Saturday, June 23, 2007

Permaculture: A Crude Awakening - peak oil

Last week, At the Movies on ABC, did a review of A Crude Awakening.

Included in the takes, was part of an interview with Dr Colin Campbell. Seeing this, especially with his accent, reminded me that I have some podcasts that include one presentation by Colin.

These were recorded at the Fuelling the Future Conference (link to podcasts) held at Kinsale, Co. Cork, Ireland on 18 & 19 June 2005.

There are a number of great podcasts from this conference, including from Richard Heinberg (peak oil author) and David Holmgren (co-originator of permaculture)

A Crude Awakening is on staggered release in Australia, so people are going to have to keep an eye on the papers/net and wait.

If they have got an interview with Colin Campbell, I expect it to be good, detailed coverage of the subject.


Technorati tags:

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Context: Green Roofs

Green Roofs for Healthy Australian Cities has a word press blog called Green Roofs. It’s a great source of posts and particularly photos.

A post from the start of May interested me. The Brisbane City Council (BCC) is looking at green roofs in the ‘Action Plan’ that is currently being drawn up by its Climate Change and Energy Taskforce.

For me, it’s an issue of context. Over most of the BCC’s area, green roofs would not be a good course of action.

Where are green roofs a good course of action? I think three factors need to be considered. These are:
1/ Rainfall
2/ Open space
3/ Insulation

Is local rainfall high enough that the addition high quality run off from a hard roof would not be missed?

Is the value of the additional usable open green space is greater value than the value of the addition high quality run off?

Is the value of the insulation provided by the green roof is greater value than the value of the addition high quality run off?

Background: Brisbane is a city currently in a water crisis, due to climate change and a lack of government planning (since an incoming state government cancelled a major dam in the late 1980s).

Over suburban Brisbane, the additional run off would be of great use for both as drinking and garden water.

Only in the inner city, would the value of a green roof as open green space and insulation combine to make is a good choice of action.


Technorati tags:

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Fined for using home made fuel

The following story just hit Slashdot.

It’s titled ”NC Man Fined For Using Vegetable Oil As Fuel”.
"The News and Observer reports on an Charlotte, NC driver who has been fined $1000 for not paying a fuel tax when he fills his tank with vegetable oil. Perhaps the funniest quote is this one: '"With the high cost of fuel right now, the department does recognize that a lot of people are looking for relief," said Reggie Little, assistant director of the motor fuel taxes division. "We're not here to hurt the small guy, we're just trying to make sure that the playing field is level."' Sure, since the field is so plainly tilted against Arab oil interests.”

Now it may look funny from this side of the pond, but…

A few years ago, there was a situation here (au), where a government backbencher commented the ‘small’ farmers/hobbyist who brewed their own bio-fuels for their own use shouldn't/wouldn't be subject to fuel excise. The federal treasure rebuked the backbencher, saying the all fuel would remain subject to excise no matter who the producers & consumers are or how it was made.

Can't find the story on the net, darn pay walls!


Technorati tags: