Ann Larkin Hansen of Storey Publishing will present four workshops on sustainable farming and bugs at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
A BIG issue in everyone’s lives today is increasing fuel costs. The seriousness and scope of our energy problems calls for an all-out effort for sustainable solutions, starting as soon as possible.
SunRay Kelley’s Gypsy Wagon is an exciting, sustainable home on wheels built from a camper vehicle.
Passive solar design comes to Navajo families, as architecture students build homes on Utah reservations.
Cam speaks to a group of university students about "sustainable" development...
There are two situations which do not require you to be heating your home: when it is warm and when you are not at home. Since it is still a bit chilly outside, you may want to consider setting up a routine of turning down the set temperature on your thermostat when you head out in the morning and when you go to bed.
Monitoring energy use has led to increased motivation for conservation
Now's the time to redouble our efforts to tap into energy efficiency. The potential is huge and the benefits are even greater.
Our humble abode begins to take shape.
Kirk Haffner, solar power expert, and Jeff Swotek of the USDA will present workshops on solar power and USDA programs at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
Steve explains how one practical guy invented a way to burn pellets efficiently without an expensive pellet stove
Low-fired brick is a very sustainable building material with low embodied energy. They are made with locally procured clay and fired with rice hulls, a by-product of growing rice. Brickyards are located near urban areas to minimize transport costs.
The Obama Administration releases its plans for new renewable energy sources. Ken Salazar, Secretary of the Interior, explains that the new solar energy zones span six states and keep both domestic energy and environmental preservation in mind. If completed, the power generated from these solar energy zones would provide electricity to roughly seven-million homes.
Let's stop for a minute and think about what we are doing!
Solar Energy International (SEI), the National Wildlife Refuge System, and the National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service all offer events to educate participants in varying pursuits. This blog provides links to activity calendars and workshop schedules.
A three-part series on sustainable comfort systems for heating and cooling homes using passive solar design, solar electric power, system controllers and newly popular heat pump technology.
A 3-part series on sustainable comfort systems for heating and cooling homes using passive solar design, solar electric power, system controllers and newly popular heat pump technology.
Many criticize eliminating coal mining in West Virginia because of the amount of jobs the sector provides. A wind farm, however, would employ over 200 local residents during the two-year construction phase, and create 40-50 permanent maintenance jobs afterward. A wind farm would also allow the mountain to be used for other purposes, like sustainable forestry, mountain harvesting, and gathering of wild forest plants, creating additional jobs and the opportunity for stable income for locals.
Americans equate products made in the USA with sustainability and often choose American-made products over other options, a study finds.
Most American homes are codependent with a lifestyle-support-system of roads, wires, pipes, lines of credit, satellites, and a collective identity determined by the supply side. Yet just about any household budget offers continuing opportunities for creating a healthier, less expensive lifestyle that’s also easier on the environment.
A ForestEthics report calls out the American Forest and Paper Association-backed Sustainable Forestry Initiative label for not protecting forests.
Coporations continue to purchase interests in seed industries. Could this be a problem?
Publisher Bryan Welch's conviction that we need a better vision for our future led him to consider the way we form images, which led him to holograms. Humanity’s perception of its present world and its vision for its future are formed from billions of individual perspectives. Each individual human being possesses a unique vision, a single point in the light field. Each perspective records the person’s place in space and time. Each point of light forms a complete image, a complete vision for the future. When we reproduce the light field projected by those billions of unique visions, we get a three-dimensional picture of humanity’s combined vision. Effectively, we can’t perceive the future in three dimensions without taking into account the entire light field. Find out more about how we can use this idea to create a model for a sustainable future that can be applied across the globe.
In most cases, we can't do all of the things we would like to live more sustainable lives — at least, not all right away. We can all do something, though, and making the choices and taking the steps that we can is an effective, satisfying way to make our lives more self-reliant and better for the planet every day.
The only practical means of creating abundance in our world requires examining the ratio between our capacities and our desires. Our capacities can be measured. Our desires can, presumably, be adjusted to fit within our capacities. And if we fit our desires within our capacities with some room left over then abundance is possible.
The highest goal of politics might be to instill a sense of fairness in society, since that sense of fairness promotes tranquility, productivity and prosperity. The cooperation that undergirds a healthy society — the social contract — is based on a sense of fairness. Without it, a society is unhealthy and unproductive and, ultimately, ceases to exist. As the next big challenges facing our species will be global challenges, considering fairness from a global perspective will be one key to creating true sustainability.
If we need a vision for a sustainable future then we need a lot of people to contribute their own ideas and energy to forming and realizing that vision. If we are to attract the energy of millions of people to the task, then we must start with beauty in the frame.
Fairness and repeatability share this essential value: They can be visualized today, even when sustainability cannot. If we make fairness and repeatability part of our criteria for decisions today, they contribute to sustainability in the long-term even if they don’t provide permanent solutions.
A 3-part series on sustainable comfort systems for heating and cooling homes using passive solar design, solar electric power, system controllers and newly popular heat pump technology.
Consider these simple steps for making your backyard flock-friendly.
KOR Water has announced the reusable Nava filtering water bottle.
Missoula, MT company awards home owners sustainable products.
Living luxuriously doesn’t necessarily mean living large — at least not in these homes — and reducing a little waste doesn’t hurt, either.
Look out guys — these women really know what 21st century farming is all about.
Here's a helpful guide to help you make sustainable choices while shopping or out to eat. What else do you do to support sustainable farming practices?
BuildingGreen.com founder and Environmental Building News editor Alex Wilson wins Hanley Award for Vision and Leadership in Sustainable Housing.
Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence reviews the sustainably minded Fairmont Hotels.
The book Toolbox for Sustainable City Living: A Do-It-Ourselves Guide is a collection of skills, tools, and technologies usable by urban residents wanting to have more local access and control over life's essential resources.
Help us discover ways to achieve an affordable sustainable diet.
The Monterey Bay Aquarium updates The Super Green List, a guide to helping you choose healthy and safe seafood from more sustainable waters.
Decision from the USDA: Farmers won't be allowed to break their CRP contract without penalty.
Wherever you live, you can practice sustainability and share your successes with your neighbors.
Luke Dinan, a young man from Toronto, Ontario, is forging his way towards sustainable living and a self-reliant lifestyle; a path we can appreciate, strive for and maybe contribute to.
In business, we build a vision of the company at its most successful and we articulate a set of questions to guide us toward that vision. If it works, more or less universally, in business, then why couldn’t we apply it to other large, complex undertakings?
Asking if an idea or action is fair and repeatable is one way to determine if it will be useful in building a beautiful, abundant future.
Step Forward Paper is a new type of paper made most from wheat straw (80 percent to be exact) with the remaining 20 percent made of Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified wood fiber.
Most of us would love to live in energy-efficient homes that are good for the environment and have low, low energy bills. But what are the best real options available? How do you create an extremely energy-efficient home that’s still affordable for most people?
Any net zero-energy home needs two things. The first is the sun, providing passive solar energy. The second necessity is retaining maximum heat.
The Canadian government’s ecoENERGY program stops giving financial assistance for energy-efficient home improvements.
Sustainability starts at home—but it sure does help to have community backing. Natural Home magazine editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence takes a closer look at the Cambridge Energy Alliance, a nonprofit, community-supported program that offers free energy audits and customized plans to make homes and buildings more eco-friendly.
The requirements for the much-trusted Energy Star label have changed after a government test discovered exploitable flaws in its certification process.
Every year, the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) releases a report assessing each state’s programs and policies for energy-efficiency. See how your home state did in 2010!
Geothermal energy is cleaner than fossil fuels and is endlessly renewable. Find out more about why we should seriously reconsider geothermal energy as a way to meet the world's energy needs.
This current situation is a perfect example of the 80/20 rule of homesteading: 80 percent of your time, energy and effort is spent on maintenance; 20 percent on progress towards the dream. A majority of your time homesteading is spent covered in chicken poop, squashing potato bugs, figuring out why gas isn’t getting to the carburetor in the ATV and shoveling snow after dark by headlamp.
The all-new RZT S ZERO is available in select markets and will be headlining the Cub Cadet Test Drive Experience Tour.
Be aware: Living sustainably can be hindered by homeowner association rules.
Hello to my new life and good-by to the old.
We claim to live sustainably if we can harvest or extract the earth’s resources without depleting or permanently damaging them. By that standard, no one in a country that devours coal, oil and water—and uses up a quarter of the earth’s resources—can live sustainably.
Seventh Generation commits to using sustainable palm oil in all products by 2012.
