HOW sought keen advice from Jess Sand, a Re-Nourish.com partner, designer and writer, for tips and tools to help every designer work with sustainability in mind. She begs the question: “What can you do tomorrow?” The day after Earth Day is an opportunity to work differently.
I found this passage of the article particularly eye-opening: “Environmental expert John Thackara estimates, after all, that a full 80% of a product’s environmental footprint is determined at the design stage. That gives us a whole lot of control that most of us don’t even think about.” Sand outlines three steps that’ll get you started.
Step One: Ask Better Questions
Designers are problem-solvers and ask questions by nature. So when you tackle your next project, ask a few more:
- What resources will be needed to make the project happen?
- What will the project leave behind?
- How will the project be used in the real world?
- What can I do differently than I normally would to reduce the project’s impact?
Identifying these things at the outset will allow you to make better design decisions as you go, reducing the project’s overall footprint.