Believed tomb of Jesus Christ is far older than previously thought

December 7, 2017 by  
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Scientists have discovered that the tomb in which Jesus Christ is believed to have been buried after his crucifixion is significantly older than previously known. According to results given to National Geographic , archaeologists tested a sample of mortar taken from a limestone tomb beneath the Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem and found the cave dates back 345 CE. Previous evidence had indicated that the cave, the oldest architectural structure on site, was built during the Crusader period, around 1000 CE. According to historical records, the tomb is thought to have been rediscovered, after a period of obscurity, by the Romans in 326 CE. This rediscovery occurred during the reign of Constantine, the Roman leader who converted the Empire to Christianity. The recent discovery was made possible by the tomb’s opening on October 26, 2016. Within the tomb, scientists were surprised to discover an older, fractured marble slab, which rested on the original limestone surface of the “burial bed,” where it is believed that Jesus’s body was placed. Some researchers suspected that this older marble may have been placed during the Crusader Period, while others believed that the slab may have been even older. Upon further testing, it was determined that the slab dated back to Constantine-era Jerusalem. In order to determine the tomb’s age, scientists analyzed chemicals found within the slab to determine how long it is has been since they were last exposed to light. It was also discovered that a significant portion of the tomb remains sealed off. Related: Pope Francis Officially Endorses Evolution and The Big Bang Theory The Church of the Holy Sepulcher and the caves below it have undergone great changes over the millennia. Following the discovery and reconstruction of the tomb in the 4th century, the Church was completely destroyed in 1099, then subsequently rebuilt. This destruction led scientists to question whether the site could ever be conclusively identified as the location, as determined by the Constantine-era Romans, of Christ’s tomb. While there is no archaeological evidence to suggest that the historical Jesus of Nazareth was buried in the tomb, the recent discoveries help to clarify the complex history surrounding Christianity’s holiest shrine. Via National Geographic Images via Depositphotos (1)

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Believed tomb of Jesus Christ is far older than previously thought

IBUKU unveils modular bamboo homes for garbage collectors in Bali

December 7, 2017 by  
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Bali-based IBUKU explores the fantastic potential of bamboo as a sustainable building material – and we’ve featured several of their beautiful buildings in the past. The team’s most recent undertaking is a series of modular bamboo homes for garbage collectors in Denpasar, the capital of Bali and the main gateway to the island. IBUKU was commissioned to develop healthy, well organized homes that would provide a means for social transformation. The project is designed for people who earn their livelihood by collecting and selling recyclable waste . Related: Ibuku founder Elora Hardy on creating incredible buildings with bamboo The project comprises 14 housing units of 193 square feet, and it also includes bathrooms, storage, kitchens and common areas to meet the needs of its inhabitants. Each house is modular, with main living spaces on the first floor and a mezzanine sleeping area above. Room for the safe storage of recycled materials was also integrated into the design. Related: Brilliant bamboo house uses ground water for natural cooling The floors and walls are made of bamboo and prevent wind from penetrating the building. Recycled bottles and tetra pack packaging was used for the roofing and insulation . The houses are meant to provide temporary shelter so that their occupants can increase their income and return to their hometowns. + IBUKU Via Archdaily

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IBUKU unveils modular bamboo homes for garbage collectors in Bali

France is the world’s most sustainable food country

December 7, 2017 by  
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Thanks to proactive measures put in place to curb food waste, France now ranks #1 in the world when it comes to food sustainability . In 2016 , the country became the first globally to require supermarkets to donate unsold food to charity, and for restaurants to provide doggy bags when requested, or be subject to fines of up to €75,000 ($82,324) and two years in jail. The  Economist Intelligence Unit graded 34 nations based on food waste, environment-friendly agriculture, and quality nutrition as part of a newly launched Food Sustainability Index . Several other European countries broke the top five, including Germany, Spain, and Sweden, while Japan ranked second. Despite being a highly developed country (high-income countries tend to rank better) the U.S. sits in a much less desirable 21st place, thanks to its over-consumption of meat, sugar, and saturated fats. Poor management of soil and fertilizer in agriculture were additional reasons it was downgraded further. Related: Study finds that cutting food waste could feed one billion hungry people Interestingly, the very wealthy United Arab Emirates ranked last. Food waste in the country is nearly 1,000 kilos (2,205 lbs) per person per annum. The UAE is experiencing an increase in obesity rates and an agriculture sector that is straining water supplies. Vytenis Andriukaitis, EU Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, called the waste “unethical and immoral” in a statement, especially since hundreds of millions of people go hungry each day. According to Reuters , 815 million people are afflicted by global hunger, which is more than one in 10 persons on the planet. Food waste also produces incredible amounts of greenhouse gases in landfills, making it the third largest source of emissions after China and the U.S. As Inhabitat previously reported , over 1.4 billion tons of food is thrown out across the globe each year, which the World Bank estimates to be  between one-quarter and one-third of all food produced . In France alone, 7.1 million tons were being trashed before the 2016 food waste bill was passed. Now it loses just 1.8 percent of its total food production annually, and there are plans to half that figure by 2025. Via Reuters Images via Pixbay

