Howtogogreen’s Weblog


The $6 Oven!
June 7, 2009, 2:04 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

 

The Kyoto Box, a $6 solar cooker made from cardboard, has won the Financial Times-sponsored Climate Change Challenge contest for innovative ways to decrease the human impact on the environment. Its capacity to not only cook food but also sterilize water could help three billion people reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. The Kenya-based Norwegian creator of the cooker, Jon Bøhmer, has been awarded $75,000 to put the idea into production.
Named after the United Nations’ Kyoto Protocol, the cooker is made from two cardboard boxes, one inside the other, with either paper or straw insulation placed in between; an acrylic cover on top lets in and traps sunlight. Black paint on the inner box, and silver foil on the outer one, help concentrate the heat. The trapped rays make the inside hot enough to cook casseroles, bake bread and boil water [CNN]. Covering the cooking pot with a transparent cover retains heat and water [BBC], and temperatures inside the pot can reach about 175 degrees Fahrenheit.
With as many as 3 billion people dependent on firewood for fuel, it is hoped that the cooker will eliminate the small-scale deforestation that has cumulatively become a major contributor to global warming worldwide. By allowing users to boil water, the simple device could also potentially save the millions of children who die from drinking unclean water [CNN]. The Kyoto Box was chosen from five finalists; the other four included a garlic-based feed additive to cut methane emissions from livestock, an indoor cooling system using hollow tiles, a cover for truck wheels to reduce fuel use and a “giant industrial microwave” for creating charcoal [Reuters].
The box can be produced in standard cardboard factories, and Bøhmer is already working with one factory in Nairobi. Bøhmer, who has started a design firm called Kyoto Energy, also designed a sturdier version made of recycled plastic, which he says would also be extremely cheap to produce. His next step is to conduct trials with 10,000 cookers in 10 countries, including India, Indonesia, South Africa, Kenya and Uganda [GreenBiz.com]. “We’re saving lives and saving trees” [Reuters], he said. “I don’t want to see another 80-year-old woman carrying 20 kilos of firewood on her back. Maybe we don’t have to” [CNN].

 

solar-cooker-2

The Kyoto Box, a $6 solar cooker made from cardboard, has won the Financial Times-sponsored Climate Change Challenge contest for innovative ways to decrease the human impact on the environment. Its capacity to not only cook food but also sterilize water could help three billion people reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. The Kenya-based Norwegian creator of the cooker, Jon Bøhmer, has been awarded $75,000 to put the idea into production.

 

Named after the United Nations’ Kyoto Protocol, the cooker is made from two cardboard boxes, one inside the other, with either paper or straw insulation placed in between; an acrylic cover on top lets in and traps sunlight. Black paint on the inner box, and silver foil on the outer one, help concentrate the heat. The trapped rays make the inside hot enough to cook casseroles, bake bread and boil water [CNN]. Covering the cooking pot with a transparent cover retains heat and water [BBC], and temperatures inside the pot can reach about 175 degrees Fahrenheit.

 

With as many as 3 billion people dependent on firewood for fuel, it is hoped that the cooker will eliminate the small-scale deforestation that has cumulatively become a major contributor to global warming worldwide. By allowing users to boil water, the simple device could also potentially save the millions of children who die from drinking unclean water [CNN]. The Kyoto Box was chosen from five finalists; the other four included a garlic-based feed additive to cut methane emissions from livestock, an indoor cooling system using hollow tiles, a cover for truck wheels to reduce fuel use and a “giant industrial microwave” for creating charcoal [Reuters].

 

The box can be produced in standard cardboard factories, and Bøhmer is already working with one factory in Nairobi. Bøhmer, who has started a design firm called Kyoto Energy, also designed a sturdier version made of recycled plastic, which he says would also be extremely cheap to produce. His next step is to conduct trials with 10,000 cookers in 10 countries, including India, Indonesia, South Africa, Kenya and Uganda [GreenBiz.com]. “We’re saving lives and saving trees” [Reuters], he said. “I don’t want to see another 80-year-old woman carrying 20 kilos of firewood on her back. Maybe we don’t have to” [CNN].



