Couple turns old toy hauler into a gorgeous tiny home for their family of four

May 28, 2018 by  
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Rusty and Autumn Bailey travel a lot for Rusty’s job, so in order to travel comfortably on the road, they purchased a Keystone Fuzion 416 toy hauler to transform into their dream home on wheels. Surprisingly, it only took about 12 weeks to convert the 300-square-foot camper into a homey, light-filled tiny home with plenty of custom-made features designed to provide optimal space efficiency for a family of four. The couple began to reform the interior of the 42-foot-long camper by incorporating as many  colorful and bright accents as possible. The original interior was very dark and drab, so the ambitious couple painted all of the walls white. Beautiful Persian rugs bought on eBay for less than $100 adorn the interior. Related: 7 beautifully designed tiny homes that fit big families The next major upgrade to the space was the flooring. With a large family, the couple knew that they had to have durable flooring, so they went with a waterproof vinyl plank tongue-in-groove flooring with a cork base for easy installation. The kitchen was also in desperate need of a makeover. The couple updated the space with a butcher block countertop made out of 8? slabs of builder-grade honey maple, then repainted the cupboards a dark slate grey, which contrasts nicely with the home’s contemporary all-white interior. For the bathroom renovation, they used a little bit of the leftover butcher block slab to create a nice vanity space. A beautiful hammered copper sink, found on eBay, completes the sophisticated look. The family also completely renovated the sleeping quarters in order to create the maximum amount of space. They gutted the former  main bedroom and converted it into their oldest child’s bedroom, adding a closet with a sliding door and a tiny play area. Autumn says that they focused on opening up the space as much as possible for the couple’s first child: “We tried to keep it open so he had all the space he needed to romp around in and play with toys.” Finally, the couple gutted the master room to make space for a large bed, instead of the existing bunk beds. With just a coat of new paint on the walls and new flooring , the master bedroom became a calming oasis with natural light flooding in through the windows. According to Autumn, the entire camper renovation , which she and Rusty did themselves, took about 12 weeks and cost approximately $6,000. The family posts updates on tiny home living on their Instagram page, @AutumnABailey. + Asphalt Gypsy Via Dwell Images via Autumn Bailey

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Couple turns old toy hauler into a gorgeous tiny home for their family of four

