All Questions

2
votes
1answer
90 views

In which cities “free” public transportation generated positive impact, no impact or negative impact to sustainability?

In Europe there are discussions about free public transportation to reduce pollution in cities. Even when in Germany first attempts failed due to economical and political arguments, the discussion ...
5
votes
2answers
84 views

Are motion activated faucets more sustainable than traditional faucets?

In the spirit of this question about paper towels vs electric dryers, which types of faucets are most sustainable? The marketing reasons for using motion-activated faucets are that they reduce water ...
7
votes
1answer
210 views

Composting bones in a worm bin

I have a composting worm farm and would like a definitive answer, as what I've read so far is confusing. When adding scraps of dog bones from beef or lamb, or inedible (for small dog breeds) chicken ...
2
votes
0answers
44 views

Has anybody converted a bus from diesel drive to electric drive (hybrid) converting the old engine into a generator?

I am aware that the vehicle will increase weight and that older engines must be modified to operate with less harmful impact to the ambient. I rather wonder about the accompanying effects and ...
2
votes
2answers
115 views

Are aluminum sheets appropriate for rainwater catchment roof?

I was thinking of building a rainwater catchment system at my place in the boonies, but ... I want to make sure -- priority one -- I'm not going to get toxic stuff in my water. I looked at the ...
3
votes
1answer
455 views

Recycling soda stream cannisters in Australia?

My wife and I have a bunch of random broken things from our previous lives that we're trying to get rid of correctly. One of them is a few left over soda stream canisters. Many recycling centers in ...
6
votes
1answer
135 views

Does Sawdust for Humanure/Composting Toilet need to be Powder?

First timer here, just getting into homesteading. I bought a pack of sawdust from Tractor Supply the other night. Finest variety they had. Fine premium pine shavings: This looks like very thin pine ...
4
votes
1answer
122 views

Will natural gas or propane generators also run off of methane?

I'm looking at building a sustainable energy project that will convert biogas (methane) into electricity. I haven't found any biogas or methane electric generators for sale. It seems that there are ...
1
vote
1answer
31 views

Are pure or modified sine inverters different?

Just starting my power closet to power my off grid mobile home I've come to question everyone that I belive would know with no concrete answer Is there a difference between using a modified sine or ...
1
vote
0answers
22 views

Use Ebooks or normal books? [duplicate]

Ebooks and normal paper books both contribute to environmental damage in some way. I want to know, which of those two contributes to less environmental damage, on average?
4
votes
3answers
114 views

How to consume all my photovoltaic electricity locally?

In a location where feed-in to the grid is not rewarded, it makes sense to consume "oversupply" locally produced photovoltaics energy with non-critical consumers, such as water heaters. How can I ...
1
vote
1answer
37 views

What do the different rules for photovoltaics feed-in mean?

When researching about photovoltaics feed-in to grid options in my area, I came across various terms: net metering, feed-in limit, zero export / zero feed-in, solar smoothing. Can somebody explain ...
7
votes
2answers
965 views

How to set up grid-tied photovoltaics without feed-in?

In my current place (Morocco), the electrical utility operator does not allow feed-in. How can I create a photovoltaics installation that respects this rule? I would like to create a grid-tied ...
4
votes
3answers
61 views

Can grass clippings be used for livestock feed?

I was at a university agricultural research farm and I noticed that sheep had maintained grass height on a pasture to less than 1 inch. I asked the person in charge if they used a lawn mower and he ...
12
votes
2answers
97 views

Is using a menstrual cup better for the environment than using pads or tampons?

Menstrual cups can last between 5 to 10 years depending on the brand and care in use. There are many different brands and designs. E.g. Diva cups only last about the average of 5 years, while Mooncup ...
3
votes
2answers
50 views

Alternative to sealing compound

Has anyone ever used self-made, eco-friendly sealing compound for outdoors? What recipe? How long does the recipe you used last? I intend to use this sealing compound to stop wasps from getting in ...
3
votes
1answer
90 views

How can we all together clean up the vast plastic carpets in our oceans? [closed]

It is mind-boggling to me that there is still so much plastic out in our oceans, floating around for years and ever growing and nothing is being done about it. Governments should work together, ...
4
votes
2answers
41 views

Does adding essential oil to a wash waste detergent?

