Every Thursday on MCL is (good) green news day. It’s when I give doom and gloom the beady eye by sharing a selection of the latest feel-good stories that have helped warm the cockles of my increasingly green heart (and which are inspiring me to live a better, greener life).

Smog Eating Eco House in Cyprus
(www.inhabitat.com)

Smog Eating Eco HouseItalian architects in Cyprus have designed a “smog-eating” environmentally-friendly house that is “full of green features that provide for clean energy and also save your bills.”

So how exactly does it go about “eating” smog, you might ask? Well, like this, of course:

“Its smooth structure is composed of photo-catalytic concrete, a material containing an active agent that reacts with light to break down air pollutants such as carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxide, and benzene.”

Gotcha. But wait, there’s more – in case you’re wondering how this fabulous eco-dwelling also manages to help reduce your energy costs, here’s the skinny:

“Low emissivity glass helps insulate the interior, while adjustable solar panels and a rainwater recycling system cut down on utilities. A heat storage system helps to regulate temperature when day turns to dusk.”

Hmmm, they had me at “smog-eating.”

Dirty nappies to be made into roof tiles
(timesonline.typepad.com)

Nappies - image by ‘jeti87 sxc.hu’Here’s a sobering thought:

“It is estimated that up to 750,000 tonnes of nappies – enough to fill Wembley Stadium eight times – are buried in landfill sites each year in Britain as part of 29 million tonnes of the nation’s annual municipal waste.”

That’s why it’s really good news that Britain is building a new recycling plant (the first of its kind) that will have “the capacity to recycle about 30,000 tonnes of nappies and similar absorbent materials such as incontinence pads each year.” Apparently, the processed nappies will then be “turned into a range of products including roof tiles and plastic cladding.”

After that they can figure out what to do with the other 720,000 tonnes…

$100 Wind Turbine Brings Light to Villages Without Power
(treehugger.com)

Wind TurbineThis is a great one for the developing world: a $100 wind turbine designed to be a “cheap replacement for the kerosene lamps that are a fire and health risk.”

What makes this small-scaled power-generator particularly useful is its vertical axis which, according to its designers, “works better in the choppy conditions likely to meet the turbine out in the field, where it’ll be bolted on to buildings, towers or even trees.”

Shack fires are a big problem here in the Cape. Wouldn’t it be amazing if something like this turbine could change that? We’ve certainly got enough wind…

And, in other good green news:

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