites. Nearly a hundred manufacturers and communities throughout Thailand and hundreds of young designers have been involved in SCRAP LAB’s upcycle activities since 2007. Everyone is welcome to join SCRAP LAB network and workshops. Through creative design rooted in life cycle thinking, wastes sorting and manipulation techniques for material developments would be explored. Novel upcycled materials are generated continually such as Javacore (artificial stones made from coffee wastes), Ecostone (porous glass made from glass dust), Woven trellis (green facade made from banana fibers), Ecology Skin (bird habitat building-enclosure from palm wastes). The new upcycled materials are then used for architectural applications and for designing new products with equivalent or better-than-original quality and at the same time minimizing the environmental impacts (reducing GHG emissions). However, technical successes do not guarantee market acceptance. To support upcycled products in the global markets, quality assurance system in terms of source and amount of scraps, quality and environmental friendliness were developed. In 2015, the world’s first UPCYCLE Carbon-footprint certification and labeling systems were launched to help green practitioners and manufacturers enter green markets. U.S. based fashion house, Eileen Fisheräó»s was the first American enterprise to showcase products with UPCYCLE CF certified materials. SCRAP LAB’s Upcycle Ecology has become the most fertile ground for upcycling knowledge and innovation, which responds to the national policy on promoting 3Rs and GHG reduction from waste management and on creative economy.
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CONTACT: [email protected]