The Current State of the Solar Industry

Solar-Saudi-ArabiaIt is projected that in the near future, solar power might actually overtake other sources of electricity generation. Notably, a lot of concerns has been raised concerning the defects that are brought about by fossil fuels. These encroaching dangers that negatively work against other fossil fuels have led to the rejuvenation of the solar energy industry. The solar industry is now working on their policies to come up with a more realistic and achievable form that will see the industry emerge the best energy provider in the whole world. All this is achievable when the environment and the investors are willing to embrace

According to the report on the US solar energy policy, they are now inventing the best policies that will see the solar energy integrated into almost all the US electricity systems. It will also design the most efficient and convenient ways to supply solar energy.

New solar technologies will be built to fit the energy requirement since the sufficiency is the key here. All this seems to be realizable since a serious climate concerns has been raised and it is now clear that new ways and new power systems need to be embraced to mitigate the climate change that are attributed to fossil fuels.

Among the best kinds of solar energy systems that will likely be embraced are the photovoltaic, solar thermal and concentrated solar power (CSP). The solar industries are now aligning themselves in what they are best in and that is why new gadgets that utilize the solar power are now injected into the market. You will find all kinds ranging from the cheapest and less efficient to the superior and the most expensive solar panels.

It is now possible to get a solar powered helmet, a solar-powered water pump, the D-light solar and even other complex provisions like those installed in the big restaurants. Batteries also will utilize this solar power and actually, it has prevented be the most efficient and convenient form of power with less environmental hazards.

“Solar energy presents an opportunity for property owners across the UK but there is a lot of uncertainty over what the benefits are in real terms and what the figures really mean for householders.” Alastair Kay, Green Business Watch

Solar energy is undoubtedly the cheapest and the most convenient source of renewable power. It is actually the most affordable and it only requires the initial cost and the rest will be naturally supplied by the sun, this explains its relatively high uptake compared with some other newer energy technologies.

The major concerns on the environmental conservation and health concerns also add a more realistic view of the possibility of the resurrection of the solar power again. Though major setbacks have been previously observed in the industry, especially after the election of the US president Donald Trump who had a different opinion about climate change, and that is why only 2 % of the US uses solar power.

Despite this small setback, the current state of the solar energy industry seems to be appealing. It is actually promising and the industry should invent more attractive policies that will see it prosper. The need of the house is to develop more realistic and powerful solar inventions which may allow even larger industries to use solar energy in their day-to-day operations.

احراق الغاز و هدره

من المعروف أن إحراق الغاز وهدره يرتبطان بعملية استخراج النفط الخام في حقول النفط. أن آبار النفط الحديثة تكون قادرة لاستعادة كل من غاز آبار النفط والنفط الخام ، وعليه  فإن الغاز يشكل مورد إضافي لحقل النفط. تلجأ الكثير من شركات النفط المنتجة في العالم إلى حرق الغاز المصاحب لحقول النفط بكميات كبيرة محاولةً تعظيم أرباحها، واستخدمت في سبيل ذلك أرخص السبل للتخلص من الغاز الطبيعي الذي لا تريده.

وتحرق شركات النفط الغاز المصاحب لأن النفط ينتج في مناطق نائية بعيدة عن المراكز الاقتصادية والسكانية ويحتاج نقله والاستفادة منه استثمارات كبيرة لا توفرها أسواق الطاقة. ونظراً لكون شركات النفط تركز على مصالحها فهي تريد النفط المنتج وترى في إحراق الغاز المصاحب أرخص الطرق لتعظيم الأرباح.

ومازال حرق الغاز بدون فائدة منتشرا في كثير من بلدان. حيث ان الدول العشرين الاكثر هدرا للغاز هي روسيا ، نيجيريا ، إيران ، العراق ، أنغولا ، فنزويلا ، قطر ، الجزائر ، الولايات المتحدة ، الكويت ، إندونيسيا ، كازاخستان ، غينيا الاستوائية ، ليبيا ، المكسيك ، أذربيجان ، البرازيل ، الكونغو ، المملكة المتحدة ، والغابون وتقدر بعض المصادر أن الغاز الذي يتم إحراقه في حقول النفط والغاز يمثل حوالي 5 بالمائة من الإنتاج العالمي من الغاز الطبيعي، ولو استخدمت هذه الغازات لتوليد الكهرباء لغطت احتياجات القارة الافريقية.