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France is the world’s most sustainable food country

Prefab timber chapel pays homage to Chernobyl disaster victims

February 28, 2017 by  
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A chapel made almost entirely of timber has been completed in Finchley, north London in memory of the victims of the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster . Designed by Spheron Architects , the Belarusian Memorial Chapel will serve the estimated 5,000 people in the UK’s Belarusian diaspora community. The chapel was prefabricated offsite from timber to follow Belarus’ wooden church tradition and to reference the mostly rural areas affected by Chernobyl radiation. The 75-square-meter Belarusian Memorial Chapel is the first wooden church built in London since the Great Fire of 1666. Set in a tranquil garden belonging to the Marian House, a community and cultural center for the UK Belarusian community, the church’s natural and unfinished timber facade complements the thirteen statutorily protected trees that surround the building. The chapel was prefabricated off-site with a Douglas Fir structural frame and assembled with pine cross-laminated panels manufactured in Spain. Canadian cedar shingles clad the roof and cupola. The chapel accommodates 40 people at a time within the nave and raised altar in the apse. Related: Copper-clad chapel is a beacon of unity in one of Helsinki’s most multicultural districts Spheron Architects’ Tszwai So spent time in rural Belarus to research the country’s wooden architectural heritage. The final design features a domed spire and timber shingle roof common to Belarus’ traditional churches, but also includes contemporary elements like the undulating timber frill on the church’s exterior sidewalls. Strips of frosted glazing let in natural light but are positioned to limit views. Soft lighting makes the building appear to glow at night. Historic icons set into a timber screen separate the nave from the altar. + Spheron Architects Via ArchDaily Images © Joakim Borén

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Prefab timber chapel pays homage to Chernobyl disaster victims

1,000-year-old UK cathedral is likely world’s oldest cathedral to go solar

October 31, 2016 by  
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A 1000-year-old UK cathedral is joining the solar power revolution. UK solar company Mypower just installed the first panel of around 150 on the roof of Gloucester Cathedral in England earlier this week. When the installation is complete, Mypower says the cathedral will be the oldest in the UK and maybe even the world to have a ” commercial size solar panel system on the roof .” The solar panels will adorn the roof of the cathedral’s South Nave, and due to the building design probably won’t be visible from the ground. They will provide the cathedral with 40 kilowatts of clean energy . In true British fashion, the cathedral said the solar panels would reduce power costs by about a quarter, “enough to make 2,000 cups of tea every day of the year!” Related: Philip Johnson’s Iconic Christ Cathedral to be Renovated With Thousands of Heat-Combatting Metal Petals Installing solar on a cathedral is trickier than placing panels on modern buildings; Mypower Managing Partner Ben Harrison said they’ve had to work around twists and spots where the roof has sagged over time. He said they’ve worked closely with the cathedral’s structural engineers and architect to ensure the work is completed correctly. Harrison said in a statement, “At times it’s been extremely tight in terms of maneuverability around parts of the site, particularly when the work required us to work just inches away from centuries-old gargoyles, but we put strategies and measures in place to protect the building from any damage.” Reverend Canon Celia Thomson was on hand to help install the first panel. The Church of England is running a Shrinking the Footprint campaign, and the solar array will help Gloucester Cathedral work towards the campaign’s goal of slashing carbon emissions ” by 80 percent by 2050 .” King Henry III had his coronation at Gloucester Cathedral, and King Edward II is buried there. The historic building also provided a location for three Harry Potter movies. Via BusinessGreen Images via Wikimedia Commons and Mypower

