Inspiring youth village for orphans generates solar power for nearly 10% of Rwanda

November 15, 2017 by  
Filed under Eco, Green, Recycle

More than one million people in a population of over 11 million in Rwanda are orphans . After hearing about this crisis, couple Anne Heyman and Seth Merrin started the Agahozo-Shalom Youth Village (ASYV) to offer a safe community and four-year high school education for at-risk orphans. Today, over 500 teenagers from across Rwanda’s 30 districts call the youth village home — and an on-site solar plant provides clean energy to other parts of the country. After hearing about Rwanda’s orphan crisis, Heyman was reminded of youth villages Israel constructed to house children orphaned after the Holocaust. The couple began ASYV to help teenagers specifically, as they knew of several organizations already working to care for orphaned babies. On 144 acres, hundreds of teenagers now receive an education and a family. Related: This modular orphanage in Thailand was built using local and recycled materials ASYV organizes students into families. Each group has a mama, a Rwandan educator who resides in a house with the teens, and a big brother or big sister or Rwandan guidance counselor who visits once a week. They also have a cousin, a foreign volunteer who comes for a year. ASYV recruits teenagers from around the country, taking in 125 every year. A village Health and Wellness Center provides medical and mental care, with health education on topics like HIV/AIDS, malaria prevention, and diet. Life Enrichment Applied Programs allow students to get involved in athletics or the arts. A farm , where students can get hands-on farming experience, provides around 30 percent of the village’s food. There’s even a 8.5-megawatt solar plant on village grounds. According to ASYV, “It is the first sub-Saharan grid-connected solar project, and provides electricity to nearly 10 percent of Rwanda.” Students of mixed ethnicities live together, as the youth village hopes to express reconciliation in Rwanda. One student, who asked to remain nameless, told National Geographic, “Of course, I know that some of my brothers are born from parents who could have been killers in the genocide. But why should we punish them for crimes they did not commit? I don’t want to know what their parents did. I only see them as my brothers and sisters.” Ten years in, graduates of the youth village have gone on to higher education at universities like Brown University or the University of Pennsylvania. Student Emmanuel Nkund’unkundiye, at ASYV’s first graduation ceremony, said, “Many people call us orphans but this time we are no longer orphans, we have a home.” Check out ASYV’s website for more information on the community, or on how to get involved . + Agahozo-Shalom Youth Village Via National Geographic Images via Agahozo-Shalom Youth Village Facebook

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Inspiring youth village for orphans generates solar power for nearly 10% of Rwanda

This modular orphanage in Thailand was built using local and recycled materials

November 7, 2017 by  
Filed under Green, Recycle

This cluster of tiny shelters for Burmese children in Thailand was built using reclaimed wood and locally sourced materials . Following the success of his Casa Techo emergency dwellings in Colombia, Chilean architect Sebastián Contreras Rodriguez developed a modular design that can be adapted to local conditions and material availability. The Hua-Fai – Youth Center is located in the city of Mae Sot in northwest Thailand close to the Burmese border. As this part of the country is prone to floods, the architect designed raised modules that stand 2.62 feet (80 cm) off the ground with steel profiles anchored to concrete dice. Related: Iranian Architect Builds Sustainable Bamboo Dome From Bamboo and Dry Rice Plants Rodriguez collaborated with Estudio Cavernas and a.gor.a architects to build the structures. Each unit can house two kids with a bedroom on the upper floor, and a social area on the lower level. Recycled wood taken from demolished houses was used to create the main trusses, while eucalyptus logs facilitate natural ventilation. The roofing is made from sugarcane leaves sourced from an adjacent site. + Sebastián Contreras Rodriguez + Estudio Cavernas + a.gor.a architects Photos by Juan Cuevas, Alejandro Sánchez, Albert Company-Olmo

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This modular orphanage in Thailand was built using local and recycled materials

