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Picks of the Month

Home > Browse By Topic > Renewable Energy > Miscellaneous

We Found 26 items, sorted in Bestselling order.

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1.

MICROHYDRO CLEAN POWER FROM WATER

Scott Davis
Paperback

Price: $22.95

If you live near a river or stream, Microhydro, a Mother Earth NewsBook for Wiser Living, explains everything you need to know to produce electricity for your home. This book outlines the basic requi…

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If you live near a river or stream, Microhydro, a Mother Earth News Book for Wiser Living, explains everything you need to know to produce electricity for your home. This book outlines the basic requirements and approximate costs of home-scale hydroelectric systems that let you create clean, off-grid independent power.

Hydroelectricity is the world's largest — and cleanest — source of renewable energy. But despite lively interest in renewables generally, there is an information vacuum about the smallest version of the technology dubbed "the simplest, most reliable and least expensive way to generate power off grid."

Highly illustrated and practical, Microhydro is the first complete book on the topic in a decade. Covering both AC and DC systems, it covers principles, design and site considerations, equipment options, and legal, environmental and economic factors.

About the author

Scott Davis has decades of experience operating, installing, designing, selling and teaching about microhydro technology. An award-winner in the field, he currently works as a system designer and retailer with an alternative energy company for whom he has authored an online microhydro course.

2.

THE HOME ENERGY DIET

Paul Scheckel
Paperback

Price: $6.00

CLEARANCE ITEM. PREVIOUS RETAIL PRICE WAS $18.95 AVAILABLE ONLY WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!

Learn how to get the most bang for your energy buck. The Home Energy Diet, a Mother Earth NewsBook for Wiser Living,…

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CLEARANCE ITEM. PREVIOUS RETAIL PRICE WAS $18.95 AVAILABLE ONLY WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!

Learn how to get the most bang for your energy buck. The Home Energy Diet, a Mother Earth News Book for Wiser Living, was designed to help readers take control of their personal energy usage and costs so they can save money, live more comfortably and help reduce environmental impacts. With rising energy costs, homeowners are beginning to examine the energy efficiency of their own homes, asking questions about where energy comes from and how much it costs, how to choose new appliances and what options exist for renewable energy.

The Home Energy Diet answers all these questions and more while helping readers take control of their personal energy use and costs. Energy auditor Paul Scheckel first explores energy literacy, and then describes how your home uses and looses energy you pay for through electricity, hot water, heating and air conditioning, windows, walls and insulation.

The Home Energy Diet involves readers in learning about their own homes by: measuring, metering, investigating and considering habits related to household energy use; learning how to quantify energy consumption and cost and making informed decisions about cost-effective improvements and upgrades. The book explores the misunderstood concept of efficiency versus cost by comparing fuel costs and equipment choices, including the possibility of using renewable energy for meeting home energy needs. This authoritative guide makes efficiency fun through personal anecdotes and humorous tales-from-the-basement energy misadventures.

About the author:

Paul Scheckel is an energy auditor who has visited thousands of homes, educating people about energy efficiency, cost-effective improvements and indoor air quality. With a passion for efficiency and renewables, he walks the talk by living in a solar-powered house and driving a car powered by vegetable oil in his home state of Vermont.

3.

THE HOMEOWNER'S GUIDE TO RENEWABLE ENERGY

Dan Chiras
Paperback

Price: $28.95

This Mother Earth News Book for Wiser Living helps you understand the sometimes confusing array of renewable energy technologies and techniques, plus shows how you can slash energy bills.

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This Mother Earth News Book for Wiser Living helps you understand the sometimes confusing array of renewable energy technologies and techniques, plus shows how you can slash energy bills.

The coming energy crisis caused by a peak in global oil and natural gas production will profoundly affect the lives of all North Americans. As the price of these vital fuels rises, homeowners will scramble to cut their fuel bills. Two options for meeting the upcoming challenge are dramatic improvements in home energy efficiency and efforts to tap into clean, affordable, renewable energy resources to heat and cool homes, to provide hot water and electricity and even to cook. These measures can result in huge savings and a level of energy independence.

