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The furniture is finally being unwrapped at the soon-to-be-completed Plainsboro Public Library, and the wait has definitely been worth it, especially for the amorphous lounge seating pieces that are located in reading areas throughout the building. Made of natural or renewable materials like water hyacinth, liana, bamboo, rattan and recyclable polyethylene, these sculptural furniture pieces are not only beautiful, but green as well.

Especially eco-friendly are the pieces constructed with water hyacinth, which is basically a weed. Water hyacinth is an invasive water-based plant that is one of the fastest growing species known. When not controlled, it will cover lakes and ponds entirely, dramatically impacting water flow, blocking sunlight from reaching native aquatic plants, and starving the water of oxygen, often killing fish or turtles.

Furniture maker PIE studio uses these materials to create its Eco Friendly Furniture line. Founded by a Thai architect who wanted to create ‘living space’, the studio hand crafts furniture utilizing a process of making that is inherently non-polluting and low energy.

Though not all the furniture pieces are in their final locations and most of the lights were off for servicing, below are images of some of the pieces.

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Just as the UN Climate Change Summit was set to begin in Copenhagen, the news that a string of emails from leading climate scientists had been hacked and released threatened to pull attention away from crucial global emission policy debate.  How much affect would these emails have?

Some excerpts of conversations here at BKSK:

“The latest news about Climate Gate is just another political distraction from the opposition to making significant CO2 emission policy changes. Instead of pointing fingers at which projections are right and which projections might be doctored, it is more important to let the facts speak for themselves. Let’s not forget these emissions have an impact on our health as well. Take for instance the rates of Asthma in the South Bronx. A study conducted between 2002 and 2005 (mentioned in a 2006 New York Times article by Manny Fernandez) linked increased rates of asthma in school children directly to elevated highway traffic emissions. The South Bronx is a micro climate of these toxic fumes, a home to more interstates per square mile than should be necessary. Most of these roads are continually used by large trucks to export NYC’s trash. If nothing is done to reform CO2 levels across all industries, incidents like this one will keep occurring and the climate change clock will continue to tick. Let’s stop debating how fast it’s ticking and solve the problem before it’s to late. Who knows maybe we can even lower our health care expenses and increase our quality of life.

-Jeff Massey

For more information on COP_15:

http://en.cop15.dk/

http://www.hopenhagen.org/news