Coca-Cola Creates What May Be World's Greenest Billboard

Commuters in Manila can breathe easier and enjoy fresher air thanks to the country's first-ever plant billboard.

Momentum Philippines created the living, eco-friendly ad on behalf of Coca-Cola and the World Wide Fund for Nature Philippines.

The 60 x 60 ft. billboard is located on Manila's busiest street and made from 3,600 Fukien tea plants that surround an outline of a Coca-Cola bottle. "This billboard absorbs air pollutants," says raised billboard copy. I don't think this billboard could get any greener. Each plant can absorb roughly 13 pounds of carbon dioxide a year, which equates to 46,800 pounds of dissolved toxic chemicals removed from the environment. Recycled Coca-Cola bottles serve as pots that are filled with a combination of industrial by-products and organic fertilizers.

A drip irrigation system distributes water to the roots of plant when needed, saving on the amount of fertilizer and water used.

"This project wasn't an easy feat," said Majo Tomas, managing director of Momentum Philippines. "It took lots of man hours before we finally ended with this idea. The inspiration behind the final concept was simple: if plants can convert CO2 to O2, imagine the amount of air it can convert on a per square foot basis."

The initiative is part of Coca-Cola's Live Positively sustainability program. According to Tomas, Coca-Cola Philippines partnered with WWF in 2008 to help conserve watersheds in the country.

The cost of maintaining the billboard is minimal due to the drip irrigation system used. Daily water requirements for the plants were predetermined to prevent waste.

"The biggest challenge was how to bring the idea to life. There were a lot of considerations, such as: what plant, sustainability of the plant, high elevation wind factor and safety," concluded Tomas.

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