من ناحية أخرى، أن إحراق الغاز هو إحراق لثروات بشرية تقدر سنوياً ببلايين الدولارات، ولا يقتصر الأمر على ذلك، بل إن إحراقه يساهم في زيادة انبعاث الغازات الدفيئة ويضر بالبيئة المحلية في كثير من الدول بدون أي فائدة للبشرية. لقد طرح البنك الدولي مبادرة للتخلص من ظاهرة حرق الغاز الطبيعي والتي تدعو إلى وقف حرق الغاز الطبيعي بصورة نهائية قبل عام 2030. ويحاول البنك الدولي من خلال هذه المبادرة العمل مع الدول وشركات النفط ومؤسسات التنمية لوقف إهدار الغاز الطبيعي بهذه الطريقة وإيجاد أسواق لبيع هذه الغازات أو وضعها في استخدامات نافعة للبشرية. ويمكن استخدام الغاز الطبيعي كوقود أو حتى تحويله إلى مصادر طاقة أخرى يمكن نقلها بطرق أيسر.

ولم يشارك في هذه المبادرة إلا عدد قليل من الشركات والمنظمات.  أن ما لا يقل عن 150 مليار متر مكعب من الغاز على مستوى العالم يتم إشعاله أو إهداره كل عام  مما يضيف نحو 400 مليون طن من غازات الاحتباس الحراري في الانبعاثات السنوية.  وهذا يعادل تقريباً جميع التخفيضات السنوية المحتملة للانبعاثات من المشاريع المقدمة حالياً في إطار آليات كيوتو.

تبلغ نسبة حرق الغاز في منطقة الشرق الأوسط وشمال أفريقيا 50 مليار متر مكعب سنوياً ، مما يجعلها ثاني منطقة في العالم بعد روسيا ومنطقة بحر قزوين التي تبلغ حوالي 60 مليار متر مكعب. كمية الغاز المتوهج في الشرق الأوسط وحده ، حوالي 30 مليار متر مكعب ، يمكن أن تغذي 20 مليون طن من الغاز الطبيعي المسال.  تشير بيانات البنك الدولي إلى أن بعض البلدان في منطقة الشرق الأوسط وشمال أفريقيا قد زادت من حرق الغاز خلال الـ 12 عامًا الماضية أو نحو ذلك. وتشمل هذه: العراق وعمان وقطر والمملكة العربية السعودية واليمن في حين أن دول أخرى مثل الجزائر ومصر وليبيا وسوريا والإمارات العربية المتحدة قد انخفضت حرق الغاز. تُظهر البيانات المنشورة أن حرق الغاز السنوي يعادل ربع الاستهلاك السنوي من الغاز في الولايات المتحدة ، و 30 في المائة من استهلاك الاتحاد الأوروبي السنوي للغاز ، وثلاثة أرباع إجمالي صادرات الغاز السنوية في روسيا. وفي أفريقيا ، وهي واحدة من أكثر قارات حرق الغاز انتشارا ، فإن 35 مليار متر مكعب سنويا من انبعاث الغاز يعادل نصف الاستهلاك الإجمالي للطاقة في القارة.

في العديد من البلدان المسؤولة عن معظم عمليات إشعال الغاز وهدره، تضمن الضريبة والقياس الدقيق أن يتم دفع الرسوم الصحيحة ويتم تقليل التأثير على البيئة إلى الحد الأدنى ، ولكن هذا ليس هو الحال دائمًا. هناك حوافز لتنفيذ ممارسات أكثر جدوى وأقل تكلفة مثل إعادة حقن الغاز الطبيعي في الخزان ، ومحطات تسييل الغاز الطبيعي على نطاق صغير في موقع الإنتاج ، وتوليد الكهرباء في الموقع ، وتوزيع الغاز الطبيعي على المناطق الحضرية المجاورة وما إلى ذلك ، في حين تتم العمليات المكلفة ، مثل بناء خطوط الأنابيب ، فقط عندما يبرر الغاز الطبيعي المستخرج التكاليف المرتفعة.

