Container Homes – The Illegal Saviors of Economies And the Environment

The ports of many import-driven countries including the USA are filled with used shipping containers that are never shipped back to their original destinations.  Therefore considering the well-being of the environment, getting new ways of use for them is crucial. Building affordable homes for many families is the best option, but how to influence the local decision makers to offer building permits.

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The valuable resources of used shipping containers will remain as an unused asset if the decision makers do not allow the installation of shipping container houses. The roots of the problem are not on the operational level, in other words,  in the daily application and inspection processes. In many countries there are protocols on how large, what colour or which material the houses in a specific suburb should be made of. The problem is that the standards do not say much about special building materials, let alone shipping containers.

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The inspectors can only follow the protocol, that’s a fact. Therefore people should work on influencing the upper level authorities, unions and city councils.

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Social media offers great tools for that. It is important that people keep on writing blogs about the benefits of shipping container architecture. It is also equally important to share other people’s work on social media. The optimum use of Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, WordPress  etc. enables the maximum reach of one’s work. Maximum reach implies that the content will eventually reach the decision makers or the people who influence them. Moreover, as we already analyzed in our former article, this industry develops really slowly, so all the counter measures should be designed for a long run.

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Besides quality, quantity also counts. The decision makers also suffer from bounded rationality. Instead of only few experts, by social media they can be influences of thousands of experts, those who want to build affordable homes and to help to save the environment and the economy. Even though it sounds like a long shot but it’s still an implementable way.

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Shanghai Metal Corporation also contributes to this good cause by creating content related to container architecture and sharing others’ work. SMC is a pioneer in providing shipping containers and container buildings for many countries. You can also join our social media communities.

    

Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and more reading in: Containerist, Biz Journals, Wikipedia, Baidu Image, Baco Enterprises

The Container Shops of Alluring Asian Beauties

In our previous articles, we have discussed how shipping containers can be turned into convenient mobile pop-up stores. Container shops have already been applied all over the world. At least, this peculiar example from Taiwan gives some evidence to that theory.

In Taiwan there is a unique business concept of selling paans. They are betel nuts wrapped in a betel leaf that together make a powerful drug that gives energy boosts like caffeine. It is also a very dangerous drug that causes oral cancer. It is mostly used by truck drivers to stay awake during night shifts. Selling betel nuts is only allowed outside the capital Taipei.

The vendors of betel nuts are young local girls that sell them from small glazed kiosks. In order to attract drivers along the road, the girls wear revealing clothes. The transactions take place outside the kiosk letting the drivers stay in their cars.

A Polish architectural photographer Magda Biernat discovered a set of scattered shipping container betel nut stores when she visited Taiwan with his husband. During her journey she compiled a set of images that were displayed in her exhibition, “The Betel Nut Beauties”. (via Inhabitat)

Even though we might have negative opinions about the ethics of this business, it won’t deny the fact how shipping containers success in constantly defining new business concepts. This story also shows how fully operational real estate can be built in an environmentally friendly way by using abandoned materials.

Shanghai Metal Corporation is experienced provider of shipping containers. Our large variety of containers ensures that you will find the best product for you. We also offer prefabricated container buildings for office spaces and housing. Check our websites for detailed specifications or send us questions through this form. Visit also our social media platforms.

    

Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original articles: Inhabitat, CNN, Wikipedia

This Solar-Powered House Produces 50% More Energy Than It Consumes!

A French architect Philippe Starck has developed a prefabricated wooden house that takes advantage of solar power and other sustainable power sources to produce energy.

PATH homes by Philippe Starck and Riko

The house is under construction and will be placed outside Paris for Starck’s personal use. It is produced together with one of Europe’s leading prefab manufacturers Riko. This house is also called a PATH house (Prefabricated Accessible Technological Homes) that is designed to consume a third of the energy of a traditional house.

PATH homes by Philippe Starck and Riko

The house has glazed with with rows of aluminum panels running in between. The energy-producing system is placed under the fluted parapet that lines the edge of the roof.

PATH homes by Philippe Starck and Riko

The PATH homes can have at maximum eight rooms in an area between 140 and 350 square meters. The house is priced around 2,500 and 4,500 euros per square meter. The delivery takes approximately 6 months. Assembling is usually done in 2 weeks.

PATH homes by Philippe Starck and Riko

Shanghai Metal Corporation is also a provider of customized prefabricated houses that are environmentally friendly and can be build with low costs. They can be empowered with our solar power system. Check our website for more details. Follow us also in our social media platforms for future updates.

    

Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

via Dezeen

São Paulo Presents Marvellous Container Art

The Brazilian city of São Paulo organized a design weekend during August 2014.  During the weekend some fabulous pieces of design art were presented. One of the providers was a Brazilian design company Contain[it] that transforms pieces of shipping containers into beautifully designed furniture.

