Stuff to think about if you want to have a real conversation about
For the past 16+ months I have been focusing almost all of my time and energy on Zero Energy Housing
with the goal of designing truly affordable housing for the Pacific Northwest's rather diffcult climate.
What makes this project unusuial is that I am targetting workforce and single moms, not wealthy retirees.
I am gambling on the belief that we can in fact reengineer our way out of the complex and unfolding catastrophe of this nation's investment in tens of millions of energy-inefficent houses, filled with
gas and electric appliances that almost appear to have been designed to waste energy. And yet
in spite of the enormity of the energy turning into waste heat by these
appliances, our houses, even the majority of the 'latest and greatest' green-washed supposedly ecofriendly
houses are so poorly integrated that they cannot readily be either heated or cooled w/o additional investments in fossil fuel AND power from the electrical grid. Or massive grid-tied solar arrays on the roof that in many cases only pencil on extremely expensive building sites with an LCA that
both allows "seasonal energy banking" and merely considers the out-of-pocket costs
and subsidies, not the total environmental impacts of
making and maintaining the things.
For the past 6 months I have been exploring the German passive house methodology and learning to use their software system which involves a far more rigorous analysis of energy leaks than the NREL Energy10 software.
Both programs allow comparison of various approaches to optimization, but
neither was developed with these houses in mind.
My focus is NOT on building airtight houses with heat recovery air recirculation systems, but on
capture of heat from the soil, radiant energy from the sky and recapture of
the waste heat from all sources - radiation, water and air - and I expect the
house to have substantial air turnover
year-round, with shared primary goals goal of "net zero energy" and IAQ that exceeds
the cleanliness of what is available outdoors.
I believe that 'sustainable development', at least as the term is most often
used these days, is an oxymoron. And I recognize that building new stuff is generally "not green"
at all. But it is my hope that the test lab provided by these houses will provide tools that allow
us to retrofit existing housing
stock for substantially improved energy efficiency, in a cost-effective way.
This statement will soon be replaced by a jumpsite that organizes the tools and information that I have collected (a library of well over 3 GB of pdf files at this point) and the status of the design process as well. For the time being, look very closely at David Delaney's Site. I am a relative newcomer to this arena, and he has been here marking territory here for a long time.
OK - what follows is what has always been here. A colection of the webstuff
tha tI find interesting and useful. For the past year I have been using Facebook
far more often than this page as a way of posting stuff I find,
Federal Reserve forecasting and watching Total borrowings from the Fed
Includes discount window, Term Auction Facility (TAF) and Primary Dealer Credit Facility (PDCF). Assets and Liabilities of Commercial Banks in the United States Federal Reserve Statistical Release H.8CO2 Emissions from Fossil Fuels by Sector
In the US West as a whole, transportation accounts for 44 percent of fossil fuel CO2 emissions, by far the biggest source of emissions ... When we're looking at how to reduce our climate-changing emissions, we must look at how to reduce emissions in this sector. Save the planet through YouTube
In an opinion article in The Scientist magazine, Reuben Clements, David Bickford and David Lohman from the National University of Singapore propose that posting videos on YouTube could be one of the most effective ways of showcasing just how much environmental damage is being caused worldwide. Global Warming Maps The maps
developed for Laurence Williams' book
"An End to Global Warming" show the affected areas if sea levels were to rise by 1, 3, 10, 30, and 100 meters.
The maps were derived from the
GTOPO30 dataset, a 30
arc-second resolution digital map of global topography. Border data came from
the NIMA Vector Map Level
0. They include a global map, and more detailed maps of Europe and the east coast of North America Michael Pollan meets John Mackey at UC Berkeley Feb 27, 2007 RealMedia version of Pollan's introduction and Mackey's powerpoint presentation.