This 290-page book opens with basic facts about energy and an outline of likely impacts of fossil fuel shortages. It discusses how to conserve energy and cut heating bills, and how to prepare for renewable energy options. Focusing on strategies for replacing specific fuels, the book then examines each practical energy option available to homeowners.

The Homeowner's Guide to Renewable Energy gives readers sufficient knowledge to hire and communicate effectively with contractors and, for those wanting do installations themselves, it recommends more detailed manuals. With a complete resource listing, this well-illustrated and accessible guide is a perfect companion for illuminating the coming dark age.

About the author:

Dan Chiras is the father of two boys, and the author of more than 20 books on environmental issues and sustainability. He teaches courses on renewable energy, green building and sustainability at Colorado College. His free time is spent mountain biking, camping, canoeing, kayaking, playing music and gardening with his boys.

4.

GREEN HOME IMPROVEMENT

DAN CHIRAS
Paperback

Price: $34.95

In a tight economy, this book offers clear financial benefits by helping homeowners immediately cut their utility bills. Many of these smaller home improvements require only a modest investment, and g…

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In a tight economy, this book offers clear financial benefits by helping homeowners immediately cut their utility bills. Many of these smaller home improvements require only a modest investment, and give readers an edge when they sell their homes: Buyers are looking for energy efficiency, and they are also tuned into green health and environmental concerns.

The book's projects include quick and easy, low- or no-cost tasks — like insulating a water heater, sealing foundation cracks or painting with insulating paint — as well as bigger-ticket items, such as installing a new energy-efficient heating system, windows or green flooring. The more than 65 "Go Green" tips highlighted throughout the book give readers ideas to make their homes and lifestyles greener.

Projects include:

  • Green flooring and paint options
  • Environmentally friendly cabinetry and countertops
  • Whole-house insulation and weather-stripping
  • High-efficiency heating and cooling
  • Water conservation
  • Efficient lighting, appliances and plumbing fixtures, including Energy Star and WaterSense models
  • Solar electric and water heating systems
  • Eco-friendly roofing and siding
  • Energy-efficient windows, doors and skylights
  • Green materials for patios, walkways and driveways
  • Landscaping and irrigation for water conservation and energy

5.

POWER FROM THE SUN

Dan Chiras
Other/miscellaneous products

Price: $26.95

Solar panel systems can give you the energy independence you want, and in Power From the Sun, author Dan Chiras gives you accurate and easy-to-understand information about small-scale solar energy sys…

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Solar panel systems can give you the energy independence you want, and in Power From the Sun, author Dan Chiras gives you accurate and easy-to-understand information about small-scale solar energy systems.

Starting with basic information about electricity and solar power, this book includes information about site assessment for optimum use of your solar panel system, types of PV systems, inverters, batteries, generators and maintenance of your solar electric system.

With chapters for every part of a solar panel system, you will be able to understand clearly how and why everything works. The authors have also included a final chapter on permits, insurance and other necessary paperwork for solar panel systems.

Homeowners and businesses will benefit from reading Power From the Sun by better understanding how a solar panel system can save them money in a short time, and how they too can achieve energy independence.

About the author:

Dan Chiras is president of Sustainable Systems Design, Inc., a residential renewable energy and green building consulting firm, and is director of The Evergreen Institute's Center for Renewable Energy and Green Building. He is an internationally acclaimed speaker and author and has published 25 books, including The Homeowner's Guide to Renewable Energy and Power from the Wind.

Robert Aram, PE, LEED AP, is a renewable energy advocate and consultant. His consulting projects include off-grid farmsteads, highly energy-efficient homes and a solar system for a university sports complex. He has participated in the design and installation of photovoltaic, solar thermal and small wind systems.

Kurt Nelson has been installing solar electric systems through his company SOLutions since the late 1980s. He specializes in off-grid PV and teaches classes for the Midwest Renewable Energy Association.

