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Italy’s ecological transition with Minister Cingolani

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Alongside Roberto Cingolani, Minister for the Ecological Transition, we imagined what the world will be like in 2040 when his youngest son will be 30 years old. Cingolani helps us understand why we need to act now to put all the knowledge we have to good use. Are you ready to do your part to facilitate a transition that, by the very nature of the term, must be gradual?

Cristina: How will we transition from the world we have to the one we want? We came to Genoa to ask the Minister for Ecological Transition Roberto Cingolani, physicist, researcher and father of 3 children. Good morning Minister. In 2040 we’ll be 10 years away from the 2050 target of zero emissions and your youngest son will be 30 years old – what will the world look like?

Minister Cingolani: If we’ll have done a good job it could be much cleaner than it is now and above all, there should be much less carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and we’ll probably start to limit and mitigate the effects of global warming. The problem is that we have to start tomorrow and install all the renewable energy we need, we have to reach 72% of renewable electricity by 2030, so 10 years before the date you mentioned and I have to say that it worries me. Paradoxically, the problem today is neither resources nor technology, nor companies that can install these large plants, especially in Italy where we have lots of know-how. Right now, the most limiting factor is the bureaucratic one. The chain of permits for the installation of photovoltaic, wind and renewable energy plants is so slow, we risk that during the 5-year duration of the National Recovery and Resilience Plan (PNRR), these permits will be issued too late. First of all, we need to simplify the regulatory and authorizational aspects because there is such urgency, we can no longer waste any
time.

Cristina: Let’s imagine that world in 2040 for a moment longer.

Minister Cingolani: Smart mobility, cities on a human scale, greener. Hopefully we will have recovered some biodiversity, and above all, a greater awareness of tomorrow’s adults, today’s children.

Cristina: A question about fossil fuel subsidies is inevitable. Where are we and what do you think is the right destination?

Minister Cingolani: It’s a very delicate subject, unfortunately, sustainability is a compromise between different demands, we must mitigate the damage we’ve done to the environment as soon as possible, but at the same time, we must allow people to live and work. Unfortunately this also depends on contingent situations, we are not coming out of a particularly prosperous and happy period. The subsidies must certainly be reduced as soon as possible, and if we can reduce them we can reinvest a part of these reductions in something that will help create new jobs, including the reconditioning of the transportation industry. It’s a balancing act because if we ideologize the problem we harm workers, if we neglect the problem we harm the environment, so we all need to think about how to reorganize our habits and our lifestyles knowing that nothing is free.

Cristina: Thank you Minister.

Minister Cingolani: Thank you and good luck to everyone.

Cristina: Our country’s green transition must fulfill all 17 Sustainable Development Goals. An eye on the present and an eye to the future!

On air June 12th, 2021

Bees – the sentinels of biodiversity

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Having taken sustainable development to heart for a few decades now and focusing on solutions to our biggest challenges, I tend to think that issues which have been brought to our attention have positively evolved. Sadly that’s not the case but I know we have all the information to evolve as a species and co-exist respectfully with the complex ecosystems that we’re a part of. Speaking with Andrea, the beekeeper I always buy honey from, he introduced me to Luca Bosco and Marco Bergero. Thanks to these dedicated, passionate and knowledgeable young men, I found out that bees and pollinators are more threatened than ever. That’s how this interview came about and I learned how much more there is to do. If you know any hazelnut or almond growers please share this story. Christina Grozinger, Director of the Center for Pollination Research at Penn State confirms that exposure to fungicides, neonicotinoids and insecticides is causing great harm to pollinators. Engaging in conversations with the people we buy produce from is critical to understanding the  impact of our choices.

Cristina: Today is World Biodiversity Day, and the UN wants to bring our attention to the complex dynamics that govern life on earth. Biodiversity is our greatest treasure and monitoring its health is complicated. We are in the Cuneo area to meet Luca, a beekeeper. Luca, why are bees the most precious sentinels of biodiversity?

Luca Bosco: Because everything that arrives in the hive collected by bees is the result of a synergy between different forms of life and, therefore, is a result of the environment’s biodiversity.

Cristina: What do your observations tell you?

