bicycling


But today I do. This a great organization and a great idea as well. Join today.

info@beyondextremeenergy.org

Beyond Extreme Energy

Get involved in BXE’s work

Take Action!

Stay Connected!

Support our work!

  • Make a financial contribution.
  • Write to Actions@BeyondExtremeEnergy.org if you’re interested in being on one of our organizing working groups.

Questions? Need to contact us? Email info@beyondextremeenergy.org


picsart_02-19-12-34-54

 

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Go there and join, read and protest. More next week.

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Nico the Ninja told them to save energy and they do.

https://www.saveonenergy.com/kids-learning-center/saving-energy/

A Ninja’s Quest to Save Energy

Nico loves saving energy and natural resources and wants to share his knowledge with you! Join Nico and learn the best practices of saving energy.

dot dot dot Unfortunately the actual site is graphics heavy and I am no good at copying such things, but I am going to put up the Teacher Guide. I think you will get the idea. dot dot dot

The Kids’ Guide to Saving Energy is a useful resource to incorporate into your elementary classroom’s curriculum to help students understand the importance of saving energy. Have your students complete the guide during class or as an extra credit homework assignment. Discuss the guide in class and have your students present to the class ways they saved energy at home. Below are some suggestions on how to incorporate each page of the guide into your lesson plan:
Page 2:
SaveOnEnergy.com® created Nico as a fun way to teach students about energy. As your students connect with Nico, be sure to tell students to check out the other kids’ guides and continue to explore with Nico!
Page 3:
Ask students to volunteer to read aloud the reasons why conserving energy is important. Then, review the following discussion questions with your class.
1. Do you think saving energy is important?
1. What is energy conservation?
2. What is energy efficiency?
3. How do you think we can conserve energy in the classroom?
Page 4:
Have the students define renewable and nonrenewable energy. Then have the students place each renewable energy source under the proper category. If students are unfamiliar with certain energy sources, have them look up and define the words. Then, have your students brainstorm ways in which we can use renewable resources for energy and discuss the advantages of renewable energy.

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I also love that Nico is half of Nicodemus. Go there and read. More next week.

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So after the Election we took three days off and went to Giant City State Park and drove over to see the Garden of the Gods. Giant City was disappointing:

https://www.google.com/search?q=garden+of+the+gods&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a

With its breathtaking natural beauty and unlimited opportunities for outdoor recreation, a trip to Giant City State Park near Carbondale is sure to delight visitors of all ages. From camping and horseback riding to fishing and rappelling, it’s an outdoor lover’s paradise. Visitors will marvel at the many wilderness trails. Especially popular is a hike on Giant City Nature Trail, home of the “Giant City Streets” huge bluffs of sandstone formed 12,000 years ago .

Nestled in the Shawnee National Forest, just minutes south of Carbondale, the Union / Jackson county park was named for the unique impressions made by its massive sandstone structures. Eons of geological faulting and folding have molded a landscape like none other, which is now clothed in lush garments of fern, moss, large flowering mints, hundreds of species of wild flowers and 75-plus varieties of towering trees. The natural splendor of Giant City has made it a renowned retreat that attracts more than 1.2 million visitors annually.

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But Garden of the Gods was amazing:

http://www.shawneeforest.com/Hiking/GardenoftheGods.aspx

More than 320 million years ago, the wind and rain patiently started to chisel away at large deposits of sedimentary rock located in what is now, Shawnee National Forest . Over the years, the elements have sculpted some of the most stunning and extraordinary rock formations known to man. This garden of sandstone sculptures and vast untouched wilderness was fittingly named Garden of the Gods.

The park contains a variety of plant and animal life, adding to the scenic beauty of the Shawnee Forest. Garden of the Gods covers more than 3,300 acres of forest throughout the Southeastern Illinois counties of Saline, Pope and Hardin. There are also plenty of trails for backpacking and horseback riding, allowing nature lovers a welcome tour of what the lively environment has to offer.

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Go there and be envious. More on Tuesday.

