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Naturemill Pro Promises Easy & Efficient Indoor Composting

Nobody’s going to put up with a compost heap in a closet.  But what if you could quickly compost your organic waste with no odors or bugs, indoors or outside, with a device small enough to fit in a kitchen cabinet?  Naturemill promises that its Pro Edition automatic composter will do just that, producing hassle-free compost while using just a …

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Chicago’s Green Alley Initiative

Urban alleyways. Grubby places that only scrappy cats or cop-show perps could love, right? Not in Chicago, where the Department of Transportation is giving them some serious TLC with its recently implemented Green Alley Program. This city-wide renovation initiative will offer some surprising environmental benefits and improve quality of life for residents.

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Is This The World’s Most Efficient Windmill?

Sometimes the epitome of efficiency is using whatever tools are available to accomplish the job at hand. No one understands this better than William Kamkwamba, a teenager from rural Malawi whose ingenuity provided his family and neighbors with electricity from a most unlikely source.

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Ultra-Efficient Design Meets Low-Impact Manufacturing: Patagonia Wetsuits

If you’re not a surfer or a diver, a wetsuit may seem like a fairly specialized or even obscure piece of equipment. But once in a while, a product arrives on the market that’s noteworthy not only for how well it performs its job, but also for how it’s designed and produced. Such is the case with the amazingly efficient …

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“Low-E” Windows Maximize Buildings’ Energy Efficiency

Low-E stands for low emissivity, and these windows are constructed to minimize heat transfer through the glass. Since windows are essentially huge holes in the walls of a building, choosing a low-E window design that’s appropriate for local climate and architecture can greatly increase a structure’s thermal efficiency, while reducing energy use and utility costs.

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Boeing 787: The World’s Most Efficient Airliner

Air travel can present an efficiency dilemma. Trips that wouldn’t be possible by any other means because of time or distance are suddenly viable – though when it comes to manufacturing and fuel resources, airplanes admittedly aren’t the most efficient mode of transportation. But Boeing’s newest passenger jet, the 787 Dreamliner, aims to take a big efficiency step forward with …

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GreenFiber Cocoon Insulation: Energy Efficiency From Recycled Material

One of the simplest ways to improve a home’s energy efficiency and comfort is to make sure that it is properly insulated. Cocoon Insulation from North Carolina-based GreenFiber is a highly efficient insulator, offering more convenient installation and higher R-values than common alternatives, as well as utilizing recycled source material.

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Update: Bank Of America Tower, Greenest Skyscraper In The U.S.

A while back, MetaEfficient profiled what could be the greenest skyscraper in America, the Bank of America Tower in New York City. Located in midtown Manhattan at One Bryant Park, the 945-foot tall, 55-story structure is scheduled to open later this year. Here’s a closer look at some of the groundbreaking features that should help the building earn a coveted …

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HippoRoller Water Carrier – Simple Efficiency With A Far-Reaching Payoff

Water is an immediate, fundamental need for human survival, but one in six people worldwide don’t have immediate access to water resources, particularly in arid regions of southern Africa. The HippoRoller is a deceptively efficient water carrier with the potential to offer huge health, economic, and social benefits to developing communities.

Old Running Shoes Never Die – But Brooks BioMoGo Really Does Fade Away

A critical aspect of a product’s “efficiency” involves not just what it does, but also where it comes from and where it goes after its useful life. Brooks has taken an innovative step to improve the life-cycle efficiency of its running shoes with its biodegradable BioMoGo cushioning material.

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Vancouver: All New Developments Must Be Green

In June, the Vancouver City Council unanimously approved the adoption the the highest green standards for private sector development in North America. Effective immediately, all new re-zonings for development in Vancouver will be required to achieve or exceed the level of LEED Silver, and they will have to achieve LEED Gold on January 1st, 2010.

75% More Efficient: Blue Ridge Parkway Destintation Center

The new Blue Ridge Parkway Destination Center has just been completed in North Carolina. It’s a beautifully designed building that is also highly efficient — it will use 75% less energy than a comparable conventional building. The building has Trombe walls: a very clever feature that will reduce the building’s heating load by 35% alone!

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The Best Kitchen Faucet Aerators

One of the least expensive ways to increase the efficiency of your home is to install low-flow aerators on your faucets. These devices save water, and lower utility bills as well, because less hot water is used. Because of this, low-flow aerators will generally pay for themselves in only a few months.

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Optimal: European Toys

This post has been updated and expanded here: Classic European Toys. Toys that are well-designed and made with renewable materials are optimal. European toys often fit this description. This durable block set, for example, is made in Germany by Haba using solid, natural, untreated beech wood that is harvested from sustainable forests. Toys like this are known for their longevity …

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The Best Push Reel Mowers

Modern reel mowers are quite efficient at cutting grass using nothing but your own push power. Gas-powered mowers actually produce a stunning amount of air pollution considering their small size. Plus, spilled gasoline is a nasty toxin that has no place in your yard. Plus, both you and your neighbors will appreciate the lack of engine noise on a quiet …