Luca Bosco: That the bee’s situation, and pollinators in general, is very serious. We often see episodes of die-offs and poisonings in our hives. Unfortunately we find insecticides, fungicides and herbicides in the matrices of the hives. One herbicide in particular, the molecule glyphosate, is very serious because its discovery, especially in the hive’s honey matrix – maturing honey, is a precise clue. The molecule that is sprayed here can end up anywhere, we find it in the water, in the air, it inevitably ends up in the soil because it’s sprayed on the ground and we also find it in plant pollen and nectar. This is a clear indication that the ecosystem’s natural filters are somehow degrading.

Cristina: Luca, which crops are sprayed the most with these substances?

Luca Bosco: Here we find ourselves in an area of viticulture and coriliculture, so grapes and hazelnuts. In recent years, thanks to the work of the beekeepers association, viticulturists have learned to use pesticides wisely, without causing direct and serious harm to pollinators. On the other hand, as far as hazelnuts are concerned, the matter is still open to discussion because it’s a new crop and, at the moment, the agronomic practices in use leave much to be desired. They are a source of direct poisoning, somehow they’re also the cause of those systematic findings in the hive matrices, especially in this area. We want to appeal to those who grow hazelnuts to follow the path already taken by winemakers.

Cristina: Luca you are about to take some samples, what is their frequency and what are they for?

Luca Bosco: They’re monthly and are used to investigate the possible presence of chemical molecules. Experience tells us that we will most likely find them because in past years, their presence has unfortunately been very assiduous. We know that these molecules are harmful to bees, also because of their somewhat unique ability to purify environmental matrices by absorbing chemical molecules into their bodies, to their own detriment of course, but especially preserving the honey. Somehow, the honey always results pure.

Cristina: How phenomenal. Do you cross-reference this data with others?

Luca Bosco: We cross this data with other measurements that are carried out in the area, in particular with those carried out on the Tanaro River, which you can see just nearby, and the two surveys confirm the same thing, the ubiquitous presence of chemical molecules.

Cristina: Thank you Luca. This story touches all 17 Sustainable Development Goals. And what can we do? Talk with beekeepers as much as possible, understand the critical issues in our area and protect it in any way we can. It pays off for everyone. Occhio al futuro

On air May 22nd, 2021

Mygrants, the first app for migrants

By sdg 1, sdg 10, sdg 11, sdg 4, sdg 8, sdg 9, technology

According to the International Organization for Migration, the number of migrants globally attempting to cross borders continues to grow: in 2000 there were 150 million while in 2020, 272 million. I hadn’t given enough thought to the fact that 90% of migrants landing on Italian shores are digital natives. Very few find work after the time spent in reception centers, but today, thanks to Christian Richmond and the Mygrants app, they can hope for a decent future. It’s a story of perseverance, vision and commitment born from the mind of a young Ivorian man, who was able to create a tool of tremendous human and social value. I’m honored to have met him and spread the word about his important initiative.

Cristina: Since the beginning of the Arab Spring, 10 years ago, about 800,000 migrants have landed in Italy, in search of a dignified life. Many of them have placed their hopes on Europe. 90% are under 35 and technically digital natives, more than half have not attended high school. After about a year and a half in reception centers, very few find work. Today there is a different possible future for them, thanks to the first app developed for migrants, available in 3 languages with more than 8,000 quizzes that assess their ambitions and talents. Good morning Chris, tell us about your wonderful initiative.

Chris Richmond: In 2017, we decided to create this educational platform for migrants and refugees with the aim of fully valuing their prior skills, backgrounds, and talents, ensuring that these skills and talents become assets in the job market.

Cristina: What goals are you setting and what results have you achieved?

Chris Richmond: The goal is certainly to innovate the Italian, European, and international asylum system, making sure that even economic migrants and future climate migrants can move freely from point A to point B in a legal and secure manner. Finding a way to generate more trust between migrants and formal financial actors simply means making migrants creditworthy as well.

Cristina: And how many users do you have?

Chris Richmond: After 4 years we have reached over 100,00 active users on the platform. We have about 20% of users who are not in Italy, and are still in the Middle East, Africa or Southeast Asia; we’ve identified about 15,000 highly qualified profiles and supported the job placement of about 1,900 people.

Cristina: An important percentage but low in proportion to the big picture. Why do you think that is?

Chris Richmond: We didn’t set out with the ambition to do job placement, rather to emphasize skills and talent. Over time, as we analyzed the data, we realized that we could aspire to something more and in early 2018 we decided to start testing job placement. 2018, 2019 and to some extent due to the pandemic job placements were reduced and we are focusing on meeting market demands. Definitely IT and technology, translations and interpreters, definitely mechanics and mechatronics, delivery and logistics and obviously sanitation and personal services so, caregivers.

