Category Archives: sustainable design

Self Sufficiency…an Island Dedicated to Change

The new york times just published a great article about Samso, Denmark, a small Danish Island located South of Denmark and West of Copenhagen. Last year the town embarked on a ten year study to see if their island of 4,000 could sustain itself. After a year, with help from mainland Denmark, Samso is self sufficient, and could potentially sell the extra energy it gains from it’s off shore, turbines. Wind turbines, burning straw (in kitchen furnaces), ground heat extraction and my personal favorite, a ‘special pump that captures heat from a farmers’ dairy cow milk, were all simple ways in aiding this effort.’ What I like most about the article is the simplicity of becoming self sufficient “or simply to clarify the scale of what is needed” as one of the founders of Cambridge Energy Forum in England so concisely puts it.

Check out the article here!

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How ‘Green’ is your City?

The Green City Post, just released Smart Cities findings of the Greenest Cities in America. Seattle ranked #1 with San Francisco, where I call home, coming in at #2. What I found interesting is, while San Jose was ranked #5 overall, it was ranked #1 for standard of living. Want to know how? Please visit Smart Cities website, see the methodology used to rank the ‘Green’ cities. So…how did your city do?

groundbreaking efforts in Renewable Energy….

According to CNN, researchers in Florida have begun efforts to see if currents from the gulf stream could harness energy for the state of Florida.  As the US becomes more and more aware of the potential shortages of energy, researches are working feverishly behind closed doors to try and stay ahead of the population.  It’s amazing to see existing concepts being applied in different ways.   “The new ocean turbines have the same concept as turbines on land”, states CNN.  Studies are now being done on the effects these rudders could potentially have on marine life.  Because most of us do not see what lies beneath on a day to day basis, I wonder how patrolling the rudders might be necessary?  It seems almost invasive to pollute a habitat with mechanical armatures, to benefit the “good” of the earth.  I’ll be interested to hear the findings.

Designers Accord… Are you a supporter?

Valarie Casey is challenging designers to adjust their process of design. As designers we can make a difference on fighting Climate Change by just asking the right questions.  It’s unfortunate that our mindset has to make such an adjustment, but it’s about time. If you support the cause, sign the Designer’s Accord and then put those words into practice.  Advocacy is huge and as designers it’s our social responsibility to provide environmental integrity to the world.

I read about the Designers’ Accord here:

…and of course, they are socially viable… so check out their profiles on twitter, facebook, youtube and LinkedIn.