Facebook icon Twitter icon Forward icon

From Garage to Granny Flat with GECA: The final result

Sustainable House Day was on Sunday 13 September, and what better way to introduce the final result of our 'Garage to Granny Flat with GECA' series!

See all the 'Before' and 'After' photos from our budget DIY eco-friendly renovation project, plus plenty of suggestions for how to choose more sustainable building materials and furniture. Or start from the beginning and catch up on previous posts focussing on insulation, plasterboard, paint, carpet and furniture.

This story is also featured in the Spring edition of The Natural Artisan.

The Defit Dilemma: What Happens to Furnishings and Fittings?

Every year, office defit teams send thousands of dollars worth of perfectly good furnishings and fittings to landfill – and the landfills are rapidly reaching full capacity.

As a result, city councils are urgently looking for ways to reduce waste. With the commercial and industrial sectors contributing substantially to a city’s total waste generation (almost 50 per cent in the case of the City of Sydney), businesses are in a position to significantly reduce the amount of waste material ending up in landfill. Read more at Sourceable.

Fast Furniture: What's the real cost?

Companies like IKEA have made buying furniture cheap and convenient. Their massive influence on global furniture consumption puts them in an excellent position to lead when it comes to sustainability.

But what are the real impacts of our changing attitudes towards "fast furniture"? GECA's Bobby Ali-Khan chats to SBS's The Feed about how to make sure our purchases don't cost the Earth. Watch online here (and keep an eye out for lovely GECA certified designs from Anibou!)

What's new with GECA

This month, it's all about hygiene and keeping things clean. We've welcomed on board three licensees who manufacture cleaning and personal care products with a lower environmental, health and social impact: Elyptol, GOE Australia and Clean Plus Chemicals.

Elyptol’s antimicrobial moisturising hand sanitiser products are made from naturally derived ingredients and can be used by consumers and professionals.  Their formula focus is on germ efficacy and usage frequency, which is regarded as a strong indicator of sanitising effectiveness. Read more.

GOE Australia makes a range of non-toxic, biodegradable products for general cleaning and odour removal, which utilise enzyme technology. The company adheres to the principles of minimal waste generation, recycling where possible, energy efficiency and carbon neutrality. Read more.

Clean Plus Chemicals formulates and manufactures high standard cleaning and hygiene chemicals. The company supplies through a network of distributors to the hospitality, healthcare, aged care, food processing, laundry, automotive and commercial industries. See their certified products here.

What’s So Bad About VOCs?

With an increasing number of paint manufacturers lining the shelves with ‘low-VOC’ or ‘no-VOC’ products, we’re now well aware that it’s wise to avoid volatile organic compounds (VOCs).

They’re commonly found in paints, but also in carpeting, furniture, adhesives, cleaning products, and a range of other building and interior materials. If a product has a strong smell, there’s a good chance it contains VOCs.

So why should we avoid VOCs, and just how dangerous are they, anyway? Read more at Sourceable.

The GECA eco trail: we have a winner!

Australia's biggest design event, Sydney Indesign 2015, was a success! Thousands of visitors attended the three day event, which ran from 13-15 August and showcased outstanding designer furniture.

Visitors who followed the GECA eco trail, which highlighted GECA certified exhibitors, had the chance to enter our competition for the opportunity to win $1000 to spend at a participating exhibitor's store.

Of the many fantastic entries we received, we'd like to congratulate our winner, Mercie Chin of PMDL Architecture and Design, who now has $1000 to spend with Arthur G furniture! We liked her response: "Made in Australia, providing jobs for Aussies here, keeping local talent here, maintaining sustainable work practices in manufacturing is a win for everyone."

Thanks to everyone who entered, and we hope you enjoy your prize, Mercie!

International Green Interior Awards - entries close soon!

Architects, interior designers, manufacturers and students have the opportunity to be globally recognised for specifying and creating interior products that are healthy for us and our environment.

Don't miss out - entries close 25 September 2015 so be quick! International Green Interior Awards are proudly supported by Good Environmental Choice Australia.

Enter projects and products into the International Green Interior Awards.

Planex upgrades site to use solar power and better lighting

GECA licensee Planex have upgraded their manufacturing site to take advantage of more energy efficient solutions, including solar panel installation from Climate Friendly.

The panels reduced their grid power consumption by 30%, and they also achieved an energy reduction of over 70% by upgrading their lighting systems. Check out the video for more information.