Cristina: Chris, is there a story you’d like to share with us?

Chris Richmond: There are many, certainly the story of a young Tunisian software engineer who arrived in Italy a couple of years ago, who tried to find job opportunities as a dishwasher, entered the platform and after a few weeks showed all his talent. He had 12 job offers and was able to choose which company to work for. After 3 months of internship he was hired with a long term contract testing industrial plants. This is one of the many stories that we were able to transform from a dream into reality.

Cristina:  Great job, I really wish you all the best and thank you Chris. This project fulfills six of the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals: 1 zero poverty, 4 quality education, 8 decent work, 9 industry innovation and infrastructure, 10 reducing inequality, e 11 sustainable cities and communitiesOcchio al futuro

On air May 1st 2021

Decarbonization by 2050 with Jeff Sachs

By ecology, sdg 11, sdg 13, sdg 14, sdg 15, sdg 7, sdg 9

Jeffrey Sachs is a guiding star of sustainable development, which is why I wanted to feature him in my weekly segment Occhio al futuro. He’s an esteemed academic, a dynamic promoter of a necessary transition and is President of the United Nation’s SDSN (Sustainable Development Solutions Network).

We interviewed him to talk about decarbonization and how reaching zero emissions by 2050 is a crucial goal for the entire world.

Cristina: Professor Sachs joins us again from New York, he’s one of the world’s leading experts on sustainable development. Bentornato, thank you for being with us again. 2050, decarbonization, really the end crucial goal. How can you guide us to understanding obligations and solutions, also how relevant and important it is to act now?

Prof. Jeff Sachs: We need to stop emitting greenhouse gases that are warming the planet and most importantly the carbon dioxide coming from fossil fuels: coal, oil and gas. In order to do that, we need to change our very energy, from fossil fuels, to wind and solar and hydro and other low carbon energy. We need to change our transport from internal combustion engines to electric vehicles we need to use clean energy to produce clean fuels like hydrogen. Splitting water to make hydrogen that can be used by industry and we need to stop chopping down the forests which emit carbon dioxide as well. These are the basic pillars. This is a dramatic change because the energy system is at the core of a modern economy, it will take us some decades to do. 2050 has been set because if we don’t decarbonize by 2050 we are likely to experience rises of temperatures beyond the 1,5 C warming that could lead to runaway climate disasters. So, 2050 is a really tough timeline to achieve this because of all the time it will take to replace the vehicles, for the new infrastructure, for the new power plants, but it can be accomplished, this is what serious studies are showing. We can do this, and we can do this in an affordable manner and must urgently move now so that by 2050 we are at zero net emissions of greenhouse gases.

Cristina: In the reports that you have been responsible for compiling, the most encouraging aspect to me was the job opportunities. Could you briefly sum up what we’re looking at?

Prof. Jeff Sachs: There’s a lot of new jobs and new clean green industry that will be created from this transformation. And the truth of the matter is the old fossil fuel sector that has to go away, basically over time, was so capital intensive, it didn’t have so many jobs. We’re going to see a net creation of jobs in the new green digital world.

Cristina:  This is the greatest challenge of our time, let’s turn it into an opportunity. Occhio al futuro

On air 4/17/2021

The power of trash

By ecology, sdg 11, sdg 12, sdg 13, sdg 14, sdg 15, sdg 17, sdg 7, sdg 9, technology

Arthur Huang, architect, engineer and CEO of Miniwiz explains his processes and machines to use the most abundant resource on our planet: trash! Trashpresso, a portable solar-powered recycling machine was in Milan’s Parco Sempione during the Salone Internazionale del Mobile 2018.

PART I

Cristina: Arthur, what is the power of trash for you?

Arthur Huang: It is the most abundant resource that’s out there right now. It’s in our ocean, it’s in our water, it’s even in the glacier at 4.900m. This trash resource is growing so I think we need to do something about it to power our new way of designing and our lifestyle.

Cristina: You are doing something about it. How many systems have you designed?

Arthur Huang: We actually designed 1.200 new processes and they come with 4 big categories of machinery, which can sort and transform the material from the original raw source of trash that we throw away every day from cups, bottles, packaging, all the way to waste fiber. From these four major categories we can go into lots of different variations of pre-fabricated material for designers and engineers to be able to use in building construction or for products.

