Monday, December 22, 2008


Governing - A company in the Netherlands has installed what it calls the world's first device that uses the motion of a revolving door to generate energy. The door in this case is the entrance to the Driebergen-Zeist railway station in the central part of the Netherlands. It's a high-traffic spot -- 8,500 commuters use the station every day. The door is expected to generate about 6,400 kwh of energy a year, roughly equal to the needs of one household.

Tree Hugger - Because the US encouraged increased planting of corn by 19% in 2006 and 2007 the number of insect pests that plague the soybean crop increased as well, causing lost yield to farmers or forcing them to apply more insecticide to deal with the problem. The pest in question is the soybean aphid and the cause of its increase is declines in ladybug populations. . . Though New Scientist frames it in the context of increased support for biofuels, it's just as much a further example of the problems of mono-crop agriculture in general, rather than bio fuel crops specifically.

The Local, Sweden - In a bid to increase energy efficiency, a town in western Sweden is planning to connect the local crematorium to its district heating system.
"To start with we're planning on heating our own facilities, but hopefully we can connect to the district heating network in the future," said Halmstad cemetery administrator Lennart Andersson to the Aftonbladet newspaper. . . Andersson hopes the cemetery's plans don't offend anyone, insisting the effort is being undertaking strictly on the basis of its environmental benefits. "There won't be anything different about the ashes," he said.