Reblogged from BBC August 31st, 2011 at 4:58 pm 218 notes #News #science #green #film #drinking the dead
Is Soylant Green one step closer to reality?
A Glasgow-based company has installed its first commercial “alkaline hydrolysis” unit at a Florida funeral home. The unit by Resomation Ltd is billed as a green alternative to cremation and works by dissolving the body in heated alkaline water. […]
The system works by submerging the body in a solution of water and potassium hydroxide which is pressurized to 10 atmospheres and heated to 180C for between two-and-a-half and three hours. Body tissue is dissolved and the liquid poured into the municipal water system. Mr Sullivan, a biochemist by training, says tests have proven the effluent is sterile and contains no DNA, and poses no environmental risk.
Reblogged from kateoplis March 26th, 2012 at 2:26 pm 83 notes #urban planning #architecture #green
“I believe that the modern surface parking lot is ripe for transformation. Few of us spend much time thinking about parking beyond availability and convenience. But parking lots are, in fact, much more than spots to temporarily store cars: they are public spaces that have major impacts on the design of our cities and suburbs, on the natural environment and on the rhythms of daily life. We need to redefine what we mean by ‘parking lot’ to include something that not only allows a driver to park his car, but also offers a variety of other public uses, mitigates its effect on the environment and gives greater consideration to aesthetics and architectural context.
It’s estimated that there are three nonresidential parking spaces for every car in the United States. That adds up to almost 800 million parking spaces, covering about 4,360 square miles — an area larger than Puerto Rico. In some cities, like Orlando and Los Angeles, parking lots are estimated to cover at least one-third of the land area, making them one of the most salient landscape features of the built world.
Such coverage comes with environmental costs. The large, impervious surfaces of parking lots increase storm-water runoff, which damages watersheds. The exposed pavement increases the heat-island effect, by which urban regions are made warmer than surrounding rural areas. Since cars are immobile 95 percent of the time, you could plausibly argue that a Prius and a Hummer have much the same environmental impact: both occupy the same 9-by-18-foot rectangle of paved space.
A better parking lot might be covered with solar canopies so that it could produce energy while lowering heat. Or perhaps it would be surfaced with a permeable material like porous asphalt and planted with trees in rows like an apple orchard, so that it could sequester carbon and clean contaminated runoff.”
Reblogged from The New York Times January 17th, 2013 at 5:23 pm 658 notes #design #tech #green
1. Local River, a system by Mathieu Lehanneur for raising fish and plants at home.
2. In their design project “Microbial Home,” designers at Philips Design in the Netherlands created an ecosystem of kitchen appliances powered by methane derived from food waste.
3. Bacterioptica, a chandelier designed by Petia Morozov containing bacterial cultures that change the quality of the light.
4. The Halflife Lamp by Joris Laarman is illuminated by hamster cells modified with firefly DNA.
5. Moss Table, by Carlos Peralta, Alex Driver and Paolo Bombelli, makes use of the small electrical charge produced when bacteria consume organic compounds released by moss.