Lots of us make sacrifices for the environment, but few of us would consider supporting the cause by moving into a dumpster. Dr. Jeff Wilson of Huston-Tillotson University, however, is doing just that. Working with his students and the community, he has transformed an old dumpster and is living in it for a year.
The aim of the Dumpster Project is to investigate sustainable living practices in recognition of a world with an increasing population but decreasing space and resources to go around. The dumpster itself is 33 sq ft (3 sq m).
Additions to the basic dumpster have included solar panels to generate electricity, a high-efficiency toilet, a false floor to provide storage, a weather station, air conditioning, a pitched roof, locks and a mailbox. The dumpster pockets have been sealed so that the dumpster cannot be mistaken for and serviced as a standard trash receptacle.
See where Dr. Jeff Wilson is his year-long journey:
Dr. Wilson is making quite a sacrifice in the hope of getting more people to think about reducing our impact on our planet. Could you live (for even a short time) in a dumpster?
Solar Impulse 2 will attempt an historic journey relying on the sun’s energy to power its trip around the world. It can fly day and night fueled only by solar power or termed “perpetual endurance”. Just think, taking a flight using no fuel and with no emissions.
After some short trial flights, the journey around the world is scheduled for March 2015. The aircraft was developed in Switzerland and is sponsored by Masdar, the Abu Dhabi government’s clean-energy company.
The future of aviation looks very bright and very sustainable with these advances in technology. Read the wealth of information that led up to this historic event here.
Do you have any expertise or ideas that can advance current technology to leave a smaller footprint in our world?
Researchers from the University of Michigan and the University of Buffalo are working with the Rich Earth Institute to generate some means of making human urine usable as fertilizer. Just like researchers at the University of South Florida are trying to find ways to make sustainable fertilizer production possible from livestock waste, researchers are working with the Rich Earth Institute to find ways to achieve the same ends with human waste. It is something to see useful results from this research that could potentially lead the world beyond chemical fertilizers.
The time needed to get the project underway has made it to where it will take years to get results, but finding a way to put urine rich in nitrogen and phosphorus to use is now in reach. Urine can be toxic for water supplies but if the work is done right, a sustainable and efficient way can be found to make fertilizer from urine that will help the environment and provide nutrition to plants while being harmless to local water sources.
Check out this amazing structure assembled in public view, on the grounds of the London Building Centre, in England-
Challenges remain on the structural integrity in the face of weather issues – strong winds… lashing rains… violent, ‘no fun’ kinds of storms. Maybe there’s an opportunity for you to bring your mind to the puzzle and create a more sustainable model? Great opportunity to put your “inner architect”, as well as your techie self, into a potentially great future!
University of Missouri, US – 2 projects:
“RaW”, led by Chao Fang, finding protein substructures to enhance knowledge of protein function using analytics!
“DORK”, led by Xinjian Yao, using analytics to understand Medicare data to further understand what happens in the system.
University Putra Malaysia: Embedded Systems for Public Water Management, led by BALAMI Emmanuel Luke, toword making water supplies more sustainable.
Lumbini Engineering College, Nepal – event held September 28 to inform students about Smarter Planet, Bluemix, Watson, IBM and Students for a Smarter Planet opportunities. Led by Basant Pandey.