EcoWeb June 17

Don’t worry, ecochicks: I have read the internet so you don’t have to.

You a geek who wants to be green? Gizmodo showed us this new Monitor from LG that uses about 45% less energy than traditional models. Now you can feel a whole lot less Green Guilt about your WOW addiction.

Looking for a new source for green news? The Huffington Post, the US political commentary site named the World’s Most Powerful Blog by the Guardian, recently launched a new channel: Huffington Post Green, with news, blogs, and commentary about all the latest green news. This one will have some clout!

Sustainablog brings us news about Power of Green Consumers working together through Earth Aid Group Buys: Groups of consumers combining their purchasing power to buy in bulk and get better prices on green goods. Take the power into your own hands! They also posted a great article on Low Impact Living: 10 ways to cut energy consumption. What changes can you make?

Inhabitat featured several cool stories, including these awesomely funky Lamps made with recycled bottles, cool Solar Curtains that shade your home from the sun while absorbing energy, and an uber-useful Crank USB Battery that you could use right away to generate power, and that you will need to surf the web in case of the apocalypse.

At Treehugger, they featured this cool Lettuce Billboard, the Whippy Light (hide your CFL bulbs no more!) and these recycled plastic cutlery cases to curb your need for take-out cutlery with your pad thai.

There was also one piece of ironically good news: the high price of petroleum means that the Cost of Petro Plastic is Skyrocketing, forcing companies who rely on petro-plastics to find alternatives – natural rubber vs. synthetic rubber, reducing plastic packaging, and looking to increased use of recycled materials. While the price of petroleum is hard on the wallet, it’s forcing industry to make changes that make things easier on the planet – which in the end, is good for everyone.

Oh, muffin – is all this gloom and doom getting you down? Don’t worry: the Budget Ecoist has a great list of 5 Great Organic Wines for Summer to help you through.

Got any ideas for ecoweb? Send ‘em to me at talk at ecochick dot ca!

Solar Panels for your Prius

From Gizmodo: California company SEV has created solar panels to fit the roof of your hybrid Toyota Prius, Toyota Highlander, Toyota Rav4, Ford Escape and Dodge Sprinter. The solar panels absorb the power of the sun and add power to your hybrid battery, claiming to add up to 20 miles (32 km and change.. enough for doing your zipping around town on the weekend!) and up to 29% improved fuel economy.

Obviously this sort of thing will work a little better in sunny California than it will here in no-weather-guarantees-Canada, but this is the kind of innovation ecochick loves: mining the obvious energy sources around us instead of digging out planet-killing petroleum half a planet away.

Lightwedge

Reading in bed. It’s a lovely way to end the day, or get you through a bout of insomnia. However, if a crabby ecodude and snoring ecopup are asleep beside you, you’re best advised not to turn on a glaring light and wake up the house.

There are lots of book lights out there, some of which work better than others. Often you’re left having to awkwardly position the light or constantly shift it to avoid having strange shadows on the page. Lightwedge solves all those problems. Using environmentally friendly LED light, it casts light evenly and smoothly across the page you’re reading and flips easily over to the opposite page. It’s even more environmentally friendly if you use rechargeable batteries (4 AAA batteries are required).

Lightwedge’s partner, Bigger and Brighter, ships internationally but the charges are unknown. Still looking for a source for this cool product in Canada!

UPDATED: Found them at my local Chapters store – check it out in person or you can go to chapters.indigo.ca!

Nokia Eco Sensor Phone at CES


At CES, the focus in electronics is slowly but surely shifting to more environmentally friendly, sustainable technologies. One example of this is the Nokia Eco Sensor Phone. Although all they have on display is a non-working prototype, the concept is very intriguing. From the website:

“Our visionary design concept is a mobile phone and compatible sensing device that will help you stay connected to your friends and loved ones, as well as to your health and local environment. You can also share the environmental data your sensing device collects and view other users’ shared data, thereby increasing your global environmental awareness.

The unit will have a wrist or neck strap made from wearable solar cells that provide power to the environmental sensors. These sensors will track data on personal health, local environmental conditions and local weather, telling you more about your own personal environment.

The unit itself will be made from as much recycled or sustainable material as possible, including printed electronics (an innovative technology which allows smaller electronic units to be created), biomaterials (sustainable materials which can be used in place of environmentally hostile plastics) and 100% reclaimed steel – thus reducing the footprint of the unit.

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