Archive for March, 2013


Join Chelsea Green Authors at BuildingEnergy

Friday, March 1st, 2013

Buildings use a whopping 42% of America’s total energy each year, and a mind-boggling 72% of all electricity generated. That’s more than any other single sector of the economy, and according to the research in RMI’s book Reinventing Fire cutting the wasted energy from buildings by maximizing efficiency could save, get this: $1.4 trillion!

You can experience the latest in the push for efficient and sustainable buildings yourself. From March 5-7, The Northeast Sustainable Energy Association (NESEA) brings its annual conference, BuildingEnergy, to the Seaport World Trade Center in Boston, MA. BuildingEnergy is three days of trade show exhibits, live demos, 60 sessions offering cutting-edge information on renewable energy and high-performance building, and 24 intensive workshops.

This is the spot where architects, energy experts, builders, DIYers, and owners come together to keep abreast of the latest options for sustainability, and hear from top speakers and instructors from around the country.

Chelsea Green authors on the scene include:

  • Jacob Deva Racusin (co-author, with Ace McArleton, of The Natural Building Companion and a pioneer in building science for natural design and construction) will present on creating resilient capacity—not just in homes and buildings, but also in communities.
  • John Abrams (author of Companies We Keep and co-founder and CEO of the employee-owned South Mountain Company) will speak about how to build the kind generative economies that can promote sustainability.
  • And all those inspired by Amory Lovin’s and the Rocky Mountain Institute’s Reinventing Fire, a roadmap for getting the nation off oil by 2050, should check out the multiple presentations by Kendra Tupper, a senior RMI consultant focused on deep retrofits of existing buildings, whole building energy analysis, energy efficient HVAC design, and life cycle cost analysis.

To register or find out more, visit www.nesea.org/buildingenergy.

Are We Condemning Bees to Death?

Friday, March 1st, 2013

“Could it be that bees are telling us that the methods we are using to manipulate them, although well intentioned, are actually condemning the bees to death?” — Ross Conrad, from Natural Beekeeping (Revised and Expanded edition)

Bees are some of the hardest workers in all of agriculture — but they’re on the verge of collapse.

Since its publication in 2007, Natural Beekeeping has guided both beginning beekeepers and experienced ones interested in switching to organic methods through a challenging era, when mysterious diseases and disappearances have threatened bees worldwide. This week, we’re proud to unveil a revised, expanded, full-color edition of Natural Beekeeping — on sale for 35% off.

The current state of industrial honey production is bad news for bees, and Conrad explains why small-scale beekeepers are sorely needed at this critical time:

  • Bees in commercial honey production are fed pollen substitutes and corn syrup — but what does this do to their immune systems and overall health? Just like us, bees are more resilient when they’re fed real food, in their case real pollen and nectar from diverse crops.
  • Small-scale, local beekeeping efforts avoid the stresses of trucking bees across the country to perform “pollination services” for monoculture commodity crops.
  • As the costs of fuel rise, farmers will opt for raising their own pollinators instead of renting them — and they need to learn natural beekeeping to help raise the strongest possible bees.

The most immediate difference readers will notice with the new edition is the gorgeous full-color design including tons of photos. The expanded edition also offers new sections on a wide range of subjects, including the basics of bee biology and anatomy; urban beekeeping, and more. Browse the Table Of Contents here.

Ross Conrad’s new DVD is another teaching tool for the aspiring bee whisperer. Get clear examples of Conrad’s practices and tips, along with footage from one of his popular workshops. The DVD is available alone, or as a bundle along with the book. Watch the trailer below.

And remember, the book is on sale for 35% off this week.


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