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FAQ | Solar + Reduce + Recycle

Less is More

Ground Effect was conceived around, amongst other ideals, a rose tinted desire to deliver some gains to the environment. Cycling is fundamentally good - it keeps us fit, gets us to interesting places, reduces greenhouse gases and the consumption of fossil fuel.

We specify and build our products to last longer, so you need to buy less often. There’s no swing tag clutter and minimal packaging. Most are simply wrapped in a cardboard roll or enclosed in a cardboard sleeve. Both can be recycled via your kerbside bin.

Solar Powered Clothing

64 photovoltaic panels adorn the roof of our Christchurch factory. Commercial applications are ideal for solar with daytime generation in sync with 9 to 5 consumption. The 20kW array produces enough power annually to power our sewing machines, CAD cutting table, computers and lighting.

Fanta and Evie

For jobs around town and moving stuff between our office and factory we get about on Fanta the eCargo bike. Evie the electric van comes to the party for bigger loads.

All of us ride to and from work. We have a bike lockup and workshop for keeping 'em humming. Plus showers (solar panels on the roof produce an abundance of hot water), a laundry and drying facilities to keep us clean and sociable.

Warm as Pie & Cool as Cucumber

Our office runs at a pleasant 20 something degrees year round with minimal intervention. It faces north for maximum solar gain in the winter; eaves block the sun in the summer. Concrete floors and walls provide a bundle of thermal mass (warm in the winter and cool in the summer). There is no heat pump or air-conditioning. A pellet boiler provides base-level underfloor heating through the winter and windows (so hi-tech) generate a cooling airflow over summer.

Recycling Courier and Airmail Bags

Our NZ courier and international airmail bags are manufactured from recycled plastic. When not disposed of correctly, soft plastic is bad for our oceans and waterways. Plastic packaging is the main culprit, but the courier bags we use to send out orders also contribute to the problem. 

Soft plastic recycling is still the best option in our opinion. It's easy in NZ. Just deposit your courier bag and any other 'scrunchable' plastics in the Soft Plastics Recycling Bin at your local supermarket. Pin down your nearest drop off point at Soft Plastic Recycling. The bags are reprocessed and used to manufacture durable outdoor products like park benches, carpark wheel stops and fence posts. Smart.

Sadly in Australia RedCycle has 'temporarily' suspended collections. Curby is an exciting alternative but is only available in a few local government areas at this stage.

Compostable Bags?

Bio-degradable or oxo-degradable plastic seem like a good idea but they disintegrate into small pieces that are eaten by birds and marine life. These bags are not recyclable. Best avoided.

Plant based, certified compostable plastic bags require a controlled composting environment to decompose properly. You can't put them in your kerbside organics' bin. Home composting struggles to cut it too - in practical terms the compost heap needs to maintain a 70º temperature for at least a week. Tricky. As yet there is no collection system for these bags, except in the commercial sector. Hopefully this will change in the future.