Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Boston turns taxis green

image courtesy of lambdamu

"As part of the city's long-term plan to implement sustainable public transportation, Boston Mayor Thomas Menino kicked off Boston CleanAir Cabs on Friday, an initiative to replace Boston's old taxis with hybrid electric or alternative-fuel vehicles."

Read the full story

via cnet news

Sunday, September 24, 2006

"Going ons" about town

ONLINE REGISTRATION CLOSES at 5pm on Monday, September 25th.
REGISTER NOW! www.gulfcoastgreen.org

Benjamin Ball and Gaston Nogues: Rip Curl Canyon at the Rice Gallery
21 September – 29 October 2006

"Winners of ID Magazine's 2006 design award for Environments, Benjamin Ball and Gaston Nogues have created a new installation, Rip Curl Canyon, for Rice Gallery. Rip Curl Canyon evokes a mythical location in the American West where land and water collide."

Get Your War On
Rude Mechanicals
September 21 - 23, 2006, 8pm
September 28 - 30, 2006, 8pm
September 29 & 30, 10pm

"Get Your War On is directed by Shawn Sides and adapted by Kirk Lynn from the internet comic by David Rees. David Rees was working a crummy magazine job when Operation: Enduring Freedom inspired him to make his cartoon, Get Your War On. The satire about the war on terrorism became an internet phenomenon. Get Your War On now appears in every issue of Rolling Stone. Sales of the two GYWO books have raised almost $100,000 for land mine removal in western Afghanistan."

Friday, September 22, 2006

Will Ferrell - Bush on Global Warming

Sorry I thought this was hilarious. click on image to see the video

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

design:e2 the "Green Apple episode"

Design:e2 is a new six part PBS series that introduces us to the inventive leaders and technologies driving sustainable practices in the buildings where we live, work and play.
Design:e2 also presents a series fo video podcasts of these episodes. The first episode begins in NYC.
Watch it below....OR Subscribe to the audio and video podcasts

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Freecycle Houston

Freecycle is a grassroots environmental movement whose goal is to recycle and reduce waste and landfill space by connecting people who are throwing away unwanted items with others who are seeking the same items.

No item is too big or too small; but since this is a FREEcycle list, ALL items must be 100% free.
No bartering, trading, buying or selling is allowed.

This has worked out great for me, trying to get rid of an old desktop, that still works great, but has been replaced by a laptop. 10 people responded right away and a lady that wanted it for her gradeschool child offer to picked it up right away. I was also looking for a bike and posted this on there and a lady offered me one of 2 bikes she had just sitting around, with just a little bit of work to be done on them.

This is good stuff! Try it and make some room in that cluttered attic, closet, and/or garage. ;) ITS FREE!

+ Houston Freecycle
+ "Freecyle" in other areas

Monday, September 11, 2006

Electric Super Cars

The X1 Prototype
"Wrightspeed builds extreme performance electric supercars. With advanced electric drive train technology, their cars raise the performance driving experience to a new level – while still returning 3 times better energy efficiency than the most efficient cars available.

Wrightspeed is building the X1, demonstrable today in a street-legal prototype, using lithium-ion batteries and a 3-phase electric motor. It has already raced against and beaten some of the world’s fastest production cars, while at the same time being 10 times more energy efficient than the cars it outperformed.

It meets its design specs of 0-60 in 3 seconds, 170 mpg equivalent; and at 1536 lbs, is only 36 lbs over the design target of 1500.

No clutch, no shifting, precise and immediate control of torque in drive and braking, perfect traction control…first gear takes you to 112mph…"

Pretty cool!

Watch it beat a ferrari and a porche!

Plugin America

Green Gold WTC

via Architectural Record

"...architects Norman Foster, Richard Rogers, and Fumihiko Maki unveiled designs for three towers that will rise along the eastern edge of the World Trade Center site. Following a clockwise spiral from the Freedom Tower, each of the buildings steps down in height, gradually descending to the WTC memorial....