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First on the list of actual green active organizations is Greenpeace. As with most activist organizations, I like them or I hate them based on their actions. When they challenge the whalers, I applaud. When they unroll banners from bridges over the Mississippi River or chain themselves up in trees, I must admit I become embarrassed. I have never been a member needless to say.

http://www.greenpeace.org/usa/en/

Happy whales have sanctuaries


My Greenpeace colleagues aboard the Rainbow Warrior in the Indian Ocean shared a heartwarming experience when a frolicking group of humpback and minke whales put on quite a show. It’s not a stretch to say these whales were happy and playful. Why wouldn’t they be as the entire Indian Ocean is a whale sanctuary where they can live in peace? What a contrast this is to other parts of the world where whales not only don’t have protections but face a myriad of direct threats from humans. One huge emerging threat to whales, dolphins and other marine wildlife is happening now in the coastal waters of California. Read more

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Go there and read. More tomorrow.

 

 

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Finding a design as cool as this is like finding a reason to live. Like being given a sack full of candy. It just lights up my life and gives me hope. Hope is a scarce commodity these days what with the drought and the drum beats for war against Iran. Still this is so cool.

http://www.fastcodesign.com/1670753/this-9-cardboard-bike-can-support-riders-up-to-485lbs

This $9 Cardboard Bike Can Support Riders Up To 485lbs

Innovation By Design

It’s 100% recycled and very lightweight, with a frame that’s stronger than carbon fiber.

Izhar Gafni has designed award winning industrial machines for peeling pomegranates and sewing shoes. He’s also a bike enthusiast who’s designed a lot of carbon fiber rigs. But one day, he’d heard about someone who’d built a cardboard canoe. The idea drilled its way into his consciousness, and ultimately, led him to create a cardboard bike called the Alfa.

The Alfa weighs 20lbs, yet supports riders up to 24 times its weight. It’s mostly cardboard and 100% recycled materials, yet uses a belt-driven pedal system that makes it maintenance free. And, maybe best of all, it’s project designed to be manufactured at about $9 to $12 per unit (and just $5 for a kids version), making it not only one of the most sustainable bikes you could imagine, but amongst the cheapest, depending on the markup.

But as the above video documents, the design process was arduous. Engineers told Gafni that his idea was impossible. Yet he realized that paper could be strong if treated properly. As in crafting origami and tearing telephone books, he explains, “[if] you fold it once, and it’s not just twice the strength, it’s three times the strength.”

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Go there and read. More tomorrow.

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I tried to post about the Transition Movement in Milwaukee last year or the year before and got slammed for it by some editor/publisher woman there for using “too much” copyrighted text. She also dissed my unorthodox style. So I took the post down and replaced it with one about transition groups in Boston or Los Angeles. Maybe even the mothership in England. Let us see how this goes this time around.

http://onmilwaukee.com/living/articles/transitionmilwaukee.html?viewall=1

Transition Milwaukee: “we’re all in this together”

By Royal Brevväxling RSS Feed
Special to OnMilwaukee.com

E-mail author | Author bio
More articles by Royal Brevväxlin

Published May 30, 2012 at 5:31 a.m.

Transition Milwaukee (TM) is part of an international movement formed, in part, in response to the peak oil crisis and more generally around issues of climate change, economic security and permaculture principles.

Peak oil is a non-controversial acknowledgement from government, academic and industry experts that fossil fuels, a finite resource, reach a peak moment of production and necessarily begin to decline.

Any controversy that peak oil generates is from determining when this peak production will occur, from a few decades into the future to it already peaking in 2007. Bigger questions about what a society that can’t rely on fossil fuels looks like also stir up debate – and emotions.

Permaculture principles are those that inform design and systems theories about how to develop not only sustainable but self-maintained and regenerative ecological systems. Modern agriculture and societies based on oil consumption are not regarded as sustainable.

TM’s goals involve a “whole-systems” approach toward making our economies sustainable and regenerative for seven generations into the future.

