A new open design challenge is looking for viable alternatives to the dirty diesel pumps that provide irrigation water for off-grid farmers in India.
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Set into the hillside overlooking the Pacific Ocean in Big Sur, California, this retreat, seamlessly integrated into the landscape,was designed by Carver & Schicketanz Architects.
Built as a vacation home, the key elements were to build as least disruptively to the landscape as possible and minimise visibility of and from distant neighbors.
In the words of the architects, "We wanted the home to blend with the land, and give the clients a perfect retreat. We accomplished this by cutting a wedge into the gentle hillside and using this space to accommodate multiple functions (garage, laundry, powder room, pantry, mechanical room) underground. As a result the native meadow rolls onto the northern part of the house and ties the building to the landscape. Therefore the house is barely visible to the uphill neighbors."
Sustainable features include hydrotech roofing system planted with native grasses for insulation and minimising aesthetic impact on environment, thermal mass from limestone flooring, rainwater harvesting and cross-ventilation.
Via Lauren Moss
There’s nothing wrong with “art for art’s sake,” the notion that works of art don’t require a justification or need to serve a higher purpose. But it’s also kind of cool when they do transcend that philosophy and send a specific message.
That’s certainly the case with artist Michael Jantzen’s design for his Eco-Seed Sowing Machines. The solar-powered structures would contain a large number of flower seeds that would be automatically released in small amounts whenever evidence of environmental degradation was observed around the machines.
Jantzen calls the project “a symbolic public art response to environmental degradation,” and he’d like to see the machines located in places around the world where environmental damage is the worst.
Apologies for overposting this infographic, but it's great. We are finally getting to the real information and the myths
Everywhere, companies today receive bonus points for going green. In retrospect, is the going green fever in actuality harming the environment instead?
Take bio-fuels, for example. They are praised for being biodegradable; however, the use and production of these fuels release more CO2 than fossil fuels. The row crops grown to create bio-fuel lead to higher erosion rates than sod crops.
Via Lauren Moss, Susan Davis Cushing