Win Halloween Spooktacular tickets

first_imgTwitter NewsLocal NewsWin Halloween Spooktacular ticketsBy Alan Jacques – October 11, 2017 1694 Halloween Spooktacular competition winners Previous articleWin Halloween Spooktacular ticketsNext articleMunster appoint new Head Coach Alan Jacqueshttp://www.limerickpost.ie Spooky goings on all around Limerick Email WhatsApp Beyond the neon runes Paranormal investigators uncover link to Limerick Hellfire club Printcenter_img Facebook Walking with Limerick’s ghosts WE are giving away two pairs of tickets for the Halloween Spooktacular in Curraghchase Forest Park on Sunday October 29.The scenic forest walks will be turned into a Halloween terror trail for this nightmarish fundraiser in aid of AK UTD and other organisations within the Kilcornan community. The event has an over 13 age warning this year as it promises to be a darker experience than last year.And to up the ante on the scare front, local Prince of Darkness, Darren Shan, who has sold more than 25 million copies of his terrifying young adult novels, will even help out with some of the actor’s dialogue. The Limerick writer is world renowned for sending shivers down spines, so all the stops are being pulled out for this Halloween in Curraghchase.Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up Tickets cost €20 each and are available now at www.kilcornan.com.To win one of two pairs of tickets simply email [email protected] with your name and contact number. TAGSAK UnitedCurraghchase Caravan and Camping SiteCurraghchase Forest ParkDarren ShanHalloweenHalloween SpooktacularKilcornanlimerick Capturing the spirit around Lough Gur Advertisement Linkedin RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHORlast_img read more

Press release: Government crackdown on litter louts

first_imgThe maximum on-the-spot fine for littering and graffiti almost doubles from £80 to £150. For the first time, local authorities can also use these littering penalties against vehicle owners if it can be proved litter was thrown from their car.Keeping the country’s streets clean cost local councils almost £700 million last year. Much of this is avoidable litter, and money that could be better spent in the community.The Government is clear however that councils must not abuse the power to impose penalties. Councils should take into account local circumstances, like local ability to pay, when setting the level for these penalties. Government guidance is available to ensure the new powers are used in a fair and proportionate way by local authorities.Environment Minister Thérèse Coffey said: The full version of the government’s Litter Strategy is available here The maximum on-the-spot fine local authorities can issue for dropping litter has nearly double, from £80 to £150 The default penalty has increased from £75 to £100, and from April 2019 the minimum penalty will increase from £50 to £65 The cost of £682m in 2016/17 for street cleaning is from Official local Government returns to DCLG Research on one in five admitting to having dropped litter in the past is from Keep Britain Tidy – Litter Droppers Segmentation research (2010) For further information please contact Defra press office on 020 8225 7317 or out of hours on 0345 051 8486 Edmund King OBE, president of motoring organisation the AA said: There is no excuse for car litter louts. Tossing rubbish from vehicles spoils the environment, costs millions and puts road workers’ lives at risk when they have to clear up. The majority of our members support higher fines for littering and we welcome these steps to tackle this unnecessary problem. It is not difficult for car occupants to bag it and bin it. When AA employees have conducted litter picks and our members have surveyed local roadside litter, we are always astonished at the number of plastic bottles, take-away wrappers and even kitchen sinks discarded at the roadside.center_img The changes to penalties for littering follow a public consultation as part of the launch of England’s first ever Litter Strategy in April 2017 which showed nearly 9 out of 10 respondents were in favour of increasing fixed penalties for littering.These measures come on top of cross government work to protect the environment. On the same day, Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is implementing an extension to the landfill tax to cover unauthorised waste sites, showing that whether people are littering on a small or a large scale the penalties are high.Today’s announcement builds on a range of new measures to tackle waste including banning microbeads, proposals to extend the 5p plastic bag charge, and plans to introduce a deposit return scheme for drinks containers.The move builds on Government’s wider Litter Strategy for England as well as the recent launch of the 25 Year Environment Plan setting out how Government will protect and enhance our natural environment.Background These new fines will tackle antisocial behaviour by hitting litter louts in the pocket, whether it’s litter that is thrown from a vehicle or dropped in the street. Littering is a scourge on our environment and we waste taxpayers’ money cleaning it up – funds which could be better spent in the community. We want to be the first generation to leave our environment in a better state than we found it, and I encourage everyone to take responsibility for their litter and recycle more.last_img read more