Cristina: You’re wearing a number of your new materials. Can you point them out?

Arthur Huang: This is 100% single material, without glue in it, it’s made 100% from plastic bottles. This is also made with 100% plastic bottles but it feels like wool. The shoes are also made from recycled PET. Even the buttons and the sunglasses and the watch strap are made from cigarette butts. This button was made from four butts, that we collected from Switzerland and Italy and we’re turning into a new form of buttons and hardware and sunglasses. These are the sunglasses.

Cristina: And how much energy does it take to actually strip some of these materials from their toxic elements?

Arthur Huang: It is actually much easier than you think, that’s why we designed the portable machine called Trashpresso, to demonstrate how little energy is used. All of the machines are actually powered by the sun, all the water and air is internally recycled, so we want to show people that the transformation process actually requires very little energy, as little energy as possible. You get a 90% savings in energy in the transformation, rather than going out there into the ocean, taking out the oil, producing that and transforming it into raw material.

Cristina: There are no toxins left in the the cigarette button?

Arthur Huang: Actually we did a whole set of safety tests and there isn’t anything left in the cigarette butts after the transformation process, there are some fumes, but they’re captured by the machine. A lot of times during the transformation process the toxins are actually already exposed in terms of fume.

PART II

Cristina: We’re reading on the papers that there’s more recycled materials than the market demands, so this is a critical issue, and people are burning these stocks of transformed trash. How can your strategy and your system have an impact on a global scale?

Arthur Huang: First of all, most of our systems are designed to be portable. I think this is very important, you need to take the transformation technology as close to the trash source as possible. Most of the problem today is that when you recycle, you mix the materials. Once you get contamination, the material has no value, once the material has no value, the transformation process has become very expensive and it also becomes more environmentally damaging. The idea is to bring the machine as close to the source as possible and then you can transform it into a medium that the designers and engineers can work with on site.

Cristina: From your experience where are the missing links to be able to harness all this expertise, intelligence and solutions?

Arthur Huang: The missing link is the recycling process itself, you need to know how to sort the trash. That’s the first question. All the recycled materials out there, no matter how much percentage you collect, in reality only less than 2% is being used to be turned into some sort of recycled substitute material. And then on top of that, after you know how to sort and process the material, you have to know how to form it. And there is the whole transformation process with all the different data that’s needed. You also need application, is it going to go into shoes? Jackets? Is it going into a chair, or a building? These all have different specifications, so right now all that missing link of data is what we are working on. We are opening up a material database with 1.200 new materials in it to open source data from our learning in the last 15 years to give to institutions for education so young designers and engineers can play with the material. So we are trying to fill the missing link with data.

Cristina: What is your moonshot?

Arthur Huang: Our moonshot right now is to build an airplane made out of trash. We actually bought an airplane from Germany and we shipped it to Taiwan and now we’re actually trying to come up with a new process to build an airplane wing made from recycled PET.

Airlite – the air purifying paint

By ecology, sdg 11, sdg 12, sdg 13, sdg 3, sdg 9

Airlite developed a paint that purifies the air and can be used both indoors and outdoors. It neutralizes odors, bacteria and prevents mold, it repels dust and dirt and reduces air pollution.

Cristina: Don’t we all feel better when the air is light? Today we’re featuring a technology that allows us to breathe better. Hello Massimo, tell us more.

Massimo Bernardoni: It’s a paint that contains various technologies. It purifies the air, eliminates bacteria and molds from surfaces, it works over time and eliminates odors. Through nanotechnology our paint transforms pollutants into salts. Through other processes it gets rid of bacteria, mold and it keeps walls clean and smog free.

Cristina: Does it prevent the black streaks over radiators?

Massimo Bernardoni: Yes those too, no more dark corners.

Cristina: Is it all mineral-based? Any petrochemicals?

Massimo Bernardoni: We do not have any petroleum based ingredients, only mineral-based, and when applied it doesn’t smell.

Antonio Cianci: Outdoors, with this technology, painting a 150 meter stretch of roadside, both left and right, is equivalent to planting a forest as big as a soccer field. 12 meters of a painted surface with our technology, reduce the pollution produced by a car in one day.

Cristina: Does it also absorb particulates?

Antonio Cianci: In an indirect way. Particulate matter is generated by nitrogen oxides through photochemical synthesis, we lower its levels and reduce it significantly.

