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It’s Wednesday Word Day at Green Queen!
Today’s word is: upcycling (ʌpˈsʌɪklɪŋ), verb
- to convert discarded, old and/or previously used items/waste into new materials of greater quality and/or environmental quality;
- creatively re-crafting ordinary items/objects in order to transform them into design and/or art pieces.
The term upcycling was first used in 1994 by Reiner Pilz during an interview about an EU directive whereby he explained that while recycling often required additional resources and sometimes new materials to create an end-product, what was needed was a more sustainable approach whereby an old product/material could be creatively and cheaply reconfigured or re-used to create a product with more value. Upcycling is the counter action of downcycling which involves reusing old materials to produce goods of lesser value. The central philosophy of upcycling is to refrain from using new materials or wasting existing ones when recycling old goods into new ones (usually for commercial purposes).
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