World Energy Outlook 2008 this years annual independent report (adobe .pdf file), (which is yearly done by the influential International Energy Agency (IEA)), on the state of global energy needs and affects for both government and other organizations was published publicly today November 12, 2008 at the IEA world head quarters in London. The governments and businesses of the world had representation on hand to listen. Nobuo Tanaka speaking for the committee summarized the conclusion of this years report finding. He clearly says that the report demands change now. With the increase in global demand for automotive transportation, and development increasing rapidly global climate condition is seriously at risk.
The World Energy Outlook committee for 2008 demands that we change what we use as an energy source by switching to renewable energy before its too late.
“We cannot let the financial and economic crisis delay the policy action that is urgently needed to ensure secure energy supplies and to curtail rising emissions of greenhouse gases,” Nobuo Tanaka, head of the Paris-based IEA, said today, Wednesday 12 2008.
“We must usher in a global energy revolution by improving energy efficiency and increasing the deployment of low-carbon energy, he added.
Green energy investment firms are hoping that this report from the International Energy Agency will boost lagging investment backing in the wind power industry since the price of natural gas fell in July of 2008.
Development in India, China, and through out the nations of the Middle East is at a crucial stage where a change from dirty energy to clean energy can at least keep the rate of pollution from further climbing up at an even steeper exponential rate.
According the IEA in statements prior to the release of this report on November 12, 2008 said this transition could cost forty-five trillion dollars by 2050 to be halfway complete.
The World Energy Outlook is seen as the authority on climate change, and the final word on the balance of energy trade in regard to supply and demand relativity internationally.
Many hope that the report will force change. The World Energy Outlook for 2008 which is the formal scientific report confirming global warming as not being a hypothesis, but in fact, a fact: And the fact that even at that petroleum is a limited resource anyway.
The conclusion of the IEA committee bringing together the World Energy Report for 2008 is that the world has to start investing in renewable clean energy infrastructure now.
We are not looking into the health issues humans from mining coal to begin with. Investing in carbon capture is currently the only clean coal reality being presented as an option to American investors. American investors who are just tired of dealing with dirty energy as a whole.
Green Peace is not for clean coal via carbon capture storage:
Sustainable Times David Allison talked with Green Peaces San Francisco Press Contact Daniel Kessler (San Francisco):
CCS is a technology that is still in development. Expanding current technology is really what we should be talking about. CCS is largely untested, and would need development of a large infrastructure just to see if it could work.
In this impact review Emily Rochon states (( Ibid Rochon: pg. 15, et., al..)), and reiterates numerous times in different ways that:
Carbon capture is the most energy-intensive part of the process.
Carbon capture systems have yet to be applied to a single utility scale.
Costs for installation are estimated to result in a near doubling of plant costs.
Retrofits could be even more costly.
There are many green investment firms like the New Alternatives Fund that will not put a dime down on coal research.
Yet there are other green investment firms, like those supported by the marketing arm of Green Chip Review, who see the grey area in potential clean coal investment. Evan though Green Chip Review primarily promotes more revolutionary energy investing in what is considered as the new green economy according to the current mainstream.
Nick Hodges position in the Green Chip Review (( http://www.angelnexus.com/o/web/4479)) is not for the promotion of the coal industry. He points out that over forty percent of the worlds electricity is dependant on coal. And that the price of storage in America has dropped to $50 per metric ton.
He continues his cautious anti-thesis by stating that while coal should be replaced by renewable energy. Coal is going to be in the mix for a short while longer. And the government is going to force the coal industry to curb its emissions. Especially after the next agreement after Kyoto is signed by both the United States of America and by China.
He feels that if the coal industry is going to be forced to emit less. Than investors should profit from it. This is where he concludes his thought.
The original thought here is that investors who are thinking ofcashing in on the possibility of cleaner coal should consider the buying power of American coal companies being able to purchase carbon stocks from companies that earn them by not emitting carbon.
If the carbon stocks turn out to be less costly that CCS. The stocks will be purchased first.
The law of the land is that a company must do what is monetarily cheapest in order to protect the gains of the investors.
So far the only natural safe way of containing carbon long term has been in the phenomenon of submerged trees in riparian forests.
Investing in carbon capture and storage may not make clean coal a reality.
But the players recommended by Hodge are know for their ability to successfully work CCS for large natural gas companies around the world.
An aspect Hodge neglects to mention in his anti-thesis is:
If these firms are successful the sale of carbon stocks may also make this whole thing profitable. : Is Clean Coal a Reality?
If these firms are successful the sale of carbon stocks may also make this whole thing profitable.
There are many investment firms forming a net to catch the newly re-greened dollar. One of them is the New Alternatives Fund. This mutual fund only invests in renewable energy sources. A moral stance that is quickly becoming the norm with many mainstream green investment companies and funds.
New Alternatives Fund (( MUTF:NALFX – Via Google Finance.)) focuses on alternative energy mainly. The firm also invests in other areas that are not energy related.
Wind power, fuel cells, ocean energy, hydro power, solar power, energy conservation, hydrogen, biomass, and geothermal energy companies make up New Alternatives Funds alternative energy portfolio.
The other areas this investment firm hedges into are recycling, natural foods, clean water, clean air, and natural gas.
The company has a clean statement about its investment into natural gas:
We do invest in natural gas which is the cleanest of all hydrocarbons, particularly when used in modern turbines and fuel cells. Natural gas resources are generally domestic.
This mutual fund will not invest in the coal industry, oil, weapons, nuclear power, tobacco, or any company that practices discriminatory hiring policies, unfair labor practices detrimental environmental policies, animal testing practices.
The Economist calls the New Alternatives Fund, “The greenest fund in the United States” (( The Economist London, 11/11/1989)) This was a statement published about the fund in 1989.
The fund is also the oldest environmental fund in the United States. The firm was founded in 1982.
The fund holds its deposits in South Shore Bank. South Shore Bank in known for its community and environmental commercial lending history. Up until recently the fund has also housed its capital in federal t-bills.
The mission of this fund is best summarized in the words of the firm itself located in the company overview on their website.
The Fund periodically faces the dilemma of considering investment in a company that produces a promising environmental product, but whose other characteristics are not acceptable to our socially responsible standards. There are various degrees and subjective judgments concerning this theme. We tend towards avoiding companies with negative behavior at the expense of missing out on a promising product. This firm is leading the way for other investment firms wanting to take this strong of a moral approach to investing morally for profit nationally within the United States.
The Green Block Grant authorized $2 billion to help cities weatherize their buildings. This grant will help the cities save money and lower their carbon output, while creating jobs.
In 2006 eighty-five million new jobs were created that are directly related to renewable energy. This includes energy efficiency technology positions.
Van Jones is the Founder of Green For All said in an interview with WTTWs Chicago Tonight:
Green-collar jobs will be everything from PhDs to pH does. Buildings will be deconstructed, rather than thrown in a land fill.
Green-collar jobs will be created in tearing down the building, rather than turning it into powder.
Wind turbines have 80,000 parts. We could put Detroit back to work. Not making SUVs, rather making wind turbines.
We could put Chicago to work too, he added.
From the industries where the eighty-five million jobs were created, there was a nine hundred seventy billion in revenue. That resulted in one hundred billion in profits, cites the Green For All website.
Green For All is a nationwide organization whose mission is to create a green economy.
Currently Chicago is leading the nation in the effort to create green jobs for every socioeconomic level, according to Van Jones who is based out of California.
The fundamental idea is to not only make white-collar jobs dyed green with environmental best practices. The concept also includes making blue-collar jobs revitalized through education.
The framework is being thought out, and set in place, as training that will revitalize these positions and add new positions. Jobs that are designed to think about the environment as a central part of the day-to-day work process.
At this present time there is a window of opportunity to make the American economy stronger. This can be done through taking advantage of the necessity of making the human foot print greener.
The key part is to take Americans living below the poverty line, together – make that part of us, a part of the new green-collar middle class.
We can all work toward creating green-collar jobs. And we can gear our minds toward green-collar thinking in our jobs. We can look for new positions that are opening up in greener pastures.
These days everyone is pro-green. Pro-green messages are even pervasive in the most hardcore gangster rap music, an art form whose mind set is almost never liberal.
In this pro-green paradigm, turning your work position into a green-collar job is only limited by your imagination. If you’ve had green-collar dreams about how your job could be done better; it is time to bring that framework into reality.
The most practical invention for lighting dark unlit rooms comes from inventor mechanic Mr. Alfredo Moser with his water light bulbs.
He notices that two clear two-liter bottles refract the sun very brightly when the bottles are filled with water.
So he decided to save on his electric bill. Mr. Moser cut holes in the ceiling of his mechanic auto shop, and sealed in the two liter bottles of water.
The result is the sun greatly brightened his workspace through the refracting water and bottle plastic in rooms that have not windows.
Mr. Moser says that chloride (about two bottle caps worth) will keep bacteria from clouding up bottle.
Across the city where homes have bathrooms with no light, there is now luminescence.
The wattage put out by the water light bulb is the save as a sixty-watt electric soft white bulb.
The bulbs also refract solar energy into a room that can be verified on a light meter.
Some of these water lamps have been in place for over two years in many rooms. They have never needed to be replaced. They are maintenance free. The cement sealer holds them in place for a long time.
To turn them off on the day time, they can be covered by a solid bucket, or for complete shading out of the refracted light.
This simple invention is changing a lot of lives across Brazil. As the news of this affordable, well practically free creature comfort spreads around the world via the Internet, not and more poor and wealthy neighborhoods will install this simple energy saving sunlight refracting water light bulb.
Renewable Energy Options Systems are a part of Oregon’s push the become and energy independent state two community colleges are offering courses in to help empower the work force that will staff the new infra structure. This expansion of existing electronics degrees available to students is called Renewable Energy Options Systems.
This program focuses on teaching how to work with wind, solar, fuel cell, and other emerging renewable energy technology training.
The first electric car was in the running as a power source for cars very early in the history of the auto mobile.
The first car ever built ran on steam, credit for this is a toss up between Nicolas-Joseph Cugnot and Ferdinand Verbiest. These designs were put in play around 1765. Cugnots Design was made in France, and Verbiests was created in China.
Cugnots version was designed to carry cannons for the French Army.
Siegfried Macus was the first man to propel a car or cart with the use of gasoline. Some time around 1870.
But before this there were two others who created propelled vehicles.
One inventor created his electric engine at some point in between 1832 and 1839.
And in the same time span one invented is solidly recorded having made an electric car in 1835.
Stratingh used the hands of an artisan assistant named Christopher Becker to put together the this electric motor car in 1835 in the Netherlands.
Robert Andeson completed his machine in Scotland.
The next great step in the advancement also was a achieved by two people.
Gaston Plante and Camille Faure both made significant improvements to the storage capacity of the electric battery.
This made electric cars very appealing.
At this point the French and the English governments saw electric cars as a very beneficial thing, and promoted them separately though out their realms.
The Jamaise Contente invented and driven by Camille Janetsy in 1899; broke the one hundred kilometer per hour/ sixty mile per hour, land speed barrier.
The actual speed achieved by the car is a little over sixty-five miles per hour.
The down side to electric cars of the time is that they were difficult to start. Sometimes they were dangerous to start.
In the United States of America electric cars flourished prior to the invention of the electric starter by Cadillac.
These car were the Baker, Detroit, Edison, and the Studebaker. These models out sold gasoline models until the electric starter made the gasoline models much safer to start up.
These common sense vehicles lead the way to the safe selection of electric cars available today.
Now that knowing how to get free electricity from radio waves is common knowledge; electric cars are a viable no emission option that can be coal fee with a little elbow grease from the industry in the next few years to come.
Senators Baucus & Grassley asked for an offset in exchange for the energy tax extension to be written into the bill.
This call for a substitution was amended quickly by Senate Majority Leader Reid for the alternative minimum tax.
The vote was passed 93-2 in favor of the bill alternative minimum tax later yesterday afternoon.
The bill backed my Senator Cornyn passed the Senate vote despite the late morning deliberation over an offset amendment.
This bill not only provides billions of dollars in tax relief for Texans. It also allocated relief money for Texans hit hard by Hurricane Ike.
Insurance for treatment of mental illness is mandated to equal coverage previously allocated only for physical illness.
Twenty million people will benefit from not having to worry about the alternative minimum tax for this fiscal year.
The result of the bill is that tax breaks for wind development are extended until December 31st of 2009.
The next extension of wind power can be voted on in September of 2009, before that end of this next fiscal year that the nation is entering into.
Wave energy is extended for another two years. The financing of this topic will be revisited in at the end of the 2010 fiscal year.
The passing of this bill will push wind and wave energy infrastructure forward. This settles national fears that without this tax relief the industry would be in trouble. This victory on the Senate Floor keeps America in the game of winning back our own energy independence.
The Pickens Plan is a wind/solar power and LNG (liquid natural gas) based plan to reduce our dependence on foreign oil over the next ten to fifteen years by three hundred billion a year; building a bridge in search of national sustainability.
The goal of this plan is to be a transitional bridge, to an even better plan that Mr. Pickens feels can be drawn up by someone younger, long after he has retired in fifteen to twenty years.
The meat of the plan is designed to introduce the general American population to the facts of our current condition through awareness.
