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2
votes
1answer
42 views

Renewable garden watering system - 12v battery system (solar recharged) to ensure there is 50l of water at 20ft twice a week

I have a load of water butt rainwater storage linked to my gutter downpipes for my garden water needs, but I can't stand around waiting to fill watering cans from taps on butts, so occasionally (once ...
5
votes
1answer
77 views

Biomass: Digestor/Reactor vs Gasifier Efficiency

When using biomass for energy, two popular options are reactors and gasifiers. The first uses anaerobic micro organisms to convert the biomass to fertilizer and a methane rich gas mixture. The second ...
4
votes
1answer
64 views

Are soybeans mainly grown for animal feed or oil production?

In the great vegan vs. non-vegan environmental debate a big point of contention is the topic of animal feed. Vegans argue that a large percentage of agriculture should be attributed to cattle farming. ...
0
votes
0answers
19 views

Most integrated energy recuperation system available for new buildings?

I wonder what the current state of the art in energy recuperation is, if you are building a house from scratch. What can a usual architect integrate into your building if you ask for it (without ...
4
votes
1answer
37 views

How to keep my tankless water heater safe in a cold room?

I have a room in my apartment that can sometimes get around 40°F (4°C), and that's where my new tankless water heater is stored. Should I take any special precautions to keep my pipes from freezing or ...
3
votes
1answer
104 views

Can Hydroponic products be termed as organic food?

Hydroponics using NFT (Nutrient Film Technique) is heavily dependent on inorganic nutrients. However, modern marketing jargons term the food produced as organic and business model as sustainable. ...
4
votes
2answers
97 views

How to correctly get rid of human poop?

I want to live alone in a floor above where I'm currently living cause I don't stand my family, only inconvenience, there is nothing not even tiles, I don't mind the discomfort but, how can I get rid ...
4
votes
1answer
180 views

Can sunn hemp make animals high?

I've heard that sunn hemp (Crotolaria Juncea) can build organic armor on the soil quickly. Building and maintaining an armor of plant residue on top of the soil can protect the surface while ...
2
votes
1answer
37 views

How to test accuracy of my Kill-A-Watt or similar device?

I have a used Kill-A-Watt power meter and want to see how accurate it is. In my "conventional" middle-class USA apartment, am I likely to have any electricity-consuming devices that I could ...
8
votes
1answer
49 views

Quantitative comparison of the economics and output of permaculture versus industrial farms

I am new to permaculture but would like to get a better feeling for if and how mid- to large-scale commercial permaculture farms could feed the world. In particular, I am interested in quantitative ...
2
votes
1answer
49 views

Calculating U values - Am I doing it correctly?

I have recently moved into a property that needs refurbishment and insulation. It has late 60s - early 70s cavity walls. I wanted to work out what the current U value is across the property and what ...
3
votes
1answer
43 views

What do the voltage and energy readings on this MPPT charger mean?

I've got a new EPEver 3210AN, 30 A MPPT solar charge controller, and single 320 W 40 V solar panel connected about 4 feet (1 meter) away with 12 AWG wire. It's a very simple van setup. My battery is ...
2
votes
1answer
58 views

Embodied energy of tap water

There is a significant chance that this has been covered on SE, but I haven't yet found anything similar enough for my taste (see related questions, below). Question: How could I go about coming up ...
1
vote
0answers
35 views

Sustainability of Vanguard?

Does anyone know if the financial organisation Vanguard is engaged in sustainability topics, specifically sustainable finance, being a big financial player themselves?
4
votes
2answers
65 views

Do we have a way to limit rising sea levels in a warmer global climate?

So, let's be honest the global climate is warmer and is going to be even much warmer no matter what. This causes glaciers to melt and more water to move to the oceans, and rising sea levels. This also ...
3
votes
2answers
42 views

Life cycle analysis comparing natural gas and propane prior to combustion?

I am choosing between natural gas and propane for a boiler. I see a discussion here where the accepted response primarily deals with the CO2 released during actual burning of the gas. I am curious to ...
12
votes
7answers
12k views

Domestic flywheel energy storage: how close are we?