The Disco Biscuits Level Up With Video Game-Themed New Year’s Show [Watch]

first_img[Photo: Silky Shots via The Disco Biscuits’ Facebook page] The Disco Biscuits finished off their four-night New Year’s run at New York City’s PlayStation Theatre last night with an expansive video game-themed show. Throughout the show, Aron Magner and Allan Aucoin had samples of classic video game noises from Super Mario Bros., Tetris, Pacman, and more, making for a wonderous New Year’s celebration.To set the mood for the evening, the Disco Biscuits opened up their first set with the Pac Man theme, eventually working the arcade tones into “Caves of the East” and “Basis For A Day”. For their New Year’s countdown, the band used a song from Duck Tales video game—”Moon Board”—to ring in the new year, keeping with the theme of the evening. As per tradition, coming out of their New Year’s countdown, the Biscuits hit “Helicopters”, changing the lyrics to fit the new year celebration.For the second set, the Biscuits opened with the Super Mario theme, using the upbeat melody as a jumpoff point for an extensive jam rife with video game sounds and intense energy. Throughout the second set, the band kept up with the video game tones, using them throughout their classic numbers like “Aceetobee” and a return to “Basis For A Day”.Continuing on their fiery second set, the Biscuits then landed in the Tetris theme, taking on the game’s accelerated speed as they went through the synthy number. To end their stand-out second set, the group transformed the Tetris theme into an inverted “Aquatic Ape” before landing back in “Aceetobee”.For their third set, the band came back with a vengeance with “Little Lai”, weaving the tune in with the percussive Super Mario underworld theme. Recalling Thursday night’s show where the group went into the “Wearing A Towel” midsection of “7-11” into the “Apple Butter Toast” section of “Mindless Dribble”, the Biscuits switched things up, instead moving from “Apple Butter Toast” into “Wearing A Towel” before a triumphant return to “Basis For A Day”. The band then closed things out with “Strobelight & Martinis” into a return to “Helicopters” before their encore of “Frog Legs”.You can watch the performance below (do yourself a favor and please watch this show), courtesy of The Disco Biscuits.Setlist: The Disco Biscuits | PlayStation Theater | New York, NY | 12/31/2017I: Pac Man-> Caves of the East-> Basis for a Day-> Duck Tales Moon Board, Helicopters-> Bionic Helix-> And the Ladies Were the Rest of the Night (inverted)-> 42 (ending)II: Super Mario-> Aceetobee-> Basis for a Day-> Tetris-> Aquatic Ape (inverted)-> AceetobeeIII: Little Lai-> Super Mario Underworld Jam-> Little Lai, Mindless Dribble-> 7-11-> Basis for a Day, Strobelights & Martinis-> HelicoptersE: Frog Legslast_img read more

