The Fluoride Debate

It’s in our drinking water, our toothpaste and even the bottled juices and sodas we drink. Fluoride, according to the American Dental Association, is a key mineral in the fight against cavities and can even repair the early stages of tooth decay. The ADA warns, however, that, like any other nutrient, fluoride can be misused and, in some circumstances, can …

Go Car-Free in DC and Save More Than $10,000 A Year

A recently-published study by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) ranks the top 20 cities where going car-free will save the most money. Number 14 on the list is Washington, DC, which has nearly 200,000 car-less households already. The APTA’s report claims that the average DC resident would save $10,282 per year in transportation-related costs by giving up his or …

Efficient Planes Good For Business; Gas Guzzlers Get Left Behind

The airline industry is one of the nation’s biggest consumers of fuel – no surprise there – but new aircraft technology has dramatically improved planes’ fuel efficiency.  Besides drastically cutting carbon emissions, more efficient jetliners have proven critical for airlines’ financial bottom lines, and companies clinging to outdated technology are paying the price, as evidenced by this week’s American Airlines …

German Town Will Soon Use 100% Renewable Power

There’s a small town in Germany called Dardesheim, that relies almost entirely on renewable sources for its energy needs. The town’s goal is to use 100% renewable power, and become known as German’s “Town of Renewable Energies”. Dardesheim already has some huge wind turbines in place, and many solar roofs installed. Last year they installed an amazing 62 megawatts of …

2010 Review Of Tankless Water Heaters

Tankless water heaters have been used in Europe and Asia for 50 years, and they are gaining popularity in the US. Right now they represent about 8% of new sales in the US. Tankless heaters, also called on-demand, flash or instant water heaters, qualify for a $300 federal tax credit. How efficient are tankless water heaters?

Natural Indigo Jeans: Metaefficient?

Originally, jeans were dyed with the color of the actual indigo plant. Today, natural indigo jeans can’t be considered metaefficient because they are expensive and only available as a kind of designer jean. Notwithstanding this, people admire these jeans because of their distinctive, deeply hued appearance. The story behind them is interesting too. There are at least three companies making …

Delaware May Become Home To The Largest Wind Park In The U.S.

Delaware may become home to the largest wind power plant in the United States. A wind energy developer, Bluewater Wind, hopes to build a 600-megawatt wind park in the waters just off Delaware’s coast. The wind park would power 130,000 homes for over 20 years, at price cheaper than coal or gas, according to Bluewater Wind’s founder Peter Mandelstam. His …

IKEA To Start Charging For Plastic Bags

IKEA will begin charging customer five cents for disposable plastic bags. IKEA hopes that this move will be the first step in ending their use altogether. The company said the decision was aimed at reducing the amount of plastic bags that are thrown away. IKEA is believed to be the first major retailer in the U.S. to undertake such a …

Allison Rogers: Commuting Overnight By Train: Efficient

Train travel — it’s an efficient form of travel that really should revived in this country. Air travel, as we know it today, doesn’t make much sense, if closely examined (although I’d like to see zero-emission planes and airship-based travel). But I digress — Allison Rogers, an optimal living trailblazer, has been commuting up and down the East Coast by …

The Most Efficient Chest Freezers

When researching energy efficient appliances, we often turn to the recommendations of the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE). The ACEEE continues to publish helpful information about all sorts of appliances, including freezers. The ninth edition of their Consumer Guide to Home Energy Savings, published in fall 2007, contains helpful information about selecting a freezer. The most efficient type …