America needs to hear, see and feel the figures to be fully aware of why the plan calls for us all to move together toward the goal of returning to being an energy independent country.
Although the popular online media has called the Pickens Plan the 1 trillion dollar plan. That is the annual cost over ten years. The total infra structural cost would be ten trillion dollars and even though it sounds costly, Pickens believes that this will be the greatest transfer of energy wealth in the history of mankind, and that this will pave the way for those of us younger than him to design plans that will work sustainablyin the future, using even cheaper forms of energy that will rely even less on foreign production.
The plan starts out by saying that the United States makes up only four percent of the worlds population, yet we use up an embarrassing twenty-five percent of the world yearly oil supply, Mr. Pickens explains on his plan web page. In 1970 twenty-four percent of our oil was from outside the United States. In 1990 we (The United States) imported forty-two percent of our oil. By 2008 weare importing seventy percent of our oil.
The statistics in his plan are clear in stating that of the eighty-five million barrels of oil produced each year, twenty-one million barrels are used here in the United States (only 4% of the worlds population).
That cost, Pickens points out, is 700 billion dollars a year. He also points out that this figure alone in just one year is more than four times the cost of the Iraq wars yearly expense.
This plan calls for a yearly savings of 300 billion dollars of that 700 billion dollar price tag, annually.
As a side note: In just one year, that is enough money saved to cover sending a team of scientists to the nearest planet and back seven and a half times.
In the plan, Pickens goes into slight detail as to why the demand for oil will not be able to be met, and since 2005 has been getting harder and harder to meet. A trend that will continue until the resource is depleted. So, if someone asks the question; Cant we just produce more oil? The plan clearly answers reasonably why we cannot:
Simple and cheap oil is gone.
The United States is the Saudi Arabia of Wind Power. – the plan states.
As a subject heading for what can be done as the first phase of rescuing our country from this current situation that makes an impact.
Producing 22% Wind Power combined in ten years time, with the current 22% of LGN production for transportation instead of domestic energy production, should reduce in 38% our dependence on foreign oil and consequently, save 300 billion dollars a year.
Investing in the wind corridors of the great plains and the solar corridors of the southern states to offset energy production for the grid, will free up the liquid natural gas industry to instead supply a clean fuel for the countrys heavy duty transportation system, reducing our dependence on foreign oil quickly and most importantly, locally.
The Pickens Plan goes into detail as to how investing in wind power and LNG (liquid natural gas) will save us money and free us from using most of the worlds oil supply for only 4% of the worlds population.
Pickens Plan suggests that the 10 trillion dollar transition is not only a cheaper alternative to what we are doing currently but the best one we have right now that builds solid a bridge in search of national sustainability.
Bioplastics are plants as plastic; such as starch-based plants like potatoes into plastic in addition to casserole, or hashbrowns. That is the new world of bioplastics.
Bioplastics came about due to a need to find less pollutive ways to create plastics.
It is possible due to the strength of plant fibers at the microscopic level.
DuPont, Toyota Motor Corp, and Cereplast are pouring money into research and development. Bioplastics are currently made into anything one can turn polyurethane into. Styrofoam products, tupperware, among other products are being made to some degree with manioc, wheat, or potato based bioplastic.
There is research and success coming at this from two different vantage points. One method is trying to change the plants so that theyll mimic plastic. The other is following the nature of the plant to work with its most plastic like attributes.
The biggest producer of bioplastic is Innovia Films. They produce plastic packaging. They employ twelve hundred people around the globe. They produce one hundred twenty thousand tons of bioplastic food wrap a year.
One of the major areas of research is to find alternatives to phthalates that come from natural sources. Phthalates are what make PVC pipes flexible, but they are harmful to the human reproductive system. Phthalates imitate hormones.
Cellulose, starch, polylactic acid (PLA), poly-3-hydroxybutyrate (PHB), and polyamide 11 (PA11) are the most common types of bioplastics.
Thermoplastic starch that is derived from maize and potatoes is used in making capsules for medicines taken orally.
PLA is used in Foil, computer parts, and phone casings. The Freedonia Group predicts that this form of bioplastic will be in most demand by 2010.
PHB is used in ropes, bank notes, car parts, and packaging.
Vegetable oil is turned into PA 11. It is used in car fuel systems because it is resistant to heat. It is sold commercially as Rislan.
PHA is the neatest thing on the market. The stuff is created using natural sugars and oils that have been broken down by microbes.
Cellulose-based plastics come from wood pulp. They are used to make wrappers, plastic bags, things of that nature.
Some of these plastics are compostable. Others are bio-resins, which are combinations of bioplastics and traditional plastics.
Bill Collis, CEO of bioplastics startup Trellis Earth says that inorder to not put an added demand on food crops, bioplastics need to find other vegetable sources that dont come from food resources or the land they grow on.
As the change is talked about everywhere, manufacturers of both traditional film, and biofilm can see the shift from traditional plastics tocheaper, cleaner, neater bioplastics, according to Frank Ernst of Treofan; a company that produces both types of plastic.
Sainsburys from the United Kingdom converted five hundred of its product lines to be bioplastics based.
A company leading the way in bioplastic recycling is Interface Fabric (now known as “true textiles”). They have been able to recycle one hundred percent of its waste.
The neatest thing is that when bioplastics degrade in seawater, they become food for fish rather than poison.
With the demand for plastics in the subcontinent of India reaching eight million tones of plastics in the trade year of 2006-07; the demand worldwide for bioplastics is clean. Many countries have a greater demand than India. Its good to know that plants as plastics has become a reality through bioplastics.
Ecological and socially sustainable living is the main theme for living in an Ecovillage. The social component to Ecovillages is modern living.
Modern living with regard to life-style comfort. This comfort is centrally caused by the use of environmentally friendly technology.
A progressive advent of the tradition of communal living, the ecovillage focuses on a palatable, sustainable transition from modern life, needed by people who want to detach from an oil (addicted) based lifestyle without giving up the creature comforts.
The benefit of this slight shift in the support network, bases for a lifestyle beneficial to a bioregion, involving both the natural species and the humans who live there.
Ecovillages are linked via the Internet and form a new kind of international community.
This or these communities are communicating to establish safety and success for the people doing this ecological research in infra-structural environmental change. This interconnected dialog via the Internet is a force that keeps these communities from being labeled as one of those weird cult things.
Each participating group tests its process with the success of other peer villages who have similar social and ecological goals. This is done both with respect to and apart from possible ethnic, religious, or other differences.
The modern concept of the ecovillage stands out from both nuclear family household life style, and the of community, in that it focuses normalcy for both the participants and the environment.
The social component in the political thinking of the ecovillage is not a means to do away with what works in modern life, instead, it is a way of taking a look at what could serve a bioregions balance while living comfortably for all the people involved; in order to achieve the ecological goal as well as the social ones.
The ecovillage as a modern research movement has almost nothing to do with its spiritually based counter part: The stereotypical religious commune.
The ecovillage is centered rather, around ecological awareness. The people who live in these communities are just like people who live in regular neighborhoods. By that, it is meant, that these communities are not one of those weird cult things.
Rather, the focus is defined as a partial paradigm shift toward effective use of renewable energy sources. Sources such as communal gardening, bio-swells, shared transportation, solar, geothermal, hydropower, wet land management in the areas of construction, irrigation and other community support systems.
There is a focus on the consideration of social nature and diversity in spiritual well being of the participating individuals. An example of this is children having a safe place to play; men, women and children feeling safe in the community where people are or partially-interdependent than they would be outside the community in a traditional neighborhood sense.
This is, to support participants in continuing to want to be a part of the research that is being done and taught at colleges and universities so that the greater global community can improve general ecological formation or reformation (that is upgrading of) its most environmentally sound practices.
The type of individual that might consider renting an apartment or buying a home in an ecovillage is a person or group of people who want to work at living a modern life style, with the benefit of a village of people who know them; and are interconnected with their well being and with the common goal to create a micro community that is not dependent on oil addiction.
Generally speaking these communities range in size between 50-150 persons. This is considered the ideal size for a community to be able to have successful participants without regard to their personal, ethnic, religious background or lifestyle choice.
This way each community member feels comfortable with the other community members. If the individual is happy in the community and does not feel spiritually threatened by the other members, then socially, the community is cohesive.
This results in community members transition into the more ecologically sound infrastructure with ease and less unnecessary personal or social sacrifices- that usually cause a community to fail. This is based on the GEN research done in communities worldwide.
The GEN has a forty two-page questionnaire that each community member can fill out anonymously. The GEN both compiles the data and also reports back to the community how well they are doing at achieving their ecological goal, and social comfort-ability of the participants.
There is a model called an eco-municipality. An eco-municipality ensures that smaller communities have the trading power of the larger group without loosing smaller community goal effective accountability practices. The largest of which has two thousand participants.
So the transition from something as small as Try-On Farm in Portland, OR– to something as open as EcoVillage At Ithaca, NY–to something as practical as the rebuilding of Greensburg Kansas into an ecocity; is a natural process. It shows the global effectiveness of this kind of experimental global research.
Ecovillages as a minor lifestyle shift are a tool for ecological and socially sustainable research. It is a way to improve on the models we have; and do so with minimal impact on the environment, using renewable sources of energy.
Research with Ecovillages, is clearing a footpath of best practices for every community to live comfortably and in tune with the land around them, as well as with each other, in the decades to come.
3M door and window warmer kits are easy-to-install frame insulation kits, used to increase the thermal dynamics of the home by sealing the cracks between the frame and the edges of doors or windows around the house, keeping drafts and cold air from getting through.
As we move into an era of higher grades of sustainability, such as the concern for more thermodynamically fit homes, like Zero Energy Homes, we come prepared with an arsenal of consumer products that make all the difference.
As always, 3M comes with a creative solution to conserving how much energy we spend on winter heating, with an install-it-yourself door and window frame insulation that is not only simple to apply, but aesthetically pleasing to the human eye.
The series of 3M door and window warmer kits are so transparent that the insulation itself is almost invisible from two yards, and completely so at three yards away.
Sealing windows and doors with the 3M solution to this modern concern is unique, because it can easily be done by the homeowner; without removing the doors or windows themselves, and with nothing more than a tape measure, a hair dryer and a pair of scissors as tools.
3M makes two different kits, one for doors and one for window and generally speaking, each kit should have enough insulation to cover the average fixture of each given kind, only one fixture per kit.
On the average, these kits cost anywhere from 17-25U$ each depending where you buy and how many, consumers however usually want to try sealing their patio doors first before buying lots of kits since its usually at the focus of the common living area and only costs about 17U$ for a door kit of this size.
Each kit comes with a large sheet of plastic and two roles of double sided tape.
After measuring the plastic to fit each side of the frame with a tape measure and cutting it in pieces according to the length of each face, the double sided tape is then applied to the first face and the first length of proper fitting plastic applied over that, heated with the hair dryer.
As each piece of plastic is heated against the applied tape of its given face, it will shrink down to fit snuggly against the frame surface and thereby eliminating drafts, cold air, invading condensation, a major source of heat loss in the home and consequently, can up the R-value by 90% on that window or door.
3M door and window warmer kits are a way to save on the energy your home uses in heating, by insulating frames with easy to install-it-yourself kits that make it convenient and affordable to be a little more sustainable.
A clustered LED light bulb like the CC VIVID Plus LED is an energy efficient, long lasting multi-directional light bulb that actually costs less than CFLs in the long run, while providing healthier lighting right now.
The CC VIVID Plus LED light bulb has a standard cork screw socket, but with a ten year lifespan and like most clustered LED light bulbs of its category, is quickly becoming the trend in sustainable solutions to indoor/outdoor artificial lighting.
The LED is a directional light, that will last for a long time and works well with dimming mechanisms, but when clustered (such as this one with 36 LEDs), that directional lighting quantifies immensely.
CC VIVID Plus LED is made by C. Crane Company Inc., available in AC or DC, 120V AC (1.84 Watts) and 12V DC (2.5 Watts), 60 lumens, 36 LEDs, dispersed output, average bulb life of 60,000 hours (ten years), safe for outdoor/indoor/small space use, with a two year warranty, measures 3.25 x 2.25 and ships at one pound.
Energy efficient, dispersed higher light output, perfect for accent lighting, reading, porches, smaller rooms, hallways, cubbyholes, or wherever needed most around the home; clustered LED light bulbs such as the CC VIVID Plus LED light bulb are a great way to improve the environmental friendliness of your home for a more self-reliant way of life that starts with your pocket book.
Strategies for Sustainable Architecture shows how sustainability can be incorporated into practical designs that work, showing one hundred designs that are working, throughout Europe, North America and Australia.
When we look at the future that is coming tomorrow, and we realize that something must be done, when our hearts are screaming for change, we look to a strategy for that change that not only makes sense, but works, and has been working for a while.
Europe, North America and Australia are all on the band wagon now, and they werent teaching this stuff to architects twenty years ago; but now, everybody wants it, and sustainability is in demand.
But for an area that has a plethora of possibilities, the professional, or even the average home owner, can become baffled from the information overload that comes from such a multidisciplinary area.
This book shows a deeper understanding of design issues that occur in this field, especially when we talk about actually delivering on a project.