This is a 'really important' discussion and you need to understand it if you
want to understand where we our food supply is headed. Mackey proposes two critical ideas: a 'beyond organic' rating system and the critical observation that although the natural foods movement began in a positive position, nature is friendly and beautiful, farming is good, etc. the traditional natural foods marketing approach has been about negativity: no pesticides, no additives, rather than positive: good for the soil, taste better, keeps money in the local economy, good for you. Michael Pollan 'debates' John Mackey at UC Berkeley Feb 27, 2007 This is a really amazing and surprisingly open discussion between a really effective CEO and a really effective journalist. I am sure that I will eventually find a parallel in some famous and potentially world-changing interview, but at the moemnt, nothing jumps to mind. Really hot moments come at around 24 minutes 41 minutes and 50 minutes, but the whole thing is riveting. Ross Elliot's Bubble Insulated Greenhouse Ross says that the 'liquid solar insulation and shading system should eliminate the need for fossil-fuel heating or powered ventilation to maintain optimum growing conditions year round in any climate'. Filters for Families To provide arsenic free water (in Nepal), Filters for Families is partnering with other organizations to provide education workshops explaining the consequences of arsenic poisoning, training in how to use the filters, and long term maintenance of the filters. Closing the 'Collapse Gap': Why the USSR was better prepared for collapse than the US is today (Dmitry Orlov 2006) Altered Oceans - a five part series on the crisis in the seas. Two LA Times
journalists won the AGU's Sullivan Award this year for best journalism published with lead time of more than one week, and this series
looks to me like the Weiss/McFarling team has laid out the basis of a book to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with Silent Spring
and The End of Nature. Absolutely must read. Tom Woods All Season Fruit Company Large scale hydroponic greenhouse operation that is growing high quality organic fruit out of season in Western Washington. The website is very detailed and literally shows you how to do it. The Cheeseburger Footprint
Running the numbers can lead to some fascinating realizations about our impact and how we might actually best focus our energy in trying to affect positive change.
"... the greenhouse gas emissions arising every year from the production and consumption of cheeseburgers is roughly the amount emitted by 6.5 million to 19.6 million SUVs." The Living Planet Index
This report from WWF meticulously documents national per capita
ecological footprints for 148 nations,
as of 2004. Crude Designs - The rip-off of Iraq's Oil Wealth This report reveals how an oil policy with origins
in the US State Department is on course to be adopted in Iraq, soon after the December elections, with no public debate and at enormous potential cost. The policy allocates the majority of Iraq’s oilfields – accounting for at least 64% of the country’s oil reserves – for development by multinational oil companies. Robert Newman's History of Oil By far the most powerful full-length (48 minutes) internet-available video history you have ever seen.
If you know something that ties more threads into a more accurate, more
revealing tapestry, I want to know about it. His website is www.robnewman.com From the ACLU - a short flash video about ordering a Pizza - In the age of Carnivore. I am willing to agree that this is not exactly sustainability related. And it's not new.
I am willing to agree that this is not exactly sustainability related. And it's not new. I have listed again where it belongs, in the section on Anthropology and Human Culture
along with EPIC 2015 which is also MUST SEE Fuel Efficient Vehicles - HP to Weight Ratio One of my friends, Rich Ruggles,
spent the final years of his life putting together a team to develop a real fuel efficient vehicle.
One of my favorite parts of his project has always been this table - the first
one he showed me - the history of motor vehicle power to weight ratios, converted to an unusually meaningful standard comparative unit based on the power output of Lance Armstong on his bicycle, rather than a mythical horse. Multiscale Integrated Analysis of Social Metabolism
I have become fascinated by the idea of a metric for biological fuel efficiency and energy conversion based on fuel intake and work done.
I am not alone in this. Mario Giampietro has already done a lot of the heavy lifting. Howard T. Odum on Energy Accounting
Starting in 1967, we used the term embodied energy for the calories (or joules) of one kind of energy required to make those of another, but that same name was used by others for some different ways of thinking and calculating. In 1983 we chose a new name, emergy (spelled with an "m") suggested by David Scienceman of Australia. In
papers and books since, many groups around the world used emergy spelled with an "m" to mean the "energy memory" of what was required of one type of energy to make another. EMBODIED ENERGY There appear to be a number of different understandings of the term embodied energy. Basically it refers to quantitative methods of accounting for flows of energy through our environment. Traditionally considered, embodied energy is the sum total of the energy necessary - from the raw material extraction, to transport, manufacturing, assembly, installation as well as the marketing and other costs of a specific material.
PHASE CHANGE MATERIALS RESEARCH
Here you will find useful links to sites concerning Phase Change Materials (PCM'S) and probably the largest and most comprehensive reading list in relation to PCM's ever compiled. GLACIATIONS THROUGHOUT EARTH HISTORY An introduction to geology, landscapes, glaciers, climate, and biology of the ice ages. The relationship of ice age events to modern environments, the nature of climatic and environmental change, and the role of man.
US DOE ENERGY INFORMATION ADMINISTRATION US Energy Consumption, by sector.