Recommended Books for Wiser Living: Today, more than ever before, our society is seeking ways to live more conscientiously. To help bring you the very best inspiration and information about greener, more sustainable lifestyles, Mother Earth News is recommending books and products to its readers. For nearly 40 years, Mother Earth News has been North America's "Original Guide to Living Wisely," creating books and magazines for people with a passion for self-reliance and a desire to live in harmony with nature.

6.

GREEN RESTORATIONS

Aaron Lubeck
Paperback

Price: $21.90

CLEARANCE ITEM. PREVIOUS RETAIL PRICE WAS $37.95. AVAILABLE ONLY WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!

Some 40 percent of North Americans live in homes built before 1940, and when it comes time to remodel …

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CLEARANCE ITEM. PREVIOUS RETAIL PRICE WAS $37.95. AVAILABLE ONLY WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!

Some 40 percent of North Americans live in homes built before 1940, and when it comes time to remodel or restore our older homes, homeowners and contractors can find themselves lost in a morass of wildly divergent information and opinion. With Green Restorations, author Aaron Lubeck brings his expertise as a restoration contractor and preservation consultant to this first-of-its-kind guide, leading the reader through the steps for restoring historic building using sustainable practices and green building techniques.

In a readily accessible room-by-room and system-by-system format, Green Restorations covers rehabilitation and remodelling questions applicable to old homes, focusing on the core techniques and debates often seen in practice. Here you'll find the answers to restoration questions, such as:

  • Is sealing my old crawl space a good idea?
  • Should I replace or rehabilitate my windows?
  • Are there historic aspects of my home I need to preserve, and what can I change?
  • What are the cultural, environmental and financial implications of my proposed changes?
  • Do residential historic tax credits apply to my home and how can I access them?

Written in such a way as to be accessible for homeowners but technical enough for contractors, this book will appeal to anyone trying to green an older home while preserving its historic and cultural significance.

About the Author

Aaron Lubeck is a partner with Trinity Design/Build, a restoration and preservation consultancy in North Carolina that has won numerous preservation awards. He is a member of the United States Green Building Council who has completed the first historic building to be LEED-certified in North Carolina.

7.

ED BEGLEY, JR.'S GUIDE TO SUSTAINABLE LIVING

Ed Begley, Jr.
Paperback

Price: $22.50

From the environmental activist Newsweek called the "star of climate change" comes the ultimate guide to living green for those ready to take their eco-efforts up a notch.

Ed Begley Jr.'s G…

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From the environmental activist Newsweek called the "star of climate change" comes the ultimate guide to living green for those ready to take their eco-efforts up a notch.

Ed Begley Jr.'s Guide to Sustainable Living lays out a detailed road map culled from Ed's 39 years of green living. For the first time ever, a comprehensive plan is provided, from effective conservation techniques to producing your own energy.

Starting with the energy audit, Ed shows us how to create a game plan for resource conservation in the home. Then, once an adequate baseline of resource use is achieved, he leads us into more in-depth eco-matters, such as the production of alternative energy, and how to use solar and wind energy and a geothermal pump. As Ed's guide continues, the focus then turns to sustainable lifestyle management choices, such as home gardening, and guidelines on creating a green nursery for your children. This book covers it all – small to large – in plain language and in a progression from resource conservation to energy production and lifestyle management that makes both environmental and fiscal sense.

There's something here for everyone – new and experienced environmentalists alike – and Ed walks you through every step of the way with helpful sidebars that outline costs and paybacks, as well as essays detailing his experiences of completing these eco-projects on his own home.

8.

GREEN TRANSPORTATION BASICS

DAN CHIRAS
Paperback

Price: $6.61

CLEARANCE ITEM. PREVIOUS RETAIL PRICE WAS $12.95. AVAILABLE ONLY WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!

Green Transportation Basics is a guide to greening your personal driving habits by dramatically improvi…

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CLEARANCE ITEM. PREVIOUS RETAIL PRICE WAS $12.95. AVAILABLE ONLY WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!

