(Im)possible Environment Class

2nd Year, Graduate, 2016, Co-work with Miiko He


This is an environment class we speculate which could be held in public schools in the future when climate issue getting severer. We designed two items to execute the class : a syllabus and a backpack. The syllabus is to deliver a clear course structure and content. The backpack is a part of the school uniform that has the function of absorbing CO2 with the replaceable CO2 absorbing Patch.


It might be impossible to stop human to use fossil fuel to decrease the emission of CO2. We can't blame anyone else for causing the greenhouse effect because our contemporary life cannot live without technology, which needs to consume fossil fuel and release CO2. Therefore, we propose that the responsibility of decrease greenhouse effect has to be on everyone within their daily life. 

How could we let everyone taking the responsibility within their daily life?

An article, Chemical 'sponge' could filter CO2 from the air, published in New Scientist on October 2007 gave us the inspiration. It introduced the research of Carbon capture and storage. After some research, we learned more about the material that could capture CO2. Professor Klause Lackner and his research partner Allen Wright discovered and developed the resin that could absorb CO2. The material could absorb CO2 in the air and spew the CO2 when put into the moister environment. One single piece of this resin could be used for 10000 cycles. Professor Lackner's research enable us to imagine the possibility of utilizing such material into the design that could let CO2 absorbing become part of people's daily life.

Our opinion is that if to fully apply this CO2 absorbing material into real life, requiring a lot of manpower, resources, and expenses. It won’t be viable until the government gets involved. Even if people know about the climate change, they won’t take any further action because they still don’t realize the gravity of the climate threat. The dystopia of climate change is still far away from our era. Even though the climate change hasn’t affected our daily life strikingly, it is invisibly changing our daily behavior. The government is a significant power that is able to rule the society to get more attention on carbon dioxide removing. The law is the best weapon the threat us. 




Initial thought:

What: Activities like gymnastics that could gather a group of people to contribute to absorbing CO2 at the same place and same time. And we also want the government to involve in this activity because the material we are looking at needs the support in many aspects.

Who: Student. Inspired by the experiences we had in China when we were in early education stage. We were asked to do gymnastics every day. It feels like a good thing to do, but students just get tired of doing that and started to fake the action. 

School always be one of the best places that involving ordinary people into the decision from government…and show the pointless and complicated of some process

This also reminds people of child labor…

This is a group that could cultivate. They are more likely to embrace absorbing CO2 being a part of their daily life.

This also feels like students are paying for the problems that caused by the early generation, which relevant to the topic of sustainability.

What If? statements: 

what if each company have a department that controls the co2 emission to avoid the penalty? because governments started to punish the co2 over emission.

What if the tolls on the highway are set to pay for the CO2 emission?

What is there are some devices on the road to absorb CO2?

What if all the lawns are not just grass but the CO2 absorbing resin?

What if there are devices on the bicycle to absorb CO2? and the government will award the people using the bicycle.

What if every each single individual, including animals, has a filter inside of the body is able to absorb the CO2 through breath within a certain area (48*48) around them?

What if the architecture’s appearance having a function to absorb the CO2? 

What if an event, like gymnastics, a competition like Olympics that gather people together to absorb CO2?

What if this technology is all around human at home (wallpaper)?



Brahic, C. (2007, October). Chemical ‘sponge’ could filter CO2 from the air. Retrieved November 11, 2016, from https://www.newscientist.com/article/dn12727-chemical-sponge-could-filter-co2-from-the-air/

Gertner, J. (2015, April 13). Klaus Lackner Is Pulling CO2 Out of Thin Air. Retrieved November 11, 2016, from https://www.fastcoexist.com/3044272/world-changing-ideas/clearing-the-air