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Plastic Bottles Go Sola

series: Global 3000

air date: 4/12/13 7:30 AM

Schomberg: Welcome to Happiness Town, Germany - Germany boasts the strongest economy in Europe, and Germans have seen their individual material wealth increase over the past decade. But a recent study by the Cologne Institute for Economic Research shows that satisfaction hasn't risen along with wages and wealth. That's where the town of Schomberg comes in. Japan: Lucky Charms - Cuteness, or 'kawaii' as it's known in Japanese, is a major aspect of popular culture in Japan. From toys to food and clothing, cute products are part of everyday life. Living mascots are a common sight on the streets of Tokyo, where people dressed as toys or cute cartoons are used to advertise tourist attractions, restaurants and more. Kohei Sato, for example, works for the city administration, but his job is to dress up as a fuzzy pink rabbit, every day. Philippines: Plastic Bottles go Solar - In the Philippines' urban slums, families are unable to afford electricity and often have no access to the grid anyway. But Filipino actor Illac Diaz is looking to change that. With his organization My Shelter Foundation, he's come up with an innovative idea: turning empty plastic bottles into lamps. The bottles are filled with water and a dash of bleach before they're built into the roofs of slum huts. The organization has already installed around 300,000 of these makeshift lamps across the Philippines.

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