"Carbon washing is the new greenwashing"

The global push to reduce atmospheric carbon is being compromised by confusing terminology and misleading claims, argues Dezeen founder and editor-in-chief Marcus Fairs.


Carbon washing is the new greenwashing. Growing alarm about climate change has triggered a rise in the number of companies making questionable claims that they are addressing the issue.

Phrases such as “climate neutral”, “carbon negative”, “net-zero” and “offsetting” are casually bandied around, replacing terms such as “biodegradable”, “compostable”, “circular” and “ocean plastic”, which were the hot bullshit buzzwords a couple of years ago.

Today, many companies appear to have switched bandwagons, swapping their plastic angst for climate concern. The new carbon jargon is designed to give the impression that new buildings and products make no contribution to atmospheric carbon, or even help reduce it.

Companies are simply taking advantage of vague and often meaningless terminology

The claims rarely stand up to scrutiny. Most often, companies are … Read more

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Sruli Recht designs "futuristic" footwear for extreme environments

Icelandic artist Sruli Recht has created the Damage collection of 3D-printed shoes that are designed for extreme environments and to help with old age.

Created in collaboration with creative consultancy Industry, the collection is comprised of three pieces designed as extensions to the foot.

damage footwear collection of prosthetic shoes
Top: Damage includes three different designs. Above: each design is meant to draw attention to an environmental issue

One pair of shoes can withstand flooding, another can be worn in extreme heat and the third pair helps to stabilise balance.

Recht added an elevated heel, a built-in cooling system and a stability feature respectively to make the shoes suitable for each extreme environment.

Damage footwear to combat flooding
The shoes are being sold via NFT platform Foundation

“The idea for this collection began with looking at the language of the functional aesthetics of footwear and how it evolves from its intended purpose through fashion,” Recht told Dezeen.

“Watching the flooded streets … Read more

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This year's Paris Design Week explores desirable lifestyles

Dezeen promotion: Parisian galleries, showrooms and boutiques will open their doors for Paris Design Week from 9-18 September.

The 10-day event will host exhibitions, workshops and discussions surrounding a range of design disciplines, including fashion, homeware and interiors.

This year the event has adopted the same theme as the biannual Parisian interior design show Maison & Objet – “desirable development”.

The show will aim to explore objects that represent designers’ visions of what makes a desirable lifestyle in light of the changes the coronavirus pandemic has brought.

Paris Design Week
The Frugal exhibition showcases designs from over 40 designers including this bamboo lamp by Samy Rio

Although Maison & Objet was a digital event in 2020, it will return physically this year from 9-13 September, and like Paris Design Week which was an in-person event in 2020, it will exhibit previously unseen collections from across the globe.

“Rising talents and iconic design brands, … Read more

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Dezeen launches £15,000 Redesign the World competition with Epic Games

Dezeen has teamed up with Epic Games to launch Redesign the World, the ultimate design competition that calls for new ideas to rethink planet Earth.

The competition is free to enter for people over the age of 18 of any profession and from any country in the world. It is open for entries until 15 September 2021.

The 15 best proposals will be published on Dezeen in November during our Dezeen 15 online festival celebrating Dezeen’s 15th anniversary.

The contest has a top prize of £5,000 and total prize money of £15,000.

Click here for more information about how to enter, including the full brief and submission requirements.

Redesign the World is “ultimate design challenge”

We are looking for radical new solutions to ensure that planet Earth remains habitable for hundreds of years to come.

“The problems the world faces are huge in scale and they demand equally epic solutions,” … Read more

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Telfar designs unisex uniforms for Liberian Olympic team

New York-based fashion brand Telfar has designed a collection of unisex uniforms for the Liberian team at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

Liberian-American fashion designer Telfar Clemens and his business partner Babak Radboy created unitards, gowns, tank tops and other clothing items for the Liberian Olympic team to wear during the games.

Above: professional Liberian athletes Wellington Zaza, Joseph Fahnbulleh and Akeem Sirleaf model the collection. Top: the uniform is designed to celebrate Liberian culture

Clemens sketched the designs, some of which debuted at the Olympic opening ceremony in the Kengo Kuma-designed Tokyo National Stadium on Friday, while in Africa.

His immediate surroundings were the inspiration for the collection.

“The garments tell the story of a journey of recognition — in which Telfar saw the roots of his design DNA all around him in the streets of a country with a history deeply entwined with America’s own,” the designers told Dezeen.… Read more

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