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tiny house project2

I have a close childhood friend serving in the United States military, who is currently on a tour in Afghanistan. In that area of the world, as the children play in the yard in front of the house, a watchful parent stands guard with a machine gun. Here in the United States we have had peace inside our country for so long that survival isn’t a concern for us, and we are able to focus our attention on things many areas of the world are unable to consider. As a result, due to the safety we enjoy, we have a greater awareness of needs in the world, with collective talent and interest to meet all of them.

The result is possibly the most altruistic generation the world has ever seen. Also, for the first time in American History, people aren’t thinking about keeping up with the Joneses, and how to live in excess, but how to eliminate the excess, simplify, and direct resources towards doing as much good as possible instead. The timing of this paradigm shift is impeccable.

In my experience, The American Dream is not dead, but it is fading fast. As our country adopts more and more socialist ideals, trades become more specialized, which raises costs that in turn bar the way to home ownership, and locks people in to their current social class. In high school we were told that The American Dream was alive and well, and that our goals were reachable. Then we graduated and learned that [continue reading…]

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bluemarbel11

Have you heard all the buzz about “smart homes”? Today, we want to share with you a new product which was just introduced to the market. It is a garden irrigation system which allows you to set up, remotely control and monitor your garden watering.

We know, you have been using a timer for your sprinklers for a long time and there are many other controllers popping up on the market almost every week. But Blue Marble is different.

First of all, it is battery-free. The system uses proven new technology for energy storage and its power supplies can last for [continue reading…]

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Vanadium via BBC News

Vanadium via BBC News

In some circumstances you really can have too much of a good thing, or so utility company representatives are saying. With the cost of energy continuing to rise, more homeowners are converting to renewable energy like solar power. Especially if you live in Hawaii, where grid-tethered homes pay triple what most continental states pay. That is because Hawaii has no local access to fossil fuels and has to have them shipped across the Pacific.  But now Hawaiians facing another problem – storing all that excess solar power.

More than 1 in 9 Hawaiian residents have installed solar panels with other states showing a similar trend. Residents save money on utilities while their solar photovoltaic systems feed excess energy back into the grid during the solar peak from noon to 4:00 P.M.; however, the demand peak for electricity isn’t until the evening when people get home from work, switch on air conditioning or heat, turn on the television and lights, and start cooking dinner. [continue reading…]

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Residential rooftop solar leases have had a good run in the market, and why shouldn’t they…? They require no money upfront for systems that cost thousands of dollars while the financial and emotional reward is immediate. Problem is (and we’ve seen it before), when a business model is built to benefit only the companies while Read more

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Brian Cranston is more known as a high school chemistry teacher Walter White gone bad spending his days on the meth cookout in a remote desert but in reality, he’s truly “breaking good” big time. Brian and Robin have just finished an ambitious, net-zero residential home in Ventura, CA that is worthy of an Oscar Read more

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Imagine you’re a green-living Goldilocks, frolicking through the eco-home industry. You try out a McMansion, but it’s just too big. You try out a tiny house, but it’s just too small. Where can you find a home that meets all of your needs but is just the right size? John Gaddo and Nancy North figured Read more

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In 2010, Gary Konkel built what may be the most energy-efficient, passive home in the Midwest. The 2,000 square foot, two-story home just outside of Hudson, Wisconsin touts thick insulation, high-performance windows, and needs no furnace. A single solar thermal panel and a photovoltaic system are all the home needs to be net-positive; it produces Read more

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O, Canada, you look so good in green. The unveiling of its eco-friendly house, Midori Uchi, has brought the limelight to Canada. “Midori Uchi,” Japanese for “green home,” is based around a simple concept interwoven with history and innovation. This high-class, high-economy award winner has snagged the LEED Canada for Homes Platinum rating, Built Green Read more

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The Jung House in northern Oakland County, Michigan was recently the recipient of the 2014 Best Energy-Smart Home from Fine Homebuilding magazine. Located on a rural property this 2,000 square foot home meets the strict standards set forth by the German Passive House organization, but does have the modern look that other energy smart homes Read more

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Once upon a time, not so long ago, in an upstate New York, on a farm dedicated to energy efficiency, a world renown architect decided to built himself a home into the side of the hill. Using the technique known as earth-berming, he built a humble abode from recycled materials, used lots of help from Read more

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