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Posted on 12:07pm Sunday 19th May 2013
Us British are such a reserved lot. Maybe even more so in the Chilterns. Every now and again, for a laugh, some TV program will try to give away free money in the street. Of course it doesn’t work. People are simply too suspicious. This is a considerable barrier because sometimes there really is such a thing as a free lunch; but is it free buffet or snake oil?
Posted on 11:53am Tuesday 12th February 2013
Jay Rayner (restaurant critic for The Observer newspaper) recently blogged about how much he hated dishwashers (http://t.co/BQgkBFUf): “At dinner parties, guests who had offered to help clear up find themselves standing in the middle of my kitchen, paralysed with fear when they realise helping means “washing up”.” In an era where kids think that what happens in a kitchen is the cooking portrayed by the TV show “Come Dine With Me” it seems the art of washing-up-by-hand is dying.
Posted on 9:17am Monday 11th February 2013
There is no such thing as an environmentally friendly car and there is no such thing as an “Eco-House”. If you want “ecology” in your house then imagine it alive with flora and fauna. It would not be a comfortable place to live. It would probably be condemned. It may even just fall down. In short – it wouldn’t be our definition of a “home” at all. So, what are we talking about?
Posted on 5:18pm Sunday 6th January 2013
Nothing more clearly illustrates the division between old fashioned green thinking & the modern sustainability movement than Genetically Modified food. A recent clash of Tweets between author Mark Lynas (“The God Species“) and Dr Vandana Shiva (author “Soil Not Oil“) exposes just how deep the battle wounds have become. The gloves are off but maybe both are missing the point.
Posted on 2:02pm Friday 23rd November 2012
Totnes is the mothership of Transition. It stands alongside a small number of pioneering towns and cities in Britain where Transition has been extraordinarily successful. We view their success with a certain amount of awe & (indeed) envy. Then, one day, a coffee shop came along and some folk in Totnes decided they didn’t want it there.
Posted on 1:58pm Friday 23rd November 2012
In ‘Part One’ of our “Was It Worth It?” article we asked whether investing your money in a retrofit of a home to super-low-carbon standards was worth it. We managed to prove that it was an interesting (if tortuous) question to figure out the answer to. The answer was “maybe, maybe not”. In ‘Part Two” we will break down the project into different parts to figure out what paid, and what did not.
Posted on 5:46pm Wednesday 14th November 2012
When you modernise your home to cut its carbon footprint, you start with a sense of purpose. It reflects your belief system. However, after having done this we wanted to know: is it worth it in monetary terms? This article is a case study of just one home; “Superhome 59″ in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, UK that was retrofitted in a project that ran from 2008 to 2010. The home was built in the 1980s, has five (small) bedrooms and has about 120msquared living space.
Posted on 12:00pm Wednesday 24th October 2012
Ever enjoyed the movies “Megamind” or “Despicable Me”? They both depict stereotypical bad guys who are thrown into the role of being good guys. Who, today, are our cartoon bad guys? We were challenged for our obvious delight that Hobbycraft were coming to Wycombe Marsh retail park. The anguished-cry went up that we should be AGAINST any big box store. If not, the argument went, then it must mean we are against buying locally. Is it that simple? Is there no middle path? Is this issue so polarising?
Posted on 10:45am Friday 19th October 2012
Did you know that 75% of consumers are on the most energy expensive tariff? Did you know that the numbers of energy consumers switching suppliers continuing to decline? The average consumer switching saved only around 50p a year and an awful lot ended up on a higher tariff! Fuel Poverty is now sky-rocketting again. So the Citizen’s Advice Bureau (CAB) has stepped in this year to try and help people get a better deal. Odd isn’t it? A few days ago almost nobody knew or cared – but now home-energy leads the TV News & is on the front page of every newspaper. Great publicity under appalling circumstances. So let’s get on and do something about it. YOU do not deserve to choose between food and heating this Winter.
Posted on 1:06pm Monday 8th October 2012
Last weekend the USA went crazy as petrol there peaked at a new high of $4.61/gallon. Here is the maths: a US Gallon is 3.785 Litres and the US Dollar is about £1.60. So by our reckoning $4.61/gall is £0.76/litre (approximately half the cost of UK petrol, the UK petrol equivalent there would be $8.41/gallon.) It lead to James Hamilton, Professor of Economics at the University of California (well known for work on the relationship between oil prices and economic growth) to ask: “will this scuttle economic growth? He concluded: “no”. Why? Regardless of the media storm they have been there before – in 2008. The US consumer is no longer shocked. Life will go on, and if it didn’t we would seriously have to ask why. Their petrol is really, really cheap. But is that a good thing? Are they prepared for what is to come?