Monday, September 22, 2008

Some Sustainable Living Ideas - Fueled by my Laundry Crisis

Eco-gym is aims to turn sweat into electricity.

So I agree that this is a gimmick, but it is a good gimmick! A new gym in Portland is using stationary bikes to produce energy! How much energy can a stationary bike produce? Not a lot unfortunately…

According to, exercising on a stationary bike produces somewhere between 50 and 250 watts of power depending on the riders effort. So, I would probably be between 100-200 watts. Let’s assume 90% efficiency…..Do the math: a 45 minute ride produces about 120 watt-hours of power. How much is that? Enough to:
• Run a 100-watt bulb for a little over an hour.
• Run 4 compact fluorescent bulbs for the same duration.
• Run an aquarium pump for a day.
• Power a small frost free fridge for about a half hour.

So, you see that gym-rat power really won’t provide that much energy. It won’t even heat the water needed for my after workout shower and that 45 minutes was only about a cent worth of electricity…

But, it is still a really cool fun idea…

Stop Drinking Bottled Water!!!

The exclamation points are there for me, because I am a horrible culprit of drinking bottled water when I am thirsty and it is most convenient. I need to learn to bring water with me. Why you say:

Water straight from the tap has about one half of one percent of the climate-warming impact of the most benign bottled water -- and less than a thousandth of the overall environmental impact of the most energy-intensive bottled water.

You will also save a lot of cash! Bottled water now costs around two bucks; 8 glasses a day costs about 49cents a year from the tap.

IT has also been proven that bottled water is most often not any better than tap water and was actually bottled from a tap…what a scam…

Walk, Don’t Drive

A completely obvious idea here and over emphasized idea, but I wanted to share a factoid I found on this: my shoes get about 220 miles to the gallon…

Ride your Bike

Utilize the world’s most energy efficient vehicle…My favorite biking fact: "Pound for pound, a person on a bike can go farther on a calorie of food than a gazelle can running, a salmon swimming, or an eagle flying."

Ceiling Fans

I learned about how wonderful a ceiling fan can be at my dad’s cabin. The fan does wonders for distributing heat and cool air around the house. According to Amory Lovins, a ceiling fan isn’t just a free lunch, it is a free lunch you are paid to eat.

Dry your clothes outside

A six dollar piece of rope (I actually just use my fence), and you have the potential to save a huge amount of energy and have clothes that smell like fresh wind. Just remember to bring them in before it rains…

An Ode to my friends…Netflix and Library Books

I just thought of this:
Re-use is the most important of the three R’s…libraries prevent the over production and waste of books….netflix also reduces waste….

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