GreenStar Community Weighs In on China Boycott

Thursday, 27 September 2007 11:32

At the August 14 and September 11 Council meetings, the GreenStar community began a lively discussion regarding the possibility that the Co-op will lift or alter its current ban on most goods produced in the People’s Republic of China in addition to implementing other product line guideline changes. (Please see additional coverage in this and last month’s Council News columns on page 3.) In order to allow this complex and controversial discourse to continue, short statements were solicited from those at the meetings including all councilmembers, present staff, representatives from the Ithaca Tibetan Association and other community members.
Please recognize that given the limited space allotted to each contributor, a comprehensive statement of position was next to impossible.

Read more: GreenStar Community Weighs In on China Boycott


Did Cooperators Evolve from the Apes

Thursday, 27 September 2007 11:26

By Joe Romano, Marketing Manager

Cooperate and nobody gets hurt.
-William Tilghman. In Matt Braun’s pulp novel, Outlaw Kingdom

Humans are a unique and unusual species. We are the only living primates in North America. Oddly, we are distinct from other mammals in that we cannot drink and breathe at the same time. (We can breathe and chew gum at the same time however.) We stand upright. We have very elaborate speech patterns and facial mobility. Most of us have no fur on our bodies. We have generalized teeth that allow for a very opportunistic omnivore’s diet. Small litters (usually one) and elaborate social structures are also unique features we share with only a few other primates. And of course, we have the specialized, opposable thumb which provides us with hands built for both power and precision. We can ball a fist or pen a treaty, hurl a spear or play a violin.

Read more: Did Cooperators Evolve from the Apes

Solar Power: Finally Within Reach

Tuesday, 04 September 2007 11:48

By Micaela Cook, Citzenre Representitive

Solar power is gaining popularity and attention in mainstream America, but solar technology has reliably producing clean power for decades, in fact, many photovoltaic systems installed in the 70s are still operating today. Today’s typical solar cells have conversion efficiencies of 15 to 20%, but research and development programs aim to increase that to greater than 50%. While solar cells are already used for calculators, watches, satellites, remote telecommunications devices, municipal lighting, off-grid, and grid-tied power, solar energy also offers many possibilities for a sustainable future. Each day, 89 petawatts (that’s 89 followed by 15 zeros) of sunlight reach the earth’s surface. That is almost 6,000 times more than the 15 terawatts of average power consumed daily by humans. As technology improves, and more of this energy is harvestable through photovoltaic (PV) cells, greater quantities of ground-level air pollution emissions will be avoided. Non-renewable sources of power are the greatest source of this type of pollution.  Additionally, solar electric generation has the highest power density (global mean of 170 watts per square meter) among renewable energies, and this is without releasing any greenhouse gases whatsoever.

Read more: Solar Power: Finally Within Reach


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