From void into vision, from vision to mind, from mind into speech, from speech to the tribe, from the tribe into din.

Monday, August 23, 2021

Zero Net Energy - August 23, 2021

 Zero emissions drive would grow U.S. economy - Report shows meeting Paris climate goals would add trillions of dollars in economic growth

Zero net energy, waste, and water development in Albany, NY

NC net zero home

Carbon neutral, net energy positive ecodistrict for Lille, France

Toranomon-Azabudai Project - an urban village for Tokyo focusing on “green” and “wellness"

Positive net energy for Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania

Tesla Energy, Brookfield, & Dacra Are Developing A Large-Scale Sustainable Neighborhood In Austin, Texas
Editorial Comment:  Anybody remember the 1979 Solar Community in Davis, CA (

Cantilever House - zero net energy design for India
Editorial Comment:  Finally some work on zero net energy designs for cooling as well as heating.  ZED Lab looks interesting as well.  They’ve been working since 2009.

Hot Heart - artifical islands to supply heat to Helsinki and support a tropical forest

Greenhouses for extreme climates

Austin, TX’s Whisper Valley "a net-zero capable community, and every home has a geothermal HVAC (it’s a very unique* geothermal system – it’s the first of its kind and the largest in the world)”
Editorial Comment:  My old English teacher, Mr Neilsen, would want me to remind people that “unique” means “one of a kind” which is difficult to modify.  There’s no such thing as “very one of a kind.”

Toyota’s Woven City - a programmable city and a test bed for a hydrogen energy system (?)

Monday, August 16, 2021

The Carbon Coin

 from Ministry for the Future by Kim Stanley Robinson

Page 294: They [a consortium of all the big central banks, with open access for more central banks to join] would issue together a single new currency, coordinated through the BIS [Bank for International Settlements]: one coin per ton of carbon-dioxide-equivalent sequestered from the atmosphere, either by not burning what would have been burned in the ordinary course of things, or by pulling it back out of the air. They promised to establish a floor in the value of this carbon coin, which exposed them to great danger from speculators trying to scare money out of the plan; and they foretold a rise in the value of the currency over the coming decades. By doing these things they made this investment a sure thing, assuming civilization itself survived.

Page 295: In fact, at the end of the agreement they all lent some fiat money of the ordinary kind, pooled into a fund administered through the BIS, which would be enough to pay for this new bureaucracy of verification that would have to be created to certify that carbon was rally being sequestered. This was a bureaucracy so vast no single bank could afford it, nor of course the ministry, not even close. It was almost a full employment plan all by itself.

Here are some programs that exist now which point in that direction:

Global Carbon Reward ( is looking for a central bank to trade and manage a "carbon currency,” their “Global Carbon Rewards,” for a demonstration project.  "The central bank will need permission from their regulators to establish a temporary swap line for buying the carbon currency during the demonstrations…”

Regrow ( does “Measurement, Reporting and Verification (MRV)... to ensure data is transparent and reliable” in terms of carbon sequestration, among other things.

There are other models at other scales and I believe Ralph Borsodi’s “Constant,” an inflation proof local currency, could be adapted to carbon:

Many more alternative currencies, even carbon coin possibilities, in Barbara Brandt’s Whole Life Economics (1996, New Society Publishers).

The Carbon Coin According to The Ministry for the Future (more quotes):

Previously:  How Do You Pay for the Green New Deal:  The Cost of Fuel

Monday, August 02, 2021

To Catch the Sun: DIY Solar Handbook

To Catch the Sun ( is a book of inspiring stories of communities coming together to harness their own solar energy, with the nitty-gritty details so you can do it too!

Learn how to design and build a photovoltaic system for engagements like:

A small home in a financially rich country

A few homes in a financially poor country

School rooms and community spaces 

Zombie-apocalypse equipment

Laptop and cellphone chargers 

A tiny home or #vanlife 

Glamping and backpacking equipment 

Emergency supply, e.g., powering an oxygen machine during power outages

Isolated loads like electric gates, pumps, greenhouse fans, backup generators, and telecommunications equipment

You had me at "Zombie-apocalypse equipment" (and I wonder why none of the zombie shows I've seen take renewables seriously - it's all motor vehicles and dirty clothes).  

Then again, I believe that Solar IS Civil Defense (