Luxury home in Kerala produces all of its own energy

July 30, 2020 by  
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Thrissur-based design studio LIJO RENY Architects has taken full advantage of Kerala’s sunny, tropical climate with its design of The House Within the Grid, a luxury residence that produces all of its own energy via rooftop solar panels. Commissioned by a doctor couple with four children, the solar-powered home is currently used as a holiday escape from the clients’ primary residence in Sharjah; however, the house will eventually serve as the family’s permanent home in the future. Located on a slightly elevated half-acre lot in the coastal neighborhood of Andathode, the House Within the Grid encompasses nearly 9,000 square feet of living space to accommodate the primary family of six and the clients’ extended family and friends on holiday visits. To provide privacy to the main sleeping wing, the architects divided the home into two connected yet distinct parallel bays — a single-story bay housing the public and semi-private areas on the east side and a double-story bay on the western side that comprises six en suite bedrooms and a compact office space. Two large courtyards are located in between the bays. Related: Mud and recycled materials make up this sustainable Kerala home “A mix of primary and secondary functions, with its two different room widths, creates a visible repetitive spatial pattern throughout the house,” the architects explained of the layout. “This project was an exercise in exploiting the spatial possibilities offered by the surprisingly flexible modular grid. Juxtaposing the rigorous but serene geometry of the house with the incoherent landscape of its site, a distinct spatial language evolved to become a subtle stage for the contemplative daily activities.” In addition to adding rooftop solar panels that meet all of the home’s electricity needs, the architects have strategically placed windows to tap into cross ventilation for natural cooling. Extended roof slabs also help protect against unwanted solar gain from Kerala’s intense sunlight. A rainwater collection system has been installed along the floating roofs as well to further reduce the home’s resource footprint. + LIJO RENY Architects Photography by Praveen Mohandas via LIJO RENY Architects

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Luxury home in Kerala produces all of its own energy

Mysterious seeds from China arriving in mail across America

July 30, 2020 by  
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Agricultural officials from several states have expressed alarm over unsolicited packages of seeds delivered to residents. The packages appear to come from China, as they feature China Post labeling. Agricultural officers advise farmers not to plant the seeds, in case they are harmful or invasive. Warnings sent out to farmers and residents follow reports of unsolicited seed packages being delivered in residents’ mail. Several people reported receiving seeds in white pouches that featured Chinese writing and the words “China Post.” Another concerning detail is that the seed packages were not labeled as food or agricultural products. Envelopes included misleading labels, with some listing the contents as jewelry, toys or earbuds. States that have released public notices against planting the unsolicited seeds include Washington, Virginia, Kentucky, Delaware, Colorado, Iowa, Georgia, Minnesota, Maryland, Mississippi, Montana, Oklahoma, Nevada, New Hampshire, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, West Virginia, North Dakota, Texas, Alabama and Florida. Kentucky , one of the first states to receive reports of unsolicited seeds, issued warnings to residents. As Ryan Quarles, Kentucky’s Agriculture Commissioner, wrote on Twitter, residents should “put the package and seeds in a zip lock bag and wash your hands immediately.” Residents must also send any seeds they receive to the Department of Agriculture. Following the reports, several other states, including Arkansas, Michigan , Oregon and New Jersey, issued warnings to residents. Such measures may help prevent farmers from planting harmful, contaminated seeds. The Chinese Embassy in Washington claims these China Post packages “to be fake ones with erroneous layouts and entries.” Cecilia Sequeira, spokesperson for the U.S. Agriculture Department’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, says the department is working with U.S. Customs and Border Protection to stop illegal importation of prohibited seeds. Should you receive any mysterious seeds in the mail, report it to the nearest Agriculture Office. + NY Times Image via Pexels

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Mysterious seeds from China arriving in mail across America

Racing on Old-School Penny Farthing Bikes Is Surprisingly Intense (Video)

October 18, 2011 by  
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This summer, the IG Markets London Nocturne , perhaps the premier urban cycling competition, featured a variety of challenges that included straight-forward races, folding bike races and longest skid contests. But the most awesome, in my opinion, was the penny farthing race. The big wheel, little wheel rides may look like historical oddities brought out for a laugh, but this surprisingly intense video proves that they’re still dead serious. … Read the full story on TreeHugger

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Racing on Old-School Penny Farthing Bikes Is Surprisingly Intense (Video)

NASA and Japan Create Spectacular Map of Earth (Video)

October 18, 2011 by  
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NASA /Public Domain Google Earth is the go-to software for viewing the planet in detail. However, a new topographical map created by NASA and Japan’s Advanced Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer, or ASTER, instrument is showing up even Google Earth with a “global digital elevation model” that has a 3D effect. … Read the full story on TreeHugger

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NASA and Japan Create Spectacular Map of Earth (Video)

Don’t Let the Earth Commit Suicide on Chatroulette (Video)

April 21, 2010 by  
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It’s easy to be cynical about Earth Day . But it’s not easy to create a cynical satire about Earth Day that involves Chatroulette . And yet that’s what the ever-inventive folks over at Grist have done here , in this surprisingly charming video about an Earth that’s about ready to call it quits

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Don’t Let the Earth Commit Suicide on Chatroulette (Video)

Bolivia’s President: "Capitalism Dies, or Earth Dies"

April 21, 2010 by  
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Climate Change Conference Kicks Off in Bolivia For anyone who thought the proceedings of COP-15 last December were a bit sleepy, the World Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of the Mother Earth may be better suited to your tastes. The meeting, being held in Bolivia, was kicked-off yesterday with a rousing speech from the nation’s president, Evo Morales , who made it quite clear w… Read the full story on TreeHugger

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Bolivia’s President: "Capitalism Dies, or Earth Dies"

World Nations’ Current ‘Paltry’ Emissions Cuts Will Lead to 3C Rise

April 21, 2010 by  
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Photo via aRecentStudy Those of us that tried to be optimistic about Copenhagen often pointed to the fact that a non-binding treaty was better than no treaty at all, and that the voluntary pledges made by nations to curb their emissions was indeed going to be have an impact.

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World Nations’ Current ‘Paltry’ Emissions Cuts Will Lead to 3C Rise

Attend Tribeca Film Festival At Home To See "Climate of Change"

April 21, 2010 by  
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A group of middle school students in India protest plastics. Image courtesy of Participant Media.

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Attend Tribeca Film Festival At Home To See "Climate of Change"

Unwrap the Inhabitat 2009 Green Holiday Gift Guide

December 2, 2009 by  
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If you want to green your gift giving this year but are worried that eco-friendly gifts come with a hefty price tag, you’ll want to check out all of the surprisingly affordable sustainable gift ideas in the Inhabitat Green Holiday Gift Guide ! The guide is chock full of smart gifts under $50 and even under $20 for you to choose from, and many of the choices will help the recipien…

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Unwrap the Inhabitat 2009 Green Holiday Gift Guide

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