Be they small dwellings or large commercial buildings; sustainable development, site, ecology, community, culture, health, materials, energy and water all need to be contemplated and the bigger picture needs to be understood as a whole and Strategies for Sustainable Architecture takes us through that understanding with precise examples of projects that have been there and done that.
This 306-page paperback, written by Paoloa Sassi, has over 400 illustrations, was first published by Taylor and Francis in July of 2006, measuring 10.8 x 8.6 x 0.8 and ships at 2.6 pounds.
If you want to make a change for the better, for a future that is coming sooner rather than later and you are looking for better strategies for sustainable architecture, this book was written just for you, with an eye on a better quality of life for everyone on Earth.
Home Power Magazine has been around since 1987, was developed by Richard and Karen Perez with the mission to change the way people generate and use energy in their homes.
Mini hydro-electric, wind, solar, rechargeable electric automotives, on-grid, off-grid, suburban or urban; Home Power Magazine is about reaching the maximum of renewable efficiency for each and every home owner.
This is done through time-tested technologies, while simultaneously linking business owners, homeowners and renewable energy professionals to exchange system performance, installations, design and equipment experience.
By promoting this exchange, cutting-edge technology and a renewable energy industry have evolved, replacing the polluting fossil fuels with infinite supplies of renewable energy.
Home Power Magazine is about helping the homeowner make fiscally sound and informed decisions concerning their energy use and generation, in order to be able to experience a wider range of benefits that only renewable energy can offer, both for the collective and the individual alike.
Green Builder Magazine is the main publication of Green Builder Media and is dedicated specifically to residential sustainable development.
For the residential sustainable developer, Green Builder Magazine is an authoritative voice with recommendations on design, products and practices, while complete with news, updates, legislative issues and legal issues.
Profiles of other green builders as well as reviews of classic and recent construction practices, business, books and simultaneously providing advice on how to sell ones self as a green builder; this is the leading magazine in residential green building.
This magazine keeps full tabs on the latest trends and technology in your field with a feature article for both those new in the field and those who have been sustainable for years as something new is always popping up and those things that have been forgotten by time are being quickly revived once again.
For those businesses or private contractors interested in residential sustainable development, Green Builder Magazine has the latest information, helping us all achieve self-reliance and energy efficiency in the home, for a more sustainable quality of life.
Acres U.S.A. Magazine is the best publication about sustainable farming available, with more than 35 years of continuous publication, filled with articles and information written by real people that make eco-agriculture part of their lives, while only advertising for the real farm suppliers.
There is a lot of theory out there, but for those who actually want to see exactly how it is done, not by a scholar, but by somebody who actually works with sustainable agriculture as their lifes blood; Acres USA Magazine was made for the real farmer, looking to do things in accordance to a more self-sufficient tomorrow that improves this nations quality of life.
Value-added processing, crop-specific advice, organic certification (and marketing), government regulations (that affect you), alternative crop marketing, insect control methods, composting, soil fertility management, rotational grazing, cover cropping and many other topics for the entrepreneur eco-agriculturist are always feature articles.
Acres USA Magazine comes as a tabloid format (newspaper) publication that is not only written by real farmers, but also sponsored by real farmers making itself a more ecologically friendly alternative to the slik wealthy magazines out there (plus its easily composted or used as mulch).
For the best publication in the states on eco-agriculture, Acres U.S.A. Magazine focuses on ecological and economically sustainable agriculture for a more self-reliant country that does not depend on foreign oil, but rather, teaches us how to do this stuff, with less theory and more action.
In todays world of sustainability, we need to watch every last use of our concrete; it is a limited resource, one that takes millions and millions of years to develop in nature.
Harvested with great cost, usually at the sacrifice of underground caves, some of natures most precious environments.
That gray powder that acts as the buildings most efficient glue may be older than the continent itself, so by reading books like this, and doing it ourselves, we can be certain to use it as wisely as possible, like a warrior society, that protects, both in war and peace.
The comparative price tag on concrete however is not like the price tag on oil, it doesnt effect our pockets directly, but the fact is, civilization needs to start recycling and making the best possible use of concrete, whenever and wherever possible.
Maybe the concrete industry will catch up sooner rather than later, but right now, you need all the information you can muster, to do the job that builds both muscle and a powerful form of pride that relies on doing it ourselves.
Working with Concrete is an excellent book for those looking to build a concrete foundation themselves, complete with illustrations, photos and detailed explanation on all the ins and outs of this heavy-duty side of DIY construction work.
Waterproofing, drainage, formwork, reinforcement, excavation issues and even design, this book takes you through all the most important issues dealt with in doing concrete work yourself and making sure that it lasts.
This is an excellent guide to help you make sure that your concrete foundations and structures are completely prepared to take on the next 1000 years or so, without ever having to deal with leaks or weaknesses that can be overlooked by even the most professional urban contractors interested in cutting corners.
If you are the kind of person that cares about your environment, and want to make sure that your concrete work is done properly and cheaply with wisdom, to really withstand millenniums; Working with Concrete will give you all the notions of what needs to be done to make sure that everything is done properly the first time, allowing your structure to really take on the future, efficiently.
This 192-page paperback, was written by Rick Arnold, published by Taunton in May of 2003, measuring 10.8 x 8.4 x 0.5 and ships at 1 lb.
Working with Concrete will help you take control of your concrete laying projects, helping you make a choice about how one of Mother Natures most precious resources is smartly used.
Sustainable Living is a book for home, neighborhood and community, showing the most essential information in this area, information that most people are looking for, but have a hard time finding; here is fifteen years of sustainable living knowledge, packed into one place.
Living sustainably is not just about being self-reliant, its about all the factors that go into becoming a good steward of Earth, and that includes not just ones home, but ones neighborhood and all of the community around that neighborhood.
People. It all boils down to people spending resources and energy, then, throwing the leftovers back into nature, without even dealing with them in such a way as to replenish properly.
We need to take care of this planet, and we need to make sure that we take care of the people around us, because we can only make a change, if we all work together on this, and that means investing not only in our own homes, but in those around us.
One home, a neighborhood of homes, a whole community of homes; how can we give back in a beneficial way, to offset ecological footprints, or how can we make people aware of the dangers pollution brings?
Mick Winter gives pointers on how to get everyone involved, how to get everyone to share, together, as a whole, for a more sustainable way of life that starts now.
This 163-page paperback, written by Mick Winter, first published by Wetsong in March of 2007, measures 8.8 x 6 x 0.5 and ships at 7.2 ounces.
Short, clear-cut and concise information about sustainable living, for home, neighborhood and community, this book has low-cost ideas to help the reader save energy, money and the planet, all in one.
Green Building Products is a greenspec guide to residential building materials, both for those who actually build homes as well as the conscious homeowner looking to remodel their home with a little consideration for the environmental impacts that traditional materials can have.
Long-term value, health, safety, efficiency, beauty, durability, energy costs, allergies or even concern for the old growth forests; whatever your worry with traditional building materials and manufacturer specifications, this fully indexed and easily navigated tome for those looking to build or remodel a residential home will find everything in one place.
Each chapter comes with tips and suggestions on what to look for in a green product and help you make your own choices when actually in the store and evaluating the potentials a product may or may not have, yourself.
Design, build or remodel with: eco-friendly distributors and retailers, renewable energy, furniture and furnishings, appliances, plumbing, electrical and lighting, mechanical systems, HVAC, painting and coatings, caulks and adhesives, interior finish and trim, flooring and floor coverings, insulation, doors and windows, roofing, exterior finish and trim, sheathing, structural systems and components, foundations, footers and slabs, decking, outdoor structures, sitework and landscaping, its all here and up-to-date with over 1,400 environmentally friendly products and materials.
This 338-page paperback, edited by Alex Wilson and Mark Piepkorn, published by New Society in its second edition as of July 2006 and mearsures 10.8 x 8.3 x 0.9.
Green Building Products is the perfect tool for those interested in building with offsetting materials, where you can find them, contact information and all phases of the residential construction for a more environmentally friendly approach.
As the area of sustainability grows, so does the range of books for growing professionals in this diverse area; Heating, Cooling, Lighting is a book of design methods for architects that breaks the possibilities down into an organized array of concepts.
The energy flow of a building can be cut down to three important factors, heating, cooling and lighting, but what are the most sustainable designs for the building or structure you find yourself creating at any given moment?
Taking a look at sustainability from a practical viewpoint and taking into account the vernacular world of low tech as well as the modern world of synthetic materials, we can get the best of both worlds, creating beauty that is self-reliant, cheaper and in the long run, will do a better job than the conventional architecture we have inherited from the 20th century alone.
Knowing exactly what decision to make, and knowing exactly where to make that decision is an important element in being an efficient architect, and one of the most important tools for decision making that we have as designers are our books.
In the realm of sustainability, those books with good bibliographies, indexes, annotated appendices and all those valuable formulas that make architecture the exact science that it is, will stay in our work libraries while, others, will get passed onto friends and colleges as presents.
Heating, Cooling, Lighting: Design Methods for Architects is one of those books that is going to stay in the work library of most professionals in this ever-expanding area that brings promises of a healthier society for the future.
This 640-page hardcover, written by Norbert Lechner, was published by Wiley in its second edition in December of 2000, measuring 11 x 8.5 x 1.5 and shipping at 3.6 pounds.
Techniques, building with greendesign, diagrams, decision making, conservation, mathematical formulas and understanding heating, cooling, lighting from a more stustainable point of view with design methods for architects, this isbasic reading for the undergraduate of today, looking to make a difference in the future.
Living the Good Life, and Continuing the Good Life by Scott and Helen Nearing is the original book on the 60s homesteading movement, and shows us what it takes to get out of the city and back to the land, with little money or knowledge.
All of us know what it would mean to get away from the troubles of city life, away from the constant onslaught of a consumer-society, but few of us are willing to take that courageous leap into the realm of rural living with simple back-to-our-roots homesteading.
It doesnt have to cost a lot nor does it demand a lot of experience or knowledge, to get back to our grass-roots, and the Nearings proved that back in 1932, when 28 year old Helen and 45 year old (married) Scott Nearing, a radical economics teacher, left the city for a more socialist way of life.
Perhaps every era has its enemies, its scapegoats, and for the 30s, it began with the commies and anyone labeled as a radical thinker could be blacklisted and banned from university campuses, which is what happened to Scott Hearing, whos adventure into the unknown world of homesteading began with a simple need, and flourished into a movement that has inspired so many of us into actually taking action.
Anyone interested in Living the Good Life, and making sure that it continues on into old peacefully and naturally, will find the Nearings journey noteworthy, beginning with this book and closing it with Scotts death in Loving and Leaving the Good Life by his wife Helen.
This 432-page paperback, written by Helen and Scott Nearing, published by Schocken in January of 1990, measures 9.6 x 5.2 x 1 and ships at 10.4 ounces.
If you are looking for a book that shows what happens when we choose to abandon the city for rural life on little experience, little money and little knowledge, these pioneers of the 60s and 70s homesteading movement, the Nearings, put everything they learned into one single classic volume; Living the Good Life, and Continuing the Good Life for future generations of self-reliance.
Websites: The Good Life Center – Their mission is to “perpetuate the philosophies and lifeways promoted and exemplified by Helen and Scott Nearing”.
Micro Eco-Farming is a book about how to prosper with an organic mini-farm the size of the backyard to the size of a small acreage, for living a more sustainable way of life, today.
Life is an enigmatic question, but everyone agrees that it should be lived to its fullest, but not at the expense of future generations, so then, can we learn to be fulfilled by giving back to nature? Are we so infantile that we would willingly exploit the world until it is gone? No!
We will grow, and we will learn of new ways to live life to the fullest, helping Mother Nature take care of all forms of life, in partnership with the Earth.
Barbara Berst Adams gives a small to large-scale rundown on what makes for a more organic mini-farm with sustainable concepts at the core, building local solutions for a global problem.
What can be grown? How do farmers get their crops to market? What sustainable methods are best for you? The author knows lives what she writes, taking care of own homestead, in harmony with the earth, giving back.
For tasty produce, incredible yields, flowers or orchards; whatever type of sustainable production you are looking for, with small acreage or even just the backyard, this book contains hundreds of real-life examples.
This 176-page paperback, written by Barbara Berst Adams, published by New World in May of 2005, measuring 8.8 x 6 x 0.5 and ships at 9.9 ounces.
Micro Eco-Farming: Prospering from Backyard to Small Acreage in Partnership with the Earth is an ecologically correct manual for those with a small plot of land, looking for sustainable solutions that make sense.
The Straw Bale House is a guide to inexpensive home building with this unique and eloquent technique that is clean, lightweight, energy efficient, cheap and even earth-quake resistant.
While many sustainable books just mention straw bale, it is sometimes enough to spark the human imagination into the far more elaborate, artistic opportunities that this distinct building form has to offer.
Children playing in the barn always get the idea of building forts, staircases and so on, but people like the authors, have taken this one step beyond childhood and into the realm of earth-friendly construction, with not only the knowledge, but also the experience from actually going out there and doing-it-themselves.
From thermodynamic efficiency, low labor costs, low material costs, to being environmentally friendly with highly renewable building materials, straw bale is making a comeback in todays world of self-reliance.
Dealing with insurers, building codes, diagrams and simple instructions for both the experienced and novice builders alike, with insightful knowledge into this comprehensive and intellectually delightful art.