SPLL 101 adapts in face of COVID-19

first_imgAs the institutions of the tri-campus community exist in a state of flux for daily proceedings on their campus, Saint Mary’s first-year common course, the Sophia Program for Liberal Learning — SPLL 101 — has required some adjustments for this semester.SPLL 101 faculty coordinator Melissa Bialko said the first-year course involves meetings typically Monday, Wednesday and Friday for roughly the first half of the semester. Bialko’s role focuses on curating a syllabus for SPLL 101, communicating the goals of the syllabus to the faculty members and organizing the Monday sessions.Continuing the first-year common course has been crucial this year, considering the disconnect that some students may feel to their first-year experience with certain precautions being taken, Bialko said, but the faculty commitment to the first years in SPLL 101 can be a guide for a more smooth transition into college life.“The way I’ve designed the class … is not necessarily how to college, but how to Saint Mary’s,” Bialko said. “To help students be an immediate touch with resources … and the theory is that if they’re in immediate touch with those resources … when the stakes are a little bit lower by SPLL, they’ll be more likely to access those resources when they’re needed.”Mondays for the SPLL 101 course include “big show sessions or big talks,” Bialko said, as a speaker will address all of the first years to discuss topics the entire class should hear — such as inclusion, diversity and vocation. Due to COVID-19 the Monday sessions have been taking place via Zoom.The faculty advisor for each cohort of students decides what to discuss each Wednesday, Bialko said. Wednesdays also include talks with different offices and resource centers around campus to expose the first years to all that Saint Mary’s offers, with adjustments made to hold these informational sessions safely through videos, she said.“Because of COVID … I am remediating a lot of tech concerns, helping faculty — much more than typically — decipher what methods of delivery might be most useful for them in their cohort, what they might most be comfortable with,” said Bialko.Senior nursing student Delaney Goggins is a peer mentor for SPLL 101. She is primarily in charge of the class meetings on Fridays with Diane Fox — the director of the Office for Student Success — who serves as Goggins’ cohort advisor.All the students in Goggins’ cohort are part of the Student Success program, just as Goggins was when she entered her first year. With 40 students, the cohort is larger than some of the others, Goggins said.“My role as a peer mentor is just to be a source of advocacy for these girls — someone that they can rely on, someone that they can come to,” Goggins said.  “We’re trying to set our students up for success so they feel confident enough walking out into the real world.”Goggins’ cohort has been meeting in Carroll Auditorium to allow for more space to social distance with many seats and rows in between them. All in attendance wear masks.Goggins said the in-person interactions for SPLL have already been beneficial in the two weeks since the course started. She said she has noticed her students becoming more comfortable around each other as she alters her lessons each Friday to what the students need at that time.“I’m really thankful that we’re still in person,” Goggins said. “I think it just allows the girls to be more comfortable with us and with each other, too. It helps them build connections and friendships a lot easier than it would be if it was over video chat.”Because she has had to be more active in the individual cohorts and iron out any complications related to COVID-19 adjustments, Bialko said she has gotten to know the first-year class better than she might have otherwise.“Just by virtue of the fact that problems occur and confusion occurs, I’ve been doing a lot more communicating with students that I may never get to meet … in person in their four years,” Bialko said. “That’s been a real big bright side of it, actually.”Goggins said it is important for first-year students to understand that maintaining flexibility is key, rather than spending time worrying about what will happen next.“We don’t know what’s next, but we know that we go to Saint Mary’s,” Goggins said. “We want to have that sense of community, which I think in-person does. But if we do need to go online … already even having these first couple weeks of school just by getting to know each other, I think that’ll be beneficial.”Bialko sees resilience in the first years and has been amazed with how socialization is still occurring safely while focus remains on the importance of health and education, she said.“[Saint Mary’s students] have clearly chosen to prioritize their education regardless of the circumstances,” Bialko said. “I think it’s very clear … our students have a strong commitment to their health and safety … and looking out for others.”Tags: first year adjustment, peer mentors, SPLL101last_img read more