6 ways that scientists are hacking the planet

May 28, 2018 by  
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Life on planet Earth is struggling through an historically challenging era, thanks in no small part to the actions of our species. Some scientists have proposed labeling this period as the Anthropocene epoch due to the outsize influence that humans have had on the planet’s ecosystems , especially in the past several centuries. Anthropogenic climate change is wreaking havoc across the planet, from the melting sea ice in the Arctic to the rising sea levels in the Atlantic. Plastic pollution threatens to suffocate aquatic life while deforestation destroys essential habitat; both are contributing to what some scientists have called the sixth mass extinction. As much as humanity has altered this planet in ways that are harmful to itself and other species, some humans are now attempting to hack the planet, in big ways and small, for the good of us all. 1. Refreezing the Arctic As nations around the world race toward carbon neutrality, it is nonetheless clear that the planet will continue to experience significant effects of climate change, even in best-case scenarios. Given that the global community is far from the path toward best-case conditions, some scientists have begun work on radical procedures that, if successful, could return Earth’s ecosystems to a pre-climate change state. Perhaps the region most associated with the fundamental ecological transformations under climate change is the Arctic . To protect this rapidly warming region, a team of 14 scientists led by physicist Steven Desch of  Arizona State University   have created a plan that aims to refreeze sthe Arctic with 10 million wind-powered pumps. The system would pump water onto the sea ice during winter, freezing new layers and reinforcing the sea ice. With the Arctic predicted to be sea ice-free by the summer of 2030, something must be done. “Our only strategy at present seems to be to tell people to stop burning  fossil fuels ,” Desch told the Observer . “It’s a good idea but it is going to need a lot more than that to stop the Arctic’s sea ice from disappearing.” 2. Puncturing the Yellowstone Supervolcano As the Kilauea volcano destroys buildings and forces major evacuations in Hawaii , the public is once again reminded of the dangers that volcanic eruptions can pose, often unexpectedly. If the supervolcano at Yellowstone National Park were to erupt, it could could trigger a collapse of the global agricultural and economic systems and result in the deaths of potentially millions of people. Although scientists cannot predict when such an eruption would occur, they have already prepared a plan to prevent it from occurring. Related: The world’s tallest active geyser keeps erupting in Yellowstone – and scientists don’t know why Researchers at NASA have proposed drilling into the magma chamber and adding water to cool it down, thereby preventing an eruption. However, researchers recommend drilling into the chamber from below, so as to avoid fracturing the surrounding rock and causing an eruption. Excess heat gathered through such a puncture could be converted into geothermal power. NASA estimates that such a project would cost $3.5 billion; the agency has yet to secure funding. 3. A ‘Spray-on Umbrella’ to Protect Coral Reefs Coral reefs around the world are under severe pressure, with up to one-quarter of all reefs worldwide already considered too damaged to be saved. Climate change , overfishing, and pollution all contribute to the poor health of global coral populations. Even the sun’s UV rays are damaging coral reefs by exacerbating extreme bleaching events. To protect acute vulnerabilities in coral reefs, researchers have created what has been described as a “spray-on umbrella”: an environmentally friendly substance 500 times thinner than human hair, capable of reflecting and scattering sunlight that hits the surface of the ocean. “It’s important to note that this is not intended to be a solution that can be applied over the whole 348,000 square kilometres of Great Barrier Reef ,” Great Barrier Reef Foundation managing director Anna Marsden told  the Sydney Morning Herald . “That would never be practical, but it could be deployed on a smaller, local level to protect high value or high-risk areas of reef.” Real-world experiments with the lipid-calcium carbonate substance will begin soon. 4. A Chemical Sunshade As global temperatures continue to rise and climate change fundamentally alters ecosystems around the world, scientists are considering what some may see as drastic measures to correct a global climate spiraling into chaos. The deliberate large-scale manipulation of Earth’s climate to compensate for global warming is known as geoengineering. Scientists from Bangladesh, Brazil, China, Ethiopia, India, Jamaica, and Thailand have now joined the debate in a new study published in Nature, arguing that if there is to be geoengineering, developing countries must lead the way . Related: Trump administration could open door to geoengineering “The technique is controversial, and rightly so,” they wrote. “It is too early to know what its effects would be: it could be very helpful or very harmful. Developing countries have most to gain or lose. In our view, they must maintain their climate leadership and play a central part in research and discussions around solar geoengineering.” Specifically, these scientists are interested in studying the effect of controlled sprays of water molecules on cloud cover reflectivity. If clouds become more reflective, they could deflect more of the sun’s rays, thus cooling the planet down. While small-scale experiments have been conducted by researchers at Harvard University, geoengineering remains on the not-so-distant horizon for now. 5. Using the Color Spectrum to Cool Down Hacking the planet need not be done on such a large scale; sometimes small, local actions can effect large, global change. In this case, public works officials and workers in Los Angeles have figured out a way to hack the light spectrum by painting its streets white to reduce heat absorption. White-painted streets and rooftops are a low-cost, simple measure to reduce the urban heat island effect, thus saving energy otherwise spent on cooling. To achieve this impact, Los Angeles is covering its streets with CoolSeal, a light-colored paint that has already yielded positive outcomes. Related: Futuristic “spaceship” Lucas Museum breaks ground in Los Angeles “We found that on average the area covered in CoolSeal is 10 degrees cooler than black asphalt on the same parking lot,” said Greg Spotts, the assistant director of the Bureau of Street Services for San Fernando Valley, one of the hottest spots in greater LA. Currently, Los Angeles is one of the only places in the United States where heat-related deaths occur regularly during winter , a public health hazard that is expected to worsen as  climate change  gains strength over the next decades. If enough streets are painted white, relief from the heat may arrive in the City of Angels. 6. The Rain-Making Machine No matter how many streets are painted white, if there is no water, there will be no city. Water held within the air, even as it stubbornly refuses to rain, represents an untapped resource with which to quench the thirst of communities around the globe. The  China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation  (CASC) is currently testing devices in the Tibetan Plateau that could increase rainfall in the region by as much as 10 billion cubic meters, or around 353 billion cubic feet, per year. CASC plans to build tens of thousands of chambers across 620,000 square miles, which will burn fuel to create silver iodide. This silver iodide will then serve as a crystalline cloud-seeding agent. The chambers will be located on steep, south-facing ridges that will facilitate the sweeping of the silver iodide into the clouds to cause rainfall. As the project unfolds, 30 weather satellites will gather real-time data while the chambers work together with drones, planes, and even artillery to maximize the effectiveness of the rain-making machines. While the idea of “cloud seeding” is not new, China is the first country to pursue such a project on a large scale. Images via Good Free Photos,   Depositphotos  (1) (2) ,  Pixabay (1) , NASA/ISS  

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10 minutes with Dave Stangis, Campbell Soup

February 7, 2017 by  
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What’s the best piece of advice for up-and-comers in sustainability? This CSO reveals this and other master tips.

