Green Living News

Green Growth of Shipping Container Homes

Since the turn of the century shipping container homes have slowly started becoming more common, but it’s over the last three years that shipping container homes have really started to gain popularity with their price and eco-friendliness being key selling points. With thousands of used shipping containers left abandoned in ports throughout the US let’s take a closer look at the use of recycled shipping containers.

Trend Setters
Several homes have helped launch the idea that shipping container can be turned into beautiful, affordable and environmentally friendly homes.

The Peralta family’s home, named ‘Containers of Hope’, was made in 2011 and was built out of two old 40 foot shipping containers. Their home really showed people for the first time that shipping container homes can be affordable. The home was designed by Benjamin Garcia Saxe Architecture and built for under $40,000, which includes the cost of purchasing the containers.

Perhaps the most famous use of shipping containers is the Graceville Container home which was built back in 2013 by Todd Miller. The Graceville Container home was originally shown on Grand Designs Australia where Todd showcased the idea of a three story, 6000 foot square home. The home was built for $550,000 and has since been featured on Container Home Plans.


Another great example of a truly ‘off-grid’ container home is Larry Wade’s ‘Taj MaLodge’. He built the container home himself for around $35,000 (this figure doesn’t include the cost of the land) and it even features DIY solar panels on the roof to provide some additional energy. Why not check out the Green Guru Guides on Solar Power for Your Home for more information on solar panels at your new home?

So What Else Are Shipping Containers Being Used For?
Not only are shipping containers being used to create incredible homes for people we have started to see them being for numerous other reasons.



We have also seen novelty use of shipping containers, such as Wahaca, a London base Mexican restaurant, who converted eight shipping containers into a temporary restaurant overlooking the river Thames. Or Stefan Beese, an American architect, converting a shipping container into a swimming pool for his family!

Why Are Shipping Container Homes Popular?
The use of shipping containers as a building material has dramatically risen over the last decade due to two main reasons. Firstly, the cost. Building a home from shipping containers can be significantly cheaper than building a home out of traditional materials. We have seen this through examples such as Containers of Hope; a 1000 square home built by Benjamin Garcia Saxe for $40,000.

Secondly, shipping containers are seen as a more environmentally friendly building material when compared to traditional building materials such as brick and cement. There are thousands of these shipping containers lying dormant in ports throughout the world that could be used to build homes with. Other benefits of building with shipping containers include their strength. Each shipping container is designed to carry up to 30 tonnes inside it, so it makes them an ideal building material to work with.

Be careful though as idyllic as it, shipping container homes don’t come without drawbacks. Most notable are that shipping containers require a fair amount of man hours and energy to convert them into living dwellings. In addition the wooden floors in containers are typically infused with hazardous chemical pesticides, so new flooring would be required in most containers.

However if you are looking for a sustainable project which can both environmentally friendly and financially viable maybe a shipping container home is for you?

How Forests Heal People

‘How Forests Heal People’ – A simple idea to show, how nature affects our brain and to spread some healing in a world that needs it urgently.

Films for a Cause

The Company that made this film was Filmkaar Productions. They aee an independent production house that creates entertaining films which are socially relevant.

Their award winning work covers issues ranging from environment to women’s rights, from children’s education to population control and much more.

If you wish to use the power of films to address a social issue we can help you develop the communication idea and implementation strategy through low budget, high quality films.

I hope you all like this film.

Hilarious Aziz Ansari Urges Young People to Vote in New NextGen Climate Video

The humorous video will be distributed across key battleground states to engage millennials this election cycle

SAN FRANCISCO (October 18, 2016) –NextGen Climate released a new humorous digital ad starring comedian and Emmy-winning actor Aziz Ansari encouraging young people to vote in the upcoming election. The video will run in the key battleground states of Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, and Nevada on digital channels, including social media, mobile and desktop video; display ads; and on streaming platforms like Hulu, Xbox, and SlingTV. This video is a part of a $3,006,000 ad buy as part of NextGen Climate’s efforts to empower millennials to raise their voices and vote in this historic election.


“He doesn’t believe in climate change! That’s how dumb you have to be? To not believe in climate change?! At this point?!” Aziz Ansari exclaims disbelievingly in the new video, before imploring young people: “Go vote! Please!”      

