Want to get your kids excited about diverting waste from the landfill? Get them involved in the process by creating a home recycling center! It’s a good idea to teach kids the importance of recycling at an early age, and one of the best ways to do that is to make a project out of it, making home recycling fun and engaging. First, you’ll want to explain to them what recycling is and how it works in your hometown. Then comes the fun part: setting up bins, attaching colorful labels, and sorting recyclables. Click through for Inhabitots’ step-by-step tutorial.
We love our lawns and gardens. Sadly, however, the average suburban lawn uses six times the hazardous chemicals per acre as conventional farming. Per hour of operation, a gas mower emits 10 times as much hydrocarbon as a car. Then, of course, there are the sprinkler systems that go off like clockwork, even when it’s raining. Want to make your lawn and garden more eco-friendly? Read on for tips on greener gardening.
• Create black gold
Composting is simple, fun and strangely satisfying. Maria MacRae, manager of Backyard Habitat Programs for the Canadian Wildlife Federation, points out that compost is a great eco-friendly way to add microorganisms and lots of nutrients to your lawn and garden. [more...]
Living on a street lined with tall, leafy trees is as much a part of the American dream as a green front lawn and a brand-new car in the driveway. While the latter two are fairly expensive and unsustainable (think pesticides and carbon emissions), it turns out that trees reward property owners with more than just shade.
A study [PDF] by the U.S. Forest Service’s Pacific Northwest Research Station published last month in Urban Forestry and Urban Greening, combined rent data from Craigslist apartment listings in Portland, Oregon with tree data from Google Earth to figure out the effect of trees on rent. The researchers, Geoffrey Donovan of the Forest Service and David Butry of the National Institute of Standards and Technology, found that trees planted directly on a property increase a rental unit’s value by more than five dollars per month. Rental units with trees abutting the property lines feel a 21-dollar bump [more...]
Going green can be very easy if you know what to do and do plenty of research before you decide to go green. Going green can help you decrease your carbon footprint and help the environment but it can also help you decrease your energy bill. All during the year we can have outrageous heating and cooling bills as well as outrageous power bills. If we follow some simple power saving tips we will be able to save a ton on our power bills.
Unplug When Not In Use
You may think that just because your computer is turned off it is not using any power. Many people assume this and unfortunately they are wrong. Even when the off button is hit, there is still power going into the machine if it is still hooked to the power outlet. A phone left charging is still using power as is other appliances such as a radio that is left plugged in. The best practice is, if it is cut off go ahead and unplug it. If you unplug it there is no way that power could be going into that machine and being wasted. So remember unplug anything you are not using [more...]
If global warming continues unchecked it will likely cause thousands of species to radically change in order to adapt to the changing planet — and we’re beginning to see some of those changes already. In southeast Alaska, near Juneau, researchers from the University of Alaska have found that in response to warmer waters resulting from climate change pink salmon are migrating upstream earlier than they did previously. This is the first time scientists have found evidence of genetic changes in pink salmon, and it could have broader implications for how animals adapt to the changing planet.
Are your kids fans of the Dr. Seuss book Bartholomew and the Oobleck. It’s a fantastic story of the day Oobleck fell from the sky and wreaked havoc in the kingdom. Why not read the book together and then head outside to make your own Oobleck? All you need is a few common ingredients you probably already have in the house. It only takes a few minutes to make, but it entertained my boys for a few hours on a hot summer afternoon. They were mesmerized by the way that Oobleck is both a liquid and a solid, making for an afternoon of get-your-hands-dirty fun! Read on to learn how to make Oobleck with your little ones.
Is this where is all started?
The Drake Landing Solar Community is the first solar powered community of North America. Located in the town of Okotoks, Alberta, Canada, the project sets a wonderful example of how every household can lead a sustainable lifestyle. There are 800 solar panels located throughout the community on garage roofs, and they produce 1.5 mega-watts of thermal power during a summer day and supply heat to the district heating system. The whole system meets 90% of the annual heating and hot water needs of the homes.
The 52-home solar community has installed an array of solar panels on the roofs of their houses and garages. Glycol solution runs through an insulated piping system, or collector loop, that connects the array of solar panels. The solar panels absorb the solar energy during the daytime and heat the glycol solution. The glycol solution travels through the collector loop and reaches an underground heat exchanger within the community’s centralized Energy Center. The heat is then transferred from heat exchanger to the water stored in a short-term storage tank. The glycol solution returns to the solar collector system. The Energy Center has short-term thermal storage tanks and long-thermal storage tanks (Borehole Thermal Energy Storage (BTES) system).
Cities and companies around the world tap into geothermal energy — the thermal energy below the Earth’s surface — but there’s another type of man-made energy coursing through sewer pipes beneath cities and towns: sewage. The town of Brainerd, Minnesota plans to develop a unique alternative energy system that will tap into the thermal energy in sewer pipes to heat and cool buildings.
When people use hot water to wash clothes, take a shower or run the dishwasher, all of that heat energy ends up in sewers, which get quite hot. In 2010, the Minnesota-based company Hidden Fuels installed sensors in the city’s sewers so that they could measure water temperatures and create a thermal energy map. ”It shows that there’s a significant amount of energy — literally enough to heat hundreds of homes — within the streets of the city of Brainerd,” Hidden Fuels’ Peter Nelson told NPR.
Read more: Minnesota Town to Tap into its Own Sewers for Geothermal Energy | Inhabitat – Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building
Beer company Molson Canadian has released a set of plantable coasters in specially-marked can packs as part of the company’s ‘Red Leaf Project.‘ When planted and watered, the seeded beer mats will grow into towering Black Spruce trees! The coasters are part of the beer company’s environmental initiative to clean up Canada’s natural parks.