Among the works on display were a lounger chair, lamps, vases, modular shelving, and a table that are made out of shipping container scraps.  The scraps are collected from the company’s shipping container projects that turn discarded containers into new spaces.

Shipping containers are becoming a mainstream construction material for green and environmentally friendly construction projects. In general, the world is suffering from oversupply of shipping containers because they are seldom reused for shipping.

Shipping container architecture solves the problem of used shipping containers turning into waste, but only partially. Shipping container houses, villas, hotels etc. need to be modified through welding which creates waste of container scraps.

Contain[it] solves this problem by giving the container scraps a new life and therefore creating art with zero waste. The company’s mission is to create art that gives an impact in an intelligent way. The company really gives a great contribution for the well-being of nature.

Today sustainable architecture and shipping containers are becoming synonyms. No other building material can be same time as durable and low-cost as shipping containers. Shipping container architecture enables designers to create environmentally friendly construction that can easily be retrofitted to any natural environment.

As an experienced provider of shipping containers, Shanghai Metal Corporation is proud of serving its international clients as well as giving a major environmentally friendly contribution to the construction industry. You can also familiarize yourself with our product offering by visiting our website. You can also send us an inquiry about any product you have in mind, and our English speaking staff will give you assistance. Please also visit our social media sites in Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.

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Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original articles: São Paulo Design Weekend, Contain[it], Inhabitat

Green Campus – Steve Jobs’ Last Wish for Apple

Before his death in 2011, Steve Jobs announced that Apple wants to build a massive and green campus in Cupertino City California. The construction project has been put off many times but Apple‘s CEO Tim Cook has told that the complex will be finished in 2016.

The sketches of the space-like building look simply astonishing. The Apple campus has been said to become one of the world’s largest corporate campuses and the world’s greenest building. 100 percent of the facilities will utilize renewable energy and just like Coca-Cola in developing countries, Apple will also use solar power in its construction.

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The 260,000 square meter campus will accommodate harshly 14,000 employees who will have the possibility to utilize offices, fitness facilities, auditoriums and cafeterias inside the complex. For enabling such facilities the budget of the project has been raised to over five billion US dollars.

Designed by Foster and Partners, Apple‘s campus will be naturally ventilated meaning that air-conditioning and heating is needed only during 25 percent of a one-year period. The natural appearance will be generated 7000 surrounding trees..

Shanghai Metal Corporation is also specialist in construction projects that are sustainable and environmentally friendly. We also execute prefabricated construction projects and build homes, hotels, villas and offices out of shipping containers. If you are looking for a reliable international construction company and construction material, you should visit our website or just send us an inquiry and our English speaking staff will get back to you. Meanwhile please check our social media platforms Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.

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Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original articles: Inhabitat, Apple, The Verge, Bloomberg Business Week

 

Aluminum Leaves Apple’s Desktops

Apple has announced that its new Mac Pro desktop computer will use 74 % less aluminum and steel than its predecessor. The new design of Mac Pro is also said to be 84 % lighter than the previous version.

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Reducing the amount of aluminum and steel as well as reducing the overall weight is said to decrease the green house gasses that the manufacturing process would omit. The emissions caused by shipping of goods will also be reduced as the weight becomes substantially lower. This will also reduce Mac Pros’ value-to-weight ratio because according to Apple, the change of materials will not hinder the desktops’ efficiency.

Even though Apple will reduce the percentage of metals in Mac Pros, they still represent the majority of the desktops’ weight. Aluminum and steel still represent about 60 % the Mac Pro’s weight. In addition, aluminum, steel and copper will represent about 73 % of the weight. The total weight of the computer will be close to 13 pounds (six kilograms).

Metals such as aluminum, copper and steel are still in a crucial role in the mobile phone and computer industry. Even though Apple drastically reduces the use of these metals,  it is very unlikely that they will leave the manufacturing process for good. It remains still important for businesses to have good relations with reliable providers of metals, such as the Shanghai Metal Corporation.

Apple Mac Pro’s packaging slightly resembles wine packaging.

In Shanghai Metal Corporation we offer high-quality service for our international clients as well as help them to find the best metal products for their needs. If you are planning to procure aluminum or any other metals, just send us an inquiry and our English speaking staff will guide you further. For specifications of our products, please visit our website. Also follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram.

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Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original articles: Inhabitat, CleanTechnica, Treehugger, Tapscape, Cnet

Cheers To The Naked Greener Coke Can!

Imagine a time when we recycle all aluminum cans in the world. Now imagine a time when all aluminum cans are “greener” than they claim to be. That is what the Ryan Harc design studio had in mind when a Coca-Cola can was re-created without toxic paint that tends to sink into the metal.