وبغض النظر عمن يحرق الغاز ، يجب أن تكون حوافز الاستثمار في خفض الحرائق مناسبة وواضحة إلى أقصى حد ممكن. لا يوجد خيار واحد هو الأفضل لجميع حقول النفط. لكل حقل نفط خصائصه وحجمه وظروف السوق المحلية واحتياجات البنية التحتية الخاصة به ، وكل بلد له إطاره السياسي والمؤسسي والمالي الخاص به وبالتالي ، فإن القياس الدقيق لحرق الغاز هو أفضل شيء ، لأنه يعطي الصناعة وسيلة لجمع البيانات ، وبناء صورة دقيقة للغاز المشتعل وتخطيط طرق أفضل لتقليل الخسائر وإنشاء أفضل الممارسات في المستقبل ، كما يتم اتخاذ تدابير أكثر صرامة لمراقبة هذه الأمور.

Production and Applications of Crumb Rubber

Tens of millions of tires are discarded across the Middle East every year. Disposal of  waste tires is a challenging task because tires have a long life and are non-biodegradable. The traditional method of waste tires management have been stockpiling or illegally dumping or landfilling, all of which are short-term solution. 

Crumb rubber is a term usually applied to recycled rubber from automotive and truck scrap tires. There are two major technologies for producing crumb rubber – ambient mechanical grinding and cryogenic grinding. Of the two processes, cryogenic process is more expensive but it produces smoother and smaller crumbs.

Ambient Mechanical Grinding

In ambient mechanical grinding process, the breaking up of a scrap tire happens at or above normal room temperature. Ambient grinding is a multi-step technology and uses whole or pre-treated car or truck tires in the form of shred or chips, or sidewalls or treads. The rubbers, metals and textiles are sequentially separated out. Tires are passed through a shredder, which breaks the tires into chips.

The chips are fed into a granulator that breaks them into small pieces while removing steel and fiber in the process. Any remaining steel is removed magnetically and fiber through a combination of shaking screens and wind sifters. Finer rubber particles can be obtained through further grinding in secondary granulators and high-speed rotary mills.  

Ambient grinding is the production process used by the majority of crumb producers. The machines most commonly used for fine grinding in ambient plants are:

  • Secondary granulators
  • High speed rotary mills
  • Extruders or screw presses
  • Cracker mills

Cryogenic Grinding

Cryogenic grinding refers to the grinding of scrap tires at temperatures near minus 80oC using liquid nitrogen or commercial refrigerants. Cryogenic processing generally uses pre-treated car or truck tires as feedstock, most often in the form of chips or ambiently produced granulate.

Processing takes place at very low temperature using liquid nitrogen or commercial refrigerants to embrittle the rubber. It can be a four-phase system which includes initial size reduction, cooling, separation, and milling. The material enters a freezing chamber where liquid nitrogen is used to cool it from –80 to –120 °C, below the point where rubber ceases to behave as a flexible material and can be easily crushed and broken.

Because of its brittle state, fibres and metal are easily separated out in a hammer mill. The granulate then passes through a series of magnetic screens and sifting stations to remove the last vestiges of impurities. This process requires less energy than others and produces rubber crumb of much finer quality.  

Applications of Crumb Rubber

Both ambient and cryogenic processing can be repeated to produce finer particles. Increasingly, the two with their attendant technologies, are combined into one continuous system in order to benefit from the advantages and characteristics of each and to reduce overall costs.

The ambient system is generally used for the initial size reduction phases. The cryogenic system is used to further reduce the material in size and then to remove the metals and textiles. The outputs from either or both systems can be used directly or as feedstock for further processing.

Rubber crumb is sold as feedstock for chemical devulcanization or pyrolysis processes, added to asphalt for highway paving and pavement sealers, or used for the production of a large number of recycled rubber-containing products. Some of the major applications of crumb rubber are as follows:

Sport Surfaces

  • Kindergarten Playgrounds and Recreation Areas
  • School Sports Areas
  • Athletic Tracks
  • Tennis and Basketball Courts

Automotive Industry

  • Bumpers
  • Splash Guards and Fenders
  • Floor Mats for Cars and Trucks
  • Floor Liners for Trucks and Vans

Construction

  • Hospital, Industrial, and Bathroom Flooring
  • Floor Tile
  • Foundation Waterproofing
  • Dam, Silo, and Roof Liners

