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90% Of Israeli Homes Have Solar Water Heaters

by Justin Thomas •

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I recently noted that Hawaii has enacted a law that requires all new homes to install solar water heaters. Eventually, Hawaii may have as many water heaters as Israel, where 90% of homes have solar water heaters installed. When viewed from above, the Jerusalem often glitters with the shine of the thousands of solar heaters that adorn rooftops.

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All Buses Rides Are Free In Hasselt

by Justin Thomas •

The Tyee reports: Ten years ago the people of Hasselt, Belgium embarked upon a bold experiment: no more charging for bus rides. Ever since, they’ve been proving the idea can work wonderfully. This city of 70,000 residents, with 300,000 commuters from the surrounding area, has made traveling by bus easy, affordable, and efficient. Now, people in Hasselt often speak of …

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The Best Computer Under $500

by Patrick •

Here is some helpful information to find the best computer under $500. The average price of a personal computer is somewhere in the neighborhood of $1300, according to CNET.com. That’s a rather hefty chunk of change, especially if you’re a recent high school or college graduate and don’t have a sizable bank account (who does in this economy?). Even spending …

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Best Electric Kettles

by Siel •

Stovetop kettles are nostalgically cute in movies and lovable as collector’s items, but when it comes to our time-crunched, energy-efficient world, electric kettles–which boil water twice as fast as their stovetop counterparts–are the way to go.

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Do Rechargeable Lithium-Ion AA Batteries Exist?

by Justin Thomas •

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Do rechargeable lithium-ion batteries exist in standard sizes like AA, AAA, C or D? Yes, they are finally available. A company called Kentli has released AA and AAA rechargeable lithium polymer batteries that output 1.5 volts. Kentli batteries are available on Amazon here. Lithium-ion batteries normally operate 3.7V per cell — but Kentli put circuitry inside the cells to reduce the voltage …

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Home Coffee Roasters: 5 Efficient Choices

by Tracy McGill •

Home coffee roasting, once considered an exotic practice only for the hardcore coffee drinker, has seen a rebirth in recent years. Coffee lovers everywhere are embracing this surprisingly simple and efficient way to enjoy the best tasting coffee around. Once a common practice in American households, the 20th century onslaught of commercial coffee roasters and instant coffee virtually wiped out …

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The Best Reverse Osmosis Water Filters 2010

by Tracy McGill •

Reverse osmosis for the home is a water purifying method in which tap water is forced through a semi-permeable membrane that prevents bacteria and minerals from passing through to produce a more pure form of drinking water. The choice of a water filtration system depends on if you’re looking to rid of a specific contaminant or if you’re generally looking …

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Optimal Material For Mattresses: Natural Latex

by Justin Thomas •

I’ve come to the conclusion that natural latex is the optimal mattress-making material. I’ve tried all kinds of mattresses: goose down, wool, foam, cotton futons and box spring mattresses. But I have to say that my first few nights sleeping on a latex mattress were the most comfortable I ever experienced.

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How To Filter Your Shower Water Very Efficiently

by Justin Thomas •

This post has been updated for 2011. I recently wrote about Filtering Your Drinking Water Very Efficiently, but let us turn now to your shower water. When we shower, we absorb the substances dissolved in water through our skin quite readily. For example, 60% of the chlorine absorbed daily comes from showering in chlorinated water. The chlorine is absorbed directly …

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Ecoeffective Shoes: Adidas Hemp

by Justin Thomas •

When Adidas came out with these hemp shoes a few years back, they were given grief about it by the federal government and chose to rename them from “Superstar Hemp” to “Gazelle Natural”. Regardless of the politics, hemp is a very durable and “breathes” very well as a shoe material. The soles are made out of recycled rubber — making …