August 31, 2007
Want to learn how to DIY on that solar water heating project? This Solar Powered Panel Instructional DVD & Plans for water heating is a simple step-by-step, DIY, easy to follow solar panel construction DVD. When you're done you'll have 3500 watts (12,000BTU) of free solar power per panel, 10+degrees F increase in water temperature in one day, and a solution engineered for maximum robustness and weatherability.
At Do It Yourself Solar Panels for Swimming Pools, Spas & more
August 30, 2007
At 1.3 megawatts of solar power, the Stade De Suisse, located in Bern, Switzerland is the worlds largest solar powered stadium. Apparently they used to have a smaller output of solar power (a mear 834 watts), but now look at the size of it! SOLAR POWER!
August 29, 2007
The Sonex Electric Airplane is a concept plane which runs on batteries - lots of batteries. With this plane you can recharge it from your wall socket and then take off on a flight around your neighborhood. It's also going to take you 24 hour for a charge, and hopefully the batteries don't run down as fast as other batteries do under heavy use. What's odd is how they didn't incorporate any solar recharging into the plane design. Maybe next time.
Via The Red Ferret Journal at Sonex Electric Airplane
August 28, 2007
It's sunny in Sonoma and a perfect place for a giant solar topped winery to debut. The Medlock Ames Winery has come to full fruition beautifully with glowing wine reviews and an operation that is now 100% solar powered. The winery building, designed by George Riley of Sebastopol, incorporates passive solar design, natural daylighting and natural ventilation.
August 27, 2007
If you’re unfamiliar with the concept behind Park(ing) Day, it’s a national one-day global event, centered in the city of San Francisco, calling all artists, activist, and citizens together to temporarily take over parking spots, turning them into “Park(ing)” spaces, or temporary public parks. But, what started as a few grassy plots of sod occupying metered parking spots in San Francisco has blossomed into a world-wide event scheduled to take place September 21st, 2007. So get out and occupy a Park(ing) space and save the planet.
Via Inhabitat at Parking Day
August 24, 2007
Apparently, flying saucers are the future of eco-friendly vehicles because of their very efficient shape. Right now air travel accounts for 3% of carbon emissions worldwide, but that figure stands to rise to 5%. Apparently, ditching the wings and throwing flying saucers into the air will help do that just from the redesign and consideration of new materials that would use less weight. Read the entire article at LiveScience.
Via SCI FI Tech
August 20, 2007
We're sad to say it, but summer is nearly over. If you're heading back to school, you may want to think about purchasing green and eco-friendlier school supplies this year.
A number of major retailers (including Home Depot, Wal-Mart, and Amazon) have started stocking "green" merchandise for customers who prefer eco-friendly purchasing options.
Office Depot is no exception, with a whole section of their website devoted to a green buying guide.
The green school supplies buying guide includes tips on what products are out there, and ways in which you can minimize the environmental impact of your purchases. Suggestions include notebooks made from recycled and post-consumer recycled paper, alternative fiber paper products made from sugarcane and banana fiber, and certified AP non-toxic pencils, crayons and paints and solar powered calculators.
The Buy Green site includes a description of the criteria Office Depot utilizes for selecting greener products and a a detailed FAQ that breaks down terminology for different levels of recycled content, labeling, and certifications.
Check out Office Depot's Green School Supplies Buying Guide.
August 17, 2007
Tom Philpott has a great Grist column this week on The Eat Local Backlash.
The column seeks to address articles and op-eds in the Economist and New York Times suggesting that eating locally produced foods can have more of an environmental impact than consuming mass produced (and far traveling) food from the supermarket.
Continue reading: "Weekend Reading: The Eat Local Backlash"
August 16, 2007
The folks at Lily Organics sent over samples of some of their products. I can't get enough of their Balancing Facial Lotion.
Formulated as a lighter alternative to their Moisturizing Cream, it contains primrose oil and rosehip seed oil to moisturize, horsetail and coltsfoot "to assist in cell proliferation" and ylang ylang essential oil for aromatherapy.
Available at Lily Organics.
