Monthly Archives:September 2005

Promote off-grid in your community

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Community Choices for Sustainable Living aims to provide opportunities for individuals and communities to move towards more sustainable lives, writes its co-organiser, Cara Naden.

We have a grant from DEFR’s Environmental Action Fund to get the project on the road. Since that arrived, we’ve been identifying people and places that are able to inspire others to green up.

There is support from local authorities and other groups with initiatives such as composting and recycling, and there are many opportunities for communities to go off-grid. For example: Making your own solar water heater, a wormery, a wildlife garden, rain water collector or organising a car share scheme, a group delivery of organic vegetable boxes or alternative energy for your community.

We are looking for individuals or groups in the West Country who can take some inspiration from others and feed it back to members of their community. Any person who is interested in greening their community in some way is welcome to apply to become a volunteer. Click “more” to see rest of this story.
Fostering Sustainable Behaviour: An Introduction to Community-based Social MarketingFostering Sustainable Behaviour: An Introduction to Community-based Social Marketing – buy it from Amazon UK and 4% goes to Off-Grid
Fostering Sustainable Behavior: An Introduction to Community-Based Social Marketing – buy it from Amazon US

Make money and save the planet

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Solarworld – not the only one going north

Alternative Energy firms across Europe are considering floating their shares in the coming months as the soaring price of oil makes solar and wind power ever more attractive than costly and polluting fossil fuels.

We see money going to solar and wind. Governments recognise the fact that those technologies have entered the market and see the necessity for further development to make them more efficient and cheaper.

New Orleans grid destroyed

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At Charity hospital in New Orleans, as the emergency generator ran out of fuel yesterday, nurses hand-pumped ventilators for patients who could not breathe and doctors used canoes to get supplies from neighbouring hospitals.

“It was like our tsunami,” said Vincent Creel, spokesman for the coastal city of Biloxi, one of the worst-hit areas. “The city’s power grid, water and sewage systems were destroyed.”

How can Off-Grid help the disenfranchised and dislocated people of New Orleans? This is not going to be a temporary phenomenon. Readers are invited to make comments at the end of this story for ways to use our know-how for their benefit. New Orleans looks set to be off the grid for the next year at least. The city may become a case study of a large-scale off-grid community, using renewable energy.

“The entire grid system in these areas is completely ruined,” said David Botkins, a spokesman for Dominion Virginia Power, which sent 200 workers to Louisiana and Mississippi. “They’re starting from scratch.”

Building the future

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“From Rhetoric to Reality” is a short series of seminars in the UK, aimed at the growing numbers who are taking Sustainable Building from a quirky minority occupation into a mainstream activity. That process will take years, and these meetings bring together some key players with newbies coming into the fast-growing segment of the building industry.

Sustainable Refurbishment

Thursday 22nd September

CREATE Centre, Bristol

A one-day conference on refurbishment for: housing associations, housing managers, property maintenance contractors, architects and designers, and HECA officers.