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Being a leader in the soft drink industry and having the US as the largest market, followed by Mexico and China, the Coca-Cola Company owns the most innovative marketing campaigns worldwide. We saw the latest marketing campaign launched in China, Coke Lyric bottle, and Chok, the so-claimed best marketing campaign in over 35 years released last year in Hong Kong, reaching the top of the local app downloads for iOS in a single day, 380,000 downloads in one month, and over 9 million total views for the television commercial.

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Although seen as an innovative player in the marketing space the Coca-Cola Company has yet a lot to catch up on the sustainability side. It is true that the aluminum cans are 100% recyclable, but it does not mean that the cans are as green as they could be. The current design favoring flashy colors uses toxic ink that tends to seep into the metal. What the consumers don’t realize is that the memorable experiences promoted by the marketing efforts tag along the risks for their own health and the environment that surrounds them.

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In an endeavor to address such an issue, the NY-based Design studio Ryan Harc created a colorless can design that will reduce the cost of recycling and pollution. At least elegant, the minimalist touch given to the Coke can uses a pressing machine to insert a convex logo as an alternative to the colorfully toxic sprayed can.

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The gains in environment benefits when skipping painting are huge if looked from the right perspective. Based on Alcoa statistics for aluminum can recycling, over 112 billion aluminum beverage cans are sold per year in the USA alone. But before aluminum cans can be recycled, the coating that goes on the cans to make them more beautiful and appealing on the shelves must first be produced, which in other words means CO2 emission by thermal or chemical burn-off. According to a report examining the potential coatings market opportunity for soy-based products estimates that 33 million gallons of coatings are sold per year in the US (2007 data).

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Although only present in the design studio, the colorless pressed cans could also become a real product along with last summer’s Coca-Cola’s refreshing Ice Bottle packaging. Introduced in Cartagena, Colombia, consumers were seen enjoying a bottle of Coke direct out of ice instead of plastic or glass bottles; very practical, innovative and eco-friendly Coke packaging as the Ice Bottle melts away right after use.

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Shanghai Metal Corporation offers a wide range of aluminum sheet (aluminum plate) widely used in the manufacturing of Coke aluminum cans. To find out more about us, please visit our Website, WordPress, LinkedIn , Twitter , Facebook  and Instagram. Or you could try our new mobile app by scanning our QR code. Moreover, we sell directly from Alibaba , EC21 and Tradekey.

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Sources: gamification.co, trendhunter.com, psfk.com, treehugger.com

Pictures: bevreview.com, greenerpackage.com

Camilla G.//SMC Editor

Green Building Material Of The Future

Asbestos is slowly disappearing from offices and houses the world over as societies became aware of its harmful affects.  Although this new found awareness and action is a positive step there is another product that has potentially hazardous health effects, drywall.

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Drywall has a freighting ingredient known as gypsum, a waste product of coal-burning plants.  Gypsum is known to produce both mercury, formaldehyde and has the potential to be radioactive when combined with phosphates.

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This was a major issue in both the USA and China as citizens of both countries became ill when exposed to drywall with high levels of these substances.  Along with heavy metal and chemical concerns there is also a lot of dust associated with the deterioration and instillation of drywall which can severely affect indoor air quality.  Fortunately, there is a product that can replace drywall.

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Magnesium oxide is slowly becoming the go to material for interior walling in offices and homes.  Magnesia imagewas used in the construction of the Great Wall of China along with the Coliseum and many other ancient landmarks that have stood the test of time.  The benefits of Magnesia are that it is environmentally friendly, fire-resistant, waterproof, mold/fungus and bug free and most importantly has only positive effects on indoor air quality.

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Thus, the use of magnesium boards can greatly improve the air quality within a house and eliminate many allergens that would otherwise affect the inhabitants.

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Shanghai Metal Corporation is committed to sustainable growth that improves the quality of life for everyone, now and for generations to come. We take the recent construction scares across the globe very seriously and believe that our magnesium products can have a significant affect on improving the quality of life for many people. Magnesium products are part of our commitment to improving the quality of life for people the world over.

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For our full list of products that we offer check out our website here. Be sure to join the conversation in our LinkedIn groupFacebookTwitter and Instagram. Try also our new mobile application by scanning the QR code below.

Jordan S.//SMC Editor

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Sources:

http://www.smcbuildingsystem.com/MagnesiumPlate–tpl1024.html

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/05/02/chinese-drywall-adverse-health-effects-wallboard/8574707/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_drywall

http://www.propublica.org/article/american-made-drywall-emerges-as-potential-danger

http://ask.metafilter.com/232074/Dangers-of-Drywall

http://ductworks.com/indoor-air-quality/top-10-ways-homeowners-can-ensure-good-indoor-air-quality/

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-image-skyscraper-construction-crane-image2205911

Pictures: barrington220.orgglobal-yurtdisiegitim.comgreenliving4live.com