ForestEthics exposes Sustainable Forestry Initiative Greenwash, catalyzing growing corporate trend and grassroots consumer movement to avoid SFI.
An interview with the founder of a small organic gardening business that focuses on education and helping gardeners go organic. Learn more about this company and vote for it to win funding from a small business competition.
Readers suggest sustainable oyster sources.
This listing links to information resources related to sustainable agriculture, organic farming and gardening, and growing and buying good, safe food.
Tell the U.S. Department of Agriculture to abandon their efforts to create and enforce a National Animal Identification System. We've made it easy for you with sample wording and directions on where to submit your comments.
PBS will air Food, Inc. on TV Wednesday, April 21 at 9 p.m. Eastern.
Manure-spreading day is a big event on the farm, for everyone from the chickens to the border collies. And it's part of a wonderful seasonal cycle that's the foundation of self-reliance and sustainability.
Many sustainable agriculture groups sponsor conferences in the winter. Learn more about these opportunities to continue your learning and broaden your network.
Sustainably harvested cork creates a beautiful flooring material that’s competitively priced with other kinds of sustainable flooring.
An energy audit can help the homeowner determine the best strategies for improving the home's energy efficiency.
Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence explains why wind energy is growing in popularity right now.
The Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency (DSIRE) provides state-by-state information on incentives, rebates and grant programs for renewable energy systems and energy efficient home improvement programs.
Nokero International has been awarded the United States Patent and Trademark Office’s ‘Patents for Humanity’ award.
Admirals Alternatives make it easier to obtain renewable energy systems for your home.
The bar has been raised! Televisions now need to consume less energy to qualify for the Energy Star label.
The new Microsoft Hohm application makes it easy to track your energy use and provides simple recommendations to save energy and money.
Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence shares exciting information about the Google PowerMeter, a new device that helps homeowners find ways to reduce their electric bills.
Yesterday I had coffee with Kirk Adkisson, a pastor who’s starting a progressive Presbyterian church here in Boulder. (In the continual erosion of my judgments and stereotypes, I got to learn this week that “progressive Presbyterian” is not necessarily the oxymoron I had assumed it to be!)
The future looks bright as long as the United States can follow its current energy efficiency programs.
Profitability, efficiency and growth are eternal goals. As we improve, we set higher goals, always asking how to raise the bar so that we continue getting better and better.
The GateMate, by Cartell, has the lowest current draw in standby than any other free exit system on the market.
Here’s advice from a renewable energy expert about what you can expect to pay for a solar-electric system to power your home.
An Energy Efficient Mortgage can help you add value to your home by making home energy improvements more affordable.
Next spring, President Obama will install a solar panels on the roof of the White House. The photovoltaic system will provide hot water and some electricity for the White House living quarters.
Looking for natural ways to ward off that 3 o'clock slump? Real Simple magazine offers nine natural tips for increasing your energy — no pills, caffeine or other stimulants required.
Want to know more about where that $787 billion dollars in the stimulus package is going? Here are links to a couple of timely articles with all the details about how the stimulus package will encourage renewable energy and energy efficiency.
Check out these high-quality workshops on solar electricity, home energy efficiency, and small wind energy systems. Geared to homeowners, aspiring professionals, students and teachers - anyone wishing to learn more about renewable energy systems
Honey bees, the Boston tragedy, and our power to create the world we’ve been waiting for.
Restaurants in the United Kingdom can be evaluated and accredited based on choices such as purchasing ethical meat and dairy products, choosing fair trade coffee, monitoring energy use, supporting community charities and serving tap water.
While productivity is often the name of the game at large farms, local food, minimal environmental impact and healthy conditions for farm workers also are hot topics today. Yet, our agriculture — and our living — have a greater impact on the environment and the life it supports than these issues alone address.
ECO360 Trust produces sustainable T-shirts made from 100% recycled PET plastic water bottles. ECO360 Trust is a campaign of the non-profit Institute for Sustainable Communication.
Congress is accused of bait-and-switch tactics when they propose millions in reductions to the conservation-related program assistance that helped pass the 2008 farm bill.
Jacobs Farm in Santa Cruz, Calif. was recently awarded $1 million in damages for lost income due to pesticide drift.
Secure grant funds for your farmers market, community-supported agriculture program and more by applying to the USDA by April 27.
Where is the strange and wonderful place this homesteader describes? And how do you get there?
Looking for a farming internship or apprenticeship? Search the National Sustainable Agriculture Information Center’s online directory of farming internships and apprenticeships to find one that interests you.
The workshop series "In Her Shoes: Sustainable Farming for Women, by Women" will provide on-farm, women-led sharing of resources, experiences and inspiration to further connect, encourage and support female organic farmers, entrepreneurs and agricultural leaders. These all-day workshops will be in Wisconsin and Minnesota, and each will cost $20 and include lunch.
Experiences getting started gardening in the 1970's and suggestions for beginning your own projects in 2012.
Arthur Bolduc shares his story of experiencing life near an Amish community in Ohio, where he enjoyed the exciting process of sorghum production firsthand.
Animal products provide vitamin B12 in your diet, which is necessary for a healthy nervous system. Learn what and how much you would have to eat to meet your daily B12 need and other considerations for adding animals to a sustainable diet.
Focus on Food records an episode from Chaffin Orchards and discusses sustainable farming and the ethics of eating meat.
Sailors for the Sea presents its new Rainy Day Kits teach young sailors to care about marine ecology and the environment with fun, interactive games.
Guest blogger and longtime advocate of sustainable food Gwen Roland reflects on the new popularity of local eating, and highlights some of the innovative local food projects funded by Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) grants.
The Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture’s upcoming annual conference on sustainable farming will focus on how to achieve sustainability in our food system, as well as the future of agriculture in general.
We know why we love heritage breed livestock, but why do you?
Save time and avoid blisters and burnout by following these common-sense guidelines this leaf season.
Eric, Michael and Loren decided to build a winter shelter from natural and re-used materials two winters ago, their first ever natural building experiment. This is an account of that experience that changed their lives in mysterious and unforeseen ways (for the better!).
For many people, going green seems like a daunting task, but in reality, a few simple lifestyle changes is all you need.
Permaculture is at the heart of the solution of many environmental crises. Permaculture is alive with the possibilities of positive change.
Celebrate meals with homegrown or local food. Tips for making your celebration gatherings zero-waste events.
Sixty-one percent of Americans say they understand our nation's energy issues, but more than half have never heard the term "smart grid." We have a lot to talk about.
Solar Energy International is excited to announce the 2013 Online Solar Training schedule! On Jan. 14, we will kick off this year's online training schedule with some of the most rigorous solar training in the industry. Join thousands of people from all over the world in SEI's Online Campus!
Check out how millions of gallons of water can be saved by Aug. 11, 2009!
Let's face it: Tax audits have given the word "audit" a bad name. But a home energy audit is a good thing, and every home can benefit from the information and recommendations a home energy audit provides.
The Solar Energy Tour is coming to communities all over the U.S. the first weekend of October — learn how to attend an event, or create one yourself.
More than the electricity needed to run these machines, the “rinse hold” hot water setting that many households use is the biggest energy drain associated with dishwashers – as much as 80 percent of the energy your dishwasher uses goes to heat water.
U.S. energy consumers will rely more on natural gas and renewables and less on imports in 2011. Coal remains dominant.
The Home Star Energy Retrofit Act of 2010, which passed the House on May 5, would provide $6 billion in rebates to homeowners who make energy-efficient upgrades to their homes.
Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence explains a Pew Charitable Trusts study that finds that jobs in the clean energy sector are growing faster than jobs in the fossil fuel industry.
Summer marks the start of buzzing AC units, but this doesn’t have to waste energy or drain your wallet. By accessing the energy leaks in your home with a simple energy audit, you’ll save money on utility bills. Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence explains how to perform a home energy audit.
Hold on to the holiday spirit while saving energy and money this season with holiday LED lights.
Henry Red Cloud moved back to the Pine Ridge Reservation 12 years ago and started looking into renewable energy. Since then he has started a solar heating system company and a renewable energy training center to serve the Native American community.
American and European renewable power sources made up more than half of the countries' new electrical capacity in 2009.
Tonight when you get home from work or school, call your utility company and ask what incentives they have for you to get an energy audit for your home. Many utilities have been offering free energy audits for years, but very few people have actually taken advantage.
Renewable energy accounts for nearly 50 percent of added capacity in US in 2012.
Want to Save on Earth-Friendly Products? Check out Worm's Way's sale by clicking on the Earth Week banner at WormsWay.com and enjoy up to 20 percent off your purchases.
