This tiny cabin on the Greece-Turkey border generates 100% of its own energy

May 14, 2018 by  
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Istanbul-based studio SO? Architecture & Ideas has completed a tiny off-grid cabin perfect for reconnecting with the outdoors. Located in a village on the Turkish-Greek border, the Cabin on the Border is a prefabricated and transportable unit constructed of laminated wood and polycarbonate. As a modern take on the traditional cabin vernacular, this tiny, sustainably minded structure is equipped with solar panels and a rainwater catchment system as well as an adaptable interior design. Designed to capture the “back-to-nature” aesthetic, the 194-square-foot Cabin on the Border is set in a field of mustard greens and raised off the ground to minimize site impact . “We tried to envision the nature not only as a picturesque background but also as a protagonist of the scenes we will create,” said the architects, who cited the challenges of living with Mother Nature – including mosquitos and storms. To mitigate the ever-changing weather, the architects designed the off-grid cabin with operable facades that can adapt to different climate conditions. Related: This prefab movable house can be assembled anywhere A drawbridge-style door at one end of the cabin tilts outwards to form a patio, while the polycarbonate window can pivot upwards to form a glazed canopy, effectively opening up the living area to the outdoors. The plywood-lined interior includes three sleeping spaces—one next to the drawbridge-styled opening and the others tucked above—as well as a bathroom and open-plan kitchen, dining area, and living space. Solar panels cover the roof of the off-grid unit. + SO? Architecture & Ideas Images via SO? Architecture & Ideas

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This tiny cabin on the Greece-Turkey border generates 100% of its own energy

Off-grid island home in Florida hits the market for $1M

May 14, 2018 by  
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Near the southern tip of Florida , a breezy and 100% self-sufficient island home has hit the market for a cool million. Located along the Intracoastal Waterway just east of Keewaydin Island, the 5.3-acre property on Little Marco Island is an idyllic private getaway with a custom-built cottage and a front-row view of waterfront wildlife, from dolphins to gopher tortoises. Keep reading for an inside look at the off-grid island home currently listed on Premier Sotheby’s International Realty . Built in 2000, the two-bedroom, one-bath home comes with an adjacent cottage set on 1.8 acres. The 1,968-square-foot main property is set on 3.5 acres of land with a private beach frontage and a boat dock. Only accessible by boat, the off-grid property feels completely secluded despite the fact that its only minutes away from Marco Island, Isles of Capris and Naples. Related: Florida power company scraps nuclear project, will pursue solar power instead Built largely of timber to complement the island setting, both properties stay naturally cool with long eaves , tall ceilings, and large openings that admit cross breezes. On days of unbearable heat however, air conditioning always remains an option in the main home, which is powered entirely by solar energy. The property is equipped with a backup generator, while water is harvested in cisterns and treated through a four-part filtration system. + 11781 Little Marco Island Images via Premier Sotheby’s International Realty

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Off-grid island home in Florida hits the market for $1M

"Crown jewel" wildlife refuge is about to be decimated as Trump starts border wall

July 19, 2017 by  
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A 2,000 acre wildlife area known as the “crown jewel” of the national refuge system is about to be gutted as Trump begins construction on his border wall . US Customs and Border patrol has quietly been preparing to start the 18-foot tall border wall in the Santa Ana National Refuge in southern Texas, according to an anonymous official. The refuge is home to 400 bird species and hundreds of animals, including the endangered ocelot – but if the wall is constructed as planned, it will decimate the sanctuary. UCB has been working quietly under the radar to start the project. One official, however, felt that the project shouldn’t start without public input. “This should be public information,” the official told the  Texas Observer . “There shouldn’t be government officials meeting in secret just so they don’t have to deal with the backlash. The public has the right to know about these plans.” Related: Mexican architect proposes stunning purple bridge in defiant response to Trump’s border wall The Department of Homeland Security picked the refuge as the place to start the border wall because it is already owned by the federal government, so there is no conflict with private land owners to worry about. This week, workers have been drilling to extract soil samples in order to prepare for construction, would could begin in January. The wall will be 18-feet-tall and 3-miles-long through the refuge. In order to accommodate a road along the south of the wall, along with light and surveillance towers, the refuge land will be cleared, devastating all fauna and flora. “Republicans are making a grave mistake supporting Trump’s bizarre fantasy of a border wall,” said Brian Segee, an attorney with the Center for Biological Diversity. “Throwing billions of dollars at the border wall boondoggle and demolishing an iconic wildlife refuge won’t make our country safer. But it will be a disaster for people and communities, and tragically sacrifice the fragile borderlands environment and endangered species like jaguars and ocelots.” Via the Texas Observer images via the US Fish and Wildlife Service