All three towers will seek LEED gold ratings, and are scheduled for completion by 2012. "

read more here

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Indoor air filter

via inhabitat.com

The four-story biofilter is a jungle of ferns, ivy and other plants, collaborating to emit microbes that break down harmful airborne contaminants into water and CO2. This wall is self-cleaning- the pollutants are not absorbed into the plants, but broken down.

The biofilter was developed by biological researchers at the University of Guelph, including Alan Darlington, who now heads his own company, Air Quality Solutions, Ltd., to sell the living walls commercially.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006


Rudolf Diesel developed the idea for the diesel engine and obtained the German patent for it in 1892. His goal was to create an engine with high efficiency. Gasoline engines had been invented in 1876 and, at that time, not very efficient.

Diesel hoped that his engine would provide a way for the smaller industries, farmers, and "commonfolk" a means of competing with the monopolizing industries, which controlled all energy production at that time, as well as serve as an alternative for the inefficient fuel consumption of the steam engine.

Rudolf Diesel demonstrated it in the 1900 Exposition Universelle (World's Fair) using peanut oil (see biodiesel).As a result of Diesel's vision, compression ignited engines were powered by a biomass fuel, vegetable oil, until the 1920's and are being powered again, today, by biodiesel.

The main differences between the gasoline engine and the diesel engine are:
+ A gasoline engine intakes a mixture of gas and air, compresses it and ignites the mixture with a spark.
+ A diesel engine takes in just air, compresses it and then injects fuel into the compressed air. The heat of the compressed air (at a substantially higher compression ratio than a gasoline engine) lights the fuel spontaneously once it is injected into the super-heated compressed air.
+ A gasoline engine compresses at a ratio of 8:1 to 12:1, while a diesel engine compresses at a ratio of 14:1 to as high as 25:1. The higher compression ratio of the diesel engine leads to better efficiency.
+ Gasoline engines generally use either carburetion, in which the air and fuel is mixed long before the air enters the cylinder, or port fuel injection, in which the fuel is injected just prior to the intake stroke (outside the cylinder). Diesel engines use direct fuel injection -- the diesel fuel is injected directly into the cylinder.

Today there are even companies that will convert your diesel powered vehicle to run on 100% vegetable oil (new or waste), Biodiesel, and/or regular diesel, in any combination....see Lovecraft Biofuels

See also DHlovelife's biodiesel Vlog.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Toyata Green Turfs

via Technovelgy.com:

"Toyota Roof Garden (subsidiary of the car company) is now taking orders for its modular grass tiles...
Individual mats are twenty inches square, and about two inches thick. The mats are planted with a special brand of Korean velvet grass - it only needs to be cut once per year. The mats are irrigation system-ready; water can flow through tubes to channels in the mats, providing moisture to roots.

The price? Just $43 per square yard."


Saturday, September 02, 2006

North Houston Developements

I took this photo flying into Houston about to land at Intercontinental... These previously forested areas are being replaced by "barnacale-like" developements. (Notice the line of forest behind the developement.)

These developements are not keeping ANY of the original trees....and if you look really really hard you can see a tiny twig planted in each front yard. How long till those little sprigs can offer the shade that an existing tree could have provided?


What is Carbon Offsetting?

A carbon offset is a reduction in carbon dioxide emissions from a third party, aimed at cancelling out (offsetting) the emissions arising from a particular activity. The aim is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and thereby combat global warming. Proponents claim that all emissions can be offset and made "carbon neutral".
Carbon offsets can be purchased by individuals, businesses and governments from a variety of commercial and non-commercial organizations.

There are three main types of projects that produce offsets: projects that prevent the release of CO2, projects that reduce non-CO2 greenhouse gases, and projects that sequester carbon in vegetation or soil. A company could achieve the first two goals by purchasing an energy-efficient heating system for a school, for example, thus reducing the school’s CO2 emissions. A company could accomplish the third goal by reforesting an area, sequestering carbon in trees and soil.

More on Carbon offsets:
Carbon Emission Offset Directory via ecobusiness links
Carbon fund.org
more info via Climate Biz