Recently, I had an epiphany in a building supply center. Even though I’ve been in the building trades for over 35 years and made countless trips to purchase building supplies, this trip was different.
The accumulation and storage of hay is an essential summer task.
Elizabeth Van Deventer has been on a quest to find the answer to sustainable farming and an ethical diet most of her life. Follow along as she discovers the impacts of producing tea, palm oil and fruit, and how she eventually settles on a lifestyle that is in tune with the earth and all of its creatures.
In this section you will find stories of real farmers across the country that made it work. You'll find their story, how they did it and who helped them. We hope these stories will inspire and educate new farmers, as well as land owners and community members to become involved in the new agrarian movement. A growing trust.
The “One Good Chair” competition winners, announced at Winter Las Vegas Market, demonstrate that minimal materials can result in maximum comfort.
The Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES) hosts its 23rd annual Organic Farming Conference, February 23-25, 2012, at the La Crosse Center in La Crosse, Wis.
Recipe for Southern-style shrimp and grits, made with superb Floriani Red Flint grain corn.
It’s springtime and the weather is getting warm, but that is no excuse for letting money and energy fly out the window every single day. Hopefully you were able to find all the drafts and leaks in your windows last fall (if not, now is just as good a time as any).
Mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will stop accepting loans from the nationwide Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) program, which helps homeowners pay for the cost of energy-efficient retrofits.
Green stadiums are being built all across the nation by a variety of sports franchises and this is only the start. These franchises are also implementing green team programs.
Vermont passed a bill into law last week that established a feed-in tariff policy. The policy is one of the United States' first.
The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee passed a bipartisan bill that does not go far enough for some environmental groups.
New standards for Energy Star refrigerators and freezers will reduce energy consumption and include “connected” features.
According to a recent American Wind Energy Association report, the U.S. market for small wind turbines grew 78 percent in 2008. Manufacturers predict that this trend will continue in the next few years.
Many states are working quickly to develop their wind power resources knowing it will pay off big in the future.
Have you had a home energy audit done before? A home energy audit can show you the best ways to make your home more energy efficient.
Second annual report shows how homeowners consume and conserve energy; one third willing to cool off in undergarments rather than turn down the A/C.
It's about seven unique way's you can use your iPhone to be more energy efficient.
It's how solar energy is more affordable than we may realize.
Alternative energy has become a hot topic in recent years as we try and work towards more sustainable resources. Whether we'll get there or not remains to be seen.
Hanging your clothes up to dry rather than using an electric dryer is a great way to save energy. Here are links to a couple of sturdy wooden indoor drying racks.
Adjusting the timing of your water heater could help you increase energy savings.
Woodstoves can have indoor or outdoor air supplies depending on factors and requirements for the building.
Despite rumors to the contrary, a Prius is still better for the Earth and has less embodied energy than a Hummer.
In 2010, Chevrolet announced that they were embarking on their Carbon Reduction Initiative, an effort to invest $40 million in carbon offset projects across the country with the goal of reducing up to 8 million metric tonnes of CO2 emissions. The program includes wind, landfill-gas-to-energy, solar, efficiency, and conservation projects.
Learn how to build your own wind turbine, install your own solar panels and convert your car to electricity with hands-on teaching by Dan Chiras.
This handy online tool helps calculate your solar energy potential based on your location.
The Appalachian State University team will be blogging about their progress on the solar home they are building for the 2011 Solar Decathlon.
We know that heating, cooling and operating our buildings is responsible for 40 percent of total energy expenditures in this country. That’s a huge percentage. But we also know how to test, evaluate and improve buildings so that energy use can be cut dramatically.
The International Window Film Association says older dwellings can reduce energy use with energy saving window film, which was recently voted into the new California building energy codes.
Are gas guzzlers becoming popular again? Dan Chiras gives his outlook.
The World Community Grid uses grid technology and idle computers to power environmental and humanitarian research projects.
To meet its goal of making all new buildings carbon-neutral by 2030, the American Institute of Architects introduces an online tool that help designers predict how much energy their buildings will use.
The National Renewable Energy Laboratory has invented an air conditioner, the DEVap, that’s up to 90 percent more efficient than traditional ACs.
Looser standards and self-certification have led to a market flooded with Energy Star appliances—many with questionable qualifications.
Touted as one of the greenest cities in the U.S., Boulder, Colorado, isn’t cutting the mustard when it comes to carbon emissions reduction because residents are slow to make energy-saving changes. City officials have gone so far as to send out contractors to perform the simplest changes for homeowners—including changing light bulbs.
A GE Lighting survey finds that 82 percent of Americans use compact fluorescent light bulbs—and 75 percent have no idea that the government plans to phase out incandescent light bulbs starting in 2012.
MyEmissionsExchange.com stimulates the economy and combats global warming by paying registered users for reducing their energy use.
A survey by the Shelton Group, a Tennessee-based advertising firm, reveals why energy-efficient products are flying off the shelves during this tough economic time.
A new government-sponsored program calls for India to replace 400 million incandescent bulbs with CFLs by 2012.
Energy-monitoring devices won big at the Greener Gadgets Conference in New York City.
As we continue to watch a zero energy home get built in my hometown of Boulder, Colorado, I’m digging the opportunity to learn more about building materials that I’ve seen in finished form but never in process. I like the
Almost everyone uses a computer these days. But not everyone knows how much energy is consumed by that one device.Most appliances or electronics tell you the number of watts they use. An average CPU uses 120 watts, while the monitor uses 150 watts. That's 270 watts of power while in use, but there are several easy ways to reduce that amount.
Try these helpful resources to follow environmental legislation currently being debated in Congress.
Here's one helpful link that can help you find out where your favorite candidate stands on nuclear power, biofuels, renewable energy, fuel economy and other hot environmental issues.
Check out this dramatic short movie.
Ready, set, save! Try these online calculators for help finding the best ways to save energy and money at home.
New York makes a plan to increase solar power as part of an aggressive energy policy.
It’s a lot of fun to explore Google Earth, and you can find plenty of good information on environmental topics.
Dan Chiras, founder of The Evergreen Institute, shares information on locating renewable energy training facilities.
Following a disastrous investigation into the Energy Star program’s certification process, the Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency are making major changes, including scrapping automated approval and requiring stricter lab results.
Homeowners want energy-efficient features and functional rooms that will expand on small homes’ square footage, according to a recent American Institute of Architects report.Homeowners want energy-efficient features and functional rooms that will expand on small homes’ square footage, says an American Institute of Architects report.
October 15 is Blog Action Day and this year the topic is poverty. Here are several related blog posts on this subject, especially as it relates to the sustainable living topics that we write about every day.
The Sacramento Municipal Utility Destrict (SMUD) recently approved a FIT policy, which will allow owners of small renewable energy systems in the company's area to sell excess energy back to it. Several areas in the United States have passed similar policies in recent years.
While photovoltaic panels are great for meeting small-scale energy needs (like those of individual homes or businesses), perhaps a more viable large-scale option is concentrated solar power (CSP) technology.
California ranks No. 1 on the ACEEE's scorecard of energy efficient states. See how your state ranked here!
Wouldn't it be nice if we could produce all the energy we needed from local, renewable resources, such as solar and wind power?
Here are some ways to save on energy and money while keeping your home cool in extreme summer temperatures.
Going off the grid offers complete energy independence — no utility bills, no grid outages, ever — but it takes some effort, and you will need to learn how to conserve energy.
When you build with structural insulated panels (SIPs), wiring isn't as much of a challenge as you might think.
You say you’re an environmentalist, but are you practicing what you preach?
When you start measuring electricity use, you may be surprised by which appliances and electronics use the most energy.
MIT researchers announced a breakthrough that could ultimately make it much cheaper and easier to store solar energy.
Here's how you can find people selling home-scale wind turbines near where you live.
Here are the basic options for buying your electricity from sustainable sources.
An index of previous posts that have referenced green products. These posts have covered building- and home-related products, as well as chocolates, books, and other types of goods. Many of the products mentioned in these posts would make good gifts.
Heating water is the highest drain that laundry machines and dishwashers have on your bill. Onaverage, water heating accounts for 18 percent of your energy bill.
If someone told you that you were losing money just by sitting in your home, you would probably want to do whatever you could to change that. Well the reality is that your home is using up energy regularly, and there is a huge chunk of that energy that you do not even need. Luckily, we live in a time when technology is constantly coming up with ways to fix problems such as these. Here are some of the ways that technology can help to save the environment, as well as your wallet.
Put your kitchen on an energy diet without spending money on new appliances. Use these simple tricks to use less energy while cooking, freezing and refrigerating--even drinking your morning coffee.