Cristina: It also reduces energy consumption. How?

Antonio Cianci: We have the amazing ability to reflect the warm component of sunlight, therefore painting the wall with this product can reduce the surface temperature up to 30 degrees. This way less heat passes through therefore reducing the need for conditioning the room.

Cristina: So it creates a protective but permeable coat?

Antonio Cianci: Yes, the paint is permeable, it allows the passage of all the components without causing stagnation, such as those bubbles we sometimes find on our walls, which trap mold. Our paint creates a natural conditioning system.

Cristina: How many colors are available?

Antonio Cianci: 180. I must say that architecturally the performance is beautiful, suited also for high-end finishes. And it cleans the air.

Cristina: This is what happens when two brilliant Italians come together. Occhio al futuro

On air May 5, 2018

Quakebots, seismic monitoring

By sdg 11, sdg 9, technology

How IoT and cloud technology can change the way we monitor earthquakes

Italy is the most earthquake prone country in Europe, lying close to the line where the Eurasian and African plates meet and constantly grate against each other creating seismic and volcanic tension. According to the National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology (Ingv), the earthquakes counted in 2017 alone along the Italian peninsula were over 44,000. An average of 120 per day, five per hour. That is: an earthquake every twelve minutes. Most of these are micro-earthquakes, shocks that are rarely felt by the general population.

How does all this seismic activity affect our homes, buildings and infrastructures? Understanding these vulnerabilities and taking steps to help prevent major damage is essential and could potentially save lives.

Quakebots is a seismic monitoring system that uses IoT and cloud technology to record how buildings react to seismic stress. Through the use of AI, they create classification maps that can help understand which buildings may be most vulnerable.

Sensors, called nodes, are installed inside buildings on a load-bearing wall and from that moment start using the wifi network to communicate information to the cloud system. All systems work on the network, so data coming from a system is used to create value for other buildings. The data can then be used by engineers and architects for the different phases of seismic retrofitting. “In Italy we have 7 million buildings in areas with high to medium seismic risk that were built before the 70s” explains Quakebots Founder & CTO Gianni Alessandroni.

Earthquakes are not the only contributing factor – anthropic activity, the vibrations caused by traffic, railways, subways, or even remodeling inside the buildings themselves. The system is able to record all these vibrations and give information about the stress that the building undergoes.

Alessandroni explains how his involvement in the aftermath of the earthquake in l’Aquila (2009) helped shape the idea that became Quakebots. “At the time, I was in charge of the support service for the regional emergency services hotline in Abruzzo. On the day of the earthquake at 6 am, we were told that the hospital had to be evacuated. We took everything we had in the office – servers, workstations – and we went up to L’Aquila and within a few hours we rebuilt a dispatch center, allowing emergency services to continue uninterrupted. I saw the damage, what happened and in the wave of emotions I asked myself if those buildings had previously given any signs of the devastation to come.”

Currently they have almost a hundred buildings being monitored 24/7 in various regions of Italy, including Calabria and Umbria, and their network of Quakebot Nodes is growing. They’ve even received funding from the European Commission SME Instruments Horizon 2020 and won a grant from the Microsoft Bizspark+ program.

Bringing nature back to our cities

By ecology, sdg 11, technology

One design firm's vision to bring nature back to our cities

Nature is made of many elements and sometimes, in our cities, those elements are missing. How can we incorporate those things that we miss about being outdoors into our buildings, infrastructures and cities? Our urban way of life?

Carlo Ratti Associati, an architecture and design firm from Torino, strives to play with and integrate in their projects all the elements nature has to offer.

In Singapore they’ve designed a skyscraper, deciding to put a tropical forest that opens and unveils itself in the heart of the building and in the heart of the city. 51 stories, the exterior façade consists of vertical elements that are pulled apart to allow glimpses into the green spaces in the base, center and rooftop.

Does the idea of locking yourself in an indoor gym for every workout give you pause? They designed a floating gym in Paris, where the idea is that people training in the gym, produce the energy needed to move the gym itself along the Seine. It investigates the potential of harnessing human-generated power, at the same time producing a new urban experience and envisioning ways to further integrate the river in the city’s mobility infrastructure.