Geotechnical/Asphalt Applications

  • Rubberized Asphalt for Roads and Driveways
  • Drainage Pipes
  • Soil Conditioner
  • Porous Irrigation Pipes
  • Road Building and Repair

Adhesives and Sealants:

  • Adhesives and Sealing Compounds
  • Textured and Non-Slip Paints
  • Roof Coating and Waterproofing

Shock Absorption and Safety Products

  • Shock Absorbing Pads for Rails and Machinery
  • Sound Barriers for Highways
  • Abrasion Lining in Mining Equipment

Rubber and Plastic Products

  • Pipe Insulation and Lining
  • Garbage Cans
  • Shoe Soles and Heels
  • Wire and Cable Insulation

 

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Water Conservation Strategies for Middle East

To deal with freshwater management challenges in the Middle East, it is important to bring a balance between both water supply and demand side. This can be done by employing strategies to increase water efficiency and conservation. Water conservation strategies for the Middle East include reducing the use of potable water where possible, find alternative source of water for various water usage and increase the water efficiency of fixtures and equipments. 

Efficient strategies along with water monitoring that tracks water consumption and identifies problems can significantly reduce both indoor and outdoor water consumption in water-scarce GCC countries like UAE, Qatar, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. Most of the water conservation strategies have no additional cost implication and/or provide rapid payback while other strategies such as wastewater treatment systems and graywater plumbing system often require substantial investment. 

Reduce Indoor Potable Water Consumption

Consumption of potable water  in indoor uses can be reduced by installing water-efficient low flow fixtures for water closets, urinals, lavatories, showers, kitchen sinks and by using non potable water for flush functions. The sources of non-potable water are mainly captured rain water, gray water, municipal treated sewerage effluent (TSE) or reclaimed water. Waterless urinals are available in the market, which can be used in commercial buildings. Flow restrictors, electronic controls and compositing toilets can also help in achieving indoor water reduction targets.

Reduce Outdoor Potable Water Use

Landscape irrigation consumes huge amount of potable water. The water use for outdoor landscaping can be reduced significantly through an integrated approach. This includes employing combination of water-efficient irrigation technology, mulching, reduced turf or no turf grasses, using non-potable or recycled water, installing sub-meters to track and log irrigation trend and choosing native and adapted plant species in landscape design and using xeriscaping methods. High performance water efficient irrigation systems such as drip irrigation, bubbler distribution systems, scheduled irrigation and weather-based irrigation controlled can be used to increase the water efficiency.  

Reduction in Process Water Use

The typical building systems that use process water include cooling towers, boilers, chillers, dishwashers and washing machines. The volumes of water used in these systems are quite significant. The strategies to reduce process water use include; use of non-potable water such as rainwater, graywater or TSE in building processes and systems such as cooling towers. Metering of process water system can be done to collect information on water consumption and to identify leaks.

Recovery and Reuse of Condensate Water

Condensate produced from air conditioning equipment can be recovered and reused within the building. The condensate can be collected by installing a collection pan and then transferred to different systems through drainage pipes for various reuse purposes such as irrigation, toilet flushing, or other onsite purposes where it will not come in contact with the human body. For buildings with a cooling load equal to or greater than 350 kilowatt, a large volume of condensate can be recovered and reused.

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NatHERS – A Rating System for Thermal Performance of Buildings

The Nationwide House Energy Rating Scheme, or NatHERS, uses a 10-star rating system which is able to easily assess the thermal performance of buildings within Australia. Though a NatHERS certification is required for all new developments with multiple dwellings, it is essential for all residents to obtain an assessment to be able to easily evaluate the thermal assessment of their development.

Why is NatHERS assessment required in my house?

NatHERS as outlined above is the Nationwide House Energy Rating Scheme which is able to evaluate the thermal performance of any dwelling. Though this may seem irrelevant and unnecessary when outlining the overall performance of the building, is it a necessity to get a NatHERS assessment in order to ensure a sustainable future for our environment.

Not only this, but NatHERS is essential when obtaining a BASIX assessment. BASIX is a NSW Government initiative striving to improve the environmental sustainability. It comprises of three factors: water, thermal and energy. The thermal component of BASIX can be easily completed through a NatHERS assessment with its thorough, accurate and flexible approach to addressing thermal performance.

