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New iPhone App Lets You See Environmental Rating of Your Groceries at the Store

January 25, 2011

GoodGuide Grocery App for iPhone


Goodguide has introduced an iPhone app that leverages the scanning capabilities of the iPhone to help consumers make healthier, greener and more ethical purchase decisions.  Information on sustainability and healthfulness is available for more than 70,000 products and can be accessed real time using an iphone and taking a quick photo of the bar code of a product.  There are many apps that allow consumers to compare prices of products by scanning bar codes, but this is one of the first ones that provides sustainability and health information for products.  Give it a try and let us know what you think.

Best part – it’s free.

[available in the apple AppStore]



Are Compact Fluorescent (CFL) Bulbs Meeting our Expectations?

January 19, 2011

According to a recent study by PG&E, consumer adoption was overestimated, and bulb life was overestimated (by as much as 30%).

Via Gawker, Via WSJ:

Alternatives to Alternative Energy

September 26, 2010

The NYTimes reports this weekend that “passive” energy efficient designs can require virtually zero energy for heating and cooling.  Source: NYTimes

10% of Energy Demands to be Met by Geothermal

June 20, 2010

Summary of MIT study forecasting that by 2050, 10% of energy requirements will be met by geothermal.  Supporting this 2007 forecast, the US Government is spending close to $100M to turn Nevada into a “model geothermal energy case study.”

Real World Residential Geothermal ROI

June 10, 2010

Coming soon… I have undertaken a full assessment of my own residence for geothermal retrofit (from oil heat/hw and central air).  The punchline is that at least in my situation, the payback period would be more than 5 years, potentially less than 10 years.  This includes all tax rebates and incentives available to me in Connecticut.  Still not enough to attract the masses if this is a typical financial outcome.

More to follow…

It’s Our Fault

June 10, 2010

It’s interesting to watch the government react so poorly to this disaster. While BP has no doubt bungled the PR around this event, what they should really be saying to the press, the government and to anyone else that will listen, is that if you want to know why this happened, just look in the mirror.

We did it. All of us. Every American.

We demanded multiple automobiles for our households, even though we didn’t need them. We drive larger cars than anyone else in the world. We own bigger homes than anyone else in the world. Our carbon footprint is larger than any other country’s. We have made virtually no investment in alternative energy or energy conservation.  It’s just as NIMBY as having a dump in your backyard.  No one wants to be the one to rough it w/reduce energy demands. And the government, who we elect, has done virtually nothing to encourage conservation or alternative energy.

Just look at our priorities: we invested a trillion dollars on a mess in the middle east largely to secure the price of oil. Would we have any interest in the Middle East w/out oil? Would we care at all about Saudi Arabia??? No one here would care about Iraq or Iran if we didn’t demand so much oil.

If we had spent even a tenth of what we spent on the Gulf War, here at home, subsidizing alternative energy, getting Americans off of foreign oil; finding ways to change our habits towards conservation… none of this would have happened.

Deep water drilling?  Who did that?  Who made it so profitable for oil companies by putting in liability caps?  Cmon, we did it. We do it every day. We want that oil, and the truth is we don’t really care if the environment could be impacted because we need to drive our big cars. Who’s fault is this? It’s ours. BP knows it but can’t say it. The government knows it but can’t say it either. But for the rest of us, let’s call a spade a spade. Until we change our habits, this is only the beginning.

Building a Green Home Today

April 22, 2010