1,021 MW solar plant will generate steam for Oman oilfield

November 7, 2017 by  
Filed under Eco, Green

  Solar thermal energy could create steam for operations at an Oman oilfield. GlassPoint Solar has finished the first block of what will be a 1,021 megawatt (MW) solar plant, Miraah , for Petroleum Development Oman (PDO) – that will help them save around 300,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions every year. Miraah will be comprised of 36 blocks, or greenhouse -like structures housing solar arrays to protect them from harsh conditions like dust storms and strong winds, at the Amal West oilfield. According to GlassPoint , “The greenhouse enables major cost and performance advantages compared to exposed solar designs, from reducing overall material usage to automated washing operations.” The solar plant will concentrate sunlight with the help of large mirrors to boil oilfield water into steam. The plant recently delivered its first steam for the oilfield – and when finished will generate 6,000 tons of solar steam every single day. Related: GlassPoint is Using Solar Power to Draw Oil From the Earth The steam will be used for thermal enhanced oil recovery, where steam is injected into an oil reservoir, heating the oil, according to CleanTechnica . It’s then easier to pump the oil up to the surface. Natural gas often helps generate steam, but the Miraah solar plant will save around 5.6 trillion British thermal units of natural gas a year. Miraah will offer the same amount of carbon savings as if 63,000 cars left the roads. PDO Managing Director Raoul Restucci said in a statement, “Solar-powered oil production is a sustainable, long-term solution to meet the Sultanate’s future energy demand and utilize its natural resources most efficiently…Miraah is a real statement of intent from PDO as we begin the transition away from an exclusive focus on oil and gas to becoming a fully-fledged energy company with a greater focus on renewables .” + GlassPoint Solar Via CleanTechnica and GlassPoint Solar ( 1 , 2 ) Images via GlassPoint Solar

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1,021 MW solar plant will generate steam for Oman oilfield

This Russian cottage is heated for free with Bitcoin mining

November 7, 2017 by  
Filed under Business, Eco, Green

In the last month, Bitcoin — the biggest and best-known cryptocurrency — rose in value by 480 percent . The sudden spike spurred more people to invest in the currency, while others dedicate computers to the task of mining bitcoins . Siberian entrepreneurs Ilya Frolov and Dmitry Tolmachyov are engaged in the latter – and they’ve found that they’re able to heat a 20-square-meter with two machines while pocketing $430 per month. Bitcoin transactions require a lot of computer processing power, which in turn produces a substantial amount of heat . Most “miners” just release that heat into the atmosphere — but not Frolov and Tolmachyov. The Russian entrepreneurs built a cottage in the Siberian town of Irkutsk that is heated by two Bitcoin mining machines. Each month, the men make about $430. And, they pay $0 to heat the 20-square-meter abode. In the video above, Quartz details how this is possible. Related: Power-hungry Bitcoin could consume as much energy as Denmark by 2020 Because Bitcoin is relatively new, it is still considered a highly volatile investment . However it has provided gains exceeding those of any other currency in every year but one since 2010, according to The Independent. The process of “mining” Bitcoin determines which transactions are valid, and which should be added to the blockchain — an ever-expanding ledger that holds the transaction history of all Bitcoins in circulation. The blockchain lives in the thousands of machines on the bitcoin network. Mining also ensures the system cannot be gamed, thus, making the cryptocurrency more secure than the US dollar. Every ten minutes, mining computers collect a few hundred pending Bitcoin transactions and turn them into a mathematical puzzle. The first miner to find the solution declares it to others on the network. The other miners then check whether the sender of the funds has the right to spend the money. If enough approval is granted, the block is cryptographically added to the ledger and the miners move onto the next set of transactions. A miner who finds the solution gets 12.5 Bitcoins as a reward, but only after another 99 blocks have been added to the ledger. This gives all miners an incentive to participate in the system and validate transactions. It also provides protection; to double-spend a Bitcoin, digital bank robbers would have to rewrite the blockchain — that would require more than half of the network’s puzzle-solving capacity! Via Quartz , The Economist , The Independent Images via YouTube , Pixabay

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This Russian cottage is heated for free with Bitcoin mining

Orkidstudio builds passive solar African orphanage using earthbag construction

December 8, 2014 by  
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Read the rest of Orkidstudio builds passive solar African orphanage using earthbag construction Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Africa , earthbag , earthbag construction , humanitarian design , kenya , local earth , nakuru , Nakuru project , Orkidstudio , orphanage , passive orphanage , passive solar design , St. Jerome Center

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Orkidstudio builds passive solar African orphanage using earthbag construction

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