Look at the consequences of globalization as energy consumption in the US shifts from industrial or commercial sectors (making things)
to the transportation (shipping things) in the wake of NAFTA. Think about it. Now look for other impacts of globalization. Calculate Your Ecological Footprint - There used to be only one EFC, now there are many. And I especially like this one. THE OIL WE EAT Manning, Richard, Harper's Magazine, Feb 2004, Vol. 308, Issue 1845
followed by an interesting mini-wiki on sustainability Eating Fossil Fuels - by Dale Allen Pfeiffer Human beings (like all other animals) draw their energy from the food they eat. Until the last century, all of the food energy available on this planet was derived from the sun through photosynthesis ... American Thermidor Part I By Stirling Newberry - How the cycle of deficits has kept the right in power in America. American Thermidor Part II By Stirling Newberry Why did the New Economy fail to create the long boom that was promised? Interview with a fungus (PDF) - unabridged version of Diane Brooks Pleninger's RDS-economist prize winning essay in PDF Interview with a fungus (HTML) - slightly abridged version of Diane Brooks Pleninger's RDS-economist prize winning essay in HTML IDB Population Pyramids - This page allows you to obtain population pyramids (graphs that show the distribution of population by age and sex) for nearly any country.
Data updated 9-30-2004. New dynamic display allows data extraction or graphical representation of population growth 1980-2050 Search Population and Health Data - This database contains data on 95 demographic variables for more than 220 countries, 28 world regions and sub-regions, the world as a whole, the United States as a whole, and the U.S. states. (Not all countries have data on all variables.) An Essay on the Principle of Population
-An Essay on the Principle of Population: A View of its Past and Present Effects on Human Happiness; with an Inquiry into Our Prospects Respecting the Future Removal or Mitigation of the Evils which It Occasions
Thomas Robert, Malthus (1766-1834) Published: London: John Murray, 1826. Sixth edition. First published: 1798. See also the First edition. RealClimate - a science blog - RealClimate is a commentary site on climate science by working climate scientists for the interested public and journalists. WIKIPEDIA: The Hydrogen Economy - hydrogen economy is a hypothetical future economy in which the primary form of stored energy for mobile applications and load balancing is hydrogen. Fuel Cells - A Perspective Expectations that fuel cells will be simple and cheap seem unrealistic. Hydrogen Characteristics - IGNITION AND DETONATION PERFORMANCE Hadronic mechanics - Increasing the energy available from Hydrogen combustion The Hydrogen Economy - Energy and Economic Black Hole - The energy-literate scoff at perpetual motion, free energy, and cold fusion, but what about the hydrogen economy?. RENEWABLE ENERGY; WHAT ARE THE LIMITS? - This attempt to assess the potential of renewables is being updated as new information is received. Critical feedback is welcome. 4/2004. It takes one tonne of water to produce one kilogram of wheat - Report: 21 March 2005: FOOD AND AGRICULTURE ORGANIZATION OF THE UNITED NATIONS A Gender Perspective on Water and Sanitation - background Paper #2 DESA/DSD/2005/2: Interagency Task Force on Gender and Water OF THE UNITED NATIONS Can Organic Farming Feed the World? - Hunger is a problem of poverty, distribution, and access to food. The question then, is not "How to feed the world", but rather, how can we develop sustainable farming methods that have the potential to help the world feed and sustain itself. Biomass can't save us. Published on 29 Nov 2004 by EnergyResources e-list. Thermodynamics of the Corn-Ethanol Biofuel cycle. Defines sustainability, sustainable cyclic processes, and quantifies the degree of non-renewability of ethanol produced from industrially-grown corn Shop 'til you drop on a Mexican wage - If you worked in Mexico,
What could you afford to buy? Now consider China ...
a very interesting interface to geolocated population and development information More Gapminder
The data is based on estimates in a background paper for the Human Development Report 2005:
Dikhanov, Yuri (2005). Trends in global income distribution, 1970-2000, and scenarios for 2015. Human Development Report Office Occasional pape download paper
Op Ed pages of newspapers around the world MY VIRTUAL NEWSPAPER We Want Your Soul.
We Want Your Soul, Inc. (WWYS®) is a global private equity firm with nearly 250 million souls under management.
The internet is shit.
t is vitally important that we all realize this and move on ... We need to start again. We need to stop saying how wonderful things are. We need to openly, truthfully and respectfully admit that the internet itself, in almost all of what's been done with it, is shit. Money as Debt
A short film by Paul Grignon provides a '101 level' discussion, but addresses some critical terms not included in most people's vocabulary, and fundamental concepts that you probably did not learn in your college economics classes. 'Paul Grignon's 47-minute animated presentation of Money as Debt tells in very simple and effective graphic terms what money is and how it ... all is being created.' Neil Postman on Cyberspace, 1995 "Am I using this technology,
or is it using me?" Postman discusses new media and the Faustian bargain
of technological change in the context of the Information Superhighway and the
Internet. Did You Know? This video is fascinating
as well as mind-blowing, in that it is a shorter, tighter recut of Did you Know II that
leads us to somewhat different conclusions. Seems to fit quite well with Epic 2014.