June 7, 2009, 1:48 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

 

The pattern created in a Swedish forest by logging tracks and trees downed by Hurricane Gudrun
in January 2005.
    “It’s as if the heavens had sent a message to the forest industry reminding them that, in this area, deciduous trees would have withstood the winds much better than pine.”
    —Joakim “Jocke” Berglund, who took this photograph from a Cessna aircraft

 

LW_01

The pattern created in a Swedish forest by logging tracks and trees downed by Hurricane Gudrun

in January 2005.

 

    “It’s as if the heavens had sent a message to the forest industry reminding them that, in this area, deciduous trees would have withstood the winds much better than pine.”

 

    —Joakim “Jocke” Berglund, who took this photograph from a Cessna aircraft



Our new Washing Machine!

cleanairgardening

If you’re looking for a greener alternative to washing your clothes, it doesn’t get much greener than our hand powered laundry machine (well, laundry washer, it’s not really a machine if you crank it yourself!).

This portable washing machine requires no electricity, which saves money in energy bills. It is also portable, which enables you to use in places that don’t have electricity.

When you’re in a hurry to wash a few items, this washing machine easily solves the problem of having to wait around for your electric or gas washing machine to complete a full load of laundry or feel bad about only washing a few items at a time.

Made of plastic with no mechanical parts, the hand powered washing machine comes assembled. Just attach the handle and go! It can last a lifetime and requires no maintenance.

Because this washing machine is so small, it’s easy to store and move from one place to another. This is an ideal washing machine to have with you in an RV, on road trips, at weekend sports tournaments, in apartments, especially those with limited access to laundry areas, on camping trips and those who want to make their lifestyle more energy efficient.

This small washing machine uses less water and powder detergent per load of laundry. The washing cycle is also extremely fast (from 10 seconds to 2 minutes) saving you an extraordinary amount of time.

If you work in the yard or outside frequently and don’t like to put your really dirty clothes in the wash with your other clothes, this washing machine allows you to easily separate them and get them thoroughly clean without staining other clothes.

How it works:

  • Insert your dirty laundry along with a measured amount of water and soap (instructions are included that list the appropriate amounts and temperatures)
  • Secure the lid, but do not overtighten
  • Turn the handle approximately one turn per second
  • Once the washing is done, release the pressure of the lid by slowly turning the knob
  • Rinse your laundry either in the portable washing machine after draining the dirty water or in the sink
  • Then hang the clothes to dry!


  • A new twist on an old idea!

    CASE ONE

    The other day I borrowed a 3000 watt portable generator from a friend. We are raising chickens, and at the time they were very small and needed a light on them 24 hours. The second day that I had the generator, the on/off switch popped off! It has worn out and as it was spring loaded it broke and popped off.

    I sent a note off to Goss Industries in the GTA about it and I was shocked about a few things: 1) Bill Santo got back to me within a couple of days. 2) Offered to pop a new part in the mail. 3) Sent the right part to me, at no charge!

    This is the best sort of conservation! This product, which would of been junk, or at least and expensive repair is now up and running, saving me from having to buy a new one!

    http://www.gossindustries.com

    CASE TWO

    My friend Christina has a rotor tiller, in the spring my garden is always ready first so I borrow the tiller, then my friend Peter across the street uses it and takes it back to Christina’s. We share wood splitters, chain saws, whipper snippers, and car pool together.

    To take this one step farther we all manage our gardens together so that we all don’t have to grow so many things.

    CASE THREE

    We are cutting our ties to the world, sort of! We are trying to wean ourselves off the paper newspaper. Martina misses the crossword, but we have found it all online. We have eliminated almost all of the cell phones, cable TV bills, and all of those pesky monthly bills.

     

    CASE FOUR

    We have taken a “FARM FIRST” attitude about our little oasis here. Planting tons of trees, expanding the gardens and putting more into them. We are making our own wine, beer and hooch as well! We are taking a 100% pro active approach to our lifestyle!

    Come see us at http://www.splitzvillefarm.com