Ultra-modern ski chalet pays homage to Ontario’s traditional farmhouses

March 7, 2019 by  
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Toronto-based Atelier Kastelic Buffey has unveiled a beautiful family ski chalet tucked into a winter wonderland landscape surrounded by Ontario’s Blue Mountains. Although the black and white Alta Chalet boasts a thoroughly modern aesthetic, the home’s extreme pitched roof was inspired by the area’s traditional farmhouse vernacular. The design also boasts a number of sustainable features such as a high-performance glazing system, ultra-tight insulation and natural air ventilation. Located in a private ski club, the massive 3,000-square-foot Alta Chalet was designed for a family of five who love the outdoors. When first approached by the clients, the designers were intent on avoiding the typical ski chalet aesthetic, instead opting for a home that would pay homage to its farmhouse history . The project was also inspired by the area’s idyllic natural surroundings. Related: Gorgeous prefab cabin is embedded into the mountainous Norwegian landscape “Alta Chalet communicates an ethos of contemporary design and elegant detailing that derives from the local vernacular tradition of the barn,” the architects explained. “Its iconic presence — defined by a reductive black-and-white color scheme and a tight, clean, gabled roof edge — complements the intelligence of its spatial and economic efficiency.” The home’s exterior is clad in jet black and bright white siding. Various blocks make up the ski chalet’s volume, which is marked by a large gable roof that looms over the lower volumes. The interior space, marked by white walls and wooden finishes, was designed with the family in mind. The open-concept kitchen, dining and living area is minimalist , but a strategic interior design scheme helps provide a welcoming living space that is perfect for both enjoying family time and entertaining guests. The home also has a south-facing outdoor deck to enjoy the crisp cold air while taking in the amazing views. Due to the extreme climate, the architects also focused on making the home as energy-efficient and resilient as possible. The ski chalet is wrapped in a low-maintenance, pre-finished Canadian pine siding and is heavily insulated to withstand the area’s frigid temperatures. Additionally, the home’s many windows are comprised of high-performance glazing in order to reduce energy loss. Along with a pleasant wood-burning fireplace, a hydronic in-floor heating system keeps the living spaces warm and toasty year-round. + Atelier Kastelic Buffey Via Freshome Photography by Shai Gil via Atelier Kastelic Buffey

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Ultra-modern ski chalet pays homage to Ontario’s traditional farmhouses

LSU researcher creates biodegradable plastic beads for Mardi Gras

March 7, 2019 by  
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Mardi Gras would not be the same without its plastic beads. For the past 200 years, people have given out freebies to parade attendees in New Orleans, starting with nuts and glass ornaments back in the day and eventually switching to the plastic beads that party-goers have grown accustomed to today. While the colorful beads have become a staple for the iconic celebration, leftover Mardi Gras beads end up littering the streets of New Orleans . Fortunately, one researcher has come up with an answer to the problem in the form of  biodegradable  beads. If the idea catches on, New Orleans could save a lot of money in cleanup and space in its landfills. In 2017, for example, the city gathered around 93,000 pounds of plastic beads after Mardi Gras was over, most of which was removed from storm drains in the city’s historic district. Related: 46 tons of Mardi Gras beads found clogging New Orleans catch basins To help curb the post-party cleanup, city officials invested in filtering devices to keep the beads from plugging up storm drains. While the devices keep the water flowing in New Orleans, they do not prevent the beads from ending up in the trash heap. But a professor at Louisiana State University named Naohiro Kato has created biodegradable beads from algae , which he hopes will replace the plastic beads traditionally given out during Mardi Gras. Although the biodegradable beads offer a long-term solution, the costs to manufacture the beads are much higher than their plastic counterparts. Unless those costs are reduced, Kato does not believe the biodegradable beads will be a viable solution. His company, Microalgae, is looking into cutting the costs by working with the nutraceutical industry, which produces algae-based products for the vegetarian market. If they are successful, the plastic beads of Mardi Gras could possibly be replaced by a much more eco-friendly alternative in the near future. Via Huffington Post Image via Patrick Black, Jr.

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LSU researcher creates biodegradable plastic beads for Mardi Gras

Traditional Swiss ski chalet renovated into two modern flex-space units

June 8, 2015 by  
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Read the rest of Traditional Swiss ski chalet renovated into two modern flex-space units Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Casa Sur Ual , christian muller , dutch architect , eco design , green design , pitched roof home , ski chalet , sustainable design , swiss alps , Swiss architecture , timber clad

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Traditional Swiss ski chalet renovated into two modern flex-space units

Taiwanese worm becomes internet sensation with proboscis-shooting talent

June 8, 2015 by  
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It doesn’t take much to become an internet star these days. A shakily shot YouTube video, a squishy green body, and a talent for shooting a pink tongue-like proboscis across the room are all it took for one Taiwanese worm. Hundreds of thousands of people have looked on in awe as this little green ribbon worm shoots a slithery pink proboscis-–like a worm-within-a-worm-–out of its mouth. The proboscis is a stunner used to paralyze prey. Usually ribbon worms, or nemerteans, are found under the ocean and several species grow to a horrifying three feet long. The longest one ever found was almost 200ft long and most of them are carnivores . Our advice? Stay on dry land until further notice. Via Neatomara  / Video via WebTV56 Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: green worm , nemerteans , ocean worms , proboscis , strange animals , Taiwan , Taiwan ribbon worm , Taiwanese animals , worms

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Taiwanese worm becomes internet sensation with proboscis-shooting talent

California is sinking as farmers dig deeper for water

June 8, 2015 by  
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California is sinking . We can’t mince words on this one. Drought conditions in the state have had a profound and devastating effect on crops, spurring farmers to draw out ever-elusive groundwater, causing aquifers to collapse. We’ve reported previously on this problem, but new information illustrates how dire the prognosis really is for the Golden State, as scientists recorded the worst sinking in 50 years last year. Read the rest of California is sinking as farmers dig deeper for water Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: california agriculture , california drought , california farmlands , california sinking , drilling into aquifers , drought stricken crops , farmers drilling groundwater , farmers using up groundwater , sinking land in california , water usage in california

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California is sinking as farmers dig deeper for water

UK’s biggest supermarket to donate unsold food to women and children in need

June 8, 2015 by  
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Britain’s largest supermarket chain, Tesco, will donate unsold food from 10 of their UK stores to women’s shelters and children’s breakfast programs. Tesco’s announcement came just a few days after the world learned that France would require all supermarkets there to donate unsold food to charity, instead of letting it go to waste. The big difference is that nobody is forcing Tesco to adopt this practice, and they aren’t the first chain in the UK to make a move like this. Read the rest of UK’s biggest supermarket to donate unsold food to women and children in need Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: britain supermarkets , british supermarkets , donating unsold groceries to charity , food waste , how to end hunger , reducing global food waste , supermarket food waste , tesco , uk grocery stores , uk supermarkets , united kingdom food waste , unsold food

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UK’s biggest supermarket to donate unsold food to women and children in need

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