Optimal Gift Wrapping

by Justin Thomas •

Optimal gift wrapping comes from renewable sources and does not contain toxic substances. Virgin forest fiber, bleach and heavy-metal inks need not be a part of gift giving. What are some of the better choices? One of the more optimal ways to wrap gifts is Furoshiki, a traditional Japanese technique of wrapping gifts using cloth. The appeal of this form …

8

Holiday Gift Guide: Top Ten Green Toys

by Tracy McGill •

With the recent rash of toy recalls due to the use of harmful lead paints and suspected dangerous plastics containing phthalates and BPA, parents are demanding toys made with non-toxic, non-hazardous materials. Economic times being what they are, it helps to know you’re hard-earned money is going to trustworthy, earth-friendly companies.  By using renewable materials such as bamboo, rubberwood, organic …

Gift Trees: Efficient

by Justin Thomas •

These gift trees, from the National Arbor Day Foundation, can be grown indoors or outdoors or even preserved in the refrigerator until you are ready to plant them. The trees are only $3 each, but there is a minimum order of 10. You can select from four evergreens: Ponderosa Pine, Coastal Redwood, Longleaf Pine, and Colorado Blue Spruce. They come …

5

Efficient Building In Seattle Requires No AC

by Justin Thomas •

This new building in Seattle by Weber + Thompson requires no air conditioning. To achieve this feat, the architects made use of numerous passive cooling elements throughout the building. Passive cooling means no electricity or other fuel is needed — instead strategic shading and orientation is used, rather than high-tech gadgetry.

1

Daylighting and Shading: Green Building In Hong Kong

by Justin Thomas •

Here’s an example of daylighting at the Hong Kong Science Park. Notice that the light is filtered through translucent skylights and clerestories in a central atrium, thus reducing glare and overheating. The top of the building has shades, see them after the jump:

Optimal Green: Daylighting

by Justin Thomas •

Most modern buildings don’t take full advantage of daylight. Here, in the Plaza at PPL Center, a dramatic eight-story central glass atrium brings natural light deep into the core of the building, while extensive perimeter glazing provides abundant daylight.

228

U.S. To Phase Out Incandescent Light Bulbs

by Justin Thomas •

Photo credit: USA today After being passed by Congress, Bush just signed into law a massive energy bill that will, among other things, spell the end of traditional light bulb. USA Today reports that the bill will phase out the venerable (but power-hungry) incandescent bulb over the next dozen years in favor more efficient fluorescent, halogen, and LED bulbs. Specifically, …

23

Review: The Best Flashlights (2008 Update)

by Justin Thomas •

Update: See our newer post The Best Flashlights Of 2009 What are the most efficient flashlights available today? We think LED-based flashlights are the only ones worthy of consideration. LEDs will shine longer than other bulbs, and can withstand shocks and temperature extremes. The best LED flashlights incorporate bright, high-quality LEDs with regulatory circuits that insure a consistent, long-lasting light. …