Continue reading: "Lily Organics Balancing Facial Lotion"
August 14, 2007
If you really want to use less gas and be a little more green this Summer and every Summer after this - get a scooter. We recommend the Vespa LX, as it's only 50cc and that means you can use your drivers license in most states. You should still however take a motorcycle safety course and wear a full face helmet, but after you fork out dough for all of that, you'll be saving money big time. On average scooters can get upwards of 100mpg - wow. And since doing light commuting and errands is so much more fun on a Vespa, you're life will improve as well.
At Vespa USA
August 13, 2007
Being Cambridge, MA residents we were very excited to see the news of greener homes arrive in the bay state. What's even more surprising was the fact the PowerPod is designed right in Massachusetts - Lawrence, MA to be exact. We'll have to check out their offerings and perhaps one day have a greener home ourselves.
The PowerPod is a modular home that incorporates many green design elements, including a solar butterfly roof that collects rainwater and includes an active solar array for electricity and hot water. Designed by Lawrence, Massachusetts based PowerHouse Enterprises, the PowerPod can be transported on two trailers to your site for assembly. Measuring just 480 square feet, the floor plan highlights an open living/dining/kitchen area that opens onto a front porch. High ceiling create a sense of spaciousness. A PowerPod home costs about $100,000 or $200 per square foot.
Via MetaEfficient at PowerHouse Enterprises
August 6, 2007
Came across this dress from Aventura Clothing while out shopping this weekend. It's organic cotton, with a hand-embroidered flower on the neckline. The crinkly fabric makes it ideal for traveling, or wearing right out of the dryer. And the v-neck makes it perfect for nursing, if that's something you're looking for.
I paid retail for mine - $65 - but it's on sale on the website for $49.99. I'm thinking about picking it up in another color.
Online at Aventura Clothing.
August 3, 2007
For our baby shower, Nicole gave me a copy of The Diaper-Free Baby by Christine Gross-Loh. I've been reading through it while I'm feeding him, and I have to admit I'm intrigued.
The book's premise is that babies are aware from birth of their need to go to the bathroom, and that they give off certain cues - just as they give cues when they want to eat or need to be burped. By learning those cues, and responding to them - a process called elimination communication - parents can toilet train their kids at a very young age (even as infants).
Practicing elimination communication takes a lot of work and a lot of patience. But the book argues that there are benefits (financial, ecological and emotional) to using it even just periodically -- and offers advice for full-time, part-time and occasional practitioners.
Buy The Diaper-Free Baby.
August 2, 2007
Watch out, Nabisco! Late July Organic Snacks just introduced an organic sandwich cookie that goes head to head with the Oreo, and might just win!
The Hyannis, MA-based company, founded by the same family that brought us Cape Cod Potato Chips, is known for its tasty crackers and mini peanut butter sandwich cookies. Last month, they launched their Faux-REO in two flavors -- Dark Chocolate and Vanilla Bean with Green Tea. According to Late July's website, these cookies
are like the sandwich cookies you remember as a kid, but all grown up. They deliver outstanding flavor using the finest organic ingredients like dark chocolate and whole grains with unexpected benefits like antioxidants and fiber giving new meaning to the term “smart cookie.”
Smart cookies, eh? Sounds right up our alley.
Late July Organic Sandwich Cookies are available at Whole Foods and Wild Oats and online.
August 1, 2007
Here's a recipe for tasty smoothie that's high in calcium, low in fat (no fat, actually) and packed with fruit and fiber. As someone who sometimes struggles to get enough servings of fruit in my day, this is one of my favorite summer breakfasts. Experiment with fruits and juices to get a flavor and texture you like -- or to use up fruits from your last trip to the grocery store.
1 cup nonfat yogurt (I like Stonyfield Farm Organic for taste and its eco-friendly promotions)
1 cup frozen blueberries, raspberries or strawberries
1 Tablespoon ground flax seeds
1/2 cup orange juice
Optional: peaches, kiwis, frozen mango
Instructions: Add ingredients to a blender. Blend until smooth. Enjoy.