Wooden Soccer & Climate Friendly AC Units

Here are three articles I have come across in the past few weeks that I thought were of interest.

Wooden Stadium (California News Times)

The Forest Green Rovers, a club that plays in EFL League Two, plan to build the world’s first modern football stadium almost entirely using timber.  The Gloucestershire stadium is expected to be completed by 2025, as the club leans into the “Green” part of their name.  The demand for wood buildings is rising globally as the desire for environmentally friendly and sustainable materials continues to gain traction.  Construction produces about 10% of global CO2 emissions, and this can be reduced by replacing steel and concrete with timber, which can actually store CO2.

The stadium looks beautiful, and using more timber in construction may allow for the development of more buildings that exist more harmoniously with their surroundings.  You can read the full article here.

Growth of Packaging & Plastic Free Retail (Forbes)

Sustainable Haus Mercantile opened in early 2020 in New Jersey, and its mission is to persuade its customers to change their consumption habits – one small item at a time.  They are one of a growing number of plastic-free, package-free, and zero waste stores springing up around the country.  These stores are often making many of their own products and providing plenty of education to consumers as well.  Plus they are making it easier for those consumers who are already looking for ways to ditch plastic and packaging without sacrificing all convenience.

Litterless is a great on-line resource that lists hundreds of stores across the country that are selling package-free products.  Sustainable Haus is also working to become a hub in their community, partnering with an array of like-minded businesses to offer recycling and compost options, along with services like knife sharpening.  There are also many on-line retailers offering plastic-free options as well.  It has never been easier to make conscious decisions to reduce the waste we create just through our buying of everyday items.  You can read the full article here.

Making HVAC More Climate Friendly (Fast Company)

Heat pump technology represents the future of heating and cooling, but up until now it has been expensive to install.  Enter Gradient (and others), a San Francisco based startup that is developing an alternative to the current ugly window AC units that can also double as an efficient heater in the cold.  When used for both functions it can shrink the carbon footprint of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning by 75%.  As electricity shifts to renewables that footprint can possibly be eliminated entirely, so that using more AC in the face of growing heat waves doesn’t have the ironic effect of creating even more heat waves via global warming.

The big breakthrough in the technology is in designing a unit that does not require professional installation, as those upfront costs are often the barrier to adopting the technology.  Adding in options like variable settings and WiFi connectivity also allow for more efficient use.  Plans are being made to begin commercial production in 2022, and you can read the full article here.

Hope you found these interesting, and I will return this weekend with some more adventures.

The Free Range Viking

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