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Tom Dixon transforms a 17th-century London church into a chic co-working space

May 27, 2016 by  
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The motivation behind the project began with Baughen’s desire to make the church more available to the daytime residents and creative workforce of Clerkenwell, an area in central London. The temporary intervention also gave Dixon the opportunity to display his new lighting and furniture products against a stunning historic backdrop with soaring ceilings and huge stained glass windows. “As the Church evolves and adapts to the new conditions of the 21st century, the opportunity of opening up to new audiences and unexpected collaborations becomes a necessity,” says Dixon. “For the design audience and the more permanent residents of Clerkenwell, we hope that a contemplative and spiritual space becomes more comfortable and accessible thanks to our small intervention.” Related: Tom Dixon’s dazzling Lens pendant lamps are made from 60 lenses The most eye-catching of Dixon’s pieces are the silver-coated CURVE lights that hang like a chandelier in the church’s main space and offer a sharp contrast with the colorful stained glass windows. The designer’s easily recognizable geometric chairs and tables have been added to an upstairs co-working space , while other furnishings populate the area close to the altar. The chandelier, along with a few other furnishings, has been donated to the church as gifts. + Tom Dixon Via Dezeen Images via Tom Dixon

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Molekule air filter annihilates pollutants at a molecular level

May 27, 2016 by  
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The new molecular air filtration system by Molekule is making big waves with its attention to the tiniest details. Not only does the filter trap nasty pollutants , it completely destroys them at a molecular level, including elements 1000 times smaller than what a HEPA filter can handle. It just might produce the purest air one can hope to have in their home. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j_xXHAyYfqk Using an innovative technology dubbed Photo Electrochemical Oxidation (PECO), the Molekule system eliminates bigger particles, such as dust, pollen, and dander, as well as most forms of bacteria , mold, allergens, viruses, and VOCs (airborne chemicals). The company, funded by the EPA and Department of Defense , states that 90 percent of the air we breathe is indoors, which is up to five times more polluted than the air outdoors. The aforementioned pollutants are trapped and allowed to flourish, that is, until they are filtered through the Molekule. Related: Living air filter: Bel-Air mini mobile greenhouse Much like disassembling a puzzle, the purifier breaks down harmful pollutants into their most basic molecular elements. Once in this state, they are safe to be released back into the air, as nature intended. This includes VOCs, which even the most advanced HEPA filters release back into the air. The company gladly shares its scientific research on its website, including results from a study of people with asthma and allergies experiencing a drastic reduction in symptoms after using the purifier. Pre-sales are being taken now for $499. +Molekule Via  Treehugger Images via  YouTube

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Molekule air filter annihilates pollutants at a molecular level

Wire artist unveils a massive mesh basilica on archaeological site

April 8, 2016 by  
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Tangier Island in Virginia may be lost to sea level rise in 50 years

December 11, 2015 by  
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As the Obama Administration works to secure a climate deal in Paris, members of Congress don’t have to go far to witness the real impacts of climate change. The historic Chesapeake Bay community located only 91 miles from Washington DC called Tangier Island may share the same fate as the Maldives . Only three miles long and one mile wide, Tangier Island has already suffered a tremendous loss of land over the past two centuries. The island’s land mass is only 33% of its size in 1850 and continues to shrink. According to a recent report from the US Army Corps of Engineers, if the current rate of sea level rise continues, Tangier Island will be uninhabitable within 50 years. Read the rest of Tangier Island in Virginia may be lost to sea level rise in 50 years

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This San Francisco church offers the homeless a place to sleep each day

November 27, 2015 by  
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St. Boniface Church in San Francisco is the only church in the US that invites homeless citizens in during the day for “sacred sleep.” Having a safe place to sleep truly is sacred to the 7,539 homeless individuals in the metropolis. Partnered with The Gubbio Project , the church is open to all religious denominations for some shut-eye and access to restrooms, making it a beacon of hope in a world with many closed doors to those in need. Read the rest of This San Francisco church offers the homeless a place to sleep each day

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