Posts from — April 2007

(Another) Long Way Round
by ELENA on APRIL 30, 2007 - 0 Comments in COMMUNITY, MOBILE
Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman
Adventure buddies

Ewan McGregor has announced his second motorcycle trip – and he’s due to set off in the next couple of weeks. This time, the journey will take him from Edinburgh to Cape Town.

McGregor’s last expedition started out in April 2004, taking him and actor-friend Charley Boorman from London to New York in just over 3 months. Covering 20,000 miles (32,000 kilometers), and taking in Europe, Russia, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Alaska, and Canada, the pair documented their adventures in the Long Way Round TV series. (more…)

400-watt solar aircon
by ELENA on APRIL 30, 2007 - 5 Comments in SOLAR

Somebody here needs solar

It’s easy to feel indulgent for using an air-conditioner come summer but if you live in the blistering heat of southern California it might be more like a necessity. If air conditioners use up a lot of power, why not use the sun to your advantage to power it?

SolCool One LLC of Redlands, California, is marketing an air conditioner that uses so little power it can be run from the power generated by no more than four solar panels, the company says. (more…)

Daily Show ‘salutes’ green celebrities
by ELENA on APRIL 27, 2007 - 0 Comments in COMMUNITY
Lewis Black

Daily Shows Lewis Black, who presents the Back in Black segment, couldn’t resist poking a little fun at the efforts of some celebrities on this year’s Earth Day. The very first Earth Day was organized by the Earth Day Network way back in 1970, and this year’s date was Sunday, April 22nd. Droves of celebrities, including Oprah Winfrey and Matt Damon, came out to support the event – unfortunately, their efforts were deemed patronizing, not helpful, and received lashings from the Daily Show contributor.

The clip is available at Comedy Central and is certainly worth a look if you’re fed up with celebrities telling you how to do it better. (more…)

Geodesic Blue dome
by ELENA on APRIL 26, 2007 - 0 Comments in LAND
Chrisopher Blue
Probably thinking up lyrics

Christopher Blue’s music career has taken him from working with John Cale to fronting his own raging band, 10 Minute Warning – alongside Duff McKagan, fresh off the ultimate in balls-out rock and roll trips, Guns N’ Roses  to the release of his latest acclaimed solo effort. It’s no wonder he’s chosen an off-grid place to help him unwind and get away from the hectic Seattle music scene he was once part of.

The geodesic dome Blue calls home is in Mendocino, California and its made of trees felled from the spot! The home also has an incredibly interesting history. (more…)

Jessica Alba – secretly green?
by ELENA on APRIL 26, 2007 - 1 Comment in SPIRIT

Jessica Alba
Working the hippie look

Is tough action heroine Jessica Alba discovering her softer side? You’d think so, with the release of two new films that might have persuaded the actress that green beats mean.

In the Fantastic Four sequel, The Rise of the Silver Surfer, Alba will be driving a Hybrid car the batmobileof the Fantastic foursome, Fantasticar.

In the movie, it’s powered by a proton accelerator, can hover, fly at 500 mph and break into separate flying machines. (more…)

Coastal Access for All
by ELENA on APRIL 24, 2007 - 0 Comments in LAND

Now, lets be legal

Proposed rules mean we may soon be able to walk the whole outline of the British Isle unimpeded by pesky keep out signs the historic right to roam that Labour traditionalists have been pushing for since the 1940s. But landowners, who won’t be compensated for opening up their land, have vowed to launch legal battles using human rights legislation in a bid to protect their privacy if the legislation goes through.

Off-Grid strongly supports the proposal and urges readers to write to DEFRA with a positive response. Currently, the public has access to only half of the country’s coastline, and despite a popular misconception – none at all to most beaches.

Currently, the public has a right of access to only about half of the country’s coastline, mainly along paths, and – despite a popular misconception – none at all to most beaches. Even where there are paths with rights of way, they often do not join up, or are blocked by private property, forcing walkers to make long detours inland. (more…)

Urban Sea of Green
by DYSLEXIC_FARMERSWIG on APRIL 22, 2007 - 0 Comments in URBAN

green roof
Cute or what?

The phenomenon of Green Roofs currently sweeping across Europe inverts our spatial perception by taking vegetation from the ground to the rooftops. Aside from their ecological benefits, nobody would deny the aesthetic improvement of replacing an ugly old rooftop with a floral delight.

Advocated by the UK Minister for housing, Yvette Cooper, these living roofs. come in two main types,

extensive, which needs little maintenance, consisting of laying moss or sedum as a fertile base to nurture wild vegetation, and intensive roofs, basically the creation of a more labour-intensive roof-top garden or patio. Aside from absorbing CO2 from the atmosphere, green roofs also take-in rainwater, meaning run-off and flooding is lessened, and they act as natural insulation by keeping heat from escaping. The figures suggest savings of 3-10% on your winter fuel bills Best of all, they provide an excellent way of attracting wildlife back to the city.

Although turf-topped buildings were popular in the 1930s, their current presence in the UK is much less than in (more…)

Orlando Bloom’s Epiphany
by ELENA on APRIL 21, 2007 - 0 Comments in OFF-GRID 101, PEOPLE, SPIRIT

Orlando Bloom
Bloom: prepares to survive

Orlando Bloom is taking time out from acting to study Buddhism, and is building a nearly off-grid home in London at the same time, showing he is serious about leading a life apart from the normal showbiz success story.

Orlando says he needs time to reflect on what’s going on in his life.

I’ve been white knuckling it for so long. Between the first Lord Of The Rings and Last Pirates Of The Caribbean, I’ve been going non stop. So now I just want some time and space from everything and the phone and communication.

The philosophy I’ve embraced isn’t about sitting under a tree and studying my navel, he says. (more…)

Green eating guide
by ELENA on APRIL 21, 2007 - 0 Comments in FOOD

farming family
Good food from good people

So you want to source out local and organic food producers, but small shops and delivery companies aren’t going to flood you with advertising it’s often up to you to find them. Luckily, we have just the advice to get you started.

Directories and guides

A Lot of Organics ( is a website, started four years ago by a concerned mother, covering everything from alternative therapies to special dietary requirements, plus a big section on organic food. Extremely useful. Big Barn ( lists local food producers around the country, some organic, some not. You search by location, rather than type of food. The Green Guide (9.99, 020-7502 1089, is a set of regional directories for organic/eco-friendly/ethical businesses around the country. The Organic Directory, by Clive Litchfield, is published annually by Green Books (01803 863260,; (more…)

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