I sometimes use some essential oil / extracts in my washing machine as they can have some disinfecting effect and give a nice smell to the clothes (e.g. a capful of eucalyptus oil for one load). ...
4
votes
0answers
43 views

How to manage a largish hugelkultur?

As part of the site clearance for the in-fill house I'm building at the rear of the section I have had to remove a 100 year plus old pine ( which the neighbour wanted to remove as he felt it was ...
6
votes
3answers
129 views

Most sustainable vehicle that shelters from rain

I usually travel by bike, and it's a great vehicle and is mostly sustainable. I love travelling by bike when the weather is nice, but what all the pro-bike propaganda never mentions is that one very ...
5
votes
2answers
71 views

Garden fence - order options by most sustainable

Our new house has a garden, and part of the fence needs to be replaced. Part of what needs replacing is the pole that holds the lock for the garden-door. Last year, we replaced that part of the fence ...
2
votes
0answers
30 views

Innovative design solutions to increase recycling rates among university students

I have an assignment to research innovate design solutions to increase recycling rates, in particular recycling rates among university students. I've found an excellent research report on topic (but ...
7
votes
1answer
723 views

How many times can plastic be recycled?

This answer to another question brought up the point that "recycling" of plastic is often more accurately "downcycling." From Wikipedia: Downcycling, also referred to as cascading, describes the ...
2
votes
1answer
67 views

How to size an PV array?

Due to limitations on the street fuse we are going to make a new house ( 50 m2 ) a hybrid off-grid solution that is at the rear of an existing house which is on the grid. So, this means we can charge ...
2
votes
0answers
44 views

Lead nano carbon batteries over Lithium?

The person quoting me on an off grid solution is suggesting lead nano carbon batteries instead of Lithium Ion or ordinary lead acid. Is this technology mature enough yet? And is this now the way to ...
5
votes
3answers
62 views

Cost benefit analysis of a PV array with racking to set optimal angle, vs a larger array

I'm thinking of installing some panels on the roof. It's unshaded but only pitched at 5 degrees on long run roofing iron. Would I be better off racking at an angle to optimize for winter sun, or just ...
4
votes
3answers
98 views

Could hotels charge guests for the utilities they use to encourage conservation?

I travel often for work and stay in hotels. I have observed that with no direct incentive, it's often hard to stay motivated to make such sustainable choices as taking shorter showers, running the A/C ...
4
votes
1answer
52 views

How much is the environmental benefit of organic food offset by its higher economic cost when purchased?

One thing that I do in my life is earn extra money just so I can afford organic food as much as possible. But in this higher-earning job (which is not organic farming and thus not sustainable ...
1
vote
0answers
53 views

Estimating the power that can be generated by a tidal facility

This is a homework exercise I got: A renewable energy facility has to be built immediately under the Golden Gate Bridge. Estimate the time-averaged power that can, at the resource level, be ...
1
vote
0answers
37 views

What's the environmental cost of plastic per gram?

Imagine a person that is fine littering so long as they pick up trash elsewhere. How much would they want to donate to environmental organisations in order to offset the effect they have on the ...
2
votes
1answer
26 views

What is the current tax-credit for homeowners who install a geothermal heat pump system?

I'm confused by what this website is telling me about the tax-credit for a geothermal heat pump: https://www.energy.gov/savings/residential-renewable-energy-tax-credit It says: A taxpayer may ...
3
votes
0answers
46 views

Are there any articles that describe to correlation between the forecast errors for renewable energy resources, depending on the distance?

In an article by Zhang et al., the authors describe how the (normalized) forecast errors of different renewable energy sources (like solar panels and wind mills) are correlated. To that end, they ...
4
votes
1answer
60 views

Are all Peltier-type stove fans the same?

I'm considering a stove fan to distribute heat from a small wood burner. The prices of commercial Peltier-type stove fans seem to range from £25 to £100. Is there likely to be a significant ...
7
votes
1answer
66 views

What should I do with coal that I have been given?