Uruguayan Air Force Evaluates its Capabilities on Brazilian Border

first_imgBy Carlos Maggi/Diálogo December 01, 2017 In accordance with its annual training plan, on November 6th–10th, Air Squadron No. 2 (Fighter) of the Uruguayan Air Force (FAU, per its Spanish acronym) deployed three A-37B aircraft, along with pilots, technicians, military police, and support assets to the department of Rocha, along the Brazilian border. The operation’s goal—on aerodromes and runways far from air bases—was to evaluate the flight squadrons’ capacities at the crew’s operational level and its logistical support in a different environment. This type of training requires the presence of different specialists, who make the flight missions possible. FAU routinely deploys squadrons for evaluation operations in aerodromes and runways at different locations around the country. This operation took place on a Uruguayan route with an area large enough for aircraft to descend and ascend. “The basic idea of this deployment is to operate in a rarely-used aerodrome, where we have few mechanics, to allow pilots and technicians to solve situations with ingenuity, which would be easier with the resources on our base,” FAU Major Richard Bruno, commander of the Air Squadron No. 2 (Fighter), told Diálogo. “It’s also important to operate in areas of the country we are not very used to, such as the east, where attacks on land targets are simulated, along with interception training with radar in conjunction with the air operations center.” With these operations, FAU seeks to increase the number of missions in the country’s eastern zone to deter illicit or irregular flights from entering the area. “As long as Air Force planes fly in the area, there is going to be a deterrent effect, just like a police patrol generates on the street; the effect is going to be the same,” Maj. Bruno said. Although the Air Squadron No. 2 (Fighter) executed the deployment, the mission involved other units from the force. In addition to three A-37B Dragonfly combat aircraft, a Cessna U-206H was mobilized for liaison flights, a Bell UH-1H helicopter supported search-and-rescue missions, and a C-212 Aviocar transferred personnel. Throughout the year, missions with similar characteristics are conducted in western Uruguay, which shares a border with Argentina. “It’s common throughout the year for FAU to deploy its different units far from its bases and operate with only the bare minimum,” explained FAU Colonel Hugo Parentini, commander of Air Brigade No. 2. “That’s the case for Air Squadron No. 2 (Fighter). In November it deployed on the Route Nine runway to conduct airspace control missions and missions to preserve national sovereignty—one of the Uruguayan Air Force’s main missions is to collaborate with the other forces like the Army and the Navy on defense,” he added. These deployments are not based on any threat scenario against the country. They also bring the FAU assets closer to civilian populations, who have the opportunity to see different aircraft in operation. Authorities from FAU and the Ministry of National Defense are assessing the potential upgrade of the combat aircraft fleet. In 2017, A-58 Pucará aircraft were deactivated due to a lack of spare parts. These aircraft were assigned to Air Squadron No. 1 (Attack) since 1981. Until new equipment can be incorporated, airspace defense is under Air Squadron No. 2 (Fighter)—which counts 12 U.S.-made A-37B Dragonfly—and the Advanced Flight Squadron, which has five Pilatus PC-7U Turbo Trainers. In accordance with its annual training plan, on November 6th–10th, Air Squadron No. 2 (Fighter) of the Uruguayan Air Force (FAU, per its Spanish acronym) deployed three A-37B aircraft, along with pilots, technicians, military police, and support assets to the department of Rocha, along the Brazilian border. The operation’s goal—on aerodromes and runways far from air bases—was to evaluate the flight squadrons’ capacities at the crew’s operational level and its logistical support in a different environment. This type of training requires the presence of different specialists, who make the flight missions possible. FAU routinely deploys squadrons for evaluation operations in aerodromes and runways at different locations around the country. This operation took place on a Uruguayan route with an area large enough for aircraft to descend and ascend. “The basic idea of this deployment is to operate in a rarely-used aerodrome, where we have few mechanics, to allow pilots and technicians to solve situations with ingenuity, which would be easier with the resources on our base,” FAU Major Richard Bruno, commander of the Air Squadron No. 2 (Fighter), told Diálogo. “It’s also important to operate in areas of the country we are not very used to, such as the east, where attacks on land targets are simulated, along with interception training with radar in conjunction with the air operations center.” With these operations, FAU seeks to increase the number of missions in the country’s eastern zone to deter illicit or irregular flights from entering the area. “As long as Air Force planes fly in the area, there is going to be a deterrent effect, just like a police patrol generates on the street; the effect is going to be the same,” Maj. Bruno said. Although the Air Squadron No. 2 (Fighter) executed the deployment, the mission involved other units from the force. In addition to three A-37B Dragonfly combat aircraft, a Cessna U-206H was mobilized for liaison flights, a Bell UH-1H helicopter supported search-and-rescue missions, and a C-212 Aviocar transferred personnel. Throughout the year, missions with similar characteristics are conducted in western Uruguay, which shares a border with Argentina. “It’s common throughout the year for FAU to deploy its different units far from its bases and operate with only the bare minimum,” explained FAU Colonel Hugo Parentini, commander of Air Brigade No. 2. “That’s the case for Air Squadron No. 2 (Fighter). In November it deployed on the Route Nine runway to conduct airspace control missions and missions to preserve national sovereignty—one of the Uruguayan Air Force’s main missions is to collaborate with the other forces like the Army and the Navy on defense,” he added. These deployments are not based on any threat scenario against the country. They also bring the FAU assets closer to civilian populations, who have the opportunity to see different aircraft in operation. Authorities from FAU and the Ministry of National Defense are assessing the potential upgrade of the combat aircraft fleet. In 2017, A-58 Pucará aircraft were deactivated due to a lack of spare parts. These aircraft were assigned to Air Squadron No. 1 (Attack) since 1981. Until new equipment can be incorporated, airspace defense is under Air Squadron No. 2 (Fighter)—which counts 12 U.S.-made A-37B Dragonfly—and the Advanced Flight Squadron, which has five Pilatus PC-7U Turbo Trainers.last_img read more

