Monday, August 7, 2017

Recreating Old Junk into New Art

Dale Peterson has an extraordinary ability to envision new life for old things. His workshop is crammed full of everything from doorknobs and old miner's lamps to oil cans. It is a junkyard paradise on a micro scale. All these things were functional at one time in the past. Dale's goal is to give them new life, to bring their style and class to a different purpose. Read the article in Yakima Magazine.

Friday, March 31, 2017

Raisin' in the Sun: Wine Grapes and Solar Power

Vigneron Gary Cox set a long-term goal of environmental sustainability for his Cox Canyon Vineyards and Ellensburg Canyon Winery in 1999, becoming the first sustainable vineyard and winery in Kittitas County, Washington USA. Recently, Cox invested in renewable energy by installing solar panels on his property to provide energy for processing his cabernet franc, riesling and malbec wine grapes. Cox's solar array comprises 85 solar panels on a portion of his 17-acre vineyard that wouldn't accommodate vines anyway. Read to full article here: Yakima Magazine Article MARCH 2017 

Monday, September 26, 2016

The Best Solar Panels 2016 set out to find the best solar panels.

Investing in solar energy is an excellent solution, but between hardware, installation, and the electronic components, the up-front price tag is enough of a deterrent for many. Factor in the notion that you may feel uncertain when it comes to choosing the most powerful and efficient product, and going solar doesn’t feel like a viable option. That’s why the team at took to researching 188 of the top solar panel manufacturers on the market to determine which ones are worth the investment.

How Found the Best Panels:
  • They cut any company that hasn’t been around long enough to establish a good reputation — and with most warranties lasting between 10 and 25 years, they omitted any company that hasn’t been around for at least 10 years
  • They required at least 230 watts of power, to allow for fewer panel purchases with more efficiency
  • They looked for the right efficiency ratio by calculating energy output from a panel compared to the input from the sun
  • They evaluated customer service, website user-friendliness, and service warranties

To see's top picks for the best solar panel manufacturers, as well as tips for finding a great installer, read their full review:

Thursday, August 25, 2016

DAR Historic Building in Washington, D.C. Uses Solar Power

The Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) Constitution Hall photovoltaic system helps the DAR to stabilize and reduce electric energy costs for its complex of historic buildings in Washington, D. C., just a few hundred yards from the White House. The rooftop 59kW solar panel array installation was completed in June 2014 and produces about 100,786 kWh of energy per year to help offset the energy demand of DAR Headquarters. Designed to house the annual DAR convention, Constitution Hall (as of August 2015) was designated a National Historic Landmark Building in 1985 and is Washington D.C.’s largest Concert Hall, with more than half a million patrons each year. DAR has had a conservation committee dedicated to environmental issues for more than 105 years.

DAR Historic Hall Uses Solar Power

Solar Energy Dwarfs All Other Energy Sources

Solar energy potential DWARFS the potential from every other energy resource on the planet. The chart below was produced in 2009 by Perez & Perez and provides the estimates of finite and renewable planetary energy reserves in Terawatt-years -- showing that the energy potential for renewables is ANNUAL energy potential, whereas the energy potential from non-renewables is for TOTAL known reserves. Go sun!
Solaripedia Online Green Architecture Resources

2016 Summer Olympics Stadium in Rio Sports Solar Power

Maracana Stadium in Rio, site of the 2016 Summer Olympics, is ringed by more than 1,552 rooftop solar panels from China. Since the 2014 World Cup, the 390 kW solar power system has been providing free, unlimited clean energy to the stadium, reducing 2,560 tons of carbon dioxide emissions each year. Brazil uses mostly hydropower but the country has one of the highest solar incidences in the world – every square meter exposed to the sun in Rio receives enough energy to run the average Brazilian shower for more than an hour per day. Sustainability Plan for 2016 Olympics:

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

An Ecological Resort in Costa Rica Celebrates Sustainability

By Francesca Lyman, Freelance Journalist and Managing Editor, Solaripedia
Finca Rosa Blanca is an ecological coffee plantation resort in Costa Rica where the proprietors use the power of the sun, natural wastewater treatment, sustainable materials, local food, native plantings, and organic coffee growing methods to wed natural beauty and luxury with long-term sustainability.
The resort sits almost 4,000 feet above sea level, on nine acres overlooking the capital city of San Jose in the valley far below. Finca Rosa Blanca rests in the shadow of Barva Volcano - directly above the resort - the largest in land mass of the many volcanoes in Costa Rica. Visitors also discover wild rivers and cascading waterfalls, big cats, quetzals, tapirs and eagles. Roughly a quarter of Costa Rica's area is made up of National Parks. Finca Rosa Blanca also offers lessons in creating a “green” bedroom in your own home, as well as lessons in sustainability on a broader level.