My wife and I recently moved from London to a lovely old cottage in the countryside with electricity, no gas and a wood-burning stove. We are incrementally improving insulation to make the house more ...
5
votes
3answers
91 views

Can a bag of non-organic potatoes that have gone bad be used to mulch an organic garden?

I have a big bag of potatoes I bought that aren't organic and I didn't eat all of them. They have reached a point where they really aren't worth the trouble to use for food. Can I cut them up and ...
1
vote
1answer
83 views

How can I form heat sinks from waste aluminum?

I am designing a thermo-electric generation system that would generate electricity from the heat of my wood stove. The active components are bismuth telluride TEG cells that use the Seebeck effect in ...
2
votes
2answers
56 views

How can I separate carbon monoxide from wood gas?

I am thinking about using open source wiki designs from allpowerlabs to construct a wood gas generator. The motivation came from experiencing a 10 day power outage after super storm Sandy. The ...
3
votes
2answers
85 views

How to recycle almond shells?

I have seen this related question - but it was about the almond peels and not their shells: How do I recycle these? My relatives advised me to burn it all up, as it drives away mosquitoes[citation ...
4
votes
2answers
109 views

Is there a way to remove cockroaches without having to use poison?

My parent's house has a pretty bad case of the cockroaches currently and I'm wondering if there is an eco-friendly way to deal with them. I don't find the use of poisons appealing at all seeing as ...
3
votes
2answers
74 views

Where can I find sustainable investments?

I'm currently into lowering as much as possible my consumption of expendable goods. This has already had an effect on my daily expenses: I buy in short-cycle and second-hand, and as I have a ...
1
vote
0answers
66 views

When should I get rid of a product and buy a new more efficient/useful version? [duplicate]

When should I get rid of a product and buy a new more efficient/useful version? The existing product works okay for its primary use case so I don't want to throw it away or recycle it and then spend ...
2
votes
1answer
67 views

What is the problem in my aquaponics system?

I have an aquaponics system with 20 Koi fish and different plants which works by the Siphon method , and the fish water is about 22-26°c, which is usually less for plants of 2°c degrees. The water is ...
2
votes
1answer
153 views

How to use Maximum Sustainable Yield concept with given a given population, growth rate and carrying capacity?

For my class, I was given a hypothetical situation that uses the concept of Maximum Sustainable Yield to see how much fish I should harvest. I am given an initial population, a growth rate, and a ...
5
votes
1answer
54 views

Environmental concerns of a plastic bottle boat?

Having found several images of boats constructed primarily of plastic bottles, the boy scout within me was interested by the idea. However, I know that plastic bottles biodegrade in sunlight, and the ...
3
votes
5answers
136 views

better to heat house with gas or with electricity?

Is it better to heat house with gas or electricity? We have gas insert and gas heating but am looking at other options for sustainable energy use. Thank you!
0
votes
0answers
38 views

Who re-uses used but still good florescent aquarium light tubes?

I have 50 used, full-spectrum aquarium bulbs, which are still good, but not strong enough to support aquarium plant growth. Probably still very good for helping people with seasonal affective disorder....
8
votes
2answers
92 views

How can I build an ecologically conscious dam on a small brook?

I have a brook at the bottom of my property; currently a culvert empties into a small pool that then flows further downhill to the brook. I'm interested in adding a few more feet of depth to the pool ...
6
votes
1answer
56 views

How deep should my bedding be in my bucket vermicomposter?

I plan to set up my first vermi-composting system using red wigglers in my garage, modeled after the one shown by YouTuber Larry Hall (video link). One minor difference is that I'll use two 5-gallon (...
0
votes
2answers
123 views

Sustainable vs. responsible consumption

What is the conceptual difference between sustainable and responsible consumption, if any?
5
votes
1answer
57 views

How much soya is needed to produce a glass of cow's milk?

Producing soya beans is responsible for some significant amounts of deforestation in tropical areas and relying on soya introduces a demand for transportation in countries where soya is not grown. I ...

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