Melissa DeRoso

Melissa DeRoso

Tuesday, 04 January 2011 11:16

Sustainable Future: The Green School In Bali

Imagine learning in an environment that's giving its students a relevant, holistic, green education in one of the most amazing environments on the planet (along with being completely off of the power grid!)

That's exactly what John Hardy, and his wife, Cynthia envisioned a few short years ago as they made this dream a reality in Bali, Indonesia...

At the Green School, kids learn in open-air classrooms surrounded by acres of gardens that they tend; they learn to build with bamboo; and meanwhile they're being prepared for traditional British school exams. The school is international -- 20 percent of students are Bali locals, some on scholarship. The centerpiece of the campus is the spiraling Heart of School, which may be called Asia's largest bamboo building.

Learn more about John Hardy, and view his presentation of exactly how the school was created, and the materials used used.

It's truly amazing! 

Looking to have some fun with the Internet?

Try to find the Bali Green School using Google Earth!   The beautiful swirling rooftops are unmistakable. Be sure to let me know if you find it, too. :)

Here's to the future - as bright as it will be!

Less Harm, More Harmony~

Dan

We've all heard of Elon Musk, our very own Tony Stark, but have you heard of his newest plan? How would you feel about turning your entire roof solar? After merging his two companies, SolarCity and Tesla, he announced that his master plan is to release a solar roof. Now let me clarify here, this is not a roof that has solar panels on it with the normal asphalt shingle roof underneath it, but a roof that is actually made up of solar panels! This could potentially open up an entirely new market allowing for the sale of a solar roof instead of just the panels that go on top of it. The possibilities are endless here! Gone would be the days of being limited to the amount of panels that you can install at your home due to the available space on your roof! It's a very interesting concept, one we are very intrigued to learn more about! Leave us a comment below to tell us what you think about it, and if you think this is something you would be interested in! 

Wednesday, 24 November 2010 11:43

Florida Can Be Energy and Food Independent

Here's my thought for the Thanksgiving weekend...

Florida Can Be Energy and Food Independent
Florida has an abundance of natural resources.
Plenty of sunshine.
Plenty of (moving) water.
Plenty of land.
There's enough energy landing on our roofs and flowing in the Gulf Stream to provide all the power we need.
There's enough land and water to provide all the food we need.
There's enough intelligence to make it happen.

How do you feel about this?  Please comment below, and I'd love to hear from you...

-Dan

Wow! I stumbled upon this video today and it really sums up how fossil fuels have powered human growth and ingenuity for centuries -- all in 5 short minutes!

Now that we're reaching the end of cheap and abundant oil and coal supplies, we're in for an exciting ride. While there's a real risk that we'll fall off a cliff, there's still time to control our transition to a post-carbon future.

This amazing animated short movie is written and narrated by Richard Heinberg, author of many related books.

Be sure to watch it and let me know what you think by commenting below!

The US Solar Electric Industry, including both solar photovoltaic (PV) and concentrating solar power (CSP) installations could achieve a milestone by installing a gigawatt of new capacity in 2010!

That's enough to power 200,000 homes, and it's double capacity installed in 2009.

Rhone Resch, the president & CEO of Solar Energy Industries Assocation (SEIA), which organized the event with the Solar Electric Power Association (SEPA), said:

"We now live in a world where you can be born in a solar hospital, get educated in a solar school, go to a solar college and while there drink beer brewed at a solar brewery.

Get married in a solar church, go to work in a solar office building, watch your favorite baseball team in a solar stadium and live in a country protected by the world's best armed forces powered by solar.  And I'm hopeful that when I get to that magic age, my kids have the opportunity to put me in a solar-powered nursing home. The breadth and depth of solar in our lives is amazing."

 

Image courtesy of National Geographic - Gulf Oil Spill Segment.

"There is more to the cost of oil than the ticking numbers at the fuel pump" was the editor of National Geographic's October 2010 Gulf Oil Spill segment's parting comment on Page 4 (Editor's Note).

After the initial assessment of the Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill - he speaks the truth...

That cost is becoming increasing visible and painful.

National Geographic has done an excellent job of providing great in-depth coverage of the recent Gulf Oil Spill, and it's all available online, as well as in print.

If you have a moment, let me know how you feel about National Geographic's coverage by commenting below.