Beginning July 1, 2011 and continuing for the next five months, legal residents of the U.S. and Canada can enter to win a five-year lease of a New Holland Boomer 30 compact tractor and loader with the industry-leading Boomer Guard5.
It's hard to shop responsibly sometimes, especially for meat. There are so many different label claims that it's hard to remember which are meaningful and which are just fluff. Here's a handy reference card that will give more power to your purchases.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture is seeking comments on how to implement the new Conservation Stewardship Program. Here's the lowdown, plus instructions on how to submit your opinion — it's easy!
I briefly describe my journey from a kid on a large 2000 acre alfalfa farm in the west to a homestead beekeeper in the midwest, on our 35 acres that we call BeeLanding.
My brief discription of sustainable beekeeping
Cam describes why his method of harvesting firewood from his woodlot is the most sustainable way.
We finally see walls and a loft floor.
A quick look at different ways to be sustainable whether you are off grid or not.
Thoughts on growing all your own food. How much space is required and other things to consider.
Regeneration of trees on a harvested area give hope for generations to come.
A wedding using homegrown and local food and no disposable items. Decorations were things already on hand. The ceremony took place in a field and the reception was in a barn...and there was love-lots of it!
With an understanding of your limitations, you can operate more safely and efficiently. Training in timber cutting techniques can greatly expand your capabilities
Weeding in the summer is all about species maintenance
Learn how to use less energy canning tomato products.
Managing compost now allows for more productive use the following season.
Grow to fill yourself up from your garden. Potatoes will give you the most calories in the least space and are an important part of a sustainable diet.
Even after 15 years, Cam still loves heating his home with wood that he cuts himself.
Our work in the woods starts long before we get the chainsaw and axe out; by being in the woods, observing and contemplating. We're looking for healthy trees that we can help to thrive and that will be of benefit in the future.
It is a busy time for planting here. Not tomatoes, peppers, or squash, though. We got in our order of trees from the Missouri Conservation Dept. last week. In the past, we had planted mostly walnut, but we have a good enough supply of our own walnut seedlings that we are focusing on native trees that could use a boost to restore the forest to what it once was. So we are planting pecan on the bottom areas, shortleaf pine on ridge tops where the soil is poor, and burr oak on the better upland areas.
It is a regular occurrence, a question we're asked:
Why do we do all this work?
Who would think it’s possible to discover the artist in me, incubate a business, plus milk goats, grow a garden...all in one unforgettable summer. I'm a rich woman by any standard.
Doug Van Haitsma of the Mon Valley Initiative will present a workshop on micro farms at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Worldwide fish consumption is at an all-time high, so take action by eating only sustainably harvested seafood from ethical sources.
How feeding the hungry amounts to action on behalf of a planet on fire with a toxic yang imbalance.
What is Pesticide Drift? “Pesticide drift” is the movement of a pesticide through the air away from the intended target. You might actually see the drift in the form of a mist. You may smell it. But it can be invisible and odorless. The spray may be applied from the back of a tractor — referred to as a “rig.” Or it may be applied from a spray plane or helicopter.
Incorporating charcoal into the soil helped Amazonian farmers grow better crops, and its new industrial version is promoted as a panacea for both agriculture and the global climate. Those claims are not realistic.
“Grow a Sustainable Diet” is an upcoming book (spring, 2014) that helps you plan what to eat and what to grow, feeding you and the Earth while maintaining a small ecological footprint.
This rustic, resourcefully sustainable dog fence fits right into the landscape. Before you install a fence, look around your place first to see what's already available.
Daniel Sheridan found a way to turn children's energy into electrical power with a see-saw that generates electricity. The see-saw should generate enough electricity to light a classroom for a whole evening after only five to 10 minutes of use.
Rene' Skaggs of the Pierce Conservation District will present a workshop on increasing pasture productivity at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
Christy Hemenway of Gold Star Honeybees will present a workshop on beekeeping at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
Steven Moize of the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy will present a workshop on rotational grazing at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
Daniel Kosel of Red Poll Cattle will present a workshop on Red Poll Cattle Ranching at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
Cheryl "the Pig Lady" Ouellette will present workshops on meat processing, growing meat for market, free-range pork, and growing what you love at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
Darrel Frey, permaculture specialist, will present workshops on permaculture and bioshelter design at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
The National Animal Identification Plan will be easily implemented by large factory farms, but it means trouble for smaller operations. Will the system really keep us safe from disease, or will industrial ag and tracking system manufacturers be the only beneficiaries?
Managing Cover Crops Profitably, 3rd Edition, is now available in print and by download from the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program. Learn how to make your soil perform at its very best!
The Rainforest Alliance Certified seal has been popping up on coffee, tea, cocoa and fruit products all over the world. So what exactly does this certification signify? We’ve investigated.
Cities, counties and states across the country have created food policy councils in response to their concerns about future food security in their communities. The councils work to coordinate local food efforts, such as farmers markets, to develop a sustainable food system.
Pass the cold, wintry months with warm thoughts of how you can eat more local food while supporting sustainable agriculture this coming season.
While conservation is neccessary for providing for an ever-growing human population, it alone cannot solve our problems. In fact, it may distract us from the real issue at hand.
Joel Salatin of Polyface Farms will present a workshop on localized food systems and pastured livestock at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
Every now and then we need to re-evaluate our thoughts, just as we re-evaluate our things. Learn about making cloth Christmas gift bags and find out how walking barefoot in the grass is good for you.
With just about every breed of standard bred, heritage poultry, we have work to do. They are not producing like they once were.
"The Farm Then and Now" by Douglas Stevenson tells the story of The Farm: an intentional community that has defied the odds, blending idealism with a practical approach to create a model for sustainable living.
Self-dubbed “lunatic farmer” Joel Salatin describes how sustainable living and more conscientious agricultural practices can mend and revive a planet pushed near the brink.
While you may already look for eco-friendly organic wine when you select a bottle, you're probably not aware of the environmental implications of opting for a wine closed with natural cork in lieu of a less sustainable synthetic stopper.
Reynaldo Ochoa, the subject of a new short film, grows with a goal of teaching and practicing permaculture unique to an individual's region, emphasizing sustainable farming as opposed to “slash and burn” agriculture.
Organic gardeners often need to remove mammal pests such as groundhogs and raccoons. Like many, I use live traps. How to deal with a skunk you accidentally catch, without getting sprayed?
If you’re getting ready to build a home or begin a woodworking project, consider building with sustainable wood products. With help from the Sustainable Forestry Initiative and the Forest Stewardship Council databases, you can locate sustainably harvested wood.
Cuba's bike transformation was the result of a change in context induced by external forces. It was a disruptive event that forced them to adapt. Here in America, a land of such excess, no such sudden disruption looms (nor could it be predicted, I believe). Our transportation context is centered on the car. Our culture and economy are “driven” by the car. So, how do we create a culture of transportation that is dominated by bicycles?
Pruning perennials is essential for plant health and vigorous production.
There are various means for developing an edible landscape.
The Sustainable Poultry Network and Western Piedmont Community College have combined forces to create the American School of Sustainable Poultry Husbandry, an intensive poultry workshop for anyone interested in poultry production, marketing, breeding, hatching, cooking, etc.
The place I call home these days is The FarmSchool, a fertile 180-acre strip of ridge top in Athol, where 15 student-farmers are spending a year learning the ins and outs of growing food, managing forests, and raising animals for meat. I arrived at the farm in October, just as the leaves were reaching their peak brilliance. The Farm School — which offers three-day programs for schoolchildren, a summer camp, a full-time middle school, and the apprenticeship program I’m in — takes us through all seasons of farming, weaving together class work and on-farm training.
A few months back I heard a comment on an NPR radio program that really caught my attention. The program was about the local food movement and at one point the guest on the show said, “Now remember - just because it’s local doesn’t necessarily mean it has a smaller carbon footprint. That Argentinian apple that was shipped on a barge with thousands of tons of other apples may actually have required less fuel per apple than the apple than came from a few hundred miles away in the back on a farmer’s pickup.”
Leasing solar panels may be a way for you to have a solar electric system on your home. See what our expert has to say on leasing solar panels, from an operating lease to a capital lease. Plus, learn about the federal tax incentives that come with solar electric systems.
Prestyl USA’s customizable infrared art panels prove efficient, ecological & elegant.
Tips for saving energy at home while trying to stay cool.
CFLs use 75 percent less energy and last 10 times longer than an incandescent bulb. I know that when I purchased new lamps for my house, they had a whole shelf of incandescent bulbs right next to it, and I had to go search the store for CFLs, so I understand if you are currently using incandescent bulbs. But it’s worth the switch — not only are CFLs equal in light quality, they last way longer and will save you hundreds of dollars over their lifetime.