I've done some web searches, but I don't see anything very current on how close we are to having a home energy storage flywheel system that's comparable in price and performance to a battery system. ...
3
votes
1answer
50 views

Is an air to water heat pump appropriate to keep a hot tub at temperature throughout the year?

Is an air to water heat pump appropriate to keep a hot tub at temperature throughout the year? The hot tub will run 24 hours a day, seven days a week, covered when not in use. Presumably if the ...
15
votes
8answers
2k views

What alternatives to batteries exist to store solar energy at home?

What viable options (other than batteries) exist for a home owner to be able to store energy from solar panels for use at night or when the sun isn't shining? I realise there will be losses in the ...
2
votes
1answer
41 views

Is residential water pumping common?

Is it common for people on city water in the US to have their own on-site pumping as part of the "standard" delivery system, or is the pressure usually entirely supplied by the municipal ...
3
votes
1answer
59 views

Is the drain-off water from water purifiers fit for gardening?

I have 3 stage water purifier installed at my home which first filters the water, performs reverse osmosis and then treats it with UV-C rays. The water that is released at stage 2 (RO) is usually ...
6
votes
1answer
178 views

How can I figure out what's using so much electricity in my home?

I recently moved into a new home with 2 other housemates (joining 1 who already lived there) and our combined bill for electricity is far higher than I expected. Now we're using just over 40 kWh per ...
2
votes
1answer
29 views

How does the EPA estimate annual power consumption for refrigerators?

I'm trying to get a simplified idea of how the EPA estimates annual power consumption for refrigerators, e.g. here. There are a number of reasons why I want to know this, but there are three big ones: ...
2
votes
1answer
50 views

Grass rug/carpet sustainable alternatives?

My balcony has a very ugly concrete floor that I don't like. I really like grass carpets (see a few examples on Amazon) though. I like their texture and I think they make a balcony more homely. To ...
20
votes
5answers
7k views

Why is there no spring based energy storage?

I'm wondering about kinetic energy storage for homes. Imagine a concrete plate resting on hundreds of firmly attached sturdy springs, and a couple of electric winches attached to the top. To store ...
3
votes
2answers
85 views

How feasible is a city with no cars and no streets?

Saudi prince, Mohammand bin Salman, announced a future city spread in 170km with no cars and no street. But any place to meet daily needs like schools, medicine and office will not take more than 5 ...
0
votes
1answer
81 views

Is Privet Hedge a “Living Desert”?

A friend of mine who is working for a big gardening center helped me lately to cut my green waste for the compost and realized the branches were Privet. He claimed a Privet-Hedge would be a "living ...
1
vote
1answer
49 views

Can I use a “normal” thermometer in a refrigerator?

My refrigerator has a rheostat that I want to turn up to save energy. I'm trying to figure out whether I need to get a dedicated refrigerator thermometer. I have a digital and a mercury-based ...
2
votes
0answers
50 views

Do timber buildings remove carbon from the atmosphere in the long run?

One of the advantages of timber buildings is regularly said to be their ability to effectively remove carbon from the atmosphere, through long term carbon storage. Wouldn't this require the timber ...
2
votes
1answer
60 views

Are there long-distance water pipelines emanating from the North American Great Lakes region? Why or why not?

Are there long-distance water pipelines emanating from the North American Great Lakes region? Why or why not? Under what circumstances would this be an ecologically reasonable way to provide water to ...
2
votes
2answers
100 views

Shortcut carbon emission trading by buying and sinking coal

Carbon emission trading is supposed to use market mechanisms to make carbon-intense processes less attractive. Unfortunately, the EU market is flooded with emission certificates, such that the ...
4
votes
1answer
87 views

Excess solar power

I am wanting to hook up a solar system to my house but don't want to feed back into the grid (for a number of reasons, including legislative bureaucracy and having to change my electricity company). ...
2
votes
1answer
57 views

Can furnace condensate water be used for houseplants?

I recently had my old, broken furnace replaced with a high-efficiency condensing furnace. One function of this furnace is that it extracts enough heat from the exhaust gases to condense them into ...
7
votes
1answer
76 views

Is less white paper usually more sustainable?

