Archive for Art and Culture


So i was at the eco-block get together like David, and Matt.  I was apart of the energy portion of the meeting.  They were talking about putting stationary bikes next to the business administration building.  A station to generate electricity to power the lights around there, or to charge a electronic device you had.  I think this would be kind of weird.  Its a good idea, but I don’t think in front of the max is the place for it.  Maybe somewhere that doesn’t have so many people around.

The energy group also talked about putting in water power generators underneath the bridge.  That way the rain water streams off, and pushes the generator to generate electricity.  It wouldn’t be a lot of power, but it would be something.  I thought this was a good idea.  All this would happen on Montgomery St. in that empty lot.

Anthony Tran.

Comments (1) »

Women Are Greener Than Men !

Who is greener in your household, women or men? I found this interesting article that said women are greener than men! One of reason is because women” respond more positively to environmentally friendly advertising”. Another reason is that women “get involved in co-operative and social initiatives on a personal level. However, there are more males in our sustainability class than females. So I was wondering what is you opinion would be?! Or what do u think of this?!`

Needa L

Comments (1) »

Instant watch documentaries

The best advantage to the nominal monthly fee for netflix besides no late fees is the instant watch menu played on your computer.  They have countless amounts of documentaries including most PBS shows such as Nova and Frontline. So it’s instant gratification for no extra charge!  Going off the the documentary we watched in class about water privatization, “Blue Gold” narrated by Malcolm McDowell (A Clockwork Orange) is offered as instant watch and is riveting!   It immediately pulls you in with Mcdowell’s grainy, slightly cockney voice as it introduces a story of a man going without water for a week, and describing the physiological process…ending with a powerful quote, “whomever goes without water for a week cries blood”.  Yes, it is very biased, But it is a biased side that I’m on as long as it is backed up with facts and data.  Another good documentary on instant watch is “The Yes Men” which made me excited when I realized that fact.  I saw a prescreening of it when it came out in LA because I was involved in the street team promoting that movie.  It’s about two guys who set up a false website for WTO under the pretenses of being spokespeople for the organization.  They proceed to act as caricatures for the organization when they are asked to speak at different locations.  The caricatures are so absurd it’s amazing that people don’t catch on but it really hits on some deep truths.  I highly recommend it!  Other good instant watch documentaries include “King Corn” and “The Eleventh Hour”, as well as the Nova and Frontline episodes.


Leave a comment »

Whaling: not just cruel, but carbon releasing too.

I don’t know how familiar you are with the culture of whaling, but it has been an on-going “sport” for many centuries now. In Japan, there are many protests against it as some continue to carry on this whaling tradition. Many nations have outlawed whaling, as many species of whales have been placed on the list of endangered species. In this article, whales are described as the “forests of the ocean”, because when they are killed, they release more than 100 million tonnes of carbon – equivalent to a large forest! I think whaling is a cruel “sport”, and the amount of carbon that is released by killing a single whale is astounding! Save the whales, save the planet.


Comments (2) »

Apple Refuses a Sustainability Report

In this article, Nick Aster discusses the situation surrounding Apple and sustainability. The group, As You Sow, is expecting sustainability reports from many companies including Apple, IBM, Dell, HP. Apple’s board of directors is urging the shareholders of Apple to say reject the set-up of sustainability reports. Is Apple really as ‘green’ as it claims to be? Why would they want to hide their practices and reject a sustainability report when they are ‘green’. Makes you wonder what companies would do just to say they’re ‘green’. Perhaps Apple is just a fraud when it comes to sustainability, but no one will ever know unless the shareholders urge Apple to procure the sustainability report.

D Dang

Comments (1) »

The Olympics Have Gone Green!

In 2008 when Beijing was used as a host city by the Olympic games, the environment was left with breathable air for the 12 million+ people inhibiting the area.  The games were used as an impulse to improve the environment in one of the most polluted areas on earth.  Ever since then, the games have been pushing the “green effect” on all of the host cities.  There is now an award for “the greenest games ever”!  Now in the 2010 Olympics being held in Vancouver, there are green roofs, solar panels and water harvesting being used. There are plans to make the villages eco-legacies, converted into sustainable living communities after the games are over.  More information on this here.

It is exciting that more and more events and people are “going green”.  Does anyone have some ideas on what else could be turned “green” in today’s society?

-Erica Nickerson

Comments (4) »

The brilliant engineers of Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu is always one of those places I keep in mind to go visit some day. With an elevation of 8,000 ft. above sea water, sheer cliff drops on all sides, and with neighboring peaks all around, makes it a breathtaking sight I can’t wait to experience in real life.  Aside from the physical beauty of it, there’s also the historical mystique of the Incas who once lived their.  What really threw me recently was watching a nova program that aired on Feb. 2 titled The ghosts of Machu Picchu, when they started talking about the engineering of the underground drainage systems.  I was flabbergasted to realize what a feat it must have been, and how they executed their designs perfectly to insure that Machu Picchu still stands today, and for many years to come.  Built on the site where it stands today is an astonishing accomplishment that would challenge any modern day engineers, even with all their measurements and paper work.  They had the incredible foresight to think about the environmental disasters that would occur with heavy precipitation that cause floods, erosion, and landslides.  All the extra granite scraps leftover from building the actual foundation were used deep underground as drainage systems.  They built multiple terraces to prevent water runoff by creating multiple levels of rich top soil, granular soil, and finally the granite scraps.  The water would then quickly absorb into the ground and would secure their foundation from eroding.  Even in the city plaza their were drainage holes on all sides of the walls to prevent water from collecting and pooling.  They also engineered an incredible canal system of fresh water with just the right angle, to cause a slow steady flow into the city that stretched on for 2,500 ft.  Enough water to supply a population of 10,000  people.  These canals also supplied water for the visually spectacular fountains within the plaza walls. They accounted for heavier rainfall by overflow drainage leading into their irrigation fields.  The engineers of Machu Picchu were geniuses in hydrology where nothing they did was by accident.  Modern technology have a lot to learn from the miracles of a historical site that has withstood time, and a highly volatile mountain slope for more than 450 yrs, thanks to the brilliance of well thought out drainage systems.

-Anne-Marie A.

Leave a comment »

Stuff made from recycled stuff

Recently I’ve noticed there are many things made from recycled products, such as cans, glass, magazines, tires, etc. I came across this website called Smart Glass Jewelry, which crafts jewelry from recycled materials. I think it’s very fashionable and a great way to reuse glass. There are also many products out there, such as Simple Shoes, made from recycled rubber and car tires, and random objects of decor made out of who knows what. What do you guys think of this? I’ve heard mixed responses, like “Why should I pay more for shoes that used to be tires?”. Many times these products made from recycled things are more expensive than new stuff (ie. Target, Walmart). What do you guys think? Would you be willing to pay more for something that’s
“used” in order to have the feeling of “saving the environment” or “being sustainable”? And should we have to pay a higher $ amount to be sustainable?

Leave a comment »

one mans trash

Some people in a small town not far from texas are taking the next step to becoming sustainable. Their roofs are made of license plates, and their windows of crystal platters. Almost anything discarded and durable is potential building material. Standing in one of these houses and looking at colorful, zigzag-patterned ceiling that are made out of thousands of picture frame corners.80 percent of the materials are salvaged from other construction projects, hauled out of trash heaps or just picked up from the side of the road.  Dan Phillips is responsible  for building these houses, he said he wanted to find something more sustainable so he goes to local construction areas and ask’s for anything that they are getting rid of, or goes to local dumps in search of things to build another home.   here are some pictures below





Leave a comment »