Author Archives: Debra Atlas

Full Name: Debra Atlas Website:
Info: Debra Atlas is a freelance environmental writer and eco-enthusiast based in Northern California, and is the Red Ferret’s Ecological Editor. Debra looks for the upside of eco-change - what’s positive, making a difference. She hunts down those interesting things cooked up by creative minds, especially if they’re strange and eccentric.
cool tech July 20, 2015 posted by Debra Atlas

New bladeless wind turbine will cut bird deaths

Renewable energy use is rapidly growing across the globe. But as with every innovation, there’s always a downside which in the case of wind turbines is high bird mortality. Somewhere between 140,000 and 328,000 birds die each year from collisions with wind turbines. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WqcNc9bKlNY But hope is on the horizon. Vortex Bladeless is a wind ‘turbine’ without blades that was developed by a group of inventors at a Spanish tech startup. With no whirling blades and no moving parts, this…

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New bladeless wind turbine will cut bird deaths
Eco Friendly July 18, 2015 posted by Debra Atlas

Flubber Dust – the eco-friendly way to clean up oil stains

Oil spots on your driveway are both unattractive and difficult to remove. You can try using some heavy chemicals and still be left with fainter looking but very present oil spots. But Flubber Dust by Oil Lift gets the job done. This Eco certified green cleaning product safely removes oil and leave surfaces temporarily slip-proof too. It’s biological agents bond to oil, breaking the oil’s molecular bond, and naturally biodegrades the contaminates. Simply sprinkle this scentless green powder on oil,…

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Flubber Dust – the eco-friendly way to clean up oil stains
Eco Friendly June 18, 2015 posted by Debra Atlas

Used Nissan Leaf batteries to gain 2nd life as home energy storage

The Nissan Leaf – a compact, five-door hatchback electric car – has been around since 2010, at least in the States. Once its lithium-ion batteries need replacement, the used battery packs have slowly filtered out into the Japanese marketplace as alternative energy sources such as back-up home generators. Now they’re venturing out into the world as battery packs for stationary energy storage. Partnering with commercial energy storage company Green Charge Network, who will provide the power management software, Nissan designed…

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Used Nissan Leaf batteries to gain 2nd life as home energy storage
Eco Friendly June 6, 2015 posted by Debra Atlas

Entrepreneur “grows” real furniture

Wood-based furniture is usually made with timber, nails or metal fittings and glue. Over time, inherent weak points cause joints to fail, requiring us to repair or replace our favorite easy chair or dining room set. That’s the way it’s always been. Until now. Lampshades “growing” around formers, photo by Full Grown For the past nine years, Gavin Munro and his UK-based company Full Grown has worked with trees to nurture them, shaping them into one-of-a-kind pieces of furniture that…

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Entrepreneur “grows” real furniture
nice idea... June 2, 2015 posted by Debra Atlas

Old time elegance marries solar technology with solar outdoor clocks

Outdoor clocks have been a fixture of large and small towns for several hundred years or more. But add solar to the mix and it gets interesting. Chumko LA’s Solar Outdoor Street Clocks combine the old fashioned elegance of a street clock with solar and GPS technology. Certified waterproof and rust proof, these clocks are synchronized with GPS satellites, receiving daily GPS updates to ensure the time display stays accurate. And it automatically adjusts to daylight savings time. Its motor…

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Old time elegance marries solar technology with solar outdoor clocks
Awesome May 8, 2015 posted by Debra Atlas

The Shoe That Grows will bring shoes that fit to those in poverty

Young children who live in extreme poverty often have to wear shoes that don’t fit.or go without shoes altogether. The non-profit Because International saw the problem and is doing something remarkable about it. The Shoe That Grows is an adjustable shoe that can grow five sizes to accommodate a growing child’s feet. Adjustable in the front in three places, straps at the front and rear of the shoe alter the shoe’s length, and the rubber sole bends up as needed….

