A wearable device for cows to reduce methane emissions is among the winning solutions in a sustainable design competition developed by the Prince of Wales and design guru Sir Jony Ive.
Students at the Royal College of Art (RCA) have been challenged to design projects that tackle environmental damage to the planet.
From 125 submissions, four teams of RCA students and alumni were chosen as winners of the inaugural Terra Carta Design Lab competition, receiving £50,000 in funding to help them develop their ideas further.
Among the winning designs was a portable device that allows cattle to neutralize their methane emissions in real time, created by design group Zelp (Zero Emissions Livestock Project).
They claim that each cow can exhale about 400 liters of methane per day, making it one of the main causes of global warming.
Another winning project, Amphitex, has developed the first 100% recyclable, chemical-free outdoor performance textile, as they note that today’s materials are often impossible to recycle and use many harmful chemicals.
Aerseeds – aerodynamic pods made from food scraps – are also among the winning designs as they work with nature to speed up regeneration by up to 10 times.
The Tire Collective won a spot for its device that captures tire wear while driving, accelerating the shift to zero-emission mobility.
Charles and Sir Jony will visit RCA on Wednesday for the opening of an exhibition showcasing the projects where they will meet the four winners and learn more about their solutions to the climate crisis.
Charles’ Sustainable Markets Initiative (SMI) – launched last year to help accelerate the global transition to a sustainable future – has created the Terra Carta and a Natural Capital Investment Alliance.
Sir Jony, credited with designing some of the most beloved gadgets of the modern era, including Apple’s iPhone, iPod and iPad, will also mentor the winners alongside members of the global SMI network.
The industrial, product and architectural designer, who is RCA’s chancellor, said: “We can all have good ideas. I find it reassuring, especially in the face of the overwhelming challenge of climate change, that we can all contribute ideas that could evolve into worthwhile solutions.
“I not only love the power of a good idea, but how egalitarian and inclusive they can be.
“All Design Lab winners have ideas and designs worth developing.
“The ingenuity and determination of these designers have produced some extraordinarily creative responses, and they are now embarking on the journey of turning those big ideas into practical solutions.”
The winning designs were selected by the Terra Carta Design Lab Grand Jury, consisting of Charles, Sir Jony and RCA Vice-Chancellor Paul Thompson and representatives from Terra Carta Design Lab partners Octopus Energy, The Climate Pledge and Bank of America.
Alongside the winners, two other projects were highly commendable and will receive £10,000 in funding as well as mentorship from InnovationRCA, RCA’s center for entrepreneurship and business support.
Projects included OR:BITAL BLOOM, a work of art that “blooms” when sustainability goals are met and carbon emissions are reduced, and Shellworks, which works with bacteria to produce sustainable materials.
The best videos delivered daily
Watch the stories that matter, straight from your inbox