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10 minutes with Dave Stangis, Campbell Soup

5 ways financial services companies can turn SDGs into opportunities

February 3, 2017 by  
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How companies such as MasterCard and Barclays are integrating U.N. Sustainable Development Goals to open business opportunities.

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Empowering Afghan women to code, teach, learn and inspire

February 3, 2017 by  
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Fereshteh Forough, founder and president of Code to Inspire, aims to bring Afghan women into the tech industry — while empowering their economic and social advancement.

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Empowering Afghan women to code, teach, learn and inspire

How ASU aims to create sustainability leaders in business

August 12, 2013 by  
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The university is launching an Executive Master’s for Sustainability Leadership to bolster the organizational leadership skills of mid-career professionals engaged in sustainability.

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Unlikely partnership identifies how to save more energy in supply chains

August 12, 2013 by  
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Energy service companies, finance, retail, NGOs, government and academia join forces to generate new ideas.

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Resinance: Art Installation Imitates Living Organisms by Responding to Touch

July 1, 2013 by  
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One major difference between living organisms and manmade products is that living organisms respond and adapt to their surroundings. A team of students at CAAD in Zurich recently produced ‘Resinance,’  an installation consisting of more than 40 dynamic triangular objects that respond to human touch. “In its assembly it represented an ecology of functional units that could both work autonomously but also in coordination with their neighboring units,” explains the CAAD blog. Visitors are invited to touch the objects, and the more times one of the objects is touched, the brighter it will shine. But that isn’t all — each object is connected to three others, and touching one object affects those around it. The aim of the Resinance project is to experiment with smarter materials that could be used in an architectural context. + Resinance The article above was submitted to us by an Inhabitat reader. Want to see your story on Inhabitat ? Send us a tip by following this link . Remember to follow our instructions carefully to boost your chances of being chosen for publishing! Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Art , building materials , CAAD , Chair for CAAD , Design , Resinance , smart building materials , smart materials        

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BIG Selected to Develop the Master Plan of the Smithsonian Institute Campus

March 13, 2013 by  
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Danish architect Bjarke Ingels is known for designing modern, unconventional buildings, so it comes as a bit of a surprise to learn that Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) has been selected to redesign the historic Smithsonian campus in Washington, DC. BIG will lead a design team that will include Surface Design, Traceries and Robert Silman Associates, which will be tasked with re-imagining the world’s largest museum and research complex. BIG won’t be designing any new buildings—at least for the time being—so we don’t expect any mountain-shaped forms to spring up on the National Mall, but the question of how, exactly, BIG will rethink the historic campus is still open. Read the rest of BIG Selected to Develop the Master Plan of the Smithsonian Institute Campus Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: big , bjarke ingels , Bjarke Ingels Group , National Mall , Smithsonian Campus , Smithsonian Castle , smithsonian institute , Smithsonian Institution , Smithsonian master plan , smithsonian museum , The Smithsonian , Washington DC

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BIG Selected to Develop the Master Plan of the Smithsonian Institute Campus

BIG Selected to Develop the Master Plan of the Smithsonian Institute Campus

March 13, 2013 by  
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Danish architect Bjarke Ingels is known for designing modern, unconventional buildings, so it comes as a bit of a surprise to learn that Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) has been selected to redesign the historic Smithsonian campus in Washington, DC. BIG will lead a design team that will include Surface Design, Traceries and Robert Silman Associates, which will be tasked with re-imagining the world’s largest museum and research complex. BIG won’t be designing any new buildings—at least for the time being—so we don’t expect any mountain-shaped forms to spring up on the National Mall, but the question of how, exactly, BIG will rethink the historic campus is still open. Read the rest of BIG Selected to Develop the Master Plan of the Smithsonian Institute Campus Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: big , bjarke ingels , Bjarke Ingels Group , National Mall , Smithsonian Campus , Smithsonian Castle , smithsonian institute , Smithsonian Institution , Smithsonian master plan , smithsonian museum , The Smithsonian , Washington DC

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