Did you know that a dirty filter in your HVAC equipment can reduce its efficiency by up to 20 percent? Didyou also know that it is recommended to check your filter every month? Don’t despair!
When you get home today, do this simple test: Close your fridge door on a dollar bill or piece of paper; if you can pull the bill out easily or worse, if it falls, then it is time to replace the seal.
Did you know that heat transfer through windows can account for up to 25 percent of your energy bill by allowing heat out during the winter, and makes your air conditioner work overtime to combat the sun’s warming? Drafts and leaks can be the biggest culprit of energy waste but can also be fixed with relatively little effort.
Attics can be a huge energy drain if they are not insulated sufficiently. We’ll leave the
heavy lifting for next weekend, but for now look for uneven insulation, base sports, water damage, and anything else that looks out of place.
It might seem like a small thing, but your refrigerator can be a HUGE drain on your energy bill. We’ve already shown you how to check for leaks in your refrigerator seal—now let’s take the next step in keeping your fridge in top working order.
Having a properly maintained water heater is like going to the dentist: No one wants to do it, but it’s gotta be done. Ideally, you should have an inspection and necessary maintenance performed on your water heater once a year.
The difference between power and energy and how it relates to toast!
Two new federal programs, the Home Energy Scoring program and the PowerSaver program, make it easier for homeowners to save energy.
As tough economic times hit the renewable energy industry, unsold solar panels are collecting dust in warehouses in many parts of the country. But in Gainesville, Florida, homes, buildings and schools are glittering with brand new panels, installed after the city passed a feed-in tariff law, requiring the power company to buy renewable energy from local producers.
Tips on how to conserve energy at home with Energy Star compact fluorescent light bulbs.
The Apollo Alliance want you to tell the new Obama Energy Czar, Carol Browner that you support renewable energy policy.
Find out what different states are doing to promote power from renewable sources, including solar and wind energy.
There are many ways farmers can benefit from renewable energy, including wind energy, solar energy, energy efficiency and biofuels.
To learn more about large wind energy companies and wind power generation, Brittney Tyler-Milholland and Brenna Long talk with a representative from Horizon Wind Energy about the wind energy industry in this Wind Energy blog. With wind farms in 18 states, Horizon Wind Energy plays a role in the future of wind energy in the United States.
Wind turbines within two miles of residential areas can hurt the property values of homes.
The “Remote Community Renewable Energy Partnership” exceeds Obama’s goal for supporting clean energy development in small native villages.
Environmentalists are in a debate about the Cape Wind project. We want to know what you think about the proposed offshore wind farm.
The X Prize Foundation needs your vote to help them decide their next X Prize.
Save money and energy at home by choosing energy-efficient products whenever you purchase home appliances or computers and other electronics.
High-efficiency washers save energy, water and money with every load. And with the average household washing 400 loads per year, those savings add up.
Renewable energy expert Dan Chiras shares details about The Evergreen Institute's new Renewable Energy Educator Certificate program, designed to prepare teachers to train a new generation of renewable energy professionals to meet the needs of a growing industry.
Dan Chiras points out the efforts already being made to increase availability of renewable energy professionals and educators and talks about The Evergreen Institute's new goals to raise interest among potential students.
Here are seven devices that will help you conserve energy in your home, and maybe even help make our world livable again.
The sun provides us with enough clean energy that if ever effectively harnessed, we might never need any other form again. Sadly, we are only able to harness a fraction of it's potential. Fortunately, we are making great progress to get where we want to be.
Figure out whether a home wind turbine is right for you by evaluating land for the best wind turbine location. Our expert explains placement, turbulence, wind speed and wind site assessment. These steps and factors will determine if a wind turbine is right for you.
Yes, you can make your own solar panels, but it won’t necessarily save you much money compared with buying commercial solar panels.
Beautiful night time display of spinning colors in downtown Ann Arbor vividly demonstrates possibilities of wind energy.
Information about energy-efficient washing machines and cellular window shades. These energy-efficient appliances and window shades will please environmentally conscious consumers.
Solar energy organization Show Me Solar comes highly recommended by renewable energy expert Dan Chiras for its 2010 list of workshops, webinars and other educational opportunities.
The fourth annual Earth Hour is Saturday between 8:30 and 9:30 p.m. Turn off the lights and take a stand against climate change!
The Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star program reached a major milestone this week when it qualified its 1 millionth Energy Star home.
President Obama and the Department of Energy are creating new standards for energy-efficiency in lighting.
Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence explains how the new energy and climate legislation that creates opportunities in green building.
Last December, the Quimby family paid $1,100 to heat and power their Winthrop, Maine, farmhouse for the month. Something had to be done. Jeld Wen, manufacturer of energy efficient doors and windows, came to the rescue.
How to save energy in commercial and industrial buildings.
For holiday cheer that uses less fossil-fueled energy consider LED Christmas lights.
These 25 very different places all get some or all of their energy from wind power.
When you're ready to price or purchase a new solar system, findsolar.com has everything you need.
This unusual water-powered clock from Bedol is powered by salt and water.
Check out this video on tapping wind power with kites.
More money from the Stimulus plan has gone to hot and cold states for weatherization programs.
The Electric Power Research Institute, Inc. (EPRI) assures consumers that manufacturers have rectified many of the issues related to using CFLs, making them into mere myths. These issues include usage in three-way fixtures, non-compatibility in dimmers, the high price of CFLs and CFL use in fans and candelabras. Additionally, CFL users should understand the lifespan of the bulb and causes of flicker.
To learn more about large wind energy degrees, Brittney Tyler-Milholland and Brenna Long talk with educators at Iowa Lakes Community College about the wind energy degree program in this Wind Energy blog. Iowa Lakes had the first wind energy program in Iowa.
If you crave great music with an eco-conscious cause, attend Rock the Green, Milwaukee’s first green music festival.
The X Prize Foundation will be hosting a forum in early September to discuss different ideas regarding renewable energy.
Bill Clinton has 10 recommendations for what the U.S. government should be doing to promote cleaner energy.
Want to learn more about the benefits of compact fluorescents (CFLs)? Here's a fast explanation of how the new efficient light bulbs can be better.
The Bedol water-and-salt-powered clock runs for six months on a teaspoon of salt.
Dan Chiras elaborates on his previous blog about the disadvantages of vertical axis wind turbines (VAWTs).
A new technology developed at MIT, solar concentrators, could dramatically reduce the cost of photovoltaic (PV) power.
The BP oil spill shocked the nation, but it’s not too late to take action. We want to know what you plan to change.
The fastest-growing energy technology in the world is solar, and photovoltaic solar collectors capture solar energy in a supremely adaptable and portable form. Find out more about photovoltaics, how they work, and how they can change the way we make energy.
Today most new homes are sited without any reference to solar energy at all. A few builders are catching on, however, and making the simple adjustments necessary to turn new houses into solar collectors by adhering to the tenets of passive solar building. Learn more about how passive solar works and its benefits.
The term "living off the grid" can be used in different ways, but it means something very specific when you start looking at producing electricity from renewable sources.
Check out this magical photograph of an energy-efficient dome home and the surprise above.
Have you found helpful ways to cut your energy use at home? Whether it's turning down the thermostat or installing new light bulbs, tell us what you've done to conserve energy and how well it's worked.
How much electricity is your computer using right now? You might be surprised how easy it is to find out.
A do-it-yourself portable solar cart allows us to have solar power without removing trees from the yard. We can also take it away from the home site and move it indoors before storms.
Nothing lasts forever, let's do the math.
Press Release about UNEP/GEF en.lighten initiative’s Toolkit, “Achieving the Transition to Energy Efficient Lighting.”
Some large electronics can use as much energy as a light bulb while in "stanby" mode, meaning you should unplug them when you leave the house or know you won’t use them for awhile. Having a large electronic setup plugged into a power strip makes it much easier to completely power it down, especially if it has a lot of plugs like a home theater system or computer.
Replacing a task that uses electricity with one that does not is a no-brainer when trying to save on your energy bill — and air drying is one of the easiest ways to go.
When you get home, go to your hot water heater, remove the cover and turn it down to 120 degrees (sometimes labeled “hot” as opposed to “very hot”).
Homeowners and renters who made five or more energy-efficient improvements found satisfying savings, a new study finds.
A brief announcement of a rare educational opportunity ... a wind turbine installation. We'll be installing a 2.5 kW Skystream wind turbine on a 127-foot tilt-up tower.
