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To catch the rain cover.png You made it happen! Get a paperback on Amazon or digitally at http://www.tocatchtherain.org.

There are four basic Hexayurt sizes which cover a variety of needs.
What is it? The Hexayurt is a refugee shelter system based on work done at the Rocky Mountain Institute. It uses an approach based on "autonomous building" to provide not just a shelter, but a comprehensive family support unit which includes drinking water purification, composting toilets, fuel-efficient stoves and solar electric lighting. Other systems can be added in a modular fashion.

Is this for real? Yes. Both the American Red Cross and the US Department of Defense have examined the Hexayurt system in detail and found that it has considerable merit and utility. I hope that we will see it in use by international agencies within two years. The best place to get started is to read the slides from the presentation Vinay Gupta gave at the Pentagon in December 2006: Pentagon Presentation (pdf) - 20 pages, not much text, and the best summary of the system we currently have online.

Decreasing turbidity to optimize solar water disinfection

Salt and sunlight can actually be used to clean water with the SODIS method.

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Community action news

Thames sunset.jpg
Mar 7 Climate action UK: UK carbon emissions in 2017 fell to levels last seen in 1890 [1]

Mar 1 South Africa: Cape Town’s water crisis shows the reality for cities on the front line of climate change [2]

Feb 28 Amsterdam: First plastic-free aisle is an example for other supermarkets to follow [3]

Feb 28 Germany: How a small town reclaimed its grid and sparked a community revolution [4]

Feb 27 Food news: How this CSA started by a chemistry teacher may be the future of local agriculture [5]


Muhammad Yunus at World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, 25 January 2012
The poor themselves can create a poverty-free world — all we have to do is to free them from the chains that we have put around them.

Muhammad YunusW
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Visit the Solar Portal

The Sun photographed by the Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (AIA 304) of NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO).
Solar energy, radiant light and heat from the sun, has been harnessed by humans since ancient times using a range of ever-evolving technologies. Solar radiation, along with secondary solar-powered resources such as wind and wave power, hydroelectricity and biomass, account for most of the available renewable energy on earth. Only a minuscule fraction of the available solar energy is used.

Solar powered electrical generation relies on heat engines and photovoltaics. Solar energy's uses are limited only by human ingenuity. A partial list of solar applications includes space heating and cooling through solar architecture, potable water via distillation and disinfection, daylighting, solar hot water, solar cooking, and high temperature process heat for industrial purposes.To harvest the solar energy, the most common way is to use solar panels.

Solar technologies are broadly characterized as either passive solar or active solar depending on the way they capture, convert and distribute solar energy. Active solar techniques include the use of photovoltaic panels and solar thermal collectors to harness the energy. Passive solar techniques include orienting a building to the Sun, selecting materials with favorable thermal mass or light dispersing properties, and designing spaces that naturally circulate air.

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Engineering 308 (Engr 308), Technology and the Environment, is a course taught at Humboldt State University, currently by instructor Lonny Grafman.

HSU mason jar analysis

2016: Partnered with HSU Office of Sustainability and Dining Services to analyze the effects of the HSU policy regarding mason jars and disposables in terms of dollars, CO2, and energy. Compelling comparisons were created in order to educate and influence consumers.  
CCAT NZE study

2014: Partnered with CCAT to analyze the various energy uses of CCAT for their impacts (in dollars, energy, and carbon), as well as devising an implementable plan to ameliorate the impacts and to reach Net Zero Energy.  
Fuente Nueva waste project

2013: Partnered with Fuente Nueva spanish immersion charter school to analyze their waste, its impacts, and possible mitigation plans.  
Arcata bags

2012: Partnered with Humboldt Scrap to analyze the embedded energy and carbon in various reusable and single use bags in Arcata  
Dominican Republic alternative building analysis

2011: Partnered with the Dominican community of La Yuca to compare the cost, embedded energy and carbon between three building methods  
Arcata plastic bags

2010: Partnered with the City of Arcata to analyze the embedded energy and carbon in single use plastic bags in Arcata  
CCAT PV system energy analysis

2009: Teams partnered with: CCAT on their photovoltaic system, Papercrete vs. StrawBale and Environmental impact of clay vs lime; with RCEA on Street lighting Analysis); and a local business on Multi-Pure vs. Brita Analysis.  
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