Green Transportation Basics is a guide to greening your personal driving habits by dramatically improving the efficiency of an existing vehicle using simple measures such as trip planning and regular maintenance to improve fuel economy. This handy guide also explores the most promising new green cars and trucks, including electric vehicles, hybrids, plug-in hybrids and natural-gas cars. And it critically examines sustainable fuels including ethanol, biodiesel, straight vegetable oil, hydrogen and biomethane, evaluating each according to a set of established criteria. Each green fuel source must:

  • be socially, economically and environmentally sustainable
  • have a high net energy yield
  • be clean, abundant, renewable and affordable.
Don't let your dream of greening your transportation idle – Green Transportation Basics will guide you through the myths and misconceptions and provide clear options for the road to a more sustainable future.

About the Author
Dan Chiras is a respected educator and author who has published more than 25 books on residential renewable energy and green building. He is the founder and director of The Evergreen Institute, where he teaches workshops on small wind energy systems, solar electricity, passive solar design, energy efficiency, and green and natural building.

9.

PHOTOVOLTAICS

SOLAR ENERGY INTERNATIONAL
Paperback

Price: $59.95

Producing electricity from the sun using photovoltaic (PV) systems has become a major industry worldwide. But designing, installing and maintaining such systems requires knowledge and training, and there have been few easily accessible, comprehensive guides to the subject.

Now, with Photovoltaics: Design and Installation Manual, a world-class solar energy training and education provider - Solar Energy International (SEI) - has made available the critical information to successfully design, install and maintain PV systems. This book contains an overview of photovoltaic electricity and a detailed description of PV system components, including PV modules, batteries, controllers and inverters. It also includes chapters on sizing photovoltaic systems, analyzing sites and installing PV systems, as well as detailed appendices on PV system maintenance, troubleshooting and solar insolation data for more than 300 sites around the world. Used worldwide as the textbook in SEI's PV Design & Installation workshops, topics covered include:

  • The basics of solar electricity
  • PV applications and system components
  • Solar site analysis and mounting
  • Stand-alone and PV/Generator hybrid system sizing
  • Utility-Interactive PV systems
  • Component specification, system costs and economics
  • Case studies and safety issues

Photovoltaics guarantees that those wanting to learn the skills of tapping the sun's energy can do so with confidence.

10.

HOLY SHIT: MANAGING MANURE TO SAVE MANKIND

Gene Logsdon
Paperback

Price: $17.50

In his insightful new book, Holy Shit: Managing Manure to Save Mankind, contrary farmer Gene Logsdon provides the inside story of manure — our greatest, yet most misunderstood, natural resource. He be…

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In his insightful new book, Holy Shit: Managing Manure to Save Mankind, contrary farmer Gene Logsdon provides the inside story of manure — our greatest, yet most misunderstood, natural resource. He begins by lamenting a modern society that not only throws away both animal and human manure — worth billions of dollars in fertilizer value — but that spends a staggering amount of money to do so. This wastefulness makes even less sense as the supply of mined or chemically synthesized fertilizers dwindles and their cost skyrockets. In fact, he argues, if we do not learn how to turn our manures into fertilizer to keep food production in line with increasing population, our civilization, like so many that went before it, will inevitably decline.

With his trademark humor, his years of experience writing about both farming and waste management, and his uncanny eye for the small but important details, Logsdon artfully describes how to make fertilizer and humus by managing farm manure, pet manure and human manure.

About the author
Gene Logsdon farms in Upper Sandusky, Ohio. He is one of the clearest and most original voices of rural America. He has published more than two dozen books. He writes a popular blog at OrganicToBe.org, is a regular contributor to Farming Magazine and The Draft Horse Journal, and writes an award-winning weekly column in the Ohio Progressor Times.

Recommended Product for Wiser Living: Today, more than ever before, our society is seeking ways to live more conscientiously. To help bring you the very best inspiration and information about greener, more sustainable lifestyles, Mother Earth News is recommending books and products to readers. For more than 40 years, Mother Earth News has been North America’s “Original Guide to Living Wisely,” creating books and magazines for people with a passion for self-reliance and a desire to live in harmony with nature.

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