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The Shoe That Grows will bring shoes that fit to those in poverty
Eco Friendly April 24, 2015 posted by Debra Atlas

W Hotels now use sheets made from recycled plastic bottles

There’s way too much plastic in the world and the lion’s share of that is used for plastic water bottles. Too often, those bottles are getting tossed rather than recycled. Thankfully, the W Hotel chain is doing something about that. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W3Kz-8LasKo&feature=youtu.be W Hotels now feature Ekocycle sheets, a brand of sheet developed by Coca Cola in partnership with rapper will. i. am. First introduced in North America on April 13th, these eco-friendly sheets are made from 30 percent rPet polyester,…

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W Hotels now use sheets made from recycled plastic bottles
Eco Friendly March 28, 2015 posted by Debra Atlas

3D printed bricks would cool rooms with water

Warming temperatures are being felt in many areas around the world as drought conditions continue. The answer to how to keep buildings cool while keeping energy costs down may lie in utilizing older technology in a new, innovative way. California-based design studio Emerging Objects has developed 3D-printed porous bricks called Cool Bricks that can be filled with water to lower room temperatures. Utilizing evaporative cooling, an old technology where dry warm air is cool through the use of water evaporation…

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3D printed bricks would cool rooms with water
hmm..interesting February 20, 2015 posted by Debra Atlas

Toyota cars are now being attacked by hungry squirrels – and we’re not kidding!

Toyota may have a problem on its hands. With the company’s increasing focus on using natural and environmentally-friendly materials, they seem to be offering a tempting feast for Nature’s opportunists. There have been several recent reports of Toyota car owners discovering their cars have been vandalized. One report showed a south Florida family’s Toyota Sequoia SUV had two 6-inch panels ripped from the outside of the car. Another, from Croydon, South London, England, found that a Toyota Aygo! sported a…

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Toyota cars are now being attacked by hungry squirrels – and we’re not kidding!
hmm..interesting February 14, 2015 posted by Debra Atlas

The Dom’Up Treehouse – good for the environment but tough on your wallet

If you love the idea of a treehouse and want something innovative and easy on the environment, Dom’Up could fit the bill. This “life tree platform” – invented by Dutch arboriculturist Bruno de Grunne and architect Nicolas d’Ursel from Trees and People – takes the best of tree camping and utilizes Trees and People’s No Trace arboreal hanging system. With its low impact on surrounding trees, Dom’Up is made from galvanized steel and natural wooden flooring. It comes with a…

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The Dom’Up Treehouse – good for the environment but tough on your wallet
hmm..interesting December 20, 2014 posted by Debra Atlas

Ocean Spiral – a 21st century underwater city

With the world population slated to reach 9 billion people, housing becomes a real problem. But Japanese construction firm Shimizu Corp has an innovative idea to solve this. Ocean Spiral is planned as an eco-friendly underwater city that would house 5,000 people and be powered by the sea bed. An artist’s rendering shows the futuristic structure divided into three sections. A floating sphere – the “Blue Garden” – will be 500 meters (approx. 1,640 feet) in diameter. It will lie…

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Ocean Spiral – a 21st century underwater city
Awesome December 5, 2014 posted by Debra Atlas

New York’s underground Lowline park creates solar innovation

Turning a long-abandoned trolley terminal into an underground park is a daunting task. But this dream is on its way to becoming a reality. The Lowline – inspired by the success of New York’s elevated High Line – was first unveiled as the Delancey Underground Project in 2011. The renamed project has been steadily attracting funds and supporters. As proof-of-concept, a full-scale model was built and proudly displayed. And $155,000 US has already raised to test the innovative solar technology…

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New York’s underground Lowline park creates solar innovation
but is it art? November 14, 2014 posted by Debra Atlas

This “tree” lets you charge your cell and gives you wi-fi too

Technology keeps giving us more unusual and amazing ways to stay connected. Israeli renewables company Sologic has created the eTree – a solar-panel “tree” that’s part social enterprise, environmental / ecological sculpture, public space and free wi-fi provider. If that’s not enough, the eTree provides a drinking fountain for humans and pets, shade with a bench for rest and relaxation, and it lights up for nighttime enjoyment. Created for residential and urban areas such as courtyards, schools, universities and parks,…

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This “tree” lets you charge your cell and gives you wi-fi too