Tennis: Novak Djokovic holds top spot in ATP rankings, Stanislas Wawrinka rises to 9th Spot

first_imgWith 13,845 points, Serbian star Novak Djokovic held on for the 144th week the top spot in the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) singles rankings issued on Monday.Swiss Roger Federer placed a distant second with 8,385 points, followed by Scotsman Andy Murray and Spaniard Rafael Nadal, reports Efe.Meanwhile, Swiss Stanislas Wawrinka jumped to the ninth place with 3,495 points, upsetting Croat Marin Cilic. The current ATP ranking and point scores are as follows:1. Novak Djokovic (Serbia) 13,845 points2. Roger Federer (Switzerland) 8,3853. Andy Murray (Scotland) 6,060 4. Rafael Nadal (Spain) 5,3905. Kei Nishikori (Japan) 5,2806. Milos Raonic (Canada) 5,0707. Tomas Berdych (Czech) 4,9608. David Ferrer (Spain) 4,490 9. Stan Wawrinka (Switzerland) 3,49510. Marin Cilic (Croatia) 3,405.last_img read more

Kent are Bjorn again as they blaze a trail at County Finals

first_img Tags: Kent, Men’s County Finals, Northumberland, Nottinghamshire, Somerset, Yorkshire Kent made a storming start to the Men’s County Finals with a helping hand from ex-Ryder Cup skipper Thomas Bjorn.Aiming to win the championship for only the second time in their history, Kent claimed a 4.5 – 2.5 win over Nottinghamshire in the opening singles match and head into a decisive second day at Huddersfield GC in fine fettle.Northumberland also started their campaign with an excellent 4-3 win over Somerset – and the stage is set for a dramatic final day of action in West Yorkshire.Kent captain Danny Curtis was thrilled at how a young side – with an average age of 24 – coped as the county made a return to the finals for the first time in 31 years.However, it was an eve of event message from Danish ace Bjorn that set the tone.Kent coach Benn Barham – a former European Tour pro – enlisted the help of the man who led Europe to a thrilling win against USA at Le Golf National in Versailles a year ago.Bjorn’s WhatsApp video message to the team went down a treat and his words of wisdom might just have set the tone for the competition.“It’s all about fine margins when you get to these events and I asked Thomas if he would give the lads a few words of encouragement,” admitted Barham, twice a winner on the Challenge Tour.“Who knows what the impact can be, but if it inspires someone to win half a point or a point it might make all the difference,” he added.“Five years ago we started planning for events like this. We had to change the team mentality and while we developed individuals we had to make playing for the county a big thing. I wanted the players to adopt a professional outlook even though they are amateurs.”With the competition curtailed to two days from three because of the impending bad weather and foursomes abandoned in favour of three matches consisting entirely of seven singles games, neither the blustery conditions nor the revised format knocked Kent out of their stride.Although Jordan Boulton won for Nottinghamshire with a last hole victory against Liam Burns, Kent fought back strongly.Joshua Bristow was a 3&2 victor against Cole Betteridge and Jenson Hull and Tom Sherreard also claimed full points with 2&1 and 4&3 successes against Darren Kirton and Ross Overton respectively.At one stage it appeared as if Kent could win six of the seven singles, but Nottinghamshire halved three key games in the middle section of the draw.Martin Foulkes, Adam Dorricott and Mark Porter earned half points for Nottinghamshire against Ben Quinney, Jacob Kelso and Mason Essam.Nottinghamshire team captain Trevor Ryan admitted he was impressed by how his side fought back even though they lost out.He added: “It was a bit one-sided to begin with, but the spirit remained good. For example, Martin was three down but earned a half and it could have been a full point had his chip at 18 gone in rather than hit the pin.“I think Kent simply out-putted us.”In the other match, Somerset’s hope of winning their first ever county title was dented with a narrow 4-3 loss to Northumberland.Philip White took the scalp of England international Matty Lamb in the opening match, but Mark Wharton, Sean Heads, Alex Dixon and Gary Donnison all secured wins for Northumberland.Thomas Burley and Craig Adams’ wins in the final two games reduced the deficit, but the two points went Northumberland’s way as they bid to repeat the success they enjoyed in this event when winning it four years out of five from 1960.“I’m sad to say that I’m old enough to have played with most of the guys from that era!” said Northumberland captain David Gilroy.“This was a hard-fought win in difficult conditions.”Somerset captain James Ward’s team may have been defeated, but they weren’t too downbeat.He confirmed: “We put the first point on the board and then it didn’t go for us in the middle order. I was caddying for Tom Plumb who lost his match on 18, but that could have gone either way.“Today was a slight disappointment but we have two games left and all to play for.”For latest scores and updates see here Photograph credit: Leaderboard 27 Sep 2019 Kent are Bjorn again as they blaze a trail at County Finals last_img read more

