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Archive for August, 2006


[Green-Trust Off Grid] Off-Grid in Uganda

Yesterday, Daniel Lugumya, the founder of a orphanage in Uganda that specializes in HIV/AIDS orphans, stopped by to chat about solar and wind solutions. Apparently, electric power is very sporadic and expensive in Kampala. We showed him our various solutions for generating power, explained how inverters and chargers work, and have decided to take on their mission as a joint project for Green-Trust and Woodhenge. Jim Juczak and I are planning a trip to Uganda in January to teach the kids how to build and maintain wind turbines, solar water heaters, and solar cookers. We gave him a inverter to take back to Uganda to run their PA system, dvd player and video projector for mobile video projection. If you would like to help with this project, please visit http://www.jcmuganda.org and donate funds for the wind turbine project. They will be grateful.


Posted by Steve Spence to Green-Trust Off Grid at 8/29/2006 03:18:00 PM

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Off-Grid in Uganda

Yesterday, Daniel Lugumya, the founder of a orphanage in Uganda that specializes in HIV/AIDS orphans, stopped by to chat about solar and wind solutions. Apparently, electric power is very sporadic and expensive in Kampala. We showed him our various solutions for generating power, explained how inverters and chargers work, and have decided to take on their mission as a joint project for Green-Trust and Woodhenge. Jim Juczak and I are planning a trip to Uganda in January to teach the kids how to build and maintain wind turbines, solar water heaters, and solar cookers. We gave him a inverter to take back to Uganda to run their PA system, dvd player and video projector for mobile video projection. If you would like to help with this project, please visit http://www.jcmuganda.org and donate funds for the wind turbine project. They will be grateful.

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[Green-Trust Off Grid] Trip to Woodhenge

We had a good time at Woodhenge this weekend. Jim, Al and friends brought back Al’s yurt which we unloaded. Site prep for reconstruction will start shortly. I delivered my old AIR 303 which Jim is reconstructing with new coils, and a Cowboy Hot Tubs wood fired hot tub heater. We harvested a bunch of veggies from Jim’s organic garden, and discussed the future growth of both Green-Trust and Woodhenge. Phil prepared some awesome quiche and peach pie, as well as other wonderful organic meals. Jim is helping us plan our new well and cistern upgrades. I also worked on the new Woodhenge Website, so there is content now and Jim and Krista know how to update it. The new timberframe cabin will be setup soon, as well as new wind turbines, so check them out often.


Posted by Steve Spence to Green-Trust Off Grid at 8/28/2006 06:10:00 AM

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Trip to Woodhenge

We had a good time at Woodhenge this weekend. Jim Juczak, Al McMahon and friends brought back Al’s yurt which we unloaded. Site prep for reconstruction will start shortly. I delivered my old AIR 303 which Jim is reconstructing with new coils, and a Cowboy Hot Tubs wood fired hot tub heater. We harvested a bunch of veggies from Jim’s organic garden, and discussed the future growth of both Green-Trust and Woodhenge. Phil prepared some awesome quiche and peach pie, as well as other wonderful organic meals. Jim is helping us plan our new well and cistern upgrades. I also worked on the new Woodhenge Website, so there is content now and Jim and Krista know how to update it. The new timberframe cabin will be setup soon, as well as new wind turbines, so check them out often.

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[Green-Trust Off Grid] Al McMahon – Autonomous Housing

Hello,

It has been a while since we have had activity with this program and I am sorry.

This is a long term program.

Here are a few of the connections that I have been able to keep going during this quiet time

1) Green Drinks in Syracuse. A meeting of people who are builders, architects, students and designers that meet on the 3rd Thursday every month at Colemans to talk about common interests. These groups exist in many cities in New York. (further?)

2) Ithaca Green Hub. A group of green leaning individuals using the excellent resources in Ithaca to create a place where individuals and businesses can come and actually learn how to go green and have access and training to new materials and programs. A real starting point!

3) Some students are resubmitting the paperwork to SUNY Oswego for recognition of Autonomous Housing as a student group this semester and we are looking to engage on a deeper level then before. With students driving this it will gain momentum.

In addition Jim Juczak, Dick Degraff, the land trust and Steve Spence are wonderful resources of people and places where we can get hands on experiences and see real world applications of the ideas we are looking at!!

This is not a short term project and I do wish I had kept communications going more frequently. I appreciate your understanding and I will work at keeping more data flowing. I am looking at doing a blog but I want to keep the email communications up as well.

One of the things missing is a complete calendar of greenish events in Central NY and a way to plot the resources we have available. It is a project I want to work on over this winter.

We are moving the pieces of the Yurt from Fulton to Jim’s Saturday. If anybody would like to help with this project pleeeeaaase let us know.

Thanks again, and please email me to let me know you are still getting these!

Best Regards.

Al McMahon
Autonomous Housing
315-652-7913


Posted by Steve Spence to Green-Trust Off Grid at 8/25/2006 10:06:00 AM

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Al McMahon – Autonomous Housing

Hello,

It has been a while since we have had activity with this program and I am sorry.

This is a long term program.

Here are a few of the connections that I have been able to keep going during this quiet time

1) Green Drinks in Syracuse. A meeting of people who are builders, architects, students and designers that meet on the 3rd Thursday every month at Colemans to talk about common interests. These groups exist in many cities in New York. (further?)

2) Ithaca Green Hub. A group of green leaning individuals using the excellent resources in Ithaca to create a place where individuals and businesses can come and actually learn how to go green and have access and training to new materials and programs. A real starting point!

