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Refrigeration Innovation: A Cooler Idea to Save Energy

You can make a refrigerator that consumes only 10% of the energy of your current model, runs almost silently, and stores the same amount of food. And you can do it with only minor alterations to an energy-hogging chest freezer. Australian inventor Tom Chalko shows you how.

With all the recent advancements in energy efficient appliances and electronics, manufacturers have been lauded for their hard work at reducing the energy impacts of a typical household.  
 
And it is deserved. Take for instance the refrigerator. Just 20 years ago a typical fridge would burn 800 or more kWh’s per year. 10 years ago that got cut down to 500. Not 350 kWh’s is par for the course.
 
But every now and then, someone comes along with an innovation so simple, and so brilliant (in that hidden under your nose kind of way) that it makes all the hard-earned advancements seem moot. For the refrigerator, that someone is Australian inventor Tom Chalko (PDF).
 
He had the idea to convert an old chest freezer (a known energy hog) into a SUPER high-efficiency refrigerator using nothing more than an internal thermostat hacked into the compressor. The result is a almost nonexistent 100 watts per day (the equivalent of a 100 watt light bulb going for an hour). That is approximately 1/10th the energy use of the most energy efficient (standard size) refrigerator currently on the market.

Read the whole article here.


The Seven-Point Protocol for a Lean Economy

In the future, what will our local economies look like? How will they function if there is little, to no, state or national support? The late David Fleming envisioned a post-capitalistic society that we could call “deep local” — in which all needs are met at the local level — from income to social capital […] Read More

Happy Holidays from Chelsea Green Publishing!

Today we kick off our Holiday Sale — with 35% off every purchase at our online bookstore. Simply use the code CGS16 at checkout from now until the end of the year. Along with this great discount, we are offering free shipping on any order over $100*. Are there homesteaders or organic gardeners on your […] Read More

Sex, Violence, and Figs

They are trees of life and trees of knowledge. They are the fig trees. Fig trees fed our pre-human ancestors, influenced diverse cultures and played key roles in the dawn of civilization. They feature in every major religion, starring alongside Adam and Eve, Krishna and Buddha, Jesus and Muhammad. This is no coincidence – fig […] Read More

10 Fascinating Fig Facts

“As our planet’s climate changes and reminds us that nature really does matter, the story [of fig trees] has important lessons for us all.” –Mike Shanahan In short, fig trees are awesome. They have been around for 80 million years and during that time they have shaped our world and impacted humanity in profound but […] Read More

Author Nicolette Hahn Niman to Speak at Nobel Dialogue on the Future of Food

What does a former environmental lawyer and vegetarian turned cattle rancher have in common with Bob Dylan? They’ll both be — theoretically — in Stockholm in December during the Nobel Prize ceremonies. That’s right – Chelsea Green author Nicolette Hahn Niman will be one of several global opinion leaders and experts taking part in this […] Read More
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