Sustainable Energy Inside City Limits

Sustainable Energy Inside City Limits

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Renewable energy is quickly becoming more affordable and accessible than ever, but can these systems be successfully implemented on your urban homestead? Former MOTHER EARTH NEWS editor, Kale Roberts, spoke with green building expert Dan Chiras to get some ideas about sensible alternative energy sources, how effective you might find them, and to discuss other simple ways to make your home more energy efficient.

Kale Roberts

Kale Roberts is a former renewable energy beat editor for MOTHER EARTH NEWS. He is a Program Officer with ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability USA, where he supports cities across the U.S. to manage greenhouse gas emissions and develop climate action plans. Previously, he worked as Climate Change Adaptation Support with the United Nations Development Program in the Asia-Pacific region. He was U.S. Peace Corps volunteer in Thailand (2010-2012) and a Rachel Carson Scholar at the Bard Center for Environmental Policy. He is based in New York's Hudson Valley.

Dan Chiras

Dan Chiras is director of The Evergreen Institute in east-central Missouri, where he teaches self-sufficiency and sustainability workshops on a wide range of topics. Chiras is also author of 32 books and several hundred articles on subjects including residential energy efficiency and renewable energy, sustainable communities, green building and natural building. His talks are fun, inspirational and full of useful information.

Check the links below for topics in the podcast that may have piqued your interest:

ICLEI: Local Governments for Sustainability
The Evergreen Institute

And don't forget to take a look at Dan Chiras's insightful books on saving energy in the MOTHER EARTH NEWS store!


For those of you interested in experimenting with solar right away, Kale Roberts has some projects to recommend! Each of these could be knocked out in a weekend, and they're all great ways to begin saving more energy than ever.

DIY Solar Heat Grabber:
DIY Solar Heating with the Heat Grabber

DIY Solar Oven:
How to Build a Solar Oven
Making a Solar Cooker for Free
Everyday Solar Cooking

DIY Solar Still:
How to Make a Solar Still


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The Mother Earth News Urban Homesteading Podcast is a production of Ogden Publications