Tuesday, April 30, 2024

more tiny homes going up



"When she originally got her tiny house, it was decorated farmhouse/ranch style. Being an interior decorator by degree, Kira revamped her tiny house to fit her style – modern and colorful with a yellow ceiling. She says tiny homes can range from $50,000 to $100,000 with hers being on the ‘tinier’ end of the spectrum.

As far as winter preparation, Kira says her tiny house came insulated, but she had to get creative with snow solutions. One technique she used was spray foam to seal the cervices on the exterior metal sheeting. She’s still working on making it more aesthetically pleasing, she says. Her tiny home is also snow-load appropriate as it was inspected by a private contractor for her own peace of mind and local compliance. It is the landowner, her mother, who took care of the local ordinance compliance with Pennington County for the WeeCasa resort and tiny houses."

* * * * *

The history of homes in the US was a gradual growth in size, but now it appears to be going the other direction.  Home prices are surging, so one way to counter that is to reduce the size of homes.



Saturday, April 27, 2024

Be careful of Fascism

“If one can convince a population that they are rightfully exceptional, that they are destined by nature or by religious fate to rule other populations, one has already convinced them of a monstrous lie.” [How Fascism Works, by Jason Stanley, p. 13]

  “Allowing every opinion into the public sphere and giving it serious time for considerations, far from resulting in a process that is conducive to knowledge formation via deliberation, destroys its very possibility. Responsible media in a liberal democracy must, in the face of this threat, try to report the truth, and resist the temptation to report on every possible theory, no matter how fantastical, as long as someone advances it. What happens when conspiracy theories become the coin of politics, and mainstream media and educational institutions are discredited, is that citizens no longer have a common reality that can serve as background for democratic deliberation.” [How Fascism Works, by Jason Stanley, pp. 70-71]


This is a good book!

Friday, April 19, 2024

Another chemical in the air to be concerned about



"About 85% of US emissions of sulfuryl fluoride were traced by a recent peer-reviewed study to southern California, where the state’s $4.2bn pest-control industry uses it for drywood termite control. Sulfuryl fluoride is estimated to be up to 7,500 times more potent than carbon dioxide in terms of its greenhouse-gas potential."


Oh boy, yet another climate-warming chemical to worry about.

Saturday, March 23, 2024

No farmers means no food; what to do?



"With millions of acres of American farmland set to change hands in the next 20 years, state legislators and agricultural policymakers are warning of a crisis for domestic food production and fading vibrancy in rural communities. The U.S. has lost over half a million farms since the 1980s and the average age of the American farmer has ticked up to 58. Without reliable domestic food production, they say, America’s ability to feed itself and address global food security could be in jeopardy."

 * * * * *

I spent summers on my grandfather's farm.  I think if he would have taught me how to be a farmer instead of just using me as temporary help, I would have taken over his farm when he retired.  It's not an easy life and requires skill in lots of different areas, from mechanics to crop rotation.  Hopefully we can make it appealing to the upcoming generations.

Monday, March 18, 2024

Turning dry ground to fertile fields



A community in India spent many years building a water-catchment system that keeps the monsoon waters in their area.  Wouldn't turning desert and dry land into fertile fields help cool the planet?

Saturday, February 24, 2024

The Great Green Wall of Africa stops the desert


One way to fight global warming is to replace desert land with agricultural land.  And it's working!

Sunday, February 18, 2024

Tiny homes catching on!



A decade ago, Jesse Russell was a former reality TV producer looking to get started in real estate. He had just moved back to Bend (his hometown) from Los Angeles, and began with a plot of two dozen 500-square-foot cottages sprinkled around a pond and common gardens. When he pitched it at community meetings, “the overwhelming sentiment was, ‘Nobody is going to live in a house that small,’” he said.

Then the units sold out, and his investors nearly doubled their money in two years.

Russell’s company, Hiatus Homes, has since built about three dozen more homes that range from 400 square feet to 900 square feet, and he has 100 more in development — a thriving business.

* * * * *

I lived 2 summers in a 400 square foot cabin with an outhouse.  It was fine, but I did need to rent storage space for stuff I had accumulated living in a regular sized house. My home today is 864 square feet with a garage and for a single person that feels just right to me.  I have a spare bedroom for guests and a small back yard.  But most importantly, I can afford it.

Obviously families need larger homes.  But more and more it's single people looking to buy.