But watch EPIC and WEB 2.0 first. The YouTubers' Comments on these videos are
all VERY VERY interesting. Did You Know? (the Fischbowl) Story and source material behind the
Did You Know? Videos. Web 2.0 The machine is Us/ing us? video is the most compelling product posted. Seems to fit quite well with Epic 2014.
Web 2.0 ... The Machine is Us/ing
Us. Michael Wesch is launching the Digital Ethnography working group at Kansas State University to examine the impacts of digital technology on human interaction.
So far the Web 2.0 video is the most compelling product posted. Seems to fit
quite well with Epic 2014.
chris jordan photographic arts. Pushing the envelope of photography.
Redefining what it means to create art using photographic techniques. I thought
that Intolerable Beauty (2003-2005) was over the top. But in Running the Numbers (2007)
he shows his vision is not at all static: he just keeps moving the goalposts. There is a great interview at Conscientious - a weblog about fine-art photography. MONA LISA DESCENDING A STAIRCASE An entirely delightful and utterly mesmerizing
10 minute freefall through the history of western representational painting, or at least the last 400 years of it. On
YouTube. Watch it in fullscreen. Smile. Gasp. Wish you could do that. THE MEATRIX Genius level in animation, brilliant political commentary about where our food comes from. From Free Range Video. They also have an interesting pseudo 3-D immersive Meatrix landscape model that is not up to Second Life standards, but interesting. They definitely ought to be doing guerilla theater in Second Life. WTO ANNOUNCES FORMALIZED SLAVERY MARKET FOR AFRICA
In some ways pranking the WTO and Wharton School and conservative thinktanks is even more interesting and as fundamentally worth doing as messing about in
boats or googlebombing prominent assholes.
Most people, including the conference attendees, appear to accept these pranks at face value.
Which makes them useful tools for cultural anthropologists studying the fragile
and ever-blurring line that separates truth and belief. Chocolate as a key to the history of civilization.
(note: this link is connected to the one above it in many ways) Maps of War Brilliant flash animations of over 1000 years of waxing empires in the middle east and elsewhere, another key to the history of western civilization. Works better in Firefox2 than in IE7
(note: this link is connected to the one above it and the one below it in many ways) Robert Newman's History of Oil (repeated entry from section above) By far the most powerful full-length (48 minutes) internet-available video history you have ever seen.
If you know something that ties more threads into a more accurate, more
revealing tapestry, I want to know about it. His website is www.robnewman.com From the ACLU - a short flash video about ordering a Pizza - in the age of Carnivore I am willing to agree that this is not exactly sustainability related. And it's not new.
EPIC 2014 - The Museum of Media History The
rise of GoogleZon and the decline of the 4th Estate.
A very clear look at the future history of the media by Robin Sloan and Matt Thompson, with music by Aaron McLeran.
Watch this one next, after you've ordered the Pizza (above). Perhaps the most
important internet video of the decade, IMHO. GoogleZon and EPIC - the transcript. Transcribed from the mini-movie clip EPIC by Robin Sloan. And of course,
there is an interview
with Matt and Robin The story behind EPIC. EPIC 2014 has been seen by upwards of a million people on the Web. It's been screened at big conferences -- of journalists, marketers, librarians -- and even on TV in a few places. Rupert Murdoch watched it.
EPIC 2015 - The Sequel. Corrections to the predictions from 2004 to include
GooleEarth, Picassa, the rise of the iPod, and
several other pieces of the puzzle. Michael Polland meets John Mackey at UC Berkeley Feb 27, 2007 RealMedia version of Pollan's introduction and Mackey's powerpoint presentation.
This is a 'really important' discussion and you need to understand it if you
want to understand where we our food supply is headed. Repeated from
sustainability section above Michael Polland 'debates' John Mackey at UC Berkeley Feb 27, 2007 This is a really amazing and surprisingly open discussion between a really effective CEO and a really effective journalist. I am sure that I will eventually find a parallel in some famous and potentially world-changing interview, but at the moemnt, nothing jumps to mind. Really hot moments come at around 24 minutes 41 minutes and 50 minutes, but the whole thing is riveting.
Repeated from sustainability section above THE APATHY FACTOR
Why it is important to underdstand apathy toward disaster preparedness. A paper that might help understand how to motivate action in response to the long emergency.