Thank you,

-Dan

We're very happy to announce we've been awarded a contract to install a 54kW solar electric (photovoltaic) system at the Lee County Public Safety Building.

Lee County New Release

Even better?

It's at no cost to taxpayers!

Our Solar Operations and Project Manager, says:

"The Lee County Board of County Commissioners has accessed Federal grant money to help reduce operating costs at the Lee County Public Safety Building.”

Not only will this put our local skilled solar technicians to work right here in Lee County, but it will continue to pay dividends to the county for decades. It will also decrease the County’s dependence on fossil fuels by tapping into the most abundant renewable energy source in the Sunshine State.

In addition, it is a flexible system that allows for future expansion.

Fafco Solar’s Sales Manager says, “We are proud to be invited to work with Lee County Officials that recognize the positive financial, as well as, environmental advantages of renewable energy."

Enjoy!

-Dan

Wednesday, 04 August 2010 09:20

Three Problems with Oil

It was almost 10 years ago when I wrote this, and I think it's interesting how it still applies, so I thought I would share it with you:

Problem #1: We don’t know the true cost of oil:

We’re a little angry because we think we’re paying too much for gas.

Surprisingly, and perhaps foolishly, we still aren’t taking into consideration other costs we are currently paying via tax dollars.

    • Do we have any idea how many of our tax dollars are being spent defending our oil interests around the world?
    • How many are spent cleaning up the environment and regaining our health due to pollution?
    • How many are spent, incredulously, subsidizing the oil industry. (What? Isn’t the oil industry profitable enough to pay it’s own bills?)

I don’t know if anyone knows the real number, but the cost has got to be painfully high. If these additional costs were paid at the gas pump… just how angry might we be?

Problem #2: Oil is now the wrong fuel.

Granted, oil has served us well for the past hundred years or so… and the industrial age has increased our standard of living immensely… but the side effects are now too serious to continue using this type of fuel any longer.

We all know this and being the good people that we are, we want to do the right thing, use harmless fuel, but…

Problem #3: Our freedom to choose better energy sources is impeded.

Oil companies are motivated by profits.

Politicians are motivated by power.

You and I are motivated by costs.

When we get hit in the pocket, we get angry and act. 

Yet, because we don’t know and don’t pay the true and total cost of gas at the pump, we’re not very angry or motivated… in spite of the recent increases.

As long as we’re pacified by the illusion of low gas prices… an illusion that is perpetuated by a quiet but powerful collusion between the oil industry and politicians… we won’t insist on using alternative energy sources that seem, but by true comparison aren’t, more expensive.

I advocate that our tax dollars not be spent subsidizing the oil industry… that our tax dollars not be spent cleaning up oil spills… and that our tax dollars not be spent defending our oil interests.

If the oil industry was made to pay these costs and consequently we paid these costs at the pump, we would feel the true and painful urgency needed to develop and use better energy sources.

There’s a better way… and I have no doubt that the creative geniuses in the world can develop affordable fuel that serves our needs without causing harm to the environment and ourselves.

- Dan - October 14, 2000

Friday, 30 July 2010 09:01

Change Your Fuel... Change Your World

Wow, I just saw this movie and I highly recommend it!

Fuel was released on June 22, 2010 on DVD and is an in-depth personal journey of Josh Tickell (filmmaker & eco-evangelist) who spent 11 years making it! He takes us on a journey around the world trying to find different solutions to Americ's addiction/dependency to oil.

He highlights different issues such as our overwhelming national debt, our insatiable demand for energy, and our shrinking economy while explaining the way out of the mess we're in. He explains how to replace all of the oil we now use, while creating environmentally friendly jobs and keeping our hard earned money right here at home. 

It's got very high reviews, and is focused on inspiring you, rather than dwelling on muckraking.

If you've seen Fuel, or watch it because I recommend it, please comment below and let me know what you think.

Thank you,

-Dan

Wow, I saw this on the BBC web site, and thought I'd share it. 

This BBC article discusses how two US companies will be given a large amount of money to help jump-start our solar industry. The money that will be given to these two companies will come from a government stimulus find that is designed to boost the economy during the recession, one of which will use the money to create the world's largest parabolic trough plant as well as the first solar plant in the US with molten salt thermal energy storage.

This initiative will not only provide jobs, but it will provide energy from the sun to power over 70,000 homes WHILE cutting carbon dioxide emissions.

This is good news!

Enjoy!

- Dan

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