In this Wind Energy Blog, we talk with a representative from The Nature Conservancy to learn more about the environmental impacts of wind energy. Despite the many concerns about the impacts these wind farms can have on wildlife, there are no current regulations that wind farm developers must follow before building their wind farms.
Defying conventional wisdom about the limits of wind power, in 2012 both Iowa and South Dakota generated close to one quarter of their electricity from wind farms. Wind power accounted for at least 10 percent of electricity generation in seven other states. Across the United States, wind power continues to strengthen its case as a serious energy source.
Our efforts to improve energy efficiency in the United States might be faltering.
Many people don’t know that most HVAC systems don’t produce more or less heating or cooling based on the room temperature – they simply blow air for longer.
Courses in solar energy taken through The Evergreen Institute now apply toward the Midwest Renewable Energy Association’s site assessor certificates.
Energy expert Dan Chiras suggests a simple process for locating energy-efficient appliances and electronics.
Three-day workshop announcement on net zero energy homes by leading authority on energy efficiency and renewable energy, Dan Chiras. Learn how to reduce your utility bill through conservation, effriciency, & clean, affordable, renewable energy.
Our “needs” for the latest gadgets elevates our energy consumption, even with the onslaught of energy-efficient appliances and consumer electronics in recent years.
Scott Davis’ “Solar Projects, Big and Small” video offers inspiration for both solar energy enthusiasts and folks who are just curious. Tips and advice pertaining to solar energy can be found at the Yahoo! group Simply Solar, and you can make your dream project a reality with Gary Reysa’s instructions.
I had heard there are thousands of new earthen houses in Thailand. That really amazed me, so I set out to learn the details about the modern earth building movement in Thailand.
D Acres offers alternative economics. We are the 99&: join us.
Two years ago, the Natural Home & Garden staff had the honor of decorating President Obama's guest house with sustainable and handmade holiday decor. Try some of these "president-approved" projects yourself!
An overview of groups, initiatives, planning certifications, and neighborhood developments that promote sustainable communities, including Transition initiatives, ecovillages, One Planet Communities, LEED for Neighborhood Development, and others.
The Evergreen Institute lowers prices to encourage more participating in its January workshops in home energy efficiency, electricity and electrical wiring, and basic PVs: An Introduction to Solar Electricity.
Engineer Venkappa Gani leads by example when it comes to sustainable living. His entire backyard is an organic garden, an edible landscape that borders his rainwater harvesting tank collectors overlooked by solar panels that power his home (and more!). Gani is dedicated to sustainability, a word he lives by everyday at his suburban home in Austin, Texas.
Sustainable farming expert Michael Pollan has some words of wisdom for the next president of the United States.
Relax: HR 875 isn't a bill to outlaw organic farming, as you might have heard. But it's not exactly good news for pesticide-free producers, either. Here are the details.
Both organic and local food are important if we want to eat nutritious and delicious food. Furthermore, our current food system is in jeapordy because petroleum and water supplies are dwindling and climate change is resulting in more extreme weather.
Farms which have earned Rainforest Alliance certification go beyond conserving the environment and improving the lives and livelihoods of farm workers; they also help to curb climate change.
The Farm Aid concert is a chance for us to shine a spotlight on these people who work every day to put good food on our tables.
Homestead skills of yogurt-making and bread-baking increase your independence from grocery store aisles and international food conglomerates.
Starting flats of seedlings begins this year's growing season.
This blog post tells what life was like on the self-sustaining farm of Olen and Anna Mae Showman located in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia during the middle of the 20th century.
Transitioning seedlings from indoor starts to outdoor plants
Harvesting abundance in the early spring.
Learn about using the Piteba to press your own homegrown oil.
Taking care of compost is essential to healthy soil and good food.
Sandy Boyce's sauerkraut was a hit, selling out each week, until her county health department asked her to stop. Across the nation, regulations can prevent small-time home producers from distributing their 'cottage foods' to the public.
Use of a mobile chicken tractors allows us to keep the birds on fresh ground and stay on top of the weeds.
Set up a washing station in your garden. Rinse your veggies there, saving the water for the garden and keeping your kitchen clean.
Solar drying experiences in 2012, including tomato varieties Principe Borghese and Long Tom.
Book reviews by permaculture educator Cindy Conner. Learn about Sustainable Market Farming, The Art of Fermentation, The Permaculture Handbook, and The Small-Scale Poultry Flock.
Eat carrots from your garden all winter! A little planning goes a long way toward more food with less work. Learn how to start with a winter cover crop of rye, with carrots following next in the rotation, maturing by the time the first frost.
While many of those visiting our Hostel are farmers and homesteaders themselves, some come from that “city culture” and seem to take their first hesitant steps outside of a flatly paved driveway when they arrive at our place. Wide eyes, a sense of adventure.
One of my earliest vivid childhood memories is sitting on my father’s lap as a young girl reading the magazine together in the 1980s and all throughout my childhood. He would read aloud while I studied the pictures of passive solar building, vegetable gardening, sheep shearing, building your own sugar shack and the beautiful array of topics which he read to me frequently. Those images, along with the camping trips in the mountains, the whitewater and canoeing excursions, and our family trip to Alaska, have been etched in the catacombs of my childhood memories and have sculpted the person I have grown to become.
So, what makes a flock of poultry sustainable? What is standard-bred poultry? If you purchase chicks from a hatchery, are they true to the breed? Why does every hatchery sell Rhode Island Reds and they all look different? Why do the Cornish Cross meat chickens have so many problems? Raising standard poultry is the only true way to improve the sustainability of quality local food while preserving the strength of Heritage poultry.
Animal Husbandry tent experiences from Day 1 of 2011 Mother Earth News Fair.
Finca Luna Nueva in Costa Rica’s verdant San Carlos agricultural region is a dynamic, living example of permaculture and biodynamic farming, where every being is part of a system that nurtures the body and the soul.
Laundry detergent manufacturer reduces plastic by 66 percent in new easier-to-recycle bottles made from recycled cardboard and newspaper.
One of our "14 Sustainable Food Companies You Can Trust," Plum Organics is good for your baby's health and the health of the planet.
Don’t miss these featured documentaries showing on PBS’s Earth Day programming.
It was becoming pretty obvious the crowding and lack of light were real limitations to my mini garden. Then, the idea of a trough on the windowsill came to mind, combining a way to water all the plants uniformly and efficiently all at once. Great, now how to make this trough? Wood? Sheet metal? The choices all seemed expensive, clumsy, prone to leaking...then the light bulb went on in my head: gutters!
According to FDA data, the quantity of antibiotics sold for livestock use in this country continues to rise, topping 29 million pounds in 2011. This has a direct effect on the efficacy these same drugs will have on us. Sam Spitz has personal experience with a resistant illness and FamilyFarmed.org asked him to tell his story. It’s a cautionary tale that should have us all making better food choices. Read how we can all influence the campaign to end the misuse of antibiotics in livestock and keep antibiotics working for us when we need them!
Take a photographic tour of Finca Bella Vista, a sustainable treehouse community in Costa Rica.
Aside from the great stage presentations, the exhibitor booths have a lot to offer FAIR attendees.
Begin your garden planning with what,and particularly how much, you want to eat. Take a look at what you are eating now and go from there.
More on the much-feared food safety bill, HR 875, and its Congressional counterparts.
Turning liabilities into assests.
Maddy Harland writes about principles that underpin our understanding and practical application of permaculture. She relates them to designing a green home and garden but also explains how permaculture can help us to create more sustainable lifestyle
Monsanto, the world’s largest producer of genetically modified seeds and the toxic herbicides used to drench them, is calling itself a supporter of sustainability. You’re kidding, right?
are at the vanguard of thoughtful sourcing, choosing local, sustainable farms
and cooking seasonally.
Monsanto's Roundup Ready system transformed typical weed problems into a national superweed crisis, only healthy farms can correct the damage done.
Leading food sovereignty activist Vandana Shiva will present “Cultivating Diversity, Freedom and Hope” in Kansas City. Many other farming and gardening workshops and events are planned for April 17-18, 2014.
In Kenya, even for middle class families, much of what ends up on the dinner table is grown or raised at home. With food prices rising, more and more Americans are looking towards ways of growing some of what ends up on their table at home. Both in terms of personal health, and the environment, this is a very good trend—it's a food source as local as you can get.
The thousands of families who have built affordable homes, cash up front, made of earthbags, straw bales, cordwood, cob and rammed tires are not in danger of losing their homes in the current mortgage crisis.
Dan Chiras announces that five of The Evergreen Institute's workshops currently qualify as continuing education credits for LEED Accredited Professionals.