Thus, a NatHERS assessment is required not only to contribute towards a sustainable future for the environment but also as a necessity under the BASIX initiative led by the NSW Government.

Ingredients of NatHERS assessment

A NatHERS assessment can be obtained by a specialised company that has NatHERS Accredited Software which can be used to determine the thermal efficiency of your home. Within the assessment, each resident will be provided a copy of the key design features, the building materials and the scope used to generate the dwelling’s star rating.

The star rating, also known as the Energy or Thermal Efficiency star rating, is an accurate indicator of the level of heating or cooling your building requires to not only make you feel comfortable, but to ensure that it doesn’t have a detrimental impact on the environment. By following the recommendations and guidelines that will be included in your report, you will also be on the path of having lower energy expenses, by using the appropriate amount of electricity.

How does Certified Energy do it differently?

At Certified Energy, our years of experience distinguishes us from our competitors. We work with each client separately, to ensure that each individual project thrives in terms of cost, efficiency and the preservation of design concepts. We strive to minimise your costs whilst maximising the sustainability of your future home.

At Certified Energy, there are two main certification solutions that will help you achieve the lowest cost with the highest efficiency rating. These include the essential solutions (House Energy Rating Scheme, Elemental Provision) or alternative solutions (Verification Using a Reference Building and State Specific Energy Protocols).

In order to give you the best catered advice as per your personal needs, Certified Energy will guide you through the various approval pathways that will help your project achieve energy efficiency and environment sustainability. We are experts in ESD consulting and are qualified to assess projects for their suitability under rating schemes including Green Star, ISCA, Section J and NatHERS.

الارادة والتعليم سر الانجازات الاقتصادية

education-arabiaإقتصادياً؛ ينظر الكثير إلى مياه البحر من زاوية التكاليف الباهضة لمشاريع تحليتها، هذه النظرة تجعل من مياه البحر عقدة بدلاً من كونها حلا لبعض الحاجات الإقتصادية والمشاريع التنموية. قبل أيام أطلقت أستراليا مشروعاً زراعياً يعد الأول من نوعه على مستوى العالم، إذ يستغني عن التربة والمياه الجوفية والوقود الأحفوري، ويكتفى بأشعة الشمس ومياه البحر لإنتاج 17 ألف طن من الطماطم سنوياً. وفي ظل الأزمة التي تواجه العالم في الحصول على المياه العذبة وإنتاج الطاقة فإن المشروع يشكل الوجه الجديد للزراعة المستقبلية حسب تعبير مجلة New Scientist التي ذكرت أن المشروع استغرق ست سنوات فقط، وهي مدة قياسية بالمقارنة بمشاريعنا، بل حتى بالنسبة لحجم الإنجاز ذاته.

التفاصيل على قدر كبيرمن الأهمية لأنها تدفعنا لإدراك إمكانية تطبيق مثل هذا المشروع في المنطقة، بل وابتكار مشاريع أخرى، فطبيعة الصحراء الأسترالية هي نفسها طبيعة صحراء الجزيرة العربية، لذا فإن من المهم معرفة الأساليب العلمية التي لجأ إليها فريق العمل للتغلب على هذه الظروف القاسية، بدلا من الإعتماد على القدرة المالية في الحصول على أدوات مرتفعة التكاليف من أجل تحقيق إنجاز ما.

في التفاصيل، مدّ فريق العمل أنابيب لنقل مياه البحر على طول 2 كلم محطة في الصحراء لتحلية المياه بالطاقة الشمسية تقوم بإنتاج مياه عذبة بكميات تكفي لري 180 ألف نبتة طماطم زرعت في بيوت محمية. وعالج فريق العمل مشكلة التربة بإيجاد بديل لها هو قشور ثمرة جوز الهند.

مشاريع المياه تعتبر من المشاريع المكلفة

مشاريع المياه تعتبر من المشاريع المكلفة

المدهش هو أن هناك مبادرات لتطبيق نموذج المشروع في دول عدة من بينها قطر والإمارات وسلطنة عمان. وهذا يدل على رغبة هذه الدول المجلس في وضع حل لمشكلة شح المياه العذبة والعمل على استغلال الطاقة المتجددة في إنتاج محاصيل زراعية.