This 336-page paperback, was written by Athena Swentzell Steen, Bill Steen and David Bainbridge, first published by Chelsea Green in Dec. of 94 and measuring 9.8 x 8 x 0.9, ships at 1.8 pounds.
For a relaxing and more comfortable home that is also pleasing to the eye, cheap, made from renewable materials, for a more self-reliant and sustainable world, The Straw Bale House written by the founders of the Canelo Project, is a book that makes sense for those looking to build a better tomorrow.
RechargeIT is a Google.Org initiative with plug-in hybrid electric cars or V2G vehicle to grid cars, with the objective of showing how much cheaper and efficient electricity can be as an alternative domestic fuel source when compared to gasoline.
V2G, also known as plug-in hybrids really are an ideal option for commuter cars, due to recent improvements with rechargeable batteries, helping to actually stabilize the grid with home recharging during non-peak hours and solar panel recharging during peak hours with its excess energy supply being sent back to the grid when it most needs it.
Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle Video
Equipping the first Google fleet of gas/electric cars with data recording devices that come with technical read outs, charge history, environmental performance and patterns will make it possible to scientifically show the kind of results big car dealerships, not to mention consumers are lookingfor before actually investing.
A lot of people fear the use of electric vehicles because they think they will make our current situation even worse, but when businesses put up solar panels for recharging their fleet at work instead of fueling stations, the end result is actually extra energy keeping the grid stable as well as virtually eliminating CO2 emissions during the commuter week.
If every car in the US was currently a plug-in hybrid, charging in the garage at night, the usage would not endanger the grid at all, since those are sleeping hours.
But what about the hours while at work, during the day, you say? Solar panels located on the roof of an office building or parking lot roof can recharge the cars and fuel the grid simultaneously during even the highest peak hours; that is a sustainable solution that seriously offsets CO2.
The biggest reason for this offsetting is due to the fact that plug-in electric hybrids were developed to take on the commute to and from work, but for those long road trips, gasoline can still be used, while running the gasoline motor and braking, both regenerate the batteries as well.
If it takes only 2U$ to fill a battery for the commute to work, then at work, the battery is charged for free, while the buildings solar panels give-back to the grid, who will turn back to regular gasoline-only cars?
RechargeIT is a philanthropical initiative from Google.Org, to show the world what is possible with plug-in hybrid electric cars and vehicle to grid V2G solutions for commuting business people with one eye set on a more sustainable future, starting with what is possible today.
Brad Pitt is using his celebrity status together with Global Green USA to help promote a green tendency in reconstruction through the wake of hurricane Katrina.
Already, they have chosen six finalists, for their project, and each project shows something special in the area of sustainability that makes them unique, while complying to their goals of 90% net zero energy use and maximizing the livability and health of residents.
WDSU – Global Green – Brad Pitt in New Orleans
From modular construction, cross ventilation, solar convection, natural overhangs, traditional local architectural designs, solar panels, resident gardens, green roof design, wetland and watershed management of waste water, community gardens, and even passive solar water heating, the collection of six finalists bring together their ideas into a union of knowledge in sustainability that on the average is FAR superior to any single project.
Brad Pitt notices one of the problems with skeptics who say that using green building techniques is too costly or that what these people need is housing now; Brad insists that sustainable designs are the way of the future, and our industry needs to learn to go Green now rather than later.
By using competition, Brad Pitt and Global Green USA have brought together some of the most wonderful sustainable ideas in the world, in an area that really does need to be constructed to last another century, but if they choose their designs well enough, these buildings could stand from 500 to 1000 years, the knowledge is certainly there and the professional architects certainly know what New Orleans needs really are.
Probably the most fascinating part of this news is watching NBC interview Brad Pitt and recognize on camera how much he really knows about green building and sustainability, he’s not just showing his image off, he really speaks honestly about what people in the area have known for years.
Low income housing is what they are trying to build, thus the concerns are focused on the problems those people face most; mainly energy consumption and health, and those are the issues the six finalist projects have answered in this philanthropic endeavor.
With mainly Brad Pitt and Global Green USA funding so far, they hope to reach millions of dollars to build a model city of tomorrow, today, for a people in deep need of environmental, social and human attention.
The Renewable Energy Cheaper than Coal goal announced on November 27, 2007 abbreviated RE<C is Googles attempt at creating a new renewable energy revolution.
Initially, Google will need to hire experts that can help them produce one gigawatt of electrical power that is actually more cost-effective than the production of coal, then spend hundreds of millions of U$ in R&D and projects combined that in the end, make money.
Currently around 40% of the worlds energy is supplied through coal, creating a devastating and lasting effect on the planet; Googles hope, is that through their initiative RE<C more people will see that RE<C can be less expensive than coal is today.
Google will start their initiative by focusing on solar thermal power, wind power tech, enhanced geothermal systems and other possible breakthrough technologies, with cooperation from other organizations in the field, be they companies, labs or universities.
Makani Power Inc and eSolar are two companies Google already works with, while it maintains its ongoing commitments to a clean and green energy future through Google.org and the 2007 goal of carbon neutrality, which is on-track as of Nov. 27th.
For 2008, the RE<C goal intends to do something that has never been done before, on a scale that seems like something out of a sci-fi novel, moving our tech forward to show that it is possible, right now, to show the world that what is lacking, is just a little initiative.
Hopefully, the new R&D team of renewable energy professionals hired for the RE<C Renewable Energy Cheaper than Coal goal will succeed and thus enlightening other states, other nations and eventually, the world, to a cleaner and greener tomorrow, that starts right here, right now, with one companies courage, to adventure in the good of all our planet.
Sustainable Sites seeks to set standards for sustainable landscaping, through guidelines to site development that will greatly reduce the environmental impact of landscapes, much in the same way that standards already exist for sustainable green buildings.
Climate regulation, clean air, clean water and an improved quality of life; these qualities look to supplement already existing green building and landscaping guidelines, setting standards that even stand-alone landscaping projects can use.
This is the kind of initiative that helps consumers in the world of growing green trends make the decisions that will not only improve their own lifestyle, but imminently our entire planet.
Mostly, because, subjects such as Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Urban Climate, Biodiversity, Waste Water, Water Pollution, Yard Waste, Public Health and Energy Consumption, just usually are not contemplated when putting together a landscaping project.
The average homeowner, especially the average green consumer, just readily excepts that by doing some landscaping, they are already making the necessary impact on their CO2 emissions, but just a dab of awareness into the subject of sustainable landscaping, can go a long way to getting even MORE green than before.
The landscape is an extension of a green building, so we really do have to ask ourselves about the area around the building as well, because, it is what will make an even bigger impact on the well being of our building users than when restricted to the building structure itself.
How sustainable are those new green condo homes up on the hill? If the answer is VERY, then the next question must be, how sustainable are the public garden and recreation areas between them?
Sustainable Sites is a project that looks to address issues with standards and guidelines, a rating system, pilot projects and a reference guide, with the intention to improve quality of life over the long-term as well as health of communities and the environment.
Hydrology, Soils, Vegetation, Materials and Human Well-being are the key factors to determining how sustainable a given site is going to be.
Water, soil and vegetation are key elements in tracing down ecological footprints that lead to CO2 emission calculations and depending on the non-replenishable resources being addressed, materials are also factored in withone of the common standards, such as cubic meters of soil used to build a house, or cubic meters of timber reaped from so many acres, the fuel to transport it…etc.
The more sustainable human factors of well being however are not yet set in stone and are still far more varied, depending deeply on statistics that have shown an increase in human recovery from illness or disease.
Statistical factors of human well-being include; wide and open green areas, spaces for physical activities, on-site food production and areas for social interaction.
Culture and art, such as folklore, theater, music and dance, all seem to have historical equivalents to prove themselves as at the very least useful in the process of well being and the statistics of social interaction, but as of yet, this is an extremely new project that will promote more results as more research and more researchers contribute to it, each in their own specialty.
Research into statistics will allow Sustainable Sites to create standards like those already used in green buildings and, in the long run, will become more and more case specific, as more and more people adhere to the principles behind these standards and guidelines of green spaces until the green space becomes an extension of the green building; not merely a household word, but a household way of life.
Beyond Growth: The Economics of Sustainable Development by Herman E. Daly is a way of looking at growth and sustainability from different angles. This book accounts for new ways of thinking about economy through wealth of nature, the necessity of morality and value of community.
Challenging traditional thinking about what really is sustainable development and good economical growth, this book clashes with economic orthodoxy and new wave trends, focusing on how many people seem to get the wrong idea about catch phraseslike sustainable growth.
Author Herman E. Daly is a visionary professor at the University of Marylands School of Public Affairs and coauthor of For the Common Good, taking the subject of economics into focus as a way to better understand the planet we live on.
For people looking to delve into discussions about an ethical economy, sustainability, the environment and really in search of down to earth solutions, this book collects points of view that really work to make the future brighter.
This 264-page paperback by Beacon Press first released in august of 1997, measuring 9 x 6 x 0.7 and shipping at only 0.6 ounces.
International finance, environmentalism, catchwords that sell in unethical ways using trendysounds like sustainable, The Economics of Sustainable Development challenges orthodox thinking to provide necessary solutions through morals, community and a return to Mother Earth.
The Philosophy of Sustainable Design outlines the most important issues and ideas emerging in the movement toward sustainable architecture and design, over the last thirty years.
This is a starting point for those involved in the building industry and looking for a more responsible method of building. This is the practical how-to knowledge that makes sense to professionals.
Asking how you can affect your own work through understanding the philosophy of sustainable design is the key to what gives this book all its power, laying the ethical questions and groundwork for a more down to earth technical study later on.
Written by the President of Ecotone Publishing, author Jason F. McLennans 325-page hardcover was published in June of 2004, in both color and black and white photos, measuring 9.1 x 6.1 x 1.2 and shiping at a total of 1.4lbs.
As a founding member of Ecotone Publishing and CEO of Cascadia Green Building Council in Seattle, author Jason F. McLennan is a national leader in the movement for a greener architecture, a leading thinker of sustainability, providing information for the building industry and designing community in search of a path for a more sustainable future.
With abundant experience in the area of sustainable design, the author of The Philosophy of Sustainable Design Jason F. Mclennantaps into dozens of historical works by pioneers and green design philosophers to help you ultimately become the real future of architecture and design; beginning with a detailed code of what should and what should not be sustainable design.
When students start making their own models of advanced technologies like hydrogen cars that have only really been taken seriously for about a decade or so, it is obvious that our civilization is actually producing a scientific revolution to mark the field.
Scientific revolutions and shifting paradigms are some of the most fascinating moments for the philosophers of science, and Hydrogen is one of those areas that just sparks life into thinkers of that field on a regular basis.
This is true because generally speaking, neither common folk, scientists or even futurists in sustainability ever really thinkof hydrogen as an alternative fuel source for the long-term to be available within any reasonable amount of time.
Usually, hydrogen is considered one of those utopian ideas to save the world and change the face of the earth that have no place in the down-to-earthness we need right now.
Thus, it tends to fall to the back of our minds, but UWAFTs entrance with the Chevy Equinox (now with a completely remodeled drive-train) into the three-year Challenge X competition to ride across North America is defying the old paradigm in favor of a new one.
This new way of thinking, is a product of two important sponsors; The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and General Motors, two organizations that are fulfilling their promises to help save the earth and guarantee energy security at the same time.
While DOE is responsible for advancing the national, economic and energy security of the US, one of their strategic themes is Scientific Discovery and Innovation, or improving the quality of life through innovations in science and technology.
Each team has been on its own, none knowing anything of the others progress until the moments of revelation and choosing freely their objects of study, following those time proven industrial production models that our system uses everyday to make the best cars on the road.
The freedom to choose, the freedom to learn, independently, these schools have the best minds our nation can produce in the area; these are the conditions such great minds as Adam Smith and Descartes set down to council our Western world on how to truly manifest innovation! And it is in these childrens toys, that a revolution in how we see Hydrogen is coming about, faster than expected.
Innovations in science and technology are exactly what Challenge X is all about, promising to reveal some of the most elite technologies that could further the kingdom of automotive design, helping North America to Crossover to Sustainable Mobility by choosing 17 of the best engineering schools on the continent.
With the UWAFTs Chevy Equinox, Hydrogen Fuel Cells find their way ever closer to the top; opening minds and shattering materialistic paradigms of a no-nonsense past in automobile designs.
Taking on tomorrow with the best our nation has, for a more self-reliant and environmentally responsible future, starting today.
Sustainable Living has 25 international examples of both high and low-tech homes across five different continents, through lavish photographs both in color and black and white, showing historical neighborhoods to rustic settings, with some of the most surprising materials from straw bales to sandbags, inspiring green design in every little detail of all the major styles and trends.
Since 1992, living in a more comfortable way of life that is at ease with Nature and the environment, harvesting the best of civilization to promote both self-reliance and quality of life has become an incredibly fast-growing trend the world over; this book takes us through a detailed and colorful exploration of 25 of these pipe-dreams come true.
This isnt just a do-it-yourself hippie dream from the 70s anymore, this is quickly becoming the major world tendency in some of the most remote areas of the world, to some of the oldest, even the most common construction worker is able to carry on conversations about sustainable living, while more and more people are finally getting the idea!
