Jul
23
2017
Sophie Paterson

A tale of two greenhouses: in praise of the solar greenhouse

7
Posted Jul 23 2017 by Sophie Paterson of Lowimpact.org
Strawberries in a Chinese solar greenhouse

Asked to describe the average greenhouse, many readers might picture a mainly glass structure. There is, however, an alternative which offers even greater growing potential across the seasons with far less energy consumption: the solar greenhouse. Particularly popular in China since the late 1970s, solar greenhouses make use of passive solar energy to retain the maximum possible amount of heat. Read more …

Jun
22
2017
Sophie Paterson

The great Human Power Plant experiment

7
Posted Jun 22 2017 by Sophie Paterson of Lowimpact.org
Components of the Human Power Plant

Taking pedal power to a whole new level, an ambitious project will see the conversion of a 22 floor building into an entirely human powered community of 750 students at Utrecht University in the Netherlands. Dubbed the Human Power Plant, Kris de Decker of Low-tech Magazine and artist Melle Smets will lead a team exploring the feasibility of modern human energy production in what promises to be both a technical and social challenge. Read more …

Jun
11
2017
Sophie Paterson

Groundswell: an agricultural show for no-till, organic farming with cover crops and grass-fed animals

1
Posted Jun 11 2017 by Sophie Paterson of Lowimpact.org
Cows in a meadow

A groundswell of farmers around the world are working out how to farm in a more ecologically-friendly way. One the farmers leading the farming revolution in the UK is John Cherry, who has set up a 2-day conference on his farm in Hertfordshire, 28th and 29th of June. Read more …

Jun
4
2017
Sophie Paterson

My plastic-free life: an interview with Kate Armstrong

5
Posted Jun 4 2017 by Sophie Paterson of Lowimpact.org
Plastic-free - better for trees?

You may remember from our post in May that the month of June marks The Marine Conservation Society’s Plastic Challenge. But what is it actually like to give up plastic? We spoke to campaigner Kate Armstrong of plasticisrubbish.com about her decade-long journey towards and campaign for a plastic-free existence. Read more …

May
28
2017
Sophie Paterson

Resilient networks: building a low-tech internet

0
Posted May 28 2017 by Sophie Paterson of Lowimpact.org
A Freifunk WiFi-node is installed as part of a low-tech internet network in Berlin, Germany - via Wikipedia Commons.

A solution to the absence of high-speed wireless networks across some developing countries and increasingly appearing in the form of WiFi based community networks in numerous countries in Europe, building a low-tech internet could have benefits for all. With excerpts from an original Low-tech Magazine article by Kris De Decker, we explore how a less resource-intensive and more energy-efficient approach to internet access could provide a resilient cooperative network with renewable energy at its heart. Read more …

May
14
2017
Sophie Paterson

One man and his sticks: meet stickmaker Joe Musialowski

0
Posted May 14 2017 by Sophie Paterson of Lowimpact.org
Stickmaker Joe Musialowski at work

A traditional rural skill sometimes overlooked, crook and stickmaking is making a comeback in the UK. Lowimpact.org’s Sophie Paterson spoke to Joe Musialowski of Wren Country Sticks about his journey to become a professional stickmaker and what the future might hold for this timeless country craft. Supplier of bespoke sticks, crooks and croziers for walkers, shepherds and Bishops, it’s over to Joe to tell us more in his own words. Read more …

May
4
2017
Sophie Paterson

Car tyre foundations: a low-impact and affordable solution?

8
Posted May 4 2017 by Sophie Paterson of Lowimpact.org
Recycled car tyre foundations in construction

Last month, Lowimpact.org’s Sophie Paterson, a trainee with the School of Natural Building, took a hands-on approach learning how to construct recycled car tyre foundations on a Straw Works course at Holy Trinity Church in Tulse Hill, London. Read more …

May
2
2017
Sophie Paterson

Farm Hack : growing innovative open-source agriculture

0
Posted May 2 2017 by Sophie Paterson of Lowimpact.org
Farm Hack Cover Crop Roller Open Source Agriculture

In response to the pervasive reach of the global agro-industrial complex, growing numbers of farmers across the world are coming together as co-operative organisations to promote and protect small-scale organic food production and environmental stewardship. We take a look below at some of the groups promoting open source agriculture with farmer driven technologies, spearheaded by the international Farm Hack movement.

Read more …

Apr
20
2017
Sophie Paterson

Period of adjustment: the case for reusable feminine hygiene products

0
Posted Apr 20 2017 by Sophie Paterson of Lowimpact.org
Natural menstrual products

Katherine Blacklaws and Harriet Parke make the case for reusable feminine hygiene products, re-blogged with kind permission from an original post at Isonomia.
Read more …

Apr
13
2017
Sophie Paterson

Smallholding with heart: advice about getting and running a smallholding from Janet Jenkins of Cuckoo Farm

0
Posted Apr 13 2017 by Sophie Paterson of Lowimpact.org
Boots and tea

Embarking on a new life in the countryside, away from the trappings of urban existence, is a dream increasingly common to many. This week we interviewed Janet Jenkins about her and her family’s smallholding journey, putting the heart back into the land at Cuckoo Farm. Read more …

Mar
27
2017
Sophie Paterson

University meets WWOOF: An interview with student and WWOOFer Iona Desouza

0
Posted Mar 27 2017 by Sophie Paterson of Lowimpact.org

Hours spent in the library? Check. Essay and assignment deadlines flooding in? Check. Tractor driving, wool spinning and weeding at weekends? Check! Read more …

Mar
14
2017
Sophie Paterson

Career change? Interview with Amanda James about becoming a dry stone waller

4
Posted Mar 14 2017 by Sophie Paterson of Lowimpact.org
Dry stone waller Amanda James

In a society increasingly out of touch with the joy of crafting and building by hand, making a transition to gain new skills and work within a traditional rural craft can seem at once appealing and daunting. Read more …

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