مشاريع المياه تعتبر من المشاريع المكلفة، فدول المجلس كانت قد خصصت أكثر من 100 مليار دولار أمريكي للإستثمار في هذا القطاع بين عامي 2011 و2016، وأعلنت عن خطط لاستثمار 300 مليار دولار أمريكي أخرى بحلول عام 2022، وهذا من شأنه إرهاق الموازنات الحكومية خاصة مع انخفاض أسعار الوقود، بينما هناك إمكانية لإيجاد بدائل تساهم في تخفيف العبء.

ينبغي القول أيضاً أن المياه المالحة قد تشكل ثروة كبيرة، حتى دون اللجوء إلى تحليتها، فهناك نباتات مفيدة قادرة على التكيف مع ملوحة مياه البحر، ويمكنها المساهمة في التنمية الإقتصادية، ومن بينها الساليكورنيا (الشمرة البحرية) والسبارتينا (العقربان).

الخلاصة

إن هذا الإنجاز الذي حققته أستراليا يؤكد لنا حقيقتين هما: إن الحاجة ليست أم الإختراع (كما يقال) فقد بقينا عقود في حاجة للمياه العذبة دون نتيجة، بل يأتي الإختراع عبر إرادة التغيير والسعي الحثيث والإخلاص في وضع هذه الحاجة على السكة العملية لتوفيرها.

والحقيقة الأخرى هي أننا يجب أن نولي التعليم والبحث العلمي أهمية كبيرة، فنحن نمتلك الكثير من الإمكانات الطبيعية والبشرية التي يمكنها أن تخلق واقعاً أفضل إذا ما وضعنا التعليم في قمة أولوياتنا والبحث العلمي في صلب اهتمامنا، وهذا ما أثبتته تجارب الدول المتقدمة، وهو ما أكد عليه "لي كوان" مؤسس سنغافورة، في كلمته المشهورة: أنا لم أقم بمعجزة إنما أعطيت المعلم مكانته التي يستحقها وهو من أنتج جيلاً قاد نهضة الوطن.

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Modern Greenhouse Design Ideas For Your Future Home

Greenhouses have definitely evolved through time. It has come a long way from its plain and simple designs to the now high-tech structured architectures. The location, weather, and the availability of materials have a lot to do with the never ending innovations. Consider these modern greenhouse design ideas that will complement your home, lifestyle, and passions in life if you plan to build your own greenhouse in your backyard.

Strong and Sturdy Foundation

Having concrete and dug-deep foundation will keep the structure in place and could last longer as compared to bamboos or soft wood which are susceptible to pests attack and damages. Concrete and heavy footings can save you a lot from trouble in the future. You do not have to dig everything out if you want to make some new tweaks on your greenhouse.

High-rise Walls

Air ventilation is very important when building greenhouses. High walls of about 10 feet at least are generally acceptable. It would be nice to imagine yourself working on an extensive and well-ventilated space with enough area for your other hanging plants and an extra spot to store your garden tools. The team of elite Brisbane architects knows what are the best quality materials to use in order to create an edgy, long-lasting and modernized plan that will suit your taste.

Anti-Fog Wall and Roof

Too much sunlight can damage and wilt your plants. With the anti-fog technology incorporated in the structure, the additives applied causes the water to condense rapidly when it hits the wall and roof. This process makes the fog disappear right away. The gutter collects the water formed from the condensation to be utilized by the plants. Architects can guide you on what type of wall material could maximize water collection.

Large Windows

Adding windows can also be a good option since not all the time the weather is humid and not every time the heat of the sun is excruciating for the plants, You can opt to have it opened during milder weather condition and let the natural air pass through the windows as compared to vents which only allows less air to enter the structure. You can have it circular, rectangular or eccentric shaped windows.

Plumbing, Water System Options

Water is one of the most important factors in determining the healthy growth of your plants. You can install rainwater catchment that stores inside the drums, You can also use automatic water system and sprinkler system that is automated watering of your plants. This can reduce your time watering the plants so you can use it to spend on other essential things.

Conclusion

It doesn’t matter if you are building a small or a large scale greenhouse as long as you are technically guided. Seeking the help of professionals can also lessen your worries because you know that it is built on trust and high standards. You can also be sure that it is safe and securely built. At the end of the day, we all want a cozy and productive space, and of course, produce high quality plants.