The ad is part of NextGen Climate’s #WHYWEVOTE campaign, a series of videos and targeted content focused on energizing and reaching young voters where they are: online and on their phones. Last week, NextGen Climate debuted a get out the vote video starring Oscar-winning actress Natalie Portman.

“We’re focused on millennials because they care about the issues and they want leaders who will take action,” said NextGen Climate President Tom Steyer. “This generation is hyper-aware of the progress the country needs to make to address climate change and they’re excited to get involved and be part of the solution.”

 This outreach complements the organization’s extensive field program on 300 campuses across 13 battleground states to reach out to millennials and encourage them to turn out and vote on Election Day.  

Source: NextGen Climate

First solar farm in community renewable energy project joins the grid Down Under

THE first commercial solar farm in a project aiming to provide options for Australia’s struggling vignerons has gone live.

The 187kw site in the South Australian town of Renmark was switched on to the electricity grid on September 26.

It is the first of three similar-sized sites expected to be up and running before the end of the year.

Renmark–based Yates Electrical Services began its Red Mud project this year and has been running a 180kw test site since February.

Since then, 80 potential sites have been assessed with 25 of them being deemed “rating one” because of their size, location, current use, zoning and electricity network connections are ideal.

The project aims to work with landowners to set up 100kw-200kw community-owned solar farms and sell the energy to Australia’s National Electricity Grid through the volatile wholesale spot market.

Managing Director Mark Yates said under the Red Mud project, landowners could lease their land to be used for a solar farm, lease the land and buy into a portion of the farm or choose to own the entire solar farm outright…
For the entire story

New principles to create water-wise cities

12 October 2016, Brisbane – To overcome the problems that are leading to pressure on water resources in urban areas, and to an increasing number of drought and flooding crises, the International Water Association (IWA) launches the Principles for Water-Wise Cities at the 2016 World Water Congress and Exhibition in Brisbane.

“Cities are rapidly expanding and water resources are under increasing pressure. We need to find ways to do more with less,” says Corinne Trommsdorff, programme manager for the Cities of the Future Program at the International Water Association. “The Principles will be used to bring people together for resilient city planning and to guide the urban water revolution needed in cities of the future,” says Trommsdorff.

The IWA developed the 17 principles to help city leaders ensure that everyone in their cities has access to safe water and sanitation, that their cities are resilient to floods, droughts and the challenges of growing water scarcity, and that water is integrated in city planning to provide increased livability, efficiencies, and a sense of place for urban communities.

The 17 principles are grouped into four categories:

1.Regenerative water services: including replenishing water bodies and their ecosystems, reducing the amount of water and energy used, recovering energy, nutrients and other materials from water, and increased efficiencies by integrating water services with other services.

2.Water sensitive urban design: including designing urban spaces to reduce flood risks, enhance livability with visible water, and modify and adapt urban materials to minimise environmental impact.      

3.Basin connected cities: including planning to secure water resources and mitigate drought, protect the quality of water resources and prepare for extreme events.     

4.Water-wise communities: including empowering citizens, increasing professional awareness of water and enabling policy makers to take water-wise action.

“The floods that hit Brisbane in 2011 and 2013 and the Millennium Drought have reshaped our city’s relationship with water, highlighting the importance of managing water at all stages of the water cycle. To ensure Brisbane meets the challenges of an increasing population, and to respond to our changing climate, Brisbane City Council is embracing the International Water Association’s Principles for Water Wise Cities” said Lord Mayor of Brisbane, Graham Quirk.

The cities of Gothenburg, Kunshan, Lyon, Melbourne Metropolitan Area, Sydney, Shenzhen, Xi’an, Dakar, Amsterdam and Brisbane are becoming the first cities to endorse the IWA Principles at their launch during the World Water Congress (Brisbane, 09-14 October). Amsterdam and Copenhagen are endorsing the Principles through their water authorities. The companies Arup, Arcadis, Veolia, Ramboll, Schneider, Suez, Xylem will be endorsing the principles at the Congress.

The 17 principles for water-wise cities encourage collaboration, underpinned by a shared vision, so that local governments, urban professionals, and individuals can actively prepare and find solutions to urban water management challenges.

The complete list of the 17 principles for water-wise cities is available here:

Source: The International Water Association