With 67 percent growth in one year, the solar energy industry eclipses even the telecommunications industry, according to a new Solar Energy Industries Association report.
The ENERGY STAR Rebate Finder app uses your zip code to find sales tax exemptions, credits, or rebates on qualified products.
Here's a rundown of the many reasons behind the recent rise in the price of gas.
Mounting a wind turbine on your roof instead of on a tower might seem like a good idea, but here are some issues you should consider.
NativeEnergy, an innovator in the United States carbon market, today launched its year-long 10-Year Anniversary program.
NativeEnergy, an innovator in the United States carbon market, today launched its year-long 10-Year Anniversary program.
New approach to renewable home energy – heating with pelletized fuel in free-standing pellet stoves and fireplace inserts. Generally made from recycled wood byproducts, pellets are low carbon fuel that can reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Lundberg Family Farms announces the opening of a new warehouse that is powered by 100% solar energy. Lundberg Family Farms produces wholesome, healthful rice products while protecting and improving the environment for future generations.
Companies launch demonstration site to illustrate the consumer and utility benefits of a BMW electric vehicle in a Smart Energy Home powered by Tendril Connect(TM) cloud platform.
A Federal Housing Association (FHA) EEM provides mortgage insurance to the borrower who is looking to purchase or refinance their home, and incorporate the costs of energy efficient improvements into their mortgage.
The Solar Decathletes begin assembly on the National Mall at midnight, Oct. 1. But just getting the houses into D.C. is no simple task.
Tell us what you think! We'd like to know whether you're using compact-fluorescent light bulbs at home and why or why not.
Michael Strizki proves that living off the grid doesn't have to mean sacrificing comfort.
The second post (of three) describing an organic gardener's attempt to grow his own wheat.
Cam shares the results of his experiment growing wheat in his vegetable garden.
What's the most efficient way to boil water?
Cam is glad to find out that he has been successful at encouraging people to embrace renewable energy.
Cam learns a lot by spending time with people who "get it."
Getting solar panels in Seattle is becoming more affordable with state incentives and net metering but still doesn't quite compare to other states.
Cam describes how our solar electric system has evolved over time.
Cam considers how Peak Oil will affect our lives....
We finally build somthing!
Cam shares his enthusiasm for the sun and the wind at his off-grid home.
Sometimes being off grid doesn't necessarily mean that you're green.
Wind turbines kills birds, but not as many as are killed by tall buildings and other hazards.
How packing snow against your house can add R-value to your insulation - and subtract energy costs.
New investment in clean energy reached $243 billion last year, driven by soaring activity in China, offshore wind and European rooftop photovoltaics
The Snail, the winner of Electrolux Design Lab 2010 Competition, saves both energy and space by heating food with magnetic induction.
The Sierra Club’s top 100 greenest colleges and universities carve a clean energy future—students demand it.
Senator Bernie Sanders’ new bill would promote installation of 10 million new rooftop solar energy systems and 200,000 solar hot water heating systems in the United States in the next decade.
A National Association of Home Builders report and a Better Homes and Gardens survey find that builders and homeowners are moving toward smaller, more energy-efficient homes.
LG Electronics unveiled a new energy-efficient bottom-freezer refrigerator at the Maison & Object living design exhibition in Paris. The product, which uses linear compressor technology to save energy, was named the best example of an eco-chic product at the exhibition.
The Environmental Protection Agency releases a list of the top green power purchasers in the United States.
Tips to save energy and water during the holiday season.
Tips on how saving energy this fall and winter can help reduce nutrient pollution in water bodies.
Tips on how to conserve energy and save money with compact fluorescent bulbs during shorter daylight hours.
November 11-17, 2012 is Geography Awareness Week and the theme is 'interdependency' this year.
Tips on how to reduce energy with lights during the holiday season.
Waves, tides and currents can all be used as sources of energy.
A new city being built in the Middle East could become the model for the world's move to renewable resources. Could the U.S. be next in line for a carbon-free metropolis?
Find out what John McCain and Barack Obama have to say about energy issues including the use of nuclear power, clean coal and support for renewable energy.
The Oak Ridge National Laboratory recently released a report discussing Combined Heat and Power (CHP) and its possibility as an energy solution.
The word is that nitrogen trifluoride is more of a problem than previously thought, and it's used to manufacture all kinds of high-tech equipment, including thin-film solar panels.
The Environmental Protection Agency announced a list of the top 20 on-site renewable electtricity generators.
The U.S. Congress has retuned from summer recess, but conflict might keep the Senate from drafting climate and energy legislation quickly.
Check out the PV Watts calculator and find out how much solar-electric power you can generate in your part of the world.
Dan Chiras announces a four-day energy workshop he'll be teaching in Kansas City, Mo.
Researchers at the University of Bath are all set to test the efficiency of the HemPod, a building made from a hemp-lime composite.
Environmental journalist and author Amanda Little gives a keynote speech about America's dependence on fossil fuels at the 2010 MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR in Seven Springs, Pa.
Meet the new green team! Here are the people Obama picked for key environmental posts in the new administration.
Yep, some of the money in that stimulus bill is committed to green initiatives, including creating green jobs.
Earlier this month a plan was drafted to remove all plasma screen televisions from California retail shelves.
Have you thought about adding more insulation to your home to reduce your energy bills? Here are some good places to go for more information.
Start cutting your electricity use today, and it will save you a bundle of cash on a renewable energy system when you're ready to buy one.
Check out these renewable-energy courses to see if there’s an Evergreen class for you.
The energy a PV system will produce during its lifetime far exceeds the amount of energy it takes to produce the PV system
Save thousands on a solar electric system by learning this simple secret.
If we want more electricity from renewable sources, we need to think about upgrades to our electric grid.
Find out what types of federal tax incentives are available for homeowners who install renewable energy.
Check out RenewableEnergyWorld.com for background information and breaking news on renewable technologies.
This one policy makes it much easier to pay for a solar or wind-electric system, but not every state offers it.
Here's how you can find out what financial incentives are available for purchasing solar panels, or another renewable energy system for your home. Search these resources to find state and local incentives.
If you’re thinking about getting a solar electric system to help the environment and save money, think about efficiency first.
Here are three of the season’s brightest and cleanest gifts for a greener holiday celebration.
Ready to decorate? Show your holiday spirit with LED lighting to save energy and money. www.earthgauge.net/?p=33327
How are US college students helping to brighten the future of Nicaragua, the second poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, without leaving campus?
Learn how to evaluate your own home for solar potential with four easy steps!
Fall is a great time to replace traditional light bulbs with energy-efficient bulbs. Save up to $50 per year.
Check out the Kimberly stove, an energy efficient, small space wood cookstove.
Save money and energy by going green and being smart about your home utilities.
Tips for solar advocates to invest money smartly and be part of the growing solar market
How does induction cooking work? What are the pros and cons? Efficient electric cooking or hidden health risk?
Declare energy independence this Independence Day, 2014
Why the cost of utilities won’t be drastically affected by renewable energy sources.
Utility companies and solar power companies are vying for customers' business. See how that affects you.
TERA-Light is a perpetually renewable fire starter that requires no batteries, no chemicals — only air and organic plant material!
Frontier Natural Products Co-op announced today that it has been awarded LEED Silver certification for a major renovation at its manufacturing facility.
Dan Chiras of The Evergreen Institute invites readers to attend a one-day conference on the future of building in Wichita, Kansas.
The work invovlve in tranforming a house that wastes energy into a house that's 50%-95% more energy efficient is called a "deep energy retrofit." We need to find ways to do more of these to save energy, money and the environment.
Everything you need to know about avoiding problems when you build or remodel your own house. Learn from the mistakes of others and make fewer of your own.
Detroit automakers ask Congress for $25 billion, but that money could come with some energy efficiency strings.
Renewable energy expert Dan Chiras warns us that building nuclear power plants is not the solution to our current energy crisis.
No one had ever attempted to set a land speed record for gasification vehicles so Beaver Energy was the first.
In a move that could devastate Colorado's thriving solar industry, Xcel Energy slashes incentive program.
ASES released a report that says 37 million green jobs are possible by 2030. Check out the study here!
Since the U.S. House of Represenatives passed the American Clean Energy and Security Act, the U.S. Senate started work on its own energy and clilmate change bill.
More and more people are looking for jobs in the renewable energy field. If you're interested in this type of career, here's how you can get started.
Recent approval by the Obama administration of the Massachusetts based Cape Wind project creates the potential for 130 offshore wind turbines, which are predicted to produce up to 468 megawatts of wind power.
Save energy and resources and reduce waste when traveling by dumping all your trash in one receptical.