The building industry is learning that this stuff can work and that this stuff has worked before, but it for the age of burning electrons, this requires intelligent technology, innovative construction, environmental approaches to energy supply, ecological building materials and a more sustainable architecture that adapts itself to individual taste in a more complete way.
With the development of a growing sensitivity to quality of life, the techniques and innovation become evermore diverse and exotic in all the green-living areas, but especially that of residential housing; the focus of this colorful book.
This 159-page hardcover was written by Dominique Gauzin-Müller, first published by BirkhTM user Basel in June of 2006, with 25 examples of sustainable homes, 352 illustrations (221 in color), measuring 11.2 x 9.6 x 0.6 and shipping at 2.2 lbs.
Sustainable Living shows rather than tells, and shows in details, part by part, all the major styles and techniques in use today by the trendy for a home that does good by Mother Earth, while maximizing all the creature comforts in a way that is specifically adapted to each owners personality with 25 international examples.
Sustainable Planet is a product of the Center for a New American Dream (CNAD), and shows how we, as American citizens, can improve our quality of life by changing the way we consume, promoting social justice and protecting the environment for a more self-reliant tomorrow, starting right now in our own lives.
Are Americans too fat? Do we work too hard? Are we too dependent on fashion and what the media decides should be an outfit for next summer? What about our cars? Our homes? Every single inch of our lifestyle is about consumption with repercussions on a global scale, and we consume more than any other civilization ever has on earth. Are we the Roman Empire, on the verge of collapse?
We take so much from the earth through our current practices, and have done so for almost five generations now, it is finally coming into the spotlight; our practices are unsustainable and in the long-run, will no longer be possible, the time to better ourselves has finally come America! The trend today, is Sustainability!
Juliet Schor and Besty Taylor show us sixteen different ways to make our lives better through more sustainable practices! Lower your carbon footprintslook like an athletic movie star, wear outfits that look like something from Brad Pitt in Fight Club or Julia Roberts in Oceans Eleven. We can do it, and we can do it from within our own nation; America!
This book can be summed up as a guide as: Words of wisdom that reflect quality of life, for the twenty-first century.
This is a road map for such things as the political willpower to change, how you can create a real sense of community where you live, five economic recommendations for a more sustainable economy, how to create a fashion industry that is socially just as well as aesthetically pleasing, how to rethink industrial design and engineering to be without waste, how to create local food systems that provide better tasting and fresher foods or protecting local family farms.
This 304-page paperback written by Juliet Schor and Besty Taylor of CNAD, published by Beacon Press in January of 2003, measuring 8.7 x 5.9 x 0.7and shipping at 13.6 ounces indicates what we need to be doing as a nation to lead the world into sustainability, each and every one of us, right at home and in our own lives.
SustainablePlanet: Solutions for the Twenty-First Century is about how we can better the quality of life for our America today; preparing for a more self-reliant and self-sufficient tomorrow.
Green Circles: A Sustainable Journey from the Cradle to the Grave by Chuck Hall is a way of observing every aspect and phase of the human lifecycle as an integral part of nature and the environment through a clear perspective of sustainable living.
Green Circles is a 176 page paperback first published by Booklocker.com in May of 2007, measures 21.6 x 14x 1 cm, only weighs 232 grams and is a sound beginners manual on the elements of real green living.
This book fulfills an empty slot on the market today, carefully examining every phase of human life from birth until death, even going so far as to include natural births, green burials and all the in-between.
What does it really take to be the green-generation of the future? The sustainable-generation? These are the cues that Chuck Hall gets the chance to reflect upon inside this book, the kind of thing, everyone interested in sustainable living needs to know for a more productive future.
Green Circles: A Sustainable Journey from the Cradle to the Grave, by Chuck Hall, metaphorically illustrates what it could mean to future generations if we begin to rely now on the children of today, through teaching and learning for a better, brighter, tomorrow
Could mushroom spores replace conventional foam insulations?
A renewable source of sustainable insulation from mushrooms that also acts as a firewall (and could even be grown into a whole house) was invented at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and is planned to be commercialized under the label Greensulate by Eben Bayer and Gavin McIntyre as soon as they are satisfied with their research and feel their technology is robust enough to meet demand.
The insulation is created by pouring a mixture of insulating particles, hydrogen peroxide, starch, and water into a panel mold, Bayer says. Mushroom cells are then injected into the mold, where they digest the starch producing a tightly meshed network of insulating particles and mycelium. The end result is an organic composite board that has a competitive R-Value a measurement of resistance to heat flow and can serve as a firewall.
While still young, Eben Bayers mushroom insulation invention shows promise as one fifth of the energy used in America today comes from poorly insulated homes and the conventional foam insulation we use are neither from a renewable source of energy, nor biodegradable.
For a country that is setting the tide for a worldwide green living revolution, Bayers invention is perfect timing.
Beyond insulation applications, the duo envision modifying the growing mixture slightly to include reinforcing materials that could be used to create strong, sustainable growable homes. Examples of this application include inexpensive structural panels that could be grown and assembled on-site in developing nations where usable housing is scarce and generally hard to obtain, or in disaster areas where temporary housing is essential.
Sustainable insulation from mushrooms, an environmentally clean firewall technology and perhaps even a more sustainable home that is thermodynamically more efficient than traditional non-biodegradable insulated ones have been; perhaps the time has come to think Greensulate?
The Climate Savers Computing Initiative was announced on the 12th of June, 2007 by more than thirty different high-tech companies such as Intel and Google in order to drive energy-efficient computing; saving 5.5 billion U$ in energy costs and reduce CO2 emissions by 54 million tons per year.
Everybody knows that since 1998, Google has come from a mere project at Standord to a world leader as a search engine software that has a commitment to knowledge distribution; Intel is a world leader in silicon innovation, developing new hardware that continually advances how people work and live.
An assortment of famous companies, have also given this same pledge; and reaching this goal by 2010 is most likely going to happen because the world is concerned with glaciers melting faster and faster and our computers are worsening the problem with inefficient energy consumption, even in down-time.
Climate Savers Computing Initiative is just one more way we can become focused about greenhouse gasses. Currently, we need to make better use of our computers, they need to use energy more efficiently, and we need to make sure that we are keeping them properly when not in use.
Learning to be one of the next climate savers through the computing initiative of tomorrow, is to work towards a clean and self-reliant utopia for the children of our children today.
The UK is ordering new sustainability standards on their modern built ZEH homes for the year 2016, and a showcase was released on the 13th of June, 2007, Kingspan OffSite, featuring six lighthouse-class homes that have no carbon footprint whatsoever.
Two bedrooms, sixty percent more insulation, southern facing windows, 93,3 square meters, two and half story with all building materials and components specified to meet gold standards of sustainability.
Rainwater efficiency, renewable energy sources, passive heating, cooling and ventilation and even a biodigester, this is as off-the-grid as building codes are going to get until 2016.
The time to go green has come for the UK, and in nine years, every contractor in the world will need to know how to make use of these technologies, vacuum tight insulation is from now a legal part of UK ZEH efficiency.
On the 5th of June, 2007 at the World Water Foundation (WWF) convention in Beijing, Coca-Cola officially pledges to replace the water it uses.
Three factors; REDUCE, RECYCLE and REPLENISH:
Reducing the water used to produce its beverages
Recycling water used for beverage manufacturing processes
Replenishing water in communities and nature.
Launching a multi-year partnership with the WWF to conserve and protect freshwater sources, including seven of the worlds most important river water basins.
“Our goal is to replace every drop of water we use in our beverages and their production. For us that means reducing the amount of water used to produce our beverages, recycling water used for manufacturing processes so it can be returned safely to the environment, and replenishing water in communities and nature through locally relevant projects.”
– E. Neville Isdell, Chairman and CEO of The Coca-Cola Company.
Acting locally and thinking globally, Coca-Cola is really leading the way for innovation in renewable and sustainable business strategies around the world.
Through water stewardship, Coca-Cola is looking to eventually eliminate every last ecological footprint they have ever cast in the world; either directly or indirectly, this is their pledge, and by 2008 they wish to have every single Coke affiliate in the world actively fighting the environmental battle on all fronts.
The Coca-Cola Company’s environmental protection efforts include:
Global water stewardship
Package design, recovery and reuse
Energy and climate protection – address the areas that are most important to its business and are where the Company can make the greatest impact.
By setting goals and targets to reach eventual global sustainability in water use by 2010, Coca-Cola is taking the slow and steady path to long-term success that will create a positive impact on every country they touch.
The Coca-Cola has already been leading the way with WWF for years, now, their influence is growing, such as with FEMSA and their partnership with SOS Mata Atlântica in Brazil to replenish three million hectares of Atlantic Rainforest.
The biggest breakthrough in this battle to zero their ecological footprints occurs in their giving back to the earth through programs that center around community awareness, productive water use, sanitation, hygiene, water supply and watershed management.
If their focus on the most important river water basins in the world, including:
The Yangtze (China)
Mekong (S.E. Asia)
Rio Grande/Rio Bravo (US and México)
Rivers and Basins of the US (Southeast)
The Mesoamerican Caribbean Reef
The East Africa basin of Lake Malawi
Europe’s Danube Rive.
Taking back these main rivers at their core, is the only the beginning, but it is a moment of truth for the world! The first moment of truth in 2,500 years when our civilization first learned to sacrifice rivers for Greek and Roman convenience!
From the looks of things, it would appear that Coca-Colas pledge to replace the water it uses and the ongoing commitment to the biosphere are genuine, and if achieved, will change the world we live in for the better, teaching us to correct our habits in accordance to the Earths already perfect water cycle.
Balance Point Homestead is a passive solar energy off grid home in the Mohawk Valley, upstate New York.
David and Sarah’s self sufficient passive solar home is totally off the grid, is not a part of the buy back program and was never intended to be.
It was always meant to be an example of how renewable energies are readily accessible to everyone, to even the most average people.
This passive-active solar home was built in 2002 to prove that passive works in the North East United States, where most people tend to think it is just far too cold and without enough sun.
The house uses eight photovoltaic solar panel arrays that together, generate almost 1 full kW of electricity, plus a single aeolic generator that also provides 1kW.
That is the electricity, but what really makes Balance Point Homestead a work of art, is the unique passive design that collects thermal solar energy and redistributes itself in a more sustainable way.
The first technique was the use of southern facing windows with heavy insulation that has been meticulously sealed to impede seeping heat; a big factor in passive homes.
Once again, this was done by the home owners themselves, inspecting the contractors work with detail at every stage of insulation, as they were average contractors and were not experts in the building of a solar passive home such as Balance Point Homestead.
Secondly, the solar hot water heating panels provide all the domestic hot water in the summer months and most of it during winter months.
Both the wood stove and hot water (gas) heater can use propane as an emergency heat source, but with additional renovation, the house will no longer need propane to heat the water in winter, as the dump load from the aeolic generator will be used to heat water electrically.
This is a creative use of the aeolic generators dump load (excess electrical energy), as most homes usually would use it to provide the grid with added electricity or simply would not have any use for it.
Balance Point Homestead is a fine example of how efficient and sustainable, passive solar homes can be in the North East United States, even completely off grid.
Balance Point Homestead is an example for everyone, that even youcan do this, no matter who you are; simply having the passion for a better, more sustainable tomorrow, and the willingness to go after your dreams are enough to create your own passive solar homestead off grid in New England
H2CAR or Hybrid Hydrogen-Carbonis a proposed process for a more sustainable biofuel that virtually eliminates CO2 emissions in biodiesel, multiplying biomass efficiency to a point where our nations current demand for oil would be completely met and eliminating the need to sequester the current overdose of CO2 in our atmosphere.
H2CAR is a new way to produce liquid biodiesel (fuel) from biomass with the addition of hydrogen; making that normal amount of biomass go three times farther than it normally would when chemically gasifying conventionally (without hydrogen).
Hybrid Hydrogen-Carbon Process basically blends two sustainable methods of fuel production for combustion (diesel) engines that free us from the uncontrolled and unregulated discharge of CO2 into the atmosphere, as has been the case with our planets overuse of fossil fuels for decades.
The logic behind this new sustainable biodiesel H2CAR relies on a more practical way of procuring and releasing the stored energy.
The solar-power electrolysis method for producing hydrogen uses 10 times less sunlight than biomass like soy or corn do; while at present the hydrogen in biomass is all that is being used in biofuel production.
Carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide and hydrogen are the three gases biodiesel contains; injecting hydrogen would maximize its potential as a sustainable resource.
Biomass is used as a carbon, while hydrogen is extracted through carbon-free methods (like solar-hydrogen-electrolysis).
They are chemically gasified, chemically liquefied and when burned in the combustion chamber of a train, plane or automobile, a far wider range of carbons are spent than is traditionally so with conventional biodiesel designs (which have a 60 70% carbon inefficiency rate).
H2CAR uses hydrogen to suppress the formation of CO2 in liquid hydrocarbon fuel; converting all the carbon atoms available into useable fuel.
Biodiesel comes from biomass that has captured CO2 through normal photosynthesis, which is then released back into the atmosphere when expended, thereby virtually closing the CO2 circuit and becoming in this way a cleansource of energy fuel that can be used to power our cars.