Saints pull off road sweep to jump atop BCIHL standings

first_img“We really got solid performances from our entire line-up this weekend,” said Saints head coach Jeff Dubois.”We have a lot of respect for Trinity Western’s compete level, and I think in both games we were able to finish strong because we knew we were facing a team that wasn’t going to quit.”In the weekend opener on Friday night, Selkirk burst out to a 4-0 lead after 20 minutes and never looked back. Mason Spear opened the scoring for the visitors off a net-front scramble early in the frame and Darnell Dyck, Cody Fidgett and Connor McLaughlin added tallies of their own before intermission. J.P. Villeneuve put the Spartans on the board in the second period, but Fidgett and Markus McCrea — with his first Saints goal — capped off the scoring in the third period. James Prigione picked up the win in goal with a 19-save performance, while Harry Fredeman allowed six goals on 42 shots in the loss. On Saturday, the teams fought through a much closer first period, with Saints goals from Logan Proulx and Markus McCrea being countered by a power-play effort from TWU’s Jamey Kreller. But Selkirk blew things open in the middle frame, as Ryan Procyshyn scored the first regular season goal by a Saints defenceman before Jackson Garrett and Thomas Hardy added on to increase the lead to four. Connor McLaughlin then converted on a third period penalty shot before Cody Fidgett and Jared Seutter put the score beyond reach. Chris Hurry made 25 saves in goal for the win, while Fredeman took his third loss is as many starts against Selkirk this season after allowing eight goals. Selkirk captain Logan Proulx extended his season-long points streak to nine games on Saturday with a goal and an assist while McLaughlin and Fidgett are now tied for the BCIHL goals lead with 11 each. “Offensively, we’ve got a bunch of guys who are having success right now and that seems to be contagious,” Dubois explained.”Thomas Hardy got his first goal of the season on Saturday and had a four-point game, which was great to see. Markus McCrea had been really snakebite around the net all season and he scored in both games. So on that side of the puck we’re where we want to be, and we’ll spend some time working on the defensive side of things as we prepare for a big game against SFU next weekend.” The Saints now sit atop the BCIHL standings with 14 points, but have played three more games than an SFU squad that will be their next opponent at home on Saturday night.Puck drop against the 2013 league runners-up is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Saturday (November 16). The Selkirk Saints sent a strong message to the rest of the B.C. Intercollegiate Hockey League by blasting Trinity Western University by 6-1 and 8-2 scores on Friday and Saturday, respectively.The two wins erased a disappointing road swing a few weeks again when Selkirk lost in Kamloops and Burnab.last_img read more

