background preloader

Alex Steffen: The route to a sustainable future

Alex Steffen: The route to a sustainable future
Related:  Sustainable Development

-New HOme Project « Leifur Thor’s WorldPress Station Imagine a home that provides a level of comfort and ease of living beyond what’s known. Now imagine this home uses less energy while providing that superior standard of living. In this century, wouldn’t we rather have a home that harvests energy quietly instead of using it? An enclosed space three average people with no special skills can assemble noise free, and with no special building tools in three weeks from start to finish. With over 10,000 variations for layout a home we can alter in a day without need of a contractor. When disaster strikes and emergency shelters are needed, weight, cost, and ability to stand up in the elements are the three considerations when relief organizations look to find shelter solutions for people in need. The New Home Project will address both these critical aspects and challenge the idea of shelter by offering a radical departure from traditional shelter construction. The two parts of the New Home Project are- Like this: Like Loading...

‘Net-zero’ school pays off - Bowling Green Daily News: Local News There’s no big smokestack. You also don’t see a bunch of workers scurrying around in hard hats. Rest assured though, Warren County Public Schools has a power plant. The district received a check for $37,227.31 this year. An online service is needed to view this article in its entirety. Login Or, use your linked account: Need an account? The check is tangible evidence that net-zero pays for itself and then some. “It has exceeded expectations. In talking this past week with officials from the nation’s capital to the Pacific Northwest, they agree Richardsville Elementary is still the only major school building in the United States that is not only net-zero, but that also actually earns money from its electricity generation. “That’s net-positive,” said Paul Hutton of Hutton Architecture Studio, a member of Cuningham Group Architecture Inc. in Denver. Hutton has worked with “green schools” since 1982. “That opens up some eyes,” Stanfield said. For example, the old T.C.

The New Geopolitics of Food - By Lester R. Brown In the United States, when world wheat prices rise by 75 percent, as they have over the last year, it means the difference between a $2 loaf of bread and a loaf costing maybe $2.10. If, however, you live in New Delhi, those skyrocketing costs really matter: A doubling in the world price of wheat actually means that the wheat you carry home from the market to hand-grind into flour for chapatis costs twice as much. And the same is true with rice. If the world price of rice doubles, so does the price of rice in your neighborhood market in Jakarta. And so does the cost of the bowl of boiled rice on an Indonesian family's dinner table. Welcome to the new food economics of 2011: Prices are climbing, but the impact is not at all being felt equally. Already in 2011, the U.N. More alarming still, the world is losing its ability to soften the effect of shortages. That's why the food crisis of 2011 is for real, and why it may bring with it yet more bread riots cum political revolutions.

What Would a Down-to-Earth Economy Look Like? (Photo: Thomas Hawk)With proper care and respect, Earth can provide a high quality of life for all people in perpetuity. Yet we devastate productive lands and waters for a quick profit, a few temporary jobs, or a one-time resource fix. Our current expansion of tar sands oil extraction, deep-sea oil drilling, hydraulic fracturing natural gas extraction, and mountaintop-removal coal mining are but examples of this insanity. A global economy dependent on this nonsense is already failing and its ultimate collapse is only a matter of time. To secure the health and happiness of future generations, we must embrace life as our defining value, recognize that competition is but a subtext of life’s deeper narrative of cooperation, and restructure our institutions to conform to life’s favored organizing principle of radically decentralized, localized decision making and self-organization. Our Original Instructions Some indigenous people speak of the “original instructions.” The Economy of the Body

OECD calls for policy reform and technology to prevent impending water crisis The OECD has released a report outlining the challenges humanity faces to maintain water resources in the future (Photo: Shutterstock) Image Gallery (2 images) Worldwide population growth and the related rapid increase in urbanization is already posing problems in many areas for the management of that most precious of resources, water. With these problems only set to intensify, the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) has released a report outlining the challenges humanity faces to maintain water resources in the face of demographic growth and climate change. Called Meeting the Water Reform Challenge, the report says that urgent reform of water policies is crucial in order to preserve human and environmental health as well as economic growth. According to UN figures, more than one billion people lack access to safe drinking water. Global water demand (Source: The Environmental Outlook Baseline,output from IMAGE suite of models) Source: OECD About the Author

1 million trees raised in 5 districts In a silent afforestation campaign, a private company has successfully raised more than a million trees on private lands in five districts in the State and recorded a survival rate of 90 per cent. Giving details to The Hindu about the successful planting of saplings and raising them to trees, A. Joseph Rexon, Director, TIST Tree Planting India programme, said it was started in Kancheepuram district with six farmers in 2003. Slowly, it was extended to Tiruvallur, Vellore, Tiruvannamalai and Villupuram. The company had 6,000 farmers as its members, he said. The company approached local panchayat heads to identify farmers owning unproductive lands, where agriculture was not possible. Thanks to the carbon revenues, the company paid farmers at the rate of Rs 2 per tree till they keep the trees alive. Mr.

Bhutan To Be First Country to Go 100% Organic If there was ever a nation that could see the purpose behind organic, sustainable farming, it would be a nation that is composed mostly of farmers. Such a place does exist, and it soon may be the first nation to go 100% organic, paving the way for others to do the same on a global scale. The Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan is known for a high level of citizen happiness, but it is doing something even more noteworthy in the near future. With Prime Minister Jigmi Thinley making a major announcement regarding the organic farming project at the Rio+20 Conference on Sustainable Development which took place last month, the move has made national headlines. What this comes down to is no GMO, no pesticides, no herbicides, no fluoride-based spray products, no Monsanto intrusion at all, and a whole lot of high quality food available for the 700,000 citizens of Bhutan. “By working in harmony with nature, they can help sustain the flow of nature’s bounties.”

biosolar photosystem solar energy harvesting chip

Related: