Once merely science fiction, the personal computer has become deeply entrenched in the lives of millions. Three years ago, three quarters of Australian households had internet access – up from one sixth just a decade earlier. As the intricate web of computer technology increases its reach, it takes a toll on the environment through chemical production processes and ewaste. Operating under the full life cycle philosophy, Recompute desktops introduce sustainability through the manufacturing, usage and disposal stages. The cardboard layering act as a natural ventilation, cutting down on electricity use for fans and cooling systems. Say hello to eco-friendly computing.
Street art is a topic heavily debated. Many question whether or not it is really ‘art’. Others ascertain that any form of self expression is a creative endeavor to be admired and preserved. But suppose that spray paint was replaced with a living, breathing material and the urban landscape was adorned with verdant lushness as a result. London-based artist Anna Garforth is part of an on-going street art project, applying poetic prose and creating a petite ecosystem in the process. Green thumbs worldwide are growing masterpieces through the unique artform of moss graffiti, melding guerrilla gardening and art installation. Watch your art grow before your eyes using this guide.
Since Al Gore stepped forward and presented us an inconvenient truth about the future of our planet, ‘going green’ is on the increase and change is on the horizon. The documentary was an entry in the 2006 Sundance Film Festival and has since encouraged heated discussion and spurred a call to action for greener living. Following in the footsteps of film-based awareness, an Australian co-op is calling for creatives to push their boundaries and give carbon the flick. Green Screen is seeking film submissions of up to 5 minutes that communicate a positive message about a clean energy future through any genre or style. This joint effort by the Climate Scientists of Macquarie University, The University of Melbourne and Monash Sustainability Institute, aims to promote positive change in the great climate debate. The deadline for submissions is Friday 10 February 2012 so get those cameras rolling.
From a light dusting of snow, to lush spring greenery, this beautiful time-lapse video captures the four seasons in Oslo, Norway.
At the foot of the snow-capped mountains of Styria, emerald green waters lap at pine trees along the edge of the Green Lake. When Spring arrives, the snow melts away and fills the basin below with ice cold, crystal clear water. Below the surface of the lake lies one of natures most strange and beautiful phenomenon. During the colder months, the lake is a completely dry parkland, a favourite among hiking enthusiasts. When the summer months roll in, the rocky paths, roads, grassy knolls, park benches and bridges become submerged beneath the melted snow-caps. Hikers are replaced with scuba divers, wading their way through the surreal setting on the lake bed. The waters reach their peak in June, up to 10 meters, providing an experience unlike any other for the avid diver.
Have you ever entertained the idea of leaving your current lifestyle behind and shifting to the countryside? Stripping back one’s life is something we have all considered at one point or another. But few of us have probably considered taking on the simple lifestyle of a rice farmer. Situated in Chiang Rai in northern Thailand, the Tigerland Rice Farm is nestled amid untouched farmland and natural rich scenery. The farm was started to accommodate those with a desire to experience the life of a rice farmer and learn firsthand the planting and harvesting of rice in a paddy field. The Tigerland experience includes a range of activities on the farm itself and several tours of nearby villages and natural landmarks. The farm also reinforces the idea of ecotourism that is sustainable as well as rewarding.
When looking at the Interactive Museum of the History of Lugo from an aerial perspective, an intriguing landscape filled with wonderment greets the eye. Designed by architecture firm, Nieto Sobejano Arquitectos, the museum has been created to respect the natural landscape and to consume minimal energy. To preserve the leafy surrounds, much of the museum has been built underground. By creating an underground space, the thermal inertia of the earth naturally cools the museum and any traffic to the museum is also housed in an underground carpark, thus reducing the wear and tear on the lush landscape. Above ground, the rustic, weathered-steel cylinders that jut from the grass are reminiscent of the industrial zone that once stood in the area. Outdoor exhibits are encased in a metal skin that has been designed to be fitted with energy-efficient solar panels.
For environmental pioneer David Suzuki, a call to leadership marks an invitation for local and global community members to join a quest for sustainability. Encouraging society to strive to find a harmonious balance between seafood consumption and environmental stewardship, the David Suzuki Foundation puts the future first: “If we care about ourselves and our children and grandchildren, we must look beyond our immediate surroundings and do all we can to care for the oceans.” As Australians gear up to welcome the season of long summer days spent peeling fresh prawns, and beachside barbecue feasts brimming with freshly caught fish – now is the time to consider the sustainable nature of our seafood purchases. Promoting mindful consumer practices, the Australian Marine Conservation Society has developed its online Sustainable Seafood Guide, which divides Australian seafood into ‘better choices’, ‘think twice before buying’ and ‘steer clear’.
What do you have scheduled in your calendar for this September 14? Al Gore invites us to join in a global conversation as part of The Climate Reality Project.
When a container of juice becomes empty, the bottle is still perfectly capable of holding juice, or any liquid for that matter. The trouble for juice bottles is that there are few opportunities for the bottle to be refilled and, as such, the bottle is generally thrown straight into the recycling pile. With the goal to change the way people approach grocery shopping, in.gredients aims to be the first zero-waste and package-free supermarket in the United States. Similar to the concept of taking your own eco-friendly shopping bags to the shops, the in.gredients philosophy is simple – customers bring their own containers from home and stock them with local, seasonal, organic produce. The environmental stewards, as they call themselves, say this ethos of negating the need for packaging in the first place is the next step in the precycling trend.
It is said that, in the future, the most valuable resource in the world will be water. When faced with water restrictions in the heat of a dry summer, we realise how much we use and how much goes to waste. It is not an easy task to conserve water, even in our own homes. GOOD and Column Five Media have collaborated to reveal via this intriguing infographic what the future looks like as precious global water supplies begin to dwindle. With only one percent of the world’s freshwater available for human consumption, one in six people are left without access to clean water for hydration and agriculture. While there are many initiatives dedicated to preventing this dire future from materialising, on the local front, Australian charity WaterAid is dedicated to fostering a world where everyone has access to clean water to escape the stranglehold of poverty and disease caused by unsanitary reserves.
Perhaps it is the gracefulness of a majestic whale, the playful nature of a cheeky dolphin, or the unity of a school of fish, but the ocean never fails to imbue a sense of awe in human beings as they behold its many wonders. Surrounded by vast seas and home to the world’s largest coral reef, many Australians share a special connection with the ocean. An opportunity for ocean-lovers to take a glimpse at life underneath the waves without having to don a wetsuit is the Australian Marine Conservation Society’s charity screening of the film Oceans. The film delves into the curious world that exists beneath the waves and all of the proceeds from tickets will be going towards the protection of the unique wildlife that calls the ocean home. The screening will take place at the Palace Barracks Cinema on June 7 and tickets can be purchased here.
The sun has many benefits, not least of which includes giving us our daily dose of vitamin D. Perhaps even more important is its ability to offer us an alternative sustainable source of power as we work towards a greener planet. Helping the sun do its work is Earthsave at Geebung and its range of solar-power products, which help you come up with a bespoke sustainable solution for your home. And if you’ve been pondering a switch to solar, now’s the time to do it, with the government’s solar-power rebates reducing and the solar-hot-water rebate likely to be withdrawn in 2012. @
A car bequeaths upon its owner the freedom to go almost anywhere, anytime. This means weekend getaways to the beach and a backup plan for those days when you sprint for the bus, but still just miss it. But with this freedom sometimes comes the consciousness of polluting our precious environment. The Nissan Leaf is unique because, unlike other low-emission cars powered by internal-combustion engines, it has no tail pipe and therefore emits no CO2 gases when being driven. With a clean, chic design, the car is operated by laminated compact lithium-ion batteries that generate a power output of more than 90 kW.
If you have ever stumbled across a wind-power documentary whilst mindlessly flicking through the television channels, you will have seen the images of wind-powered farms – large fields filled with rows and rows of turbines designed to generate energy from the wind. While these large fields of turbines can generate a great deal of energy, clearing large expanses of land in the middle of nowhere is not the most efficient way of harnessing wind power. The Power Flower, on the other hand, cleverly captures energy from the wind in urban settings. The shape and form of Power Flower means it will not look out of place in a backyard, park or beside a footpath, and its close proximity to energy-consuming buildings makes the energy harvesting process much more effective. This means that domestic households can now access wind power the same way they do solar power. Just like all good trees and flowers, the Power Flower helps clean the air, and in return it doesn’t even ask for a drink of water in return.
When it comes to international travel, there is a select group of seafaring ladies who generally subscribe to the idea that inspiration and adventure are to be found on the journey – rather than the destination. For Juliet, Janne and Tika, and their fellow aquatic peers, life as a leatherback sea turtle involves an impressive amount of globetrotting. Tracked by satellite for the first time, the migration paths of 25 critically endangered female sea turtles have been monitored as the creatures embark on their mammoth crossing of the South Atlantic Ocean. Clocking up more than 7,000 kilometres on their journey between Africa and South America, the Atlantic turtles’ migration paths have been captured by satellite technology, allowing researchers to identify international conservation concerns.
You’ve carefully mapped out your morning swim, decided on your stroke of choice. Your goggles hug your head snugly and you soak up the endorphin rush as your body breaks the still surface of the lap pool beneath you. Your eyes blink, expecting to be greeted by the continuous black line to guide your laps. Instead, your swim is suddenly interrupted by monstrous skyscrapers leaping towards you. With the aim of raising awareness of global warming and the threat of rising tides, an Indian-based advertising agency has lined a large swimming pool with a giant aerial photo of a sprawling city, creating a dizzying illusion. Created for HSBC Bank by Ogilvy & Mather Mumbai, the ad highlights the client’s environmental initiatives, whilst also drawing attention to issues associated with global warming.
via GOOD Magazine. We Patch, is one of a dozen new websites designed to connect wannabe gardeners with landowners who have available garden space. Let’s say you have an unused space that might make a good pumpkin patch, you offer it up on the website. If you’re a gardener without a garden, you can find available space—and contact the landowner. Sometimes, it leads to a rendezvous and a handshake agreement. Other times, gardeners and landowners spell out exactly how they’ll share produce and labor from a shared plot of land.
I feel like this idea linking social networking and greenspace could be expanded to take care of and be used in public spaces and parks too. It would be interesting to trial. Recently the idea of turning some of New Farm Park back to its farming roots has been flagged with me, and if anyone is interested in this idea, please contact me.