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Carfree Cities

by Justin Thomas •

Imagine life in a city free from the noise, stench, and danger of cars, trucks, and buses. Imagine that all basic needs, from groceries to child care, lie within a five-minute walk of every doorstep. Imagine that no commute takes more than 35 minutes from door to door, and that service is provided by a fast, cheap, safe, comfortable public …

10

Biodiesel FAQ

by Justin Thomas •

Biodiesel Cycle

What is Biodiesel? Biodiesel is a vegetable oil-based fuel that runs in diesel engines — cars, buses, trucks, construction equipment, boats, generators, and oil home heating units. It’s usually made from soy or canola oil, and can also be made from recycled fryer oil. You can blend it with regular diesel or run 100% biodiesel. What are the benefits of …

3

EV Global Folding Mini E-Bike (36V)

by Justin Thomas •

  Top speed: 18 mph Range: 20 miles Notes from Manufacturer: Fold it and load it easily into the back of your car, minivan, RV, boat, plane or public transportation. You can even store your ebike folding mini in your closet. Features include: Compact design folds to 32" L x 14" w X 31" H. Very easy to fold while …

2

Excel Hand Dryer Uses 80% Less Energy

by Justin Thomas •

This is a hand dryer, made by Excel, that uses 80% less electrical energy than similar dryers. It uses a high velocity fan to dry hands faster (10-12 seconds) by blowing the water droplets off the hands. Hand dryers are more efficient than paper towels in public restrooms. Paper towels have a higher annual cost, use energy to transport, create …

3

The Longest Mountain Bike Trail In The World

by Tracy McGill •

Julie with BOB

It could be said that the Great Divide Bike Trail is like the Mount Everest of cycling adventures. Not only is it the longest mountain bike trail in the world at 2,500 miles, but it has over 200,000 feet of elevation gain. Stretching from Canada to Mexico, the Great Divide bike trail travels through some of the most mountainous regions …

5

An Update On My Quest Not To Be Tracked

by Justin Thomas •

twitter-network

I thought I’d publish an update on my quest to create a computer set-up that eliminates tracking companies from my world. Basically, this infographic explains why (it’s a large graphic  — you may have to zoom in). So far I’ve really only eliminated the following: Google, Facebook and various other data collection companies. I’ve made my web browsing relatively free …

1

The Underground Railroad Bicycle Route: 2,000 Miles Of Freedom Cycling

by Tracy McGill •

Underground Railroad Bike Route

Few historical inventions could claim to offer its users as much freedom as the bicycle. Suffragettes of the 19th century went so far as to call the bicycle a “freedom machine”. So it’s only fitting that cycling and freedom once again meet up at the Underground Railroad Bicycle Route. During the 1800s over 100,000 slaves sought freedom on the Underground …

11

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 …

23

The Most Efficient Chest Freezers

by Justin Thomas •

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 …

16

Is This The World’s Most Efficient Windmill?

by Benjamin Roman •

Is This The World’s Most Efficient Windmill? (photo: William Kamkwamba)

Sometimes the epitome of efficiency is using whatever tools are available to accomplish the job at hand. No one understands this better than William Kamkwamba, a teenager from rural Malawi whose ingenuity provided his family and neighbors with electricity from a most unlikely source.