New book - 'Building a Better World in Your Backyard' - on Kickstarter (sponsored friend)

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Sharing knowledge to build rich, sustainable lives.

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in sustainability, appropriate technology, poverty reduction, and permaculture.

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Bwb-book-mockup-no-bg.png New book Building a Better World in Your Backyard Instead of Being Angry at Bad Guys Check currently being funded on Kickstarter. (sponsored friend).


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Sarah the hardest worker who is always chuggin' away.
CCAT yurt rainwater catchment. The long history of rainwater collection, can be traced (in recorded history) as far back as ancient times some 3,000 years ago (850 BC) if not even farther. The need for water is a basic human essential for maintaining life, without it, no civilization could have prospered. Rainwater collection in ancient Constantinople is one of the last megalithic structures of its kind.

The CCAT Rainwater Catchment Group consists of: Sean Colley, Matt de Young, Jessica Radtkey, Sarah Shimizu, and Tiesha Whittaker. Our project for ENGR 114 was to build a rainwater catchment system around the yurt at CCAT on campus at Humboldt State University. The purpose of the rainwater catchment system is to capture and store rainwater in a large storage drum for use to water plants on the CCAT grounds. Water is a resource that is always present around us but not always in an immediately useful form. Therefore, it is necessary that we use innovative and appropriate techniques to capture and transform the water that we have into a useful form of water for our needs.

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Hexayurt Project

The Hexayurt is a refugee shelter system that 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. 8/15/07 Update: Winner of the Treehugger Participate! contest for Burning Man.

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Community action news

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Apr 15 UK Climate news: Thousands block roads in Extinction Rebellion protests across London [1]

Apr 3 Climate news 2019: Parents around the world mobilise behind youth climate strikes [2]

Apr 2 City Of Sydney Announces 100% Renewable Energy Target [3]

Mar 29 Amsterdam: A Modest Proposal to Eliminate 11,000 Urban Parking Spots [4]

Mar 22 Community involvement USA: How the simple act of sharing a meal is creating community change [5]

Read More...


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Helen Keller
The mystery of language was revealed to me. I knew then that ‘W-A-T-E-R’ meant the wonderful cool something that was flowing over my hand. That living word awakened my soul, gave it light, joy, set it free.

Helen KellerW
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The Vitruvian Man is a world-renowned drawing created by Leonardo da Vinci circa 1487.
Those who have health have hope, and those who have hope have everything.
Arabian Proverb

An individuals health greatly influences their ability to support themselves, provide for their family, and contribute to the community. Because of this, access to care and the health of a community is central to any development effort.

Unfortunately, health care is poorly distributed around the world. Southern hemisphere countries are much more likely to suffer from lack of access to care. One aspect of this disparity is the health technology gap between developed and developing nations. While developed countries continue to invest in high technology equipment, developing countries often lack the most basic health care tools. Appropriate Medical Technologies (AMT's) can help communities, governments and development agencies create simple, low-cost, and culturally appropriate responses to health care problems.

The use of appropriate technologies is less common in healthcare than other fields such as construction or agriculture. However, there is significant crossover between the public health field and the water and sanitation fields, areas that are more familiar with appropriate technologies. Appropriate technology is often used to develop mobility and rehabilitation equipment as well as tests used to diagnose diseases.

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ENGR 215 Introduction to Design projects – Spring 2011: Locally Delicious: The Spring 2011 semester of Engineering 215 worked with Locally Delicious to design, build, test and disseminate projects that support healthy lifestyles among youths grades 4th through 6th and their families.

Spring 2011 ENGR 215 Intro to Design Projects - Locally Delicious
Tear the Roof off
Dry sliced apples in 18 hours of sunlight with this legless solar dehydrator  
The GnomeTainer
Modular, raised garden with integrated rain catchment that can be installed on a porch  
Catch and Cook
A solar oven capable of reaching 160°F in 20 minutes  
Solar Bowling Oven
Solar oven kids can build and use on their own  
Wormland worm bin
Scalable vermiculture system from free materials for kids  
Row Blender
Row yourself a smoothie with an exercise powered blender  
Sodhoppers' Solar Dehydrator
Durable food dehydrator for a school from a waste kitchen cabinet  
Interactive School Garden
Modular school garden design incorporating several different garden styles  
The Solar Swing
Solar oven for a school reaching 200°F in 30 minutes  
School Worm Bin
Worm bin for a school built from a 55 gallon drum  
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Solar
Water
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