The traditional biodiesel cycle is labeled zero-emissions, even though biodiesel does emit CO2, as the whole process is self-containing.
Hydrogen can be extracted through electrolysis which uses an electrical current to divide the oxygen and hydrogen molecules in water; usually photovoltaics are used to create the electricity for this.
This is labeled as a carbon-free hydrogen extraction system.
The stored hydrogen is also used as an explosive gas for powering our car engines with hydrogen fuel cells, much like biofuel, but producing distilled H2O instead of CO2 and is also considered clean, as it neither consumes, nor produces CO2.
As the oxygen expended in electrolysis is recaptured during hydrogen expenditure, Hydrogen fuel cells do not contribute to the formation of O3 (the ozone layer). This cycle is therefore also labeled zero-emissions.
With all the biomass in production in the US today that is set aside specifically for biofuels (1.4 billion tons), only one third (30%) of our nations fuel consumption can be met at present, Purdue Universitys researchers (abstract) however feel their new liquid hydrocaron fuel design will triple that percentage (to 90%) leaving only a small margin of 10% that could be filled with waste biomass not yet extensively cultivated.
While biomass production would consume CO2 (releasing O2 into the atmosphere) and solar-power electrolysis would release oxygen, there would be enough oxygen in the atmosphere for the regeneration of the Ozone (O3).
H2CAR eradicates the ongoing threat our unnatural release of CO2 from fuel (especially fossil) currently poses, eliminating the need to control the overabundance of CO2 in our atmosphere through sequestration.
The sequestering of CO2 would not be sustainable by any means due to the energy spent over the long-term in maintaining the gas under-stopper and monitored, below ground.
H2CAR is definitely a noticeable alternative to either hydrogen or electric cars because of the energy savings in the long-term, potential repair of the Ozone and as a self-reliant biofuel for our nation, right now.
H2CAR simply means the hydrogen extracted through solar-power electrolysis is blended with biomass (carbon) also in a gaseous state, then liquefied, producing a liquid hydrocarbon fuel (a super-biofuel:-) otherwise known as the Hybrid Hydrogen-Carbon Process.
Orchard Supply Hardware based in San José California is supporting the efforts of Miller School in Santa Maria, with over 1,000 U$ in gardening supplies and cooperation to build a state-of-the-art school garden.
Volunteers, teachers andelementary students working together in the garden is traditionally what school gardens have always been about and Miller School is doing something that goes beyond just the community; this style of teaching is inevitably one of the surest ways to guarantee a more sustainable future for our nation.
School gardens help kids get close to nature in a very up close and personal way, and because gardens can be so metaphorical, teachers can get a lot more out of them than just how we are all interconnected through the web of life, however, that is the biggest point.
School gardens can teach our younglings to respect nature and enjoy it, can help second language children build associations with their surroundings, and even lead into artistic activities like a paintings by Van Gogh and mostly, sustainability is the future; that means teaching our children about what is going to happen in their adult lives.
Systems Theorists agree that this interconnectivity that we all share in this biosphere is at the very least a sensitive thing, and through our actions, we determine outcomes that effect all life on earth.
Politically, socially and economically; our world will be controlled by children, and the earlier we instruct them in solutions to the future problems that will effect our existence, the better chances we will have of preserving our way of life.
School gardens give so much to a child and this communion is symbolic to sustainability in that it can teach more about how we are a part of the planet than any global-studies eighth grader class can.
Thank you Miller School, OSH and other schools, businesses and governments that are taking eco-living into school gardens, thereby bringing connectivity to the next generation.
Excel-Aire makes Bio-Bubble; a 100% degradable bubble packaging that turns to water, CO2 and harmless biomass through the d2w (degrades to water) oxo-biodegradable additive process.
Bio-Bubble is oxo-biodegradable, has been comprehensively tested, is environmentally safe with no compromise to product features or performance and is completely recyclable either as a plastic or an organic.
Excel-Aire knows that 90% of all plastics ever made are still out there somewhere, be they in landfills, rivers, lakes, in use or not, they will take up to 200 years to return to the earth in landfills alone in some cases and we throw so much non-biodegradable plastic away by the hour!
Excel-Aire is dedicated to making a commitment for a brighter and more sustainable future, one that is worthy of our children’s children, without compromising the quality plastics we use from day to day.
Oxo-biodegradable plastics are the conventional polyethylene, polypropylene and polystyrene with an added proprietary mixture that accelerates the breakdown of chemical structures in the plastics themselves.
The remaining product is amenable to conversion by microorganisms, offering a source of food, in turn the microorganisms change these conventional plastics into carbon dioxide and water, both easily consumed by the ecosystem.
Oxygen in the air forms different molecules that are many times smaller than the original plastic and molecules (forming water beads around the original plastic).
This is a natural process for any plastic, but with the oxo-biodegradable additives (such as d2w), this process is many times accelerated, catalyzing this reaction in a fraction of the time it would take without the additives.
Bio-Bubbles are just as good as conventional bubble plastics in practice, but once thrown away have proven in field tests that the oxidative degradation caused by the additives make the molecular chains shorter and wettable, allowing the ecosystem to clean up within weeks instead of aeons.
Bio-Bubbles have been engineered to begin their breakdown after one year, giving any products at least that, in shelf life.
Contact with sun or water is a sure way to begin the process as d2w (the oxo-biodegradable additive used in Bio-Bubbles) is fully programmable.
Anti-oxidants are used to make sure that oxo-biodegradable plastics can withstand the processing conditions and are slowly consumed over time usually between one to two years depending on the product and its uses of course.
The oxo-biodegradable additive used in Bio-Bubbles is d2w, which can control the speed and onset of degeneration.
The more heat, water and stress on the product itself the more it will speed the breakdown process; less of these things will slow the process down.
The active ingredient in d2w is a transition metal salt (very low levels) and is not toxic to sensitive plants or animals; perfectly safe for food packaging.
Bio-Bubbles are recyclable, composted as organic material (NOT PLASTICS), but if allowed into a post consumer recycling stream for plastics, the degradation process is arrested and Bio-Bubbles immediately behave as non-degradable plastics do.
If for some reason the Bio-Bubbles are recycled with non-degradable plastics they are still just as recyclable as traditional plastics and can even be safely turned back into biodegradable plastics again with a fresh addition of d2w.
Excel-Aires Bio-Bubblesan oxo-biodegradable plastic packaging that does the same job their bubble packaging has always done in the past.
Bio-Bubbles can be returned to the earth in a clean and healthy manner than that used until now, showing that our countrys industries are searching more and more to be responsible stewards with less and less ecological footprints.
Chevrolet Volt by GM (General Motors) just may be the car that will revolutionize the way Americans commute, this hybrid sports car has a sleek and aggressive style that plays caddy to what todays working class needs, wants and most of all, what the near future is certain to demand, sustainability!
Chevrolet Volt is different from its ancestors, as it uses a lithium battery that is still as of yet not available for mass production, but very similar to those used in cell phones and laptopnotebook computers already; just a larger, heavier version. 400lbs!
Chevrolet Volt comes with one very interesting factor in the chasse that just blows previous electric cars out of the ocean.
It is versatile in such a way that different kinds of motors could more than easily be installed, not just one hybrid as usually made but as many as the consumer demands.
Chevrolet Volt goes out of the way to develop a more sustainable solution for our needs right now and yet still predict that not everyone is going to be looking for the same solution from state to state.
And yet most consumers are sure to be obsessed with the sports style and a price of Chevrolet Volt that even competes domestically against other commuter automotives, but with sustainable solutions not as of yet even fathomed till now.
The current electric/gasoline hybrid that is in the works and already under tests, is not yet available to the public, merely because of the lithium batteries, which need an industry for such sizes, but it is an industry that GM has taken the risk to launch, even before foreign competitors.
Quote: GM hasn’t given a date when consumers can buy the Volt because the advanced lithium-ion batteries needed to power the vehicle — similar to technology used in cell phones– are still years from widespread use in automobiles… “In the end, this is all going to be about delivering on these products,” Wagoner said.
This specific hybrid motor by GM, designed exclusively for the average American patriot, will get 150 miles to the gallon, of which, 40 of those 150 miles can be spent without consuming a single drop of the black blood of the earth.
After intense research, GM discovered, that most Americans only need a mere 40 miles to drive all day long on weekdays during working hours and with a mere six hour charge over night, that means that it is possible to cut down on our nations transportation CO2 emissions to the point of a possible Ozone recovery within just a few years of widespread purchase!
Of course, not everyone commutes less than 40 miles a day, lots of people like to travel across this great beautiful nation of ours from time to time, yet most do not want to use machines that destroy the sensitive ecology we so proudly boast, which is the main reason why GM has done something extraordinary.
Quote: One particularly clever feature about the Volt is its E-Flex System, which is an architecture that’s designed to accommodate different types of engines. The three-cylinder installed in this show car can run on gasoline or E85, which is a mixture of 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline. But instead, a diesel could be fitted. Even one that runs on bio-diesel. Or a hydrogen-powered fuel cell.
Reaching speeds of up to 100 miles an hour guarantee more safety on the road, but still allow for that super racecar style that Americans prefer, Chevrolet Volt by GM is an elite gamble, one that could change the face of our nation, starting from within our own economy
Chevrolet Volt is a resolution for a new year of automotive excellence and overall, an audacious response to the cry for a more sustainable patriotic brand name; GM our nations elite.
As a for-profit organization, Google Philanthropy will spend three million in Google stocks on sustainability projects for developing nations such as Ghana in Africa.
Offering possibilities for venture capitalists and start up companies in the area of sustainability is only the tip of the iceberg, Google Philanthropy intends to reach out into the areas of disease and poverty as well, through organizations related to their own business, such as technology and information as long as the focus is on those really in need.
Non-for-profit organizations cant do that kind of thing, as they usually have their hands tied with the kinds of charity they can and cannot spend money on.
With a for-profit status on the other hand, Google Philanthropy is willing to pay taxes and give up the packaged advantages with non-for-profit outfits for a little freedom as to where the money goes and into what they are investing.
The first sustainable startup according to Katie Hafner of the New York Times: (quote:)
The philanthropy is consulting with hybrid-engine scientists and automakers, and has arranged for the purchase of a small fleet of cars with plans to convert the engines so that their gas mileage exceeds 100 miles per gallon. The goal of the project is to reduce dependence on oil while alleviating the effects of global warming.
While an ambitious ideal, the concept behind Google Philanthropy is beautiful and ethical with a supply of practicality; that is 100%, all Google.
Posted in Electric by admin on September 16, 2006.
The Tesla Electric Roadster of Tesla Motors gets its name from the famous Nicola Tesla; a man who knew electricity should belong to the world, a man who knew its potential. Are you thinking of using a car that is completely self-sufficient and sustainable for the modern age? How about going 100% electric?
Tesla Motors has invented a sports car that is not merely a high performance automotive on the track, but also out on the road, reaching 0 to 6 in under 4 seconds, better than even a Porsche 911.
For urban use, the Tesla Roadster is perfect, especially for fast transportation. The Roadster will last all day on a single charge and can be recharged nightly, while you sleep.
On a single charge, Tesla Roadster, the first car produced by Tesla Motors will endure 250 miles wide. This high-performance electric vehicle gets around 1 cent to the mile after doing the books and has one ofthe largest lithium battery designs in the world for the job it does.
Reaching double the speed limit allowed by the United States, Tesla Motors premier design for 2006 is in high demand among the social elite of our country for being both emissions free as well as beautiful and fast.
As a mission, Tesla Motors has lived up to their goal as a company that sells high-performance and super-efficient electric sports cars with not a single compromise.
Style, handling, advanced technology, acceleration, and the latest in high-performance, Tesla Roadster is the elite in todays electric vehicles, your passion is now sustainable and environmentally ethical
Remote military bases in Western Iraq migrate to renewable energy sources as cheaper in the short term.
As of August 11th 2006, the US Military in charge of western Iraq has made the firm decision to migrate to renewable sources of energy such as wind and solar.
The decision was made due to the ongoing threat of rebel forces in the area, that frequently attack with random precision; armed convoys of refined fossil fuels, used to generate power in remote areas.
The use of renewable resources should drastically reduce the current costs, as these transports are far too expensive in terms of the highly armed and trained security forces that would be of more use elsewhere.
By using renewable resources in remote areas of Iraq, soldiers need not disappear protecting military power generation based on fossil fuels.
InsideDefense.com NewsStands Rati Bishnoi comments on this issue in detail.
Renewable resources such as wind and solar energy in Iraq are profitable for life and less expensive for military spending.
Governor George Pataki (New York) calls for fuel efficient cars, tax credits and development of alternative fuels as an energy plan. He offered this 10 year plan on the same day an Alaskan pipeline was shut down for repairs which could enhance his possible presidential run.
Patakis Remarks @ a National Press Club Luncheon, Washington DC Monday, August 07, 2006
“It is time for a real commitment to diversify our energy supply, to achieve greater energy efficiency across the board, and to build our national strength and our global competitiveness through greater energy self-reliance.”
“Let’s replace the equivalent of every drop of OPEC oil – 25% of our current consumption — with greater efficiency, greater domestic production, and greater use of petroleum alternatives, and let’s commit to doing it within the next ten years.”