One concern for humanity moving forward in urban environments is sustainable food production. Ratti explains “I personally don’t think we will ever be able to produce all the food we need in our cities, there isn’t enough space or energy from the sun. What we can do is use urban agriculture to connect with nature in a different way, the seasons, the magic of plant life that is renewed according to the seasons. This is what we tried to do at FICO Eataly World in Bologna, in the HORTUS pavilion, attempting to turn every visitor into a small organic farmer who can sow and follow the fruits of what they sow.”

Visitors enter the “Hortus” circular pavilion and follow a route that leads to a vast indoor hydroponic vegetable garden. Here, anybody can choose to plant seeds in a hydroponic tank and start monitoring their growth. People can engage with digitally-augmented farming and grow their own food on-site. The project pairs hydroponic practices with online data collection, paving the way for a new type of collaborative, in-store cultivation system in which anyone can become a food producer.

There can be instances of too much of a good thing, for example in Dubai, there is a surplus of sun, making it difficult to enjoy the summer months. “Solar energy is becoming more competitive than all other forms of energy and I think that for an architect this is an unavoidable starting point” says Ratti. Developed in collaboration with Dubai’s Museum of the Future, Sun&Shade is a digitally-controlled canopy that couples the cooling of outdoor areas with solar power generation. Based on an array of mirrors that track the sun, each mirror can move on a double axis and reflect the sun’s rays away from the ground – allowing the precise control of the desired level of shading and natural cooling underneath. Reflected rays, in turn, are concentrated on a photovoltaic receiver, located a safe distance away, that generates electric power.

These are just one firm’s visions of how nature can be integrated into our urban landscape. Hopefully in the coming years more and more architects and designers will bring these elements into our cities and our everyday lives.

A new future for Milan’s EXPO Area

By ecology, sdg 11, technology

In 2015, Milan hosted the EXPO in an area of 1 million m², with over 22 million visitors.

What will become of the area? Carlo Ratti Associati, an architecture and design firm from Torino, won the competition with a project intending to give new life to the site.

The master plan provides for the development of a Science, Knowledge and Innovation Park serving as an innovation hub in Milan that includes offices, research centers, university facilities, residences, cultural spaces and areas for urban agriculture. The approach of CRA is open and inclusive: the buildings are designed to be reconfigured and change destination according to the needs.

Following the principle that the health of a district depends largely on the vitality of its public spaces, the project proposes a common ground which winds through all the areas of the masterplan – on which squares and pedestrian areas alternate, gardens and shops, laboratories and court buildings, in a continuous exchange between open and closed, public or more collected environments.

Ratti explains his idea of the city as an engine of innovation, “The first aspect is how we started from the decumano, this large strip of asphalt that acts as a distributor belt on the site and transforms it into a large linear park. Nature returning to the city center. The second aspect is how the lower levels of the buildings will become common ground, a shared space of interaction. Not a private space but a space that is open to citizens and anyone who wants to enter and enjoy the site. Another important focus is mobility, we know that urban mobility in the 1900s was based on the automobile. In the next few years cars will change drastically because of new technologies, they will become self-driving, this means a different mobility system in which the same machine gives a ride to one person, then another and then another. Expo is perhaps one of the first major urban centers in the world that has been conceived with this in mind from the beginning, a new type of mobility, based on autonomy.”

Clairy, the air purifying vase

By ecology, sdg 11, sdg 3, technology

One smart solution to reduce indoor air pollution

Indoor air can be 5 times more polluted than external air, says the World Health Organization, containing traces of benzene, ammonia, xylene, trichloroethylene and formaldehyde to name a few. These substances can come from cleaning products, furniture finishes, cooking. We spend 90% of our time indoors and breathe approximately 3000 gallons of air each day.

A group of university students turned their thesis project into a start-up to help us breathe a little bit easier in our homes and offices. Clairy is a smart vase which boosts a plant’s natural air purification process. Traditional flowerpots don’t allow any airflow to the roots, therefore, a single plant isn’t able to filter the toxic agents.

In the 1980’s, NASA found that certain plants are able to eliminate toxic agents– but through their roots, not their leaves.

CEO Paolo Ganis explains: “We’ve created a natural air purifier by using a double vase system, with a technological unit and a real plant. This brings much more air to the roots of the plant exponentially increasing the purification efficiency.”

Lab test results showed that Clairy was able to purify an area of about 36 cubic meters with an initial run of 30 hours. The vase is equipped with sophisticated sensors and a wi-fi unit that connects to your smartphone. Through an app, you can see, in real time, the levels of pollutants in your environment.

Plants are smarter than we think!