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Sustainability Science
How might we keep the lights on, water flowing, and natural world vaguely intact? It starts with grabbing innovative ideas/examples to help kick down our limits and inspire a more sustainable world. We implement with rigorous science backed by hard data.
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Bamboo could help developing cities urbanize

Bamboo could help developing cities urbanize | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it

What if there were a local, renewable material that could be used instead of steel in reinforced-concrete buildings? And what if that substitute could be manufactured easily? These questions have motivated Dirk Hebel, an assistant professor of architecture and construction at the Future Cities Laboratory, in Singapore, to investigate a bamboo fiber composite as a possible substitute for steel reinforcement in concrete. The Future Cities Laboratory is a research arm of ETH (Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule) Zürich, in Switzerland, and is the first program under the newly formed Singapore-ETH Centre for Global Environmental Sustainability, which conducts multidisciplinary research to foster urbanization that conforms to the principles of sustainable development.

PIRatE Lab's insight:

There are many "ifs" here, but this is an intriguing approach that may avoid the pitfalls of previous attempts at using bamboo for such a strengthening role in buildings.  I suspect that this won't work, and am always worried when press releases go out before a project has even preliminary results, but I very much like the innovative and new idea-type approach these folks are taking here.

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How Weather Forecasts Can Help Optimize Energy Usage

How Weather Forecasts Can Help Optimize Energy Usage | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it

Researchers at the University of Adelaide have been exploring how using public weather forecast information can help deliver significant reductions in energy consumption.

 

Combining information from the Bureau of Meteorology with data from existing building management systems, the researchers have developed an intelligent model that remains one step ahead of the building’s temperature changes, automatically adjusting the heating and cooling supply accordingly.

Early experimental results have provided encouraging results, with at least 10 per cent energy savings shown to be possible.


Via Lauren Moss
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UW prof discovers the cutting edge in green living | Crosscut.com

UW prof discovers the cutting edge in green living | Crosscut.com | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
Her new book recounts a journey to 14 ecovillages, where communities of people are trying to build sustainable, healthy ways of living.

Via Anita Woodruff
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