3) Some students are resubmitting the paperwork to SUNY Oswego for recognition of Autonomous Housing as a student group this semester and we are looking to engage on a deeper level then before. With students driving this it will gain momentum.

In addition Jim Juczak, Dick Degraff, the land trust and Steve Spence are wonderful resources of people and places where we can get hands on experiences and see real world applications of the ideas we are looking at!!

This is not a short term project and I do wish I had kept communications going more frequently. I appreciate your understanding and I will work at keeping more data flowing. I am looking at doing a blog but I want to keep the email communications up as well.

One of the things missing is a complete calendar of greenish events in Central NY and a way to plot the resources we have available. It is a project I want to work on over this winter.

We are moving the pieces of the Yurt from Fulton to Jim’s Saturday. If anybody would like to help with this project pleeeeaaase let us know.

Thanks again, and please email me to let me know you are still getting these!

Best Regards.

Al McMahon
Autonomous Housing
315-652-7913

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[Self Reliance in Troubled Times] Sustainable Agriculture in Iowa, and in Politics

“My husband Larry Harris and I have been organic farmers for over 30 years, and we have been advocates of sustainable agriculture since we started farming. When my daughter was born we established an informal co-op with local families and farms so we could get fresh, local and healthy food. Practicing sustainable agriculture protects our environment, and increases the revenue of local farms. Encouraging communities all over the state to practice sustainable agriculture would be an important goal in my administration. Sustainable agriculture enriches communities by building stronger ties between producers and consumers.”

Denise O’Brien, O’Brien for Secretary of Ag, Iowa

Des Moines I.A.– Today Denise O’Brien, Democratic candidate for Secretary of Agriculture reaffirmed her support for local control of placements of animal confinements.

The local control issue has been a divisive issue for many Iowans as well as for elected officials. O’Brien believes that local control continues to be “the biggest difference between me and my opponent. My opponent thing thinks the state government should hold all the power- I think communities should most.”

“This issue is about freedom. Counties deserve the freedom to make these decisions in the same way they do for every other industry,” said O’Brien.

“People opposed to local control worry that Iowans are unable to make sound, reasonable decisions without being driven by emotions. I trust Iowans, and I think local decisions are better for the people who have to live with them.”

O’Brien believes the legislature should set the basic minimum standards, but counties have the right to build upon these standards. O’Brien doesn’t believe the issue needs to be divisive and wants to bring people together to resolve the issue.

The recent rule giving the DNR discretion in the placement of animal confinements has added to the debate over local control. O’Brien views the recent rule change as, “an imperfect, but a necessary stop-gap to be used in the short term while the state transitions to local control.”

O’Brien believes that the resolution of the local control issue is “key to provide the freedom needed for safe and healthy, families, farms and Iowa.”


Posted by Steve Spence to Self Reliance in Troubled Times at 8/25/2006 09:39:00 AM

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Sustainable Agriculture in Iowa, and in Politics

“My husband Larry Harris and I have been organic farmers for over 30 years, and we have been advocates of sustainable agriculture since we started farming. When my daughter was born we established an informal co-op with local families and farms so we could get fresh, local and healthy food. Practicing sustainable agriculture protects our environment, and increases the revenue of local farms. Encouraging communities all over the state to practice sustainable agriculture would be an important goal in my administration. Sustainable agriculture enriches communities by building stronger ties between producers and consumers.”

Denise O’Brien, O’Brien for Secretary of Ag, Iowa

Des Moines I.A.– Today Denise O’Brien, Democratic candidate for Secretary of Agriculture reaffirmed her support for local control of placements of animal confinements.

The local control issue has been a divisive issue for many Iowans as well as for elected officials. O’Brien believes that local control continues to be “the biggest difference between me and my opponent. My opponent thing thinks the state government should hold all the power- I think communities should most.”

“This issue is about freedom. Counties deserve the freedom to make these decisions in the same way they do for every other industry,” said O’Brien.

“People opposed to local control worry that Iowans are unable to make sound, reasonable decisions without being driven by emotions. I trust Iowans, and I think local decisions are better for the people who have to live with them.”

O’Brien believes the legislature should set the basic minimum standards, but counties have the right to build upon these standards. O’Brien doesn’t believe the issue needs to be divisive and wants to bring people together to resolve the issue.

The recent rule giving the DNR discretion in the placement of animal confinements has added to the debate over local control. O’Brien views the recent rule change as, “an imperfect, but a necessary stop-gap to be used in the short term while the state transitions to local control.”

O’Brien believes that the resolution of the local control issue is “key to provide the freedom needed for safe and healthy, families, farms and Iowa.”

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[Green-Trust Off Grid] Work Weekend at Woodhenge

About 8 people are showing up at various times from Thursday through Sunday to work on a variety of projects around here. Harvesting the garden, burying wires, building cabin, finishing outhouses, drinking 15 gallons of homemade beer, the last half gallon of hard cider, developing a permaculture plan for the property, you know, things like that.

We’re also planning on picking up Al McMahon’s yurt in Fulton, NY, picking blackberries, and listening to a folk guitar player.

For more info, email Jim Juczak .


Posted by Steve Spence to Green-Trust Off Grid at 8/24/2006 10:43:00 AM

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Work Weekend at Woodhenge

About 8 people are showing up at various times from Thursday through Sunday to work on a variety of projects around here. Harvesting the garden, burying wires, building cabin, finishing outhouses, drinking 15 gallons of homemade beer, the last half gallon of hard cider, developing a permaculture plan for the property, you know, things like that.

We’re also planning on picking up Al McMahon’s yurt in Fulton, NY, picking blackberries, and listening to a folk guitar player.

For more info, email Jim Juczak .

Share