Burningman 2005 Great overview of the art and environment in delightful Flash format by Claudia Rose and Lenny Jones Security Analysis of the Diebold AccuVote-TS Voting Machine This paper presents a fully independent security study from Princeton University of a Diebold AccuVote-TS voting machine, including its hardware and software.
Demonstration of Hacking (vote-stealing) on a Diebold AccuVote-TS Voting Machine
This video from Princeton University demonstrates vote-stealing on a Diebold
AccuVote-TS voting machine, including how to inject a virus to infect other
machines with vote-stealing malware.
Asshole Google Bomb
a brilliant demonstration of how to use simple single-frame animation, a very high quality pop song, and googlebombing to clearly present the view of the US administration
that is held by the majority of the earth's citizens, in the US and elsewhere.
Type "asshole" into Google and hit "I'm feeling lucky" Deconstructing Google bombs A breach of symbolic power or just a goofy prank? By Clifford Tatum The Downing Street Memo
Probably the most important piece of news of the 21st century, and the US press is still clearly afraid to touch it.
This memo from July 2002 appears to be the smoking gun that proves that the US administration knowingly faked
most if not all of the evidence that was used to support the invasion of Iraq,
If a liar lies most of the time and then apparently tells the truth once, does that make the truth a lie, too? No Free Lunch, Part 1: A Critique of Thomas Gold's Claims for Abiotic Oil - Jean Laherrere edited by Dale Allen Pfeiffer Peak Oil: Fact and Fiction This page addresses several common questions about world oil production. All historical production numbers are from the Oil and Gas Journal and the 2004 figures are for the first 11 months. The Ghawar Oil Field, Saudi Arabia - Greg Croft Inc. has been created to offer a range of earth science services to the oil and gas exploration industry Dry Dipstick - a peak oil metadirectory SCENARIOS FOR THE FUTURE OF OIL - Exploring the debate over Peak Oil - another jumpsite. The American Assembler's Overview of Peak Oil - with text overview and at least a dozen great links - yet another Peak Oil jumpsite. Richard Heinberg on PEAK OIL - "it is self-delusional to dwell on hopeful images of the future merely to distract ourselves from facing unpleasant truths." Richard Heinberg - The end of the oil economy?(RA) - Real Audio interview by Laura Flanders 3.23.04 Confessions of an Economic Hit Man: - How the U.S. Uses Globalization to Cheat Poor Countries Out of Trillions - John Perkins interviewed by Amy Goodman
Peak Oil? Include Me Out - Thoughts from a Once-Burned Y2K Activist Can we design nature? - Lancelot 'Capability' Brown and the Permaculture movement.
The Global Ecovillage Network The Wordspy - Sort of an OED of the evolving moment Enformay - Tilicum and the journal of the International Society for Philosophical Enquiry (ISPE). World Wide Words - Another wonderful word site from a contributor to the OED The Art & Science of Billboard Improvement Freeway Blogging A Fresh Look at the Cattle Mutilation Mystery Howard Breskin - My dad, has an interesting collection of Links mostly related to LAW - find Supreme Court decisions, etc. Robert Garfias - A Kiosk of Information Related to Ethnomusicology Electronic Frontier Foundation - The Newsletter Girls may face risks from phthalates - This is REALLY scary! Totally Unacceptable level of risk. RAFI AKA ETC, has broadened its scope. - Status of Terminator and Traitor Technologies EPA - Office of Pesticides - Biopesticides - The "Official" collection of often apologist material on Biopesticides Urban Legends Sites. - PLEASE: Check to see if it's a hoax BEFORE you pass it on. FOREIGN RELATIONS OF THE UNITED STATES - 1964-1968, Volume III Vietnam. This is an example of what Bush just prevented you from seeing.
Other Science Stuff
U.S. Solar Radiation Resource Maps
These maps show the general trends in the amount of solar radiation received in the United States and its territories. They are spatial interpolations of solar radiation values derived from the 1961-1990 National Solar Radiation Data Base (NSRDB) and published in the Solar Radiation Data Manual for Flat-Plate and Concentrating Collectors. Welcome to the Organic Compounds Database. This 2483 compound database has been compiled by Harold M. Bell at Virginia Tech. Fill in the form below with as much information as you can. Leave the information blank if you don't know or you don't care. Interview with Fredrick vom Saal by Frontline
Interview conducted in February 1998 by Doug Hamilton, producer of FRONTLINE's "Fooling With Nature." Environmental Health Perspectives Volume 113, Number 8, August 2005 An Extensive New Literature Concerning Low-Dose Effects of Bisphenol A Shows the Need for a New Risk Assessment Need for a New Risk Assessment
Frederick S. vom Saal1 and Claude Hughes2,3