Established in 2005, the Thailand Institute of PackagingManagement for Sustainable Environment (TIPMSE), is a non-for-profit organization sponsored by Coca-Cola, that fights for a more sustainable future in Thailand.
TIPSMEs most recent conquest has been a MoU or Memorandum of Understanding for the development of waste segregation, collection and recycling models at two well-known Thailand Universities in June; Thammasart University and King Mongkut University of Technology.
According to Coca-Cola:
The institute promotes post-consumer selective waste collection and recycling and integrated waste management — targeting a 10% reduction of post-consumer packaging waste over the next 5 years.
The institute is funded solely by contributions from five core packaging supply industries (glass, paper, metal, plastic, aluminum) and relevant businesses, such as the Coca-Cola System in Thailand.
The Coca-Cola system in Thailand, with other large multinational companies, played a major role in establishing TIPMSE. The institute works closely with Brazils CEMPRE (Business Commitment for Recycling) to promote integrated waste management systems for developing countries.
Coca-Cola is taking measures to promote a more sustainable future that go beyond the United States. Coca-Cola is a global company that thinks globally and is doing something for the future that goes beyond targeting their own pockets.
Coca-Cola systems in Thailand is just one more example of thinking globally while acting locally.
Hurricane Katrina gives birth to Sustainability Projects in New Orleans
With a 3 Million US dollars investment from Ameriquest Mortgage Company and associates and the genius of young university architecture students from Tulane, the rebirth of a sustainable New Orleans will receive its first example.
With the reconstruction of the historical New Orleans Rescue Mission into a sustainable Family Center for those in temporary displacement and transition, the city begins its first sustainable project for a greener future.
When Katrina hit, Tulane students thought the project was over for sure, but instead, they will lead the way to what is according to Stephan Verderber, professor of architecture at Tulane University, said to be an “opportunity” for sustainability.
“In a historic city like New Orleans, where the majority of construction is decades or even centuries old, there is an opportunity to rebuild many of the city’s structures in a sustainable, efficient and environmentally friendly way that is unprecedented in this country,”
“The Family Center Project brings together the expertise of the City’s architectural, building, education and nonprofit communities to set a standard for re-building in New Orleans. This immense opportunity is truly the silver lining in an otherwise devastating situation.” – Stephan Verderber
The company responsible for the construction will be HomeAid, a non-for-profit builder of temporary housing for the homeless founded in 1989.
HomeAid has done more than 115 houses nationwide and includes 17 chapters in 11 states. HomeAid is perfect for the job, with experience and know-how that will make a difference combined with Tulane designs and Ameriquest private investments.
Knowledge, together with Perseverance and Charity are sure to embrace the cause of sustainability in the new, New Orleans of the future, where history and future are turning the flame further towards Hope.
It has been some 50 years since Germany began to pioneer a trend in urban development known as the green roof. MSNBC posted on the April 27, 2006:
The planted rooftop of the American Society of Landscape Architects building in downtown Washington is a model of the techniques used increasingly to cool temperatures, filter air, and lessen the burden on sewers by absorbing rainwater.
Some have seen them with their own eyes and others have seen pictures, but everyone knows that a garden on the roof is a splendid thing as long as everyone can enjoy it, not just the birds.
To add to that thought, most people seem to think that a green roof is expensive and high maintenance, the ASLA building roof project in D.C. cost some 1,000,000 US$. But that might just be a paradigm worth double-checking
Experts say green roof installation can be as cheap as $9 per square foot, and increased property value, energy cost savings and longer life for the roof can offset the investment.
Which is to say simply that the new tendency for architecture in urban spaces is the green roof. Not just because architects want them, but because homeowners and business people want them too. More and more government officials are getting interested in putting people back in contact with nature, and for good reason.
Green roofs cut down on air-pollution; they are visually enchanting and from a medical point of view, would unofficially help immensely in the fight against civilizations new diseases; unofficially aggravated by bad urban planning.
Health is the number one reason for lobbying in the direction of green roofs, but it isnt an isolated issue that only concerns the urban landscape. Everything humans do to mother nature comes back to haunt us, time and time again.
The conservation of rainwater through non-polluting methods that are ecologically sound is just one of the most important advantages to green roofs. Ecological landscape architect projects such as the column sky gardens from GreenRoofs.com are a perfect example of how this fever is catching on.
While the USA has but a fraction of the green roof space that Germany has over the last 50 years of development, the Green Roofs for Healthy Cities organization did a study with their members and discovered that from 2004 to 2005, the green roof space grew 80 percent. Definitely a trend that seems to be rising in our culture.
Every month, more and more solutions to green roofs become available to the average homeowner with little money to spend on repairs. The GreenGridR DIY Kit, to be released in May, a business of Weston Solutions Inc. is just one example of how things are generally going in that direction.
The Skyland and Garick partnership with their roofliteTM is the first American name brand to hit the market – PR News:
As the green roof industry matures in North America, rooflite(TM) certified growing media products will meet the needs of our customer base that require the availability of roof top growing media when and where they need it,” said Rick Mahoney, managing partner forThe Garick Company.
Green roofs in urban landscapes are taking back the forest little by little. And the growing trend is a good sign that new breakthroughs in research and development will show how important this concept really is for our future way of life.
Gardening and rainwater catchment systems together dont need to be heavy things that threaten to cave in. Nor do they need to be systems apart. A garden on the roof is a way to store and filter water that is very safe and economical as well as aesthetically appealing and very low maintenance.
Gardening on the roof can be cost effective, low maintenance and a great party attraction that boosts the value of the building.
Sustainable Forestry – Strategies for replenishment
Sustainable forestry is about protecting the future of our biosphere, making sure we have air to breath, and clean water to drink. But it is also about making a global economy sustain its needs for wood in the present as well as the future by adopting strategies that promote replenishment, jobs and a healthier greener environment, offering more forest space for biodiversity. At the current rate of consumption, for paper and wood, forests are being cut faster than they are being planted, making forests into a decadent resource that should be replenished. Forests are an ecosystem, and as such they play an essential role in how the world we live in, the wildlife habitat that occupies any given forest must also be given incentive for that delicate balance to succeed. Water is another crucial element that helps a forest thrive and gives life to all the living things on earth. Sustainable forestry is about ensuring the future of our forests, enhancing our wildlife habitat, and protecting water.
Short term orientated goals that revolve around limited resources are something that in the electronic fiber optic internet world, we tend to live with… At least until something critical and disastrous happens and there is nothing else we can do but acknowledge the problem. Sustainable forestry concerns itself with the way we manage our forests in the here and now, so that 60 years from now, there will be more trees to cut than there are now. That is a difficult task, especially because it deals with long term goals. Old growth trees for example take anywhere from 700 to 2000 years to grow and if we plant only after they have been cut down, we will still have to wait far too long to see any kind of return on our investment economically. However, the situation is more than just economical. Old growth forests are a part of our ecodiversity and help keep the balance between forces in mother nature. Sustainable forestry keeps the balance between those forces.
Animals like the Pacific North West spotted owl (late 1980’s) that seem to be going into extinction eventually either adapt (as did the spotted owl), or they die. In the case of death, the biodiversity becomes a tragic loss. Tragic because without sustainable forestry, we cannot continue our way of life on this planet, nor can the creatures who live in the forest. Wildlife is a part of the sensitive structure that envelops our planet, and the more consumers become aware of this dilemma, the more consumption will be regulated by the consumers themselves as we move into a new era, where it is considered fashionable to be ecologically correct when buying.
Sustainable forestry also develops strategies to help plant forests that can grow naturally and healthy with the proper balance of wildlife by using insecticides that are ecologically correct and keep the water clean. One of the hazardous things an individual can do to a forest is poison the waterways with insecticides that are not made up of the ecosystem itself. Sustainable forestry practices a biologically sound method to achieve the same goals as forest owners who use unsafe methods, but sustainable forestry in doing so is protecting the environment from water pollution that kills wildlife, and creates imbalances in the forest.
To keep the future of our forests secure and enhance the wildlife habitat through increasing biodiversity and protecting life giving natural sources of water, sustainable forestry helps create strategies that protect both the economical needs of the global market now as well as the needs of our future generations on this planet.
Sustainable fisheries look to secure protection, enhancement and wise use of fisheries resources for our current needs globally and the needs of our future generations to come. Sustainable fisheries are those that look to develop a more sustainable natural use of our ocean’s fish, thereby securing food, economy and health in a cleaner, friendlier present and future. Small Community-Based Fisheries are most endangered by the current methods of using this natural resource and sustainable fisheries look to prevent the extinction of species and securing their proliferation as well as simultaneously managing our global consumption, development and strategies. Sustainable fisheries also protect the interests of the fish market by using selective consumers who are aware, demand for sustainable fishing habits and certified fish for consumption with special attention to brand names.
Fish are more than food they are an integral part of our ecosystem. Diversity is one of the main factors that sustainable fisheries search to enhance, as the biggest problems in the 19th century with whaling was the rate at which whales could be hunted with modern technology until they were almost on the verge of extinction. Sustainable fisheries search for strategies that will prevent ecological disasters like extinction and promote the eco-diversity that is necessary to maintain the delicate balance of the biosphere. Isolated fisheries and smaller communities that live off of fishing, need far more support and management than the ocean going natural resource but without protection and incentive, fish as a natural and safe food supply can be commercially hunted until there are no more of that species available, thereby harming the environment, economy and future. Sustainable fisheries look to secure food for both healthier global economies and biodiversity in the ocean.
Community based fisheries, need to search for sustainable practices in order to survive and to offer something for future generations that will also secure their own needs. Management is a major issue in this sense, both when talking about watersheds and ocean diversity. Obviously a natural environment will also offer a far healthier product for consumers and the world. Consumers are always demanding a healthier meal, and when sustainable fisheries use natural strategies, the kind of development will be both felt economically and environmentally. With careful planning of any current situation, strategies can be developed that include the environment, people and economy their production stimulates, both on a local and global level. The market for sustainable fisheries will eventually change as the ethical and environmentally friendly strategies are implemented.
As a basis for marketing sustainable fisheries, the clear cut goal of short term economical feedback and profit needs to be overlooked while investing not only in an idea, but also in a revolutionary niche that is appearing more and more everyday. The idea that seems to consume marketing professionals in sustainable fisheries is of consumer awareness. Making consumers aware of the situation and the kind of product they are buying will enhance the sales and proliferate the distribution of sustainable practices throughout the economical niche. Once the consumers are aware of the situation their demands will change as can be seen from the example of “organic fruits and vegetables” as opposed to those that use “pesticides.” The demand for a product that highlights green practices and green eating can also enhance the credibility of certified fish. That is, once faith has been bestowed in any given brand name associated with sustainable fisheries, the FDA certified fish introduce entirely new standards of what constitutes “healthy” fish.
One of the greatest advantages for the future is in what kind of food we eat. And more and more the understanding of what it means to have more retrograde eating habits gains in popularity, especially once the consumer awareness begins to hit the market, and demand creates a kind of tendency. Sustainable fisheries concentrate on fish as a natural resource, weather they come from fresh water or saltwater, but the intention to maintain the biodiversity and ecology of their environment through sustainable practices of replenishing are what will guarantee better food, economy and health for generations to come. Management of these resources (especially in closed or limited areas) is of vital importance to the success of any strategic plan, thereby enhancing the economy and creating cultural development. By using consumer awareness, sustainable fisheries offer a market that creates a specific kind of demand for both product and quality of the product.
Sustainable Development – Environmental sensitivity
A good definition of sustainable development is easily stated by the UN:
“Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.”
And within this area there are three basic points of reference for international organizations such as the UN. Sustainable energy development is the first priority, as it is the founding of any modern civilization. Sustainable development of industry and production is the second priority in the UN. While in third is the sustainable development of the biosphere (air pollution, Ozone, the rainforest…etc) or the environment.Sustainable energy development is important to the world as a number one priority, because political views aside (and most everyone is as fierce about this as abortion right now), the world is based on energy supplies that are not easily renewed in any profitable way for the next 50,000 years or so. At the current rate of consumption, it is quite possible that we will find ourselves competing for black oil supplies in almost absurd ways within the near future if we are not already!
An excellent example of how we need to work on sustainable energy can be seen with China. China is currently subsidizing its gas stations both forcing the oil companies to make discounts as well as offering lower prices to consumers?!!? Some people say that is communism, but when in fact it is not, it is pampering! Communism is not based on short term goals as limited resources such as oil are communism is based on long term goals that gradually bring progress! Instead of investing 4.2 billion US$ in securing oil reserves, China could invest 4.2 billion dollars in sustainable energy development, but no, they choose the former rather than the later, in an attempt to imitate the west?!?
The problems countries like China are and will face in the future are not “their” fault by any means. The problem is paradigm. The problem is how humans look at the world. And even here in the US our founding father John Dewey the philosopher who invented pragmatism made this paradigm very clear, “if it works then I will do it.” The problem is current energy consumption is not sustainable and will not continue working if we keep doing things the way we do! We need to understand this, or else, by the time people actually start investing in sustainable energy development, the world will already be going through a serious energy crisis.
