News Roundup — December 15, 2017

These are a few stories we found this week that may be of interest to institute regulars. If you have a news tip, please send it to

Low Tech News

Is it a Passivehouse or is it a treehouse? Yes! – TH
How hard is it to walk in American suburbs? Worse than I imagined – TH
A review of ‘A Foodie’s Guide to Capitalism’ – An Outside Chance
Urban greening is good for the environment. Let’s ensure it’s good for local people, too – Ensia
Principles for Designing a Holistic Food System – PRI
An anthropologist explains why we love holiday rituals and traditions – C
Permaculture Guide to Reed Beds by Féidhlim Harty: Review – Feasta
You (and most of the millions of holiday travelers you encounter) are washing your hands wrong – C
Permaculture and Community Part 2: Using the Moral Imagination in Permaculture – PRI
Will China’s crackdown on ‘foreign garbage’ force wealthy countries to recycle more of their own waste? – C
These Greenhouse Designers Are Bringing Fresh Food to Arctic Communities – VM
How to Make Your Own Berkey Style Water Purifier – NBB
In the Clearing – Dark Mountain
[Episode #58] – Solar with Storage – Energy Transition Show
1734 – Permaculture as Activism: Saving the Los Cedros Reserve with John Seed – Permaculture Podcast
Guastavian vaults are still being built, and are as thin and elegant as ever – TH

Environmental News

Plastics industry has known for years that it’s polluting oceans – TH
Announcing Warrior Up – EF!
California: Mattole Action Training Camp Updates – EF!
A Century of Fire Suppression Is Why California Is in Flames – MJ
Hambach Forest, Germany: 400 people in December 10th Demonstration – EF!
The 2017 Fire Season Has Been More Expensive Than Any on Record. And It’s Only Going to Get Worse – MJ
Arctic’s Temperature Continues To Run Hot, Latest ‘Report Card’ Shows – NPR
Geologic Column: Dams in distress – Earth
The Arctic Is Warming Faster Than at Any Point in the Past 1,500 Years – MJ
Waste Not, Want Not: Drink Beer To Feed Fish And Help Save The Planet – NPR
Northern Alaska is warming so fast, it’s faking out computers – G
Gaze Deeply Into This NASA Visualization of Global Aerosol Movements – VM
Without The U.S. Government, The World Unites To Fight Climate Change – NPR

Research News

Analysis: Why scientists think 100% of global warming is due to humans – CB
Both urban flooding and rural drying to intensify – Earth
Climate change ‘tripled chances’ of Hurricane Harvey’s record rain – CB
Coastal cities are in serious jeopardy, new sea-level rise study shows – G
Germans most worried about climate change, analysis shows – CB
Lack Of Genetic Diversity May Have Doomed Tasmanian Tiger, Scientists Say – NPR
Here’s a $17 billion blueprint for how to rebuild Puerto Rico’s electric grid – G
UK wind power potential could fall by 10% by 2100 because of climate change – CB
How the Building Blocks of Life Can Form in Space – VM
Solar, wind and nuclear have ‘amazingly low’ carbon footprints, study finds – CB
Neanderthals: The Original Globetrotters – NYT
In The U.S., Flu Season Could Be Unusually Harsh This Year – NPR


The global dominance of white people is thanks to the potato – Quartzy
The Energy Transition: Too Little, Too Late – R
How should communities cope with the end of coal? Advice from the frontlines – G
The Climate Bums – The Great Change

Source Abbreviations

CB – Carbon Brief
C – The Conversation
E – The Ecologist
EF! – Earth First! Newswire
G – Grist
MJ – Mother Jones
NBB — Natural Building Blog
NPR – National Public Radio
NYT – New York Times
PRI – Permaculture Research Institute
R – Resilience
TH – TreeHugger
V – Vice
VM – Vice: Motherboard

Disclaimer: The news stories and posts linked above are not meant as an endorsement of the information presented. They are provided as they may be of interest to our readers and further our aims of solutions for a post-fossil-fuel world. We strive to provide fact-based information. If you feel that political views are being presented in a partisan fashion, we are happy to provide equal time to opposing view points as long as they are derived from verifiable data and facts.

¹Opinion pieces represent the independent thought of their authors and may or may not represent the position of the Low Technology Institute.

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