“Right now, Transition Milwaukee acts as a network of concerned activists who are working toward reducing the radius in which we get our goods and services, food, water and shelter,” says Jessica Cohodes, TM steering committee leader, press contact and “big-picture synthesizer.”

Members of TM don’t really have official titles. Although it has a steering committee, TM is organized non-hierarchically.

“Transition Milwaukee has always been a group, grass-roots endeavor about the community, from the ground up. Part of its founding philosophy is that it isn’t someone else’s job to get us off oil, but our job,” says Erik Lindberg, a former TM steering committee member who regularly gives presentations on energy and the environment.

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Go there and read. More tomorrow.

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It is clear that we have to prepare for a future with only clean energy sources in it. Well we used to think everyone agreed with that. But now comes the rich billionaires who have taken over the Republican Party and sucked in all the people who can’t or won’t tolerate change. They want their incandescent lights back.

http://cleantechnica.com/2012/05/16/is-clean-energy-yet-another-culture-war/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+IM-cleantechnica+%28CleanTechnica%29

Is Clean Energy Yet Another Culture War?

May 16, 2012 By

Source: Clean Technica (http://s.tt/1c0hi)

David Roberts of Grist had a great post the other day portraying clean energy as a culture war. I think it’s highly worth a read, so I’m reposting it in full from Grist to make it easy as pie to not pass up (note: there’s also a Part II linked at the bottom of the post that is worth a read):

by David Roberts

Not that long ago, some folks were arguing that clean energy — unlike climate change, which had been irredeemably stained by partisanship (eww!) — would bring people together across ideological lines. Persuaded by the irrefutable wisdom of wonks, we would join hands across the aisle to promote common-sense solutions. It wouldn’t be partisan, it would be … post-partisan.

Some day, I will stop mocking the people who said that. But not today. The error is an important one and it is still made regularly, especially by hyper-educated U.S. elites. They think clean energy is different from climate change, that it won’t get sucked into the same culture war. They are wrong.

On clean energy, the material/financial aspects of the conflict are the easiest to understand. Wind, solar, and the rest threaten the financial dominance and political influence of dirty energy. Last week, the Guardian broke the story of a confidential memo laying out a plan to demonize and discredit clean energy, meant to coordinate the plans/messages of several big right-wing super PACs funded by dirty-energy money.

At the bottom of that same piece, though, is one of the best expressions I’ve ever seen of the cultural and psychological aspects of the conflict

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Go there and read. More tomorrow.

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Might as well end the week with a kick off for the next. Earth Day is Sunday, but Springfield can’t seem to get its act together on the actual day. But at least people celebrate it. Happy weekend everyone.

http://digg.com/newsbar/topnews/10_things_we_ve_learned_about_the_earth_since_last_earth_day

April 19, 2012

10 Things We’ve Learned About the Earth Since Last Earth Day

Sunday is the 42nd celebration of Earth Day, which was started in 1970 by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson to help educate people about environmental issues and demonstrate public support for a conservationist agenda. With that in mind, we decided it was the right time to recap the most surprising, awe-inspiring and alarming things that we have learned about the Earth and the environment since last year’s holiday:

1. Undiscovered species are still out there: Countless discoveries over the past year reminded us that, despite centuries of research, the planet still has plenty of surprise species in store. Among the many finds include seven new forest mice species in the Philippines, a “psychedelic” gecko in Vietnam and a new type of dolphin in AustraliaA new analysis released last August, billed as the most accurate ever, estimated that a total of 8.7 million different species of life exist on earth.

2. Global warming is already driving up food prices: While many fear that climate change will someday reduce crop yields and cause food prices to rise, a study published last May in Science indicates that this troubling trend has already gotten started. The models used suggest that reduced global yields of wheat and corn are related to global warming. Although the effects are relatively small so far, they may cause severe problems in the future, as climate patterns continue to change and food demand increases.

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Go there and read. More next week.

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I put off starting the annual gardening meditation because I could not believe that on March 20th Winter was really done. Actually we planted some spinach and peas at the beginning of March but we half expected them to die eventually from frost, an ice storm or snow. But now it is pretty clear that global warming is here so what better way to celibrate then to plant potatoes and onion sets. Here is a nifty new wheel barrow.

http://www.wagle.com/gardening/containerscarts/flexi-yard-cart-economy-wheel-barrow

One of the drawbacks associated with traditional wheelbarrows is time consuming lifting, shoveling and scooping that takes its toll on your back. Designed to reduce stress on the upper body and make the arduous chore of moving yard debris a snap, the innovative Flexi Yard Carts put the main bucket area on the ground where the load is! Used just like a dustpan, you can roll, push, or rake all manner of material quickly and easily while also being able to haul heavy items more efficiently. Nimble and highly maneuverable, both models feature a lightweight, collapsible design for compact storage after each use. Features and Benefits

Features and Benefits

  • Minimizes back breaking work with an ergonomic design that allows you to rake, roll and slide debris directly into the cart.
  • Multi-use, the cart is perfect for gardening, yard clean up and a variety of hauling and transport tasks.
  • Tear proof, extra durable blue Duralite fabric forms the main body.
  • High quality, powder coated steel framework ensures strength.
  • 13 diameter by 3wide front tire makes for easy handling, even over rough terrain.
  • Low center of gravity (50% lower than most wheelbarrows) and self-leveling design allows the Wheel Easy to cradle and stabilize awkward or large loads.
  • Drops flat to the ground allowing loads to be rolled, dragged, pushed or raked directly onto the body of the cart.
  • Rapid release mechanism unclips the cart for simple hose or wipe down cleaning.
  • Cart can be folded flat for compact storage .
  • Holds up to 3 cubic feet of material.
  • Only 21 lbs. but capable of hauling loads over 350 lbs.

Specifications

  • Size Dimensions: 46 L
  • Capacity: 3 cu.ft. and 150 lbs
  • Weight: 12 lbs
  • Composition: Tear proof, extra durable blue Duralite fabric surrounding a high quality, powder coated steel framework to ensure strength.
  • Usage: multi-purpose transport of goods, surpassing the
  • limited functionality of traditional wheelbarrows.
  • Key Features: ground-level loading; light weight; ergonomic design; compact storage
  • Warranty: Manufacturer warranties item for 2 years against defects in materials or workmanship.

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Gotta go mow. Go there and find many more tools. More tomorrow.

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This article speaks for itself.

http://science.howstuffworks.com/environmental/green-science/living-off-the-grid4.htm

How Living Off the Grid Works

by

Off-the-grid Lifestyle

You’re excited about going off the grid now, right? You’re set to get your solar panels and septic tank. You have the well driller booked and you’re ready to say no to utility bills. Before you follow through on all these moves, you need to think about the lifestyle changes that come with going off the grid.

Even with solar and wind power, you’ll still need to limit your use of electricity. Most people interested in living off the grid do so at least in part to live a greener life, so conserving power goes hand-in-hand with this decision. With adequate solar and wind systems, you should be able to operate most of your electric appliances and gadgets, but not necessarily at the same time. If you’re using a hair dryer, avoid using the microwave. If you fire up the blender, unplug your space heater. Major electricity users like washing machines should be operated at night, when your other power needs are minimal. True disciples of the back-to-land movement wouldn’t use a washer and dryer anyway. Washing clothes by hand and using a clothesline is a rustic alternative.

The same goes for your water use. With a cistern system, in periods of little rain you might need to let the dishes pile up for a couple of days or limit your toilet flushes. Some people go so far as to turn off the shower water while they lather or wash their hair. Collecting additional non-potable water in rain barrels is a great way to water plants, wash dishes and keep your pets hydrated without dipping into your well or cistern.

Energy Star appliances are the most efficient on the market and a good way to save money on your bills. Look for the yellow stickers on the appliances when you buy them and compare the ratings. In addition to saving energy, the government offers rebates on Energy Star appliances, so you’ll be saving money as well. You should­ also switch your light bulbs to the energy-saving compact fluorescent bulbs.

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Go there and read. More tomorrow.

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