When we talk about the sustainable development of industry and production we are talking about the basics of our human civilization. Trucks that carry things from one side of the country to the other, factories that build toys and cosmetic packaging, paper mills, wood cutting, oil refineries, plantations… everything that is a commodity. Industrial sustainable development means creating an entire network of economies and politics that keep us from either the shopohaulic monster that thinks not of the calories of tomorrow nor the isolated artificial island sustainable sovereign nation state floating in the middle of the Atlantic cut off from the world.
Sustainable development for our industries means doing something that is low impact on both humankind and the environment, and when well supported by excellent sustainable energy resources, we begin to live a brighter better now and a brighter better future for generations to come.
Sustainable environment development, this means that once we have concentrated on correcting our current resource management challenges, balanced our industry in a way that will lower the impact on future generations, we can look toward the planet as a whole. Global warming is not an imagined thing. Maybe the world is not going to destroy itself, but if we want to be sure that we are building a brighter here and now for a longer future, we need to take action to preserve the biosphere’s equilibrium. Mother Nature built so many forests, rivers, lakes, streams, mountains, deserts and winter landscapes, yet little by little it disappears.
Without these resources, we cannot breath or drink. The more we destroy, invade and poison the simple parts of nature that most people tend to take for granted, the more future generations will have to be troubled by inconveniences like air pollution, fishless lakes and illnesses (such as psychosomatic and oncological challenges) that spread from city to city like plagues. Sustainable environment development, searches for solutions that appease not only the earth, but humankind as well, in a balanced and productive manner.
Sustainable development such as in the UN definition, of guaranteeing the needs for ourselves and future generations to come, means prioritizing sustainable energy, sustainable industry and sustainable environmental recovery. If we choose to develop a more sustainable source of energy for the general population, transportation, industry, home and office now, we will be able to make the complete change over when the time comes without causing Y2K syndromes. By securing sustainable industry based on sustainable energy, we guarantee that food, production, computers and everyday economy survive as well. Environmental development through sustainable recovery is the most vital step in the process of sustainable development, as it addresses the planet we live on. We exist because of this planet and without it, our species would perish. Perhaps one day we may discover a secure method for removing ourselves permanently from the biosphere, but as there is so little research done on this, we still could not survive without it.
Sustainable development means working from within these three areas as much as we can in all manners and walks of life. Sustainable development is not merely a way of acting locally or globally, it is a new frame of mind, a new paradigm that the whole world must embrace, if we are to migrate from limited resources to a brighter and healthier way of life on this planet. The other alternatives are less enjoyable.
Sustainable business exists as the direct result of crisis. Every time we suffer an energy crisis, we stimulate creative solutions. Those solutions don’t always come from within any specific field such as the oil industry, but more often than not those people who are directly affected by the crisis, the people. Sustainable business is just breaking the surface of a fine layer of ice that has frozen over the eyes of those before us, a paradigm. Short term equity is slowly being replaced by the popular belief in long term equity, and with every year that goes by, business strategies tend to recognize their failures from the 1980’s and 1990’s. Capital investment floating around the area of sustainable business is a direct result of the slow and growing acceptance of a market that is not merely profitable, but the very near future.
Thomas Kuhn came up with the idea that paradigms only change in accordance to popular belief in science and method. As would be true in his theory with economy as well, if he is correct. Most people know this and accept it but not everyone is willing to drop their old beliefs for something new and unknown. Ghandi is quoted as saying “All truth passes through three stages: First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.” And as we find our world falling through the Industrial Revolution and flying into a new era of Space Age modern electronics, limited resources will soon be replaced by cleaner, safer and more environmentally friendly products of the Environmental Revolution. Sustainable business is concerned about how we treat our planet, but also how we treat ourselves and our future generations, in a way that will make the “quality of life” we live to only enhance with time.
Quality of life can be determined in the world of capitalism as equity. Equity in sustainable business looks to produce long term profit with ethical strategies that reflect both sustainable as well as capitalist thinking in a kind of balance. Sustainable businesses use their equity as a way of convincing their consumers and stockholders alike that their strategies will bring profit to the business and the community by helping the environment. Most strategies that improve sustainable business equity are those that use rainwater harvesting, solar energy, wind energy, sustainable sewage recycling, as well as sustainable food and/or agricultural production. Not every business is a green business and there are a lot of businesses that simply do not have the means to make the transition over to a sustainable business, which is why investment capital in green businesses is growing all the time.
Capital investment is a way for entrepreneurs with vision to take a hold of the kinds of long term risks that are going to be a wealthy profit for those willing to make their way through today’s paradigms and to the financial breaking point of “zero”/”even” revenue. From the breaking point on, sustainable businesses become a serious threat to the way we do business today, because “time” changes our economical, political and cultural situations. Sustainable business needs come hand in hand with progress, if we become radical and start shutting down all the logging factories in Oregon, we might save the last 4% of our national old growth, but we will affect the stability of those families that make their way of life off of the jobs provided by the logging industry. Investor capitalists make choices about what they invest in based on what those choices “will” do in the long run (as well as at present) and if any of those choices require radical measures by the business at any stage, then the strategic plan is scrapped and new strategies are planned for. Sun Tzu once said, “if war is to be waged, there must be at least 1000 pieces of gold per day of the campaign in the royal treasury, if the campaign stretches on longer than the treasury can pay for, then the campaign will be a failure.” Planning well has been a financial importance for at least 2,500 years since then and sustainable business makes sure that planning well of the ethical choices in a campaign are also taken seriously.
Not merely war but all crisis situations have been responsible for the need to change our ways. If we do things in an unethical and short term profit manner, we may not feel the consequences in our own life times but our children however, or their children, certainly will. Sustainable business searches to break the ice of paradigms that have become obsolete, and crisis situations have helped stimulate that dialogue. But if we are to avoid this kind of dialogue (based on loss), we should then learn to accept sustainable business as a future with as much risk as any other equity currently on the market, the key however is planning. Planning a sustainable business, either through reinvestment (strategic planning of a currently established business that is migrating to green business) or capital investment through a well constructed and carefully planned environmentally friendly business model means making down to earth choices with vision (not optimism). Sustainable business is an ethical future for a cleaner safer and more balanced way of life.
The concept of sustainable agriculture revolves around three basic principles, environmental health, economic profitability and social as well as economic equity. Sustainability has a founding precept that we must meet our own needs here in the present without compromising the ability for future generations to meet their own needs. Environmental health means keeping our responsibilities to the stewardship of land, community and future generations.
Economic profitability, states that any sustainable agriculture must create profitable revenue for the community that it caters to as well as the community that supports it, with proper sustainable management techniques while participating actively in the culture and economy around it. Economic equity is the part of sustainable agriculture that builds a valuable and renewable asset for the long-term, with high potential for growth.
If an agriculture is to be sustainable, then stewardship is essential. Environmental health is good for the economy of the product, its marketing, the surrounding community and the consumers as well. By making sure that the water, land, wildlife, ecological diversity, riparian streams/plants, livestock and plant production are diversified and biologically economical and stable the farm becomes far more resilient. Perfecting diversity means always striving to obtain integration between livestock and crop cultivation, in accordance to the sustainable precept.
Economic profitability is not merely an area that depends on how governments treat sustainable agriculture. Economic profitability is also making efficient use of what is invested into the farm externally, or “inputs”. Anything going into a sustainable agriculture is essentially investing in the long-term sustainability of “self-sufficient” scenario, which means inputs should be minimized absolutely. The only input allowed should be biological in nature, such as the sun, a river, wind… etc. Even electricity and fuel should ideally be produced within the system. Management is the key. Usually scientific knowledge and enhanced management techniques are far too inaccessible for current projects, making transitions gradual.
Economic equity in sustainable agriculture develops the farm or community in such a way that time will only increase the economic value. Current methods of agriculture do not take into account the value of time. Since the mid 1950’s till now, the American government has developed an agriculture that consumes wealthy land and spits back useless desert. As disconcerting as that is, sustainable agriculture fights to repossess the useless plots of land that short-term profit mentality tries to disregard. Economic equity is about long-term goals, long term profit, and long term thinking in general because it will stimulate a future that is ethically productive for ourselves and our future generations.
Sustainable agriculture can be about reclaiming lost or unproductive plots of land, but it is also about the future. No matter what the condition or situation in any given area, sustainable agriculture fights the battle to achieve everything we need now and protecting the needs of generations to come. Long term thinking like this is what gives sustainable agriculture such an advantage over conventional short term thinking used my the majority of the market today. Sustainable agriculture keeps social, political, economical and cultural conditions in perspective so that low impact environmental and human strategies are effective and successful. With the proper scientific knowledge and enhanced management skills sustainable agriculture overthrows conventional inputs creating a circuit of production that takes advantage of the natural biological laws of mother nature, to produce profitable gain for ourselves and generations to come. Sustainable agriculture is the future.
Sustainable Architecture – Concepts of energy conservation.
Sustainable architecture is based on the concept of energy conservation. Sustainable architecture design is focused on “all points are zero”, as are sustainable architecture schools. Depending on who’s theory of thermal dynamics a person is studying, the focus in sustainable architecture may vary, but there are six main points to be considered.
Sustainable architecture schools use the concept of energy conservation as basis for all areas. In accordance to the first law of thermal dynamics, energy cannot be destroyed nor created but it can be converted from one form to another. All energy flowing in, must equal all flowing out plus the change in any system. The second states that all work processes tend toward greater entropy or lowered order (dispersion of energy). The third law deals with maintaining any system at zero (considered impossible). While the zeroth law determines that equality is when any two systems find themselves both at zero (in ideal and uninterrupted space).
As the laws of thermal dynamics in a more vulgar understanding do not permit perfect sustainability of a system (that is where all points are zero), sustainable architecture adapts itself to the laws of nature by using concepts that most resemble nature itself. Sustainable architecture does not remove itself from the biosphere, it integrates in a way that is of lowest (closest to zero) possible impact between all of natures elements (including human civilization).
Sustainable architecture design is the concept of “all points are zero” taken into the area of aesthetics in structures and buildings. Of course, all architecture in the end does the final job of making sure a building stays up for a long time, sustainable architecture uses designs not only to get the most out of financial and aesthetic return, but also takes into account social and environmental issues as well. Not just how long a structure will stay up, but how long will it be “useful” to the occupants or users? Will its usefulness grow? These are just some of the questions that lead the debate of philosophical concepts around sustainable architecture design.
Sustainable architecture also revolves around the kinds of “materials” being used. Materials that are easily replenished, within 50 years, are considered by most studies to be sustainable, however, when there is a question of 50,000,000 years between replenishment, then those materials are considered limited. It may be difficult to determine the lifespan of a single structure, but in most cases, 50,000,000 years is considered too long for any structure to survive (no case studies exist however so this remains theory of course). The few non-renewable materials used in megalithic architecture that still survive to this day, are the leading designs used and imitated for sustainable architecture designs today (like the great pyramids of Egypt for example).
Materials such as black oil and cement are considered limited, for example, while bamboo and cisal are considered renewable. In either case however, the unit used to measure consumption is a single cubic meter of earth. A house made from bamboo but filled with concrete is just as high impact as that built with cisal yet uses a chainsaw to cut down the bamboo. If any given materials have a return at the end of the life-span, this will also have impact on the sustainability of any materials used. Recycled materials may have the least impact (as they are trash), but they may have no return at the end of a structures life-span.
Labor in sustainable architecture is based around the concept of building with labor that is also low impact and sustainable. For example, if the labor being used is slave or child labor, the human (or ethical) impact is very high, while if it is the owner doing the work themselves yet she uses a gas guzzling bulldozer to cut down two whole acres of 2000 year old Old Growth Douglas Fir with no regard to the environment, then once again even though certain concepts of sustainability are being used this structure could in no way be considered sustainable architecture. Low impact human labor, is as important as low impact living.
During the lifespan of any sustainable architecture there is the basic consideration of energy consumption. Not all sustainable structures will consume energy 24/7 until their dieing day, but most all will in some way or another go through daily consumption. In a house, consumption is electricity, heating, water, lighting, sewer and even food and trash. Strategic methods to achieve higher sustainability within any given system during its lifespan will belong to this area. If the house is on or off the grid (perhaps solar or wind energy), has rainwater catchment (perhaps a rainbarrel), a living machine for grey water consumption and sewer water management, a aquaponic/hydroponic food system and a worm bin, then “all points are zero” goals become far more realistic.
Systems that offer some kind of return to the environment during or at the end of their lifespan are considered more sustainable architecture than those that do not. For example if a house is made from masonry and the cement, bricks, frames and all are put into a land fill when the house is demolished, then it becomes a very high impact structure. If on the other hand it is made from 50 year old cedar that was planted with agro-toxic chemicals that destroyed an entire ecosystem and sacrificed a river, then that wood going into a landfill at the end of its existence will be even higher impact than the brick house, as the cycle of toxic chemicals continues in the landfill.
Sustainability architecture rests on ideal use of the environment. Imitating nature and consuming directly from nature (sun, wind, agriculture…etc.), while making sure that social and economical needs of the here and now are still met is what makes sustainable architecture design and sustainable architecture schools attain the ever advancing belief in “all points are zero”. Sustainable architecture is about the future and about the future generations that will inherit both our world and our structures, thus a keen eye to the future means more than aesthetics of the here and now, sustainable architecture is about integrating civilization with the biosphere in the lowest energy impact strategies possible.