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CCAT natural paint project
CCAT natural paint project. The Campus Center for Appropriate Technology (CCAT) at Humboldt State University in Arcata, CaliforniaW is completely remodeling the inside of their building. When all of the construction is finished the entire interior of the house will need to be painted. As an ENGR 305 project, Spring 2007, Andrea Lanctot and Jill Anderson have decided to make all the interior paints from scratch using safe natural ingredients.

The project has four main goals. The first is to research natural paint ingredients, recipes, and techniques. The second is to make several of the recipes and test the paints for color, durability, and texture. The third is to choose paints from the tests for the new CCAT house and apply them to the interior. The last goal is to test the final application with the test of time. See natural paint basics for background research on ingredients, types and advantages/disadvantages of natural paint.

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CCAT's Vermicomposting Bin

Build your own Vermicomposting System!

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Community action news

Girls on a Bicycle.JPG
Apr 24 Cycling news 2018: What Cities Need to Understand About Bikeshare Now [1]

Apr 23 1000 Electric Buses To Spearhead Paris Goal Of 100% Zero Emissions Public Transportation [2]

Apr 17 Florida: Miami's sharing potential [3]

Apr 17 Denmark: How do we utilize local knowledge so that others can benefit from it? A guide from the Danish Island of Samsø [4]

Apr 16 Reduce, reuse, repair and recycle: Recycling hope for plastic-hungry enzyme [5]

Read More...


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Albert Einstein
Problems cannot be solved at the same level of awareness that created them.

Albert EinsteinW
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Kiva's straw bale greenhouse
An alternative or natural building involves a range of building systems and materials that place major emphasis on sustainability. Ways of achieving sustainability through natural building focus on durability and the use of minimally processed, plentiful or renewable resources, as well as those that, while recycled or salvaged, produce healthy living environments and maintain indoor air quality. Natural building tends to rely on human labor, more than technology. As Michael G. Smith observes, it depends on "local ecology, geology and climate; on the character of the particular building site, and on the needs and personalities of the builders and users."

The basis of natural building is the need to lessen the environmental impact of buildings and other supporting systems, without sacrificing comfort, health or aesthetics. To be more sustainable, natural building uses primarily abundantly available, renewable, reused or recycled materials. The use of rapidly renewable materials is increasingly a focus. In addition to relying on natural building materials, the emphasis on the architectural design is heightened. The orientation of a building, the utilization of local climate and site conditions, the emphasis on natural ventilation through design, fundamentally lessen operational costs and positively impact the environmental. Building compactly and minimizing the ecological footprint is common, as are on-site handling of energy acquisition, on-site water capture, alternate sewage treatment and water reuse.

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ENGR 215 Introduction to Design projects – Fall 2005: RCEA: The Fall 2005 semester of Engineering 215 worked with RCEA to develop educational displays for the general public.

Fall 2005 ENGR 215 Intro to Design Projects - RCEA
A Bright Idea
To create an interactive, educational display that demonstrates the importance of electrical energy conservation  
Biggest Little Thing
To design an interactive display promoting electrical energy conservation  
Thermal Curtain
To educate people about thermal energy conservation  
Know Your Load
To educate people about phantom loads on electrical devices  
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  5. Sponsored Libre Research Agreements to Create Free and Open Source Software and Hardware
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