He's a Carbon Zero Hero


14 June 2007

A personal carbon calculator is one of the winning projects of the BSI Sustainability Design Awards 2007.

Andreas Zachariah, a student graduating with an MA in Industrial Design Engineering and the first accepted to study at the Royal College of Art (RCA) with an MBA, is one of this year’s winners of BSI’s Sustainability Design Awards 2007 for his “Carbon Hero™” personal carbon calculator.

Carbon Hero™ calculates the exact carbon footprint of the user’s transport habits by identifying different forms of transport taken as a user travels through ‘space’, by virtue of their relative location, velocity and the pattern of their activity.  All of this comes in a unit the size of a key ring.

Once gathered, the data is downloaded to software on a PC or mobile phone which displays the amount of carbon used and the amount of credits needed to be purchased in order to offset the amount used.

Andreas comments “In an age where consumers are making purchasing decisions based on their environmental impact there’s no reason why they shouldn’t make the same choice about transport, be it public or private, on a daily basis. Online methods for calculating personal carbon footprints fall down on the fact that they rely on the user to estimate usage.  Carbon Hero™ uses sophisticated sensors to pinpoint usage thus giving a much more accurate assessment of the user’s impact on the environment”.

With the availability of detailed information provided by Carbon Hero™, the user can choose to change their transport habits to reduce their impact on the environment, or offset usage through carefully selected projects.

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Read this story on the BBC website ("Tracking carbon through your phone")


• Andreas Zachariah, a former investment professional, is from London and is a final year student at the Royal College of Art (RCA), London, studying Industrial Design Engineering.

• Other winners of the BSI Sustainability Design Awards 2007 are Joe Wentworth for his retrofit folding handlebars which encourages cycling in urban environments where space for bike storage is at a premium, and Ben Storan who won first prize for his new design for an affordable personal wind turbine that is more suitable for the urban environment.

• To interview Andreas Zachariah or other winners please contact Marc Edney, BSI Group Press Office on +44 (0)20 8996 6330 (24 hours).

• Press are invited to pre-view all winning designs on 14 June 2007, at the Great Exhibition 2007: The RCA Summer Show.

About the BSI Sustainability Design Awards

The BSI Sustainability Design Awards support design projects that promote awareness of sustainability issues or provide sustainable solutions.  Now in their 13th year, the Awards are open to all students studying at the Royal College of Art.

The Awards help students find out more about their chosen subjects while learning about the relevance of sustainability issues to design.  Prize money is used to help research and realise projects. 

Past winners include: Peter Brewin for his high performance water-saving shower – The El Nino – which uses 70 per cent less water and 40 per cent less energy than a conventional shower; and Will Crawford and Peter Brewin for “The Concrete Canvas” – a rapidly deployable hardened shelter for use by aid agencies in disaster regions.  This ‘building in a bag’ won the $100,000 first prize in the Saatchi & Saatchi 2005 Award for World Changing Ideas.

About The Royal College of Art

The Royal College of Art is the world’s only wholly postgraduate university of art and design, specialising in teaching and research and offering the degrees of MA, MPhil and PhD across the disciplines of fine art, applied art, design, communications and humanities. There are over 850 masters and doctoral students and more than a hundred professionals interacting with them – including scholars, leading art and design practitioners, along with specialists, advisors and distinguished visitors.  Alumni include Tracey Emin, David Hockney, Peter Blake and James Dyson. 

The Great Exhibition 2007: The RCA Summer Show
Friday 15 June – Thursday 28 June. Free Admission
To celebrate the 150th anniversary of the establishment of the Exhibition Road area, which was created following the Great Exhibition of 1851, the RCA will be holding an even more spectacular Summer Show than usual in a huge tent in Kensington Gardens, running simultaneously with an exhibition in the College galleries. Supported by generous sponsorship from The Conran Foundation and located near the site of the original Great Exhibition of 1851, the extra space will enable the RCA to show the work of the entire College’s graduates at the same time. The show will feature the work of over 400 students from the Schools of Fine & Applied Art, Architecture & Design, Communications, Fashion & Textiles and Humanities.
Opening Hours: 12 noon - 9pm daily except for Tuesday 26 June when the exhibition will close at 5pm.

Innovation Night, Tuesday 26 June 2007, at the Royal College of Art gives business and research partners the opportunity to meet the innovators of the future.  On show will be the work of graduating RCA students from the Schools of Architecture and Design, Communications, Fashion and Textiles, and Humanities.  In addition there are prestigious award events to attend, including the BSI Sustainability Design Awards 2007, and a review of InnovationRCA. At the heart of the evening is the Innovation Lecture which this year is being given by Bruce Nussbaum, Managing Editor of Business Week, speaking on global innovation trends.

About BSI

Having pioneered the environmental management system ISO 14001, BSI Group has increasingly developed a leading role in the environment and sustainability fields.  BSI undertakes work in environmental data verification including Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHG), waste and discharges as well as offering assessments of Social Accountability management systems which assure working conditions in the supply chain.

In May 2007 BSI announced it was working with Carbon Trust and Defra to develop a standard method for measuring the embodied GHG emissions in products and services which will enable companies to measure the GHG related impacts of their products and services and reduce them accordingly. The standard will ensure a consistent and comparable approach to supply chain measurement of embodied GHGs across markets. 

In 2006 BSI published the standard BS 8900 Guidance for managing sustainable development which will assist organisations in developing an enduring balanced approach to economic activity, environmental responsibility and social progress. The standard will enable organisations to develop an approach to sustainable development that will continue to evolve and adapt to meet new challenges and demands.

BSI Group is a global independent business services organisation that inspires confidence and delivers assurance to customers with standards-based solutions. Originating as the world’s first national standards body, the Group has over 2,250 staff operating in over 100 countries through more than 50 global offices. The Group’s key offerings are:

• The development and sale of private, national and international standards and supporting information
• Second and third-party management systems assessment and certification
• Product testing and certification of services and products
• Performance management software solutions
• Training services in support of standards implementation and business best practice.