Copy paper can be purchased in different white tones. The shades of white are defined by the Commission Internationale de l’Eclairage (CIE) and take values from 55 (recycling-grey) to 171 (most white)....
2
votes
0answers
31 views

Which U.S. states have zero emission vehicle mandates?

Today the governor of Massachusetts announced that starting in 2035, gasoline-powered vehicles will no longer be sold in the state. From the announcement (emphasis added, and a "sic" ...
4
votes
3answers
95 views

Efficiency of delivery services vs individuals travelling to purchase items?

Is it more efficient for a supermarket to send a van round to deliver stuff (eg a weekly/monthly shop for groceries) to multiple addresses, or for those people to drive (locally) to go and get it? ...
4
votes
1answer
91 views

Doesn't it make more sense to wrap hot sandwiches with the foil facing in?

You know those hot sandwiches sold in grocery stores (northeast USA at least...) that are wrapped in a foil paper? Wouldn't it thermally make more sense to have the shiny foil facing in? To keep the ...
11
votes
2answers
173 views

How exactly do the impacts of lithium mining compare to oil extraction over a vehicle's lifetime?

There's been a lot of discussion about the impacts of lithium mining vs oil extraction (here for example). I'd like to quantify this. How do the impacts of mining lithium for one electric vehicle (EV) ...
4
votes
0answers
50 views

Are there petroleum products which do not have practical alternative sources?

According to the U.S. Energy Information Agency, about 23 L (13%) out of every barrel of oil is turned into "other products": The other 150 L or so is turned into things which are burned ...
3
votes
1answer
85 views

Can I use 2.5kW solar panels to power 2kW rated grid tie solar inverter?

Can I use 2.5kW solar panels (10x 250 watts) to power 2kW rated grid tie solar inverter? Will anything blow up? Panels: 10x 250W, 36V panels Inverter: 2kW with max input voltage: 500V any help is ...
10
votes
6answers
322 views

To what extent (if any) are electric vehicle batteries recyclable?

Are there any existing procedures for the recycling of electric vehicle car batteries, and if so what are they? In particular I'm interested in those used in the Volkswagen E-Golf, though general ...
5
votes
1answer
79 views

Saving energy in the dryer: short and hot, or long and low?

Where I live, cold winters and humid summers rule out line drying for bulky items like blankets and towels for a few months out of the year. When I put them in my electric clothes dryer, which ...
3
votes
1answer
43 views

Where can I find out about sustainable electronics?

Are there an online resources about brands or outlets? Are there certifications? Wikipedia refers to a 2014 Rank a Brand report about the sustainability of global electronics brands in general. I ...
19
votes
1answer
10k views

Where can I recycle #81 composite materials?

I noticed my pet food bag has a recycling symbol with a new number in it - #81: The only resource I've found about this symbol is the Wikipedia page on recycling codes, which describes it as Paper/...
7
votes
1answer
83 views

How do solar panels degrade after 25 years of warranty?

This question is focused on high quality solar panels (certified Tier 1) which are more and more mainstream. The 25 years warranty is becoming standard, and producers describe degradation in 25 years ...
4
votes
1answer
41 views

How effective are shrink plastic insulation kits for residential windows?

I live in an older home with windows that build up frost in the winter, which indicates they aren't insulated very well. I am thinking of installing kits like these over the windows: However, before ...
5
votes
2answers
66 views

How can I recycle when my apartment doesn't offer it?

I live in an apartment in an urban area. I would love to be able to recycle, but unfortunately, my building doesn't offer recycling as a service. I've searched for recycling facilities near me, and ...
13
votes
6answers
5k views

How can ceramics be recycled?

How can ceramics be recycled? Does the answer vary greatly depending on glaze or other factors, and if so, how can those factors be determined (i.e. how can I tell if a glaze contains lead or not)? ...
6
votes
2answers
93 views

Will planting trees around my house save me from pollution?

If one is living in a polluted city and plants trees around their house, Will it reduce air pollution? What about reducing heat in the summer?
20
votes
2answers
480 views

Is buying online more sustainable than in local shop next door?

I was planning to buy a toy. I can buy it online and in local shop next door. Price is (including shipping in case of online shop) more or less the same. Is one more sustainable than the other?

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