Students for a Smarter Planet ..leaders with conscience
 

Treehugger.com reports that there’s huge potential to reduce our personal energy and water use, and therefore our environmental footprint, by simply greening your laundry habits (and saving some $ in the process).

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I’m not sure how many people would adopt the first item on this top 11 list to go more green:

1. Wear it more than once – that doesn’t go for everything (unmentionables and socks come to mind)

2. Use green laundry detergent – conventional detergents can contain ingredients that aren’t good for you, your clothes, or aquatic ecosystems where the dirty water we wash down the drain can end up.

3. Choose concentrated detergent – concentrated laundry detergents have reduced packaging and a smaller carbon footprint (because more useful product can be shipped using less space and fuel).

4. Make your own laundry detergent – do-it-yourself laundry soap is perhaps the greenest way to go.

5. Wash by hand – there are some great tools that make it easier. A few ideas: Laundry plungers are cheap and efficient, and there is a pedal washer – exercise while you wash your laundry!

6. Maximize your washer for energy efficiency – Front-loading washing machines (also sometimes called “horizontal axis” machines) bearing the Energy Star logo typically use between 18 and 25 gallons per load, compared to 40 gallons for older machines.

7. Hang it up/out to dry – when possible

8. Maximize your dryer – Cleaning the lint filter frequently will increase efficiency and shorten drying time. If your dryer has a moisture sensor, use it.

9. Don’t iron if you don’t have to – you probably would adopt this one quite readily – you don’t have to tell me twice! To avoid looking haggard, simply hang clothes up immediately after the wash cycle is complete.

10. Head to the laundromat – Commercial washers and dryers tend to be more efficient than domestic versions, so taking your bundle to the neighborhood laundromat may use less energy.

11. Don’t bother with dry cleaning -  Conventional dry cleaning is a decidedly un-green process; most businesses use the chemical perchloroethylene (also called “perc”), which research studies have shown may be dangerous to our health.

 

 

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New ideas keep surfacing for capturing and storing energy available right now for future use.  Because we must continue to find ways that plan ahead for sustainable life on earth, this is a really hot topic.

Batteries can store electricity generated by solar and wind power when conditions are favorable, so it can be used when they are not. Electricity storage is the second part of the renewable energy solution. By investing in new battery systems, Germany is continuing down the path it started on to shift away from nuclear power.

 

30 MW Storage Battery

 

To Be Built In Germany

 

 

There are a batch of links in the article to other stories relating to the savvy Germans and the strides they are making.  Jobs in energy – renewable, non-carbon based, solar, wind, etc., are plentiful.  What are you going to do with your future?  (Remember to bring a flashlight – efficiently powered of course!)

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November, 26th 2014
7:25
 

While reading through some of the articles on LinkedIn, I came across some of the newest thinking about how to present yourself through a resume.

In a job market where creative confidence, collaboration, and storytelling are valued across sectors, it would make sense for your first impression to be a showcase for those qualities. Rather than standard, it should be exceptional.

Below are some of the winning resumes that caught the CEO at IDEO‘s attention, and subsequently, led to hiring. Granted, IDEO is a global design consultancy company.

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I especially liked the simple video resume that was submitted:  clever video

How creative are you when building your resume so that stands it out from the thousands received?

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Moths have a bad rep.  They chew holes in winter garments or leave brown staining behind.  They can be annoying when fluttering around your home at night, attracted to every lightbulb that’s burning.  In the Dakota fields in the U.S., they can be so numerous at night that you think you’re driving in a summer snowstorm (I experienced this while driving cross-country – believe me, I’ve never needed my car washed so badly!)

There’s some new tech that is hoping to give moths a “new mission” in life.  Research is ongoing at North Carolina State University to create drones – not mechanical, but living.  Dr. Alper Bozkurt is an assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering at the university and developed the technique with Dr. Amit Lal from Cornell University. It involves attaching electrodes to a moth while it’s changing from a caterpillar, a methodology named Early Metamorphosis Insertion Technology (EMIT).

The goal: remotely-controlled moths, or “biobots,” for use in emergency response, such as search and rescue operations.

Research Paves Way for

 

Cyborg Moth ‘Biobots’

 

Read an op-ed piece by Diane Shipley featured on the shinyshiny site that speaks up for the ‘rights of the moths’: Might bionic moths be the future of disaster relief?

And another article on the Kurzweil  site with some keen observations by readers giving their thoughts on the tech:  Remote-controlled cyborg moth ‘biobots’ to monitor emergency-response operations

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November, 24th 2014
13:46
 

Moms may not be so adamant about their kids finishing their meal if they know that the uneaten (waste) food will go to good use to provide sustainable energy.

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Disney World has become a circular economy hub: food waste – including table scraps, used cooking oils and grease – are collected from selected restaurants in the Disney World complex, as well as area hotels and food processors, and sent to a system of giant tanks at a facility near the park. There, the food waste is mixed with biosolids – the nutrient-rich organic materials left over after sewage is treated – and fed to microorganisms that produce biogas, a mix of methane and carbon dioxide. The biogas is combusted in generators to make electricity, and the remaining solids can be processed into fertilizer.

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Harvest Power operates anaerobic digesters in Vancouver, British Columbia, and London, Ontario, as well as this one, near Orlando. Photograph: Harvest Power

Learn about the process here:

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Leave it to Disney to find a way to illuminate their Magic Kingdom!

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