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"Crown jewel" wildlife refuge is about to be decimated as Trump starts border wall

Taipei transforms subway cars into ultra-realistic swimming pools and sports fields

July 19, 2017 by  
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No diving, please! Taipei is getting into the sporting spirit by transforming the interiors of its subway trains into mini sports arenas to celebrate the 29th Summer Universiade Games . The fun artwork, which is shockingly realistic, was inspired by the major sporting events that will take place during the event such as swimming, track and field, soccer, baseball and basketball. Photo by huei_0804 The 29th Summer Universiade Games will be held in Taipei from August 19th to August 30th. To celebrate the event, the city has transformed the interior of the city’s MRT trains to resemble sporting arenas . The city really went all-out to create lifelike settings – the swimming train, covered in what looks like inches of flowing water, is shockingly realistic. Related: Beijing’s futuristic new subway stations are straight out of Blade Runner Each of the subway trains has also been equipped with a FAQ box that will provide information about the scheduled events as well as rules and interesting facts related to the sport portrayed in each carriage. The fun campaign, which is sponsored by The Department of Information and Tourism and EasyCard Corporation, encourages subway riders to take selfies to post on Instagram to generate awareness of the sporting event. + Taipei Tourism Via This is Colossal Images via Taipei Tourism and Instagram

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Taipei transforms subway cars into ultra-realistic swimming pools and sports fields

Vertical Line Garden engulfs visitors in a flurry of colorful kinetic tapes

July 19, 2017 by  
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Canadian design studio BACKOFFICE found a surprising and fun new use for commercial barrier tape for the Vertical Line Garden, a kinetic installation bursting with color that changes dramatically with the light and wind. Developed for the 2017 International Garden Festival in Quebec , the Vertical Line Garden offers a twist on the formal traditional garden, using “contemporary ready-made means and hyper un-natural materials.” The multi-sensory and interactive pavilion comes to life as the pavilion’s hanging barricade tapes move about in the wind and generate a flurry of sound and color. Now in its fourth iteration, the Vertical Line Garden began in 2014 as an exercise in horizontal elements. Today’s version is the most spatial of the four iterations and is entirely vertical with added color and pattern. The installation is built of mass-produced safety and construction materials including commercial barrier tape, a timber frame , and a net. These man-made elements create great contrast with the cultivated Les Jardins de Métis and also communicate the theme of environmental protection and safeguarding. Related: Intriguing ION2 installation in Seattle responds to the movement of passersby BACKOFFICE writes: “The main material forming the installation , barricade tape (barrier tape), is typically used to delineate a perimeter and keep people out of a particular area or zone. Here however it is used precisely to bring visitors into the space and entice them to inhabit it.” To encourage people to stay and use the space, custom-fabricated bent-metal and canvas lounge chairs are provided. The billowing canopy that engulfs the interior is a dazzling display of color, light, and pattern. + BACKOFFICE Images by Martin Bond

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Vertical Line Garden engulfs visitors in a flurry of colorful kinetic tapes

Man Arrested Attempting to Cross the Border with 51 Turtles Stuffed in His Pants

September 29, 2014 by  
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Is that a turtle in your pants or are you just happy to see me? Canadian Kai Xu was caught last month while attempting to smuggle 51 turtles across the border by stuffing and taping the turtles down his pants. Officials saw Xu disappear behind a semi-trailer and when he reappeared, they saw, “irregularly shaped bulges under Xu’s sweatpants on both legs.” A second man was also charged in the smuggling attempt after being caught at a Detroit airport with over 200 turtles in his suitcase. Missing Attachment Missing Attachment Read the rest of Man Arrested Attempting to Cross the Border with 51 Turtles Stuffed in His Pants Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: illegal turtle smuggling , illegal turtle trade , illegal wildlife trade , illegal wildlife trade fail , poaching , turtle border smuggling , turtle poaching , Turtle smuggling , turtle smuggling fail , turtle smuggling hamburger , turtle smuggling pants , turtle smuggling underwear , wildlife poaching , wildlife trade

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Man Arrested Attempting to Cross the Border with 51 Turtles Stuffed in His Pants

Tainted Mexican Papayas Prompt FDA Border Alert

October 10, 2011 by  
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Photo: whologwhy The FDA has responded to over 100 cases of Salmonella linked to papayas exported from Mexico by increasing food security at the border. The culprit, a bacterial strain called Salmonella Agona, spread to 23 states. Mexico currently supplies 65 percent of the papayas consumed in the U.S. … Read the full story on TreeHugger

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Tainted Mexican Papayas Prompt FDA Border Alert

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