Solar Decathlon 2011: Parsons and Stevens Institute Team Up

first_img“The worst mistake you can make with community-based projects is parachuting in with all the answers and not learning from the community itself,” John Clinton, a professor at Milano who is on its management team, told the magazine.Although groundbreaking at the Deanwood site won’t happen until spring, the Empowerhouse team played host to a community gathering at the empty lot last fall to update neighbors on the project’s progress. By that point, Habitat local director of construction and land development, Dave Gano, was sold on the project’s prospects for energy efficiency and its affordability, which, as with all Habitat projects, will be helped along by free labor supplied by volunteers and the homes’ future owners.“Already from this project, we at Habitat for Humanity decided to change our whole building schedule and model what we’re doing to the Passivhaus standard of construction, and the ground isn’t even broken yet,” Gano said in a video documenting the neighborhood gathering. Construction on the second house in the duplex will be timed to mesh with the delivery of Empowerhouse after its debut at the Decathlon. Follow the Empowerhouse Team if (WIDGETBOX) WIDGETBOX.renderWidget(‘ad9ba14f-98dd-4c30-98aa-d3bbac6631b4’); Get the Parsons NS Stevens + Solar Decathlon 2011 | widget and many other great free widgets at Widgetbox! Not seeing a widget? (More info) For an overview of the Solar Decathlon teams, see GBA’s 2011 Solar Decathlon Resource Guidecenter_img As the Solar Decathlon has evolved, the intended users of the homes in the competition have increasingly, even if only tacitly, become partners in shaping the finished products. Many Decathlon entries are not only climate-specific, they are designed to reflect regional architecture and to accommodate local culture and customs. Empowerhouse is one such entry, with design and performance features targeted for a specific lot and community environment in Washington, D.C.Empowerhouse collaborators include students and faculty at Parsons The New School for Design and Milano The New School for Management and Urban Policy, both in New York City, and students at Stevens Institute of Technology, in Hoboken, New Jersey – about 100 people in all.The project’s other team members, meanwhile, are those who live and work in Deanwood, the neighborhood in Northeast Washington where, after the Decathlon, the 1,000-sq.-ft. Empowerhouse will be reconstructed, expanded from a one-bedroom to a two-bedroom, and joined to a similar house that will be built on the lot, forming a two-family home. The two Washington-based partners helping oversee that part of Empowerhouse’s evolution are the local chapter of Habitat for Humanity and the city’s Department of Housing and Community Development.Leaning on local supportThe team says its basic goals are to address energy efficiency by incorporating Passivhaus modeling and construction details into Empowerhouse’s modular design while keeping construction costs relatively low and honoring the cultural conventions of the Deanwood community.A recent issue of re: D, Parsons’ alumni online magazine, notes that the decision to partner with Habitat for Humanity and the Department of Housing came from Parsons’ consultations with Milano, which, through its participation in the JPMorgan Chase Community Development Competition, had acquired expertise in developing real-estate proposals for nonprofit partners and underserved communities. Feedback from Deanwood residents has figured significantly in the team’s approach to the project.last_img read more

Sand for Construction Is Vanishing

first_imgThe alternatives are not attractiveStronger regulations might succeed in preventing environmental damage in developing countries. (They’re already in place in most developed countries.) But the tradeoff is that sand must be trucked for longer distances, driving up costs and increasing truck traffic and the tailpipe emissions they produce.In California, if the average hauling distance for sand and gravel doubled, to 50 miles, trucks would need an extra 50 million gallons of diesel fuel per year.Sand also can be made by crushing rocks or grinding up concrete. But the process is expensive, and the sand that’s produced doesn’t work well in all applications. In an earlier report, The Times reported that the sand and gravel business is growing faster than the economy as a whole, accelerating at 10% per year since 2008. At the same time, natural sources of sand have been shrinking because of increased demand, but also because river dams have blocked the natural flow of sand out of the mountains and to the sea.Sand mining does more than cause environmental damage. In a report published last year, Wired recounted the murder of a 52-year-old farmer in a small Indian farming village. His offense? A decade-long campaign to get rid of a criminal gang that had been robbing the village of its sand. Hundreds of people in India have died as a result of squabbles among “sand mafias,” but illegal sand mining is a worldwide problem.“It once seemed as if the planet had such boundless supplies of oil, water, trees, and land that we didn’t need to worry about them,” Beiser writes. “But of course, we’re learning the hard way that none of those things are infinite, and the price we’ve paid so far for using them is going up fast. “ If someone were to compile a list of things we’re not likely to run out of, ever, wouldn’t sand be at or near the top? That’s a logical assumption, but it turns out that we’re using sand for construction at such a blinding rate that it’s in short supply in some areas, and mining what’s left is taking its toll on the environment. Writing in The New York Times, Vince Beiser says that sand of the quality and type that can be used in concrete, glass, and asphalt is in surprisingly short supply. “Sand is the essential ingredient that makes modern life possible,” he says. “And we are starting to run out.”Sand is a $70 billion industry, and sand mining is killing birds and fish in India, damaging coral reefs in Kenya, and undermining bridges in Africa. That’s in part because desert sand isn’t generally useful for construction; what can be used comes from beaches, riverbeds, and flood plains. And when onshore sources run out, miners go elsewhere. Two dozen islands in Indonesia are thought to have disappeared in the last decade because of sand mining, Beiser writes.The run on sand is strong because urban development has been unrelenting. Since 1950, the world’s urban population has grown from 746 million to 3.9 billion. In 2012 alone, the amount of concrete — which consists of rock, sand, cement, and water — produced globally would have made a wall 89 feet high, 89 feet wide, and long enough to wrap around the equator. Beiser says that China used more cement between 2011 and 2013 than the U.S. did in the entire 20th century.last_img read more