There are many ways that each of us can lessen our unhealthy dependence on filthy fuels. You can do so in every area of your life, from choices you make regarding your house and home improvements, to food, transportation, and other consumer choices.
Learning the basics about electricity will help you conserve energy.
When you're looking for a job, there's just no substitute for getting out and meeting the professionals in the industry.
Will a degree increase your employment prospects? Absolutely. Here are some programs to look into.
Generate energy in this week’s Photo of the Week. Remember to submit your own pictures, and you could be the next Photo of the Week!
New technology achieves 80 percent energy efficiency during the coffee roasting process.
The Union of Concerned Scientists created a new Web feature to show the success of green-collar jobs.
This two-day, alternative building workshop featuring energy expert Dan Chiras will be held March 13-14, 2010 in St. Louis.
The basement of Dan Chiras' net zero energy home is outfitted with PVC pipes, insulation and concrete.
Going solar at home will save you both money and energy. See why it's the future for renewable energy in residential areas.
Some examples of passive solar design applied to homes in the southeast, where cooling, as well as heating, is a concern.
Energy Star for Homes is a worthwhile green building certification with demonstrated market value.
Ordering bees in January doesn't seem to make sense, until you understand that April is the cruelest month. Plus, if you order bees in January, and then you don't need them - that's just a reason to celebrate! Order early!
Urban food forests and public gardens provide communities with an edible landscape for everyone to share. These public fruit forests are the new trend in urban agriculture and play an important role as sustainable local food systems in their communities.
What does it take to build truly sustainable houses – the kind people really want and can afford? If you build small and use natural building materials, then most likely you’ll be able to build your own home in a reasonable amount of time for cash.
This post is about winterizing a colony of bees naturaly, using ideas and tips that we at BeeLanding have learned from nature.
What’s your idea of a delicious and wholesome breakfast? A fluffy, organic egg omelet made with fresh vegetables? Perhaps scrambled eggs and roasted garden veggies? No matter what your preference, it may surprise you to learn the link between the
As a third-party certifier, the Rainforest Alliance ensures that farms and forests are sustainable environmentally, socially and economically. The green frog seal and the FSC logo have become widely recognized, credible symbols of sustainability.
Read about methods to utilize animal- and human- power for trimming the lawn and keeping back weeds, all free of fossil fuels.
As winter descends a three-season hoop house is weeded, compost spread, and a straw mulch applied. Next spring will be here soon.
Looking ahead to spring, we're using these long days to plan a rootstock order of perennial trees, shrubs, and herbs.
Docking of dairy cows serves no purpose and causes pain and discomfort for the
A winter thaw inspires starting the first seeds of the season - indoors, of course: kale, chard, and spinach to start.
Shocked that nearly everything in their Dallas home was made overseas, a family starts over and furnishes their home only with items made in the USA. ABC News challenges everyone to take a pledge to purchase products made in America.
When we stayed on an organic farm in Costa Rica, my kids and I experienced the beauty of self-sufficiency and saw how truly sustainable development benefits the local community as well as the global one. Mostly, we miss the homemade butter.
Monticello's Heritage Harvest Festival inspired us to keep at those challenges that frustrate us on the farm.
Once a barren wasteland destroyed-like much of Costa Rica's land--by decades of cattle ranching, Rancho Margot is now a verdant and productive paradise. Find out how the Sostheim family has accomplished this in just seven years.
Eating only homegrown foods on the Fridays in Lent.
Jim and Holly Smith, founders of Today’s Abundant Living, sent us this great review of a Homesteading Education Month open house and country skills workshop they hosted at their Michigan homestead.
Cover crops are grown between planting seasons as a way to give back to the soil what cultivation takes from it. And cover crops aren’t just for large-scale growers—they can help you get the most out of your backyard vegetable garden too!
These money- and waste-saving alternatives to paper and plastic products eliminate the temptation to resort to disposable for your summertime outdoor dining needs.
The bad news? Coal-fired power plants are our biggest source of industrial pollution. The good news? Solar grew by 67 percent last year, making it our fastest-growing energy sector.
The nation's largest community-owned solar array in Rifle, Colorado, will provide clean energy for up to 350 residents, who don't even need a roof to enjoy the benefits of renewable energy.
The U.S. Department of Energy released a set of pumpkin-carving stencils celebrating Halloween through alternative energy.
As part of the Obama Administration’s all-of-the-above strategy to
expand safe and responsible domestic energy production, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management announced Nov. 7, 2012, a lease for commercial wind energy development 11 nautical miles off the coast of Delaware.
Solar Energy International is offering a free online course as an introduction to renewable energy. You will not walk away an expert, but will have learned the basics of renewable energy and be able to decide which technologies are right for you.
If you're considering purchasing a pellet or corn stove to save money on your heating bills this winter, here are some issues to think about before making that investment.
Vertical axis wind turbines don't always produce as much power as expected. Here's what we were able to learn about the new Windspire.
Solar energy is the ultimate source of all life, and there's lots of it.
The tankless water heater new design adheres to our corporate philosophy of practicing the Three Rs; of Reduce, Recycle and Reuse.
B&R Automation announces partnership to serve renewable energy industry in US and Canada.
A. O. Smith Water Products Company, the leading manufacturer and marketer of residential and commercial water heaters, has donated a 120-gallon solar storage tank to the Hurston family of Cocoa Beach, Fla., project of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition.
Hodgson Mill Inc., a leading national producer of All-Natural and Organic, Whole-Grain foods, has added two wind turbines to successfully complete the second phase of a significant new green initiative.
Elmira Stove Works offers distinctive, superior quality appliances with its innovative line of Fireview cookstoves.
Skystream install program helps consumers take advantage of their wind resource.
GO Home, built by architecture and construction firm G•O Logic LLC, received the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) 2011 LEED for Homes Project of the Year Award.
Receives SRCC OG300 certification on 41 system configurations for residential solar water heating systems.
The North American Solar Stores (NASS) network announces their nationally recognized solar store brand to meet the solar energy demands of today's alternative energy-aware consumers.
The DOE and NREL released a study outlining ways to build grocery stories and medium-sized businesses that need 50 percent less energy.
The ARCX dome has been sold to young couple!
Upgrading wall insulation is tricky. You can't see the insulation that is (or isn't) in your walls, and it's not easy to install new insulation in a hidden wall cavity. One solution that shows promise is filling wall cavities with injections foam.
I decided to build double 2-by-4 walls to achieve 14-inch thick super-insulated walls. This is just one way of achieving the high R-values for net zero energy homes.
A look at the advantages and disadvantages of “off-grid” and "grid-tied” solar electric systems.
A home’s air-tightness is just as important as how much R-value it has.
What kind of car would you get with the Car Allowance Rebate System, which gives consumers up to $4,500 to trade in old, inefficient vehicles?
Renowned inventor Craig Vetter discusses his history with aerodynamics and motorcycles, and his vision for doing more with less energy.
Yes, you can power a car or truck on wood. Chip Beam thinks it won’t be long before we encounter a gas shortage and/or significantly more expensive gas. So what can be an alternative source of energy to power our vehicles? How about wood chips or pellets of plant matter? It may sound bizarre, but it really works. Here’s the first post in a new blog devoted to wood gasification for transportation.
See the power of gasification before we hit the road.
A new tool released by the U.S. Department of Energy allows drivers to compare fuel costs of electric cars with those of gas-powered vehicles.
Cam leaves his lights on during Earth Hour since he generates his own electricity with solar and wind!
Cam describes some recent speaking engagements including the thrill of being "piped in."
Demise of the Southern Energy and Environmental (See) Expo
Cam wonders why more people don't prepare for blackouts.
We now have something to walk on other than dirt!
How a wood-fired hot tub allows us to live better on less energy.
Has the "magic" energy solution been discovered?
We settle in for a long winter's work.
Instead of learning new tricks, we devise new ways to do the same old tricks.
Finally, we start to take shape.
Cam recently spoke to a Transition group about the challenges ahead and how to prepare for them.
We heard from a variety of experts about the type and number of batteries to use in our DIY solar setup. Meanwhile, we checked in with the garden and bees.
We bring power from the array inside the building and put it to work.
Managing Editor John Rockhold catches up with Amanda Little ahead of her keynote speech at the 2010 MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR.
MOTHER EARTH NEWS Managing Editor John Rockhold catches up with Chip Beam of Beaver Energy to hear about Beam's latest exploits with wood gasification to power vehicles.
John Noska will present a workshop on solar passive tipis at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
On sunny days it delivers about a half a megawatt of electricity to the biodiesel plant,