Easy Ways to Make Organic Liquid Fertilizer

composting-arabicMany organic farmers struggle to find natural ways of enhancing their soil. While organic fertilizers are readily available, it makes more sense to produce them as only then can one be sure of the components used. When produced appropriately, homemade organic liquid fertilizers can be as good as their commercially made counterparts. There are different types of organic liquid fertilizer available. For instance, compost tea is a powerful fertilizer while coffee grounds are said to provide sufficient nitrogen to plants.

A huge percentage of organic fertilizers are made from kitchen waste. However, there are many more things one can convert into potent fertilizer for use in their organic garden rather than disposing them off.

Homemade Fertilizers

Organic farmers can make their own organic liquid fertilizer by infusing their components of choice in water for some days. The soluble nutrients then drain in the water solution.

Farmers can choose to terminate the process and utilize the fertilizer in their gardens or even continue if they intend to ferment the component. Some farmers have reported great success from fermented organic liquid fertilizer.

DIY Organic Liquid Fertilizer

Below are examples of organic liquid fertilizers you can make at home.

  • Banana Peels

Banana peels come with loads of potassium. Fertilizers that are rich in potassium are good for flowers and fruit plants. This, however, may not be appropriate for foliage plants such as spinach and lettuce.

Use banana peel organic liquid fertilizer on squash plants and tomatoes. In a mason jar, put the banana peels, fill it with water, and cork it. Allow it to sit for three days and use it on your garden.

  • Eggshell Fertilizer

Eggshells are rich in calcium and contain a small percentage of potassium. Crush them, put in a mason jar, and fill it with water. Let it sit for a week and use the water on your plants. It is ideal for tomatoes and houseplants. Calcium helps prevent blossom-end rot.

  • Vegetable Cooking Water

After boiling vegetables, do not dispose it off. Let it cool then dilute it with water. Use it on houseplants and at the organic garden. To avoid the bad smell, use it all at once. This water is rich in vitamins that the vegetables lose during the cooking process.

  • Epsom Salts

Epsom salts contain sulfur and magnesium. In a gallon of water, add a tablespoon of Epsom salts. Put the mixture in a sprayer and use it on peppers, tomatoes, roses, and onions. Spray them two times a month.

  • Compost Tea

In a bucket, begin by placing compost, followed by water and a lid. Ensure the bucket is not tightly locked. Let it sit for one to two days and pour the water in a different bucket. Dilute it in a ratio of one to ten and use the mixture in the organic garden.

  • Weed tea

Unseeded weeds can be used to make fertilizer. Add grass clippings to make it richer. Grass and weeds contain nitrogen and the water accelerates its breakdown to make the nutrients available.

Place grass and weed clippings in a 5-gallon container and add water. Ensure the water goes slightly above the components, cover and let it sit for three days. Drain the liquid and dilute with water in a ratio of one to ten. Use it to water plants in the organic garden. Put the remaining components in the compost.

  • Droppings Tea

Collect chicken, rabbit, or goat droppings, put them in a bucket and add water until it’s slightly above the droppings. Let it sit for two to three days and drain the water. Dilute it with a one to twenty water ratio and use it to water plants in the organic garden. Droppings tea is rich in nitrogen.

Finally

Ensure that the plants are sufficiently watered before using an organic liquid fertilizer on them. This prevents them from absorbing excess salts. If the plants appear withered for lack of enough water, it is advisable to water them sufficiently first and wait for twenty-four hours before applying the fertilizer.

Energy Conservation in Bahrain

Bahrain has one of the highest energy consumption rates in the world. The country uses almost three times more energy per person than the world average. Based on 2014 statistics, the country consumes 11,500 kWh of energy per capita compared with the global average of 3,030 kWh. The country is witnessing high population growth rate, rapid urbanization, industrialization and commercialization with more visitors coming in, causing fast growing domestic energy demand and is posing a major challenge for energy security.

The Government is aware of this challenging task and is continuously planning and implementing projects to enhance the energy production to meet with the growing demand. The issue of efficient use of energy, its conservation and sustainability, use of renewable and non-renewable resources is becoming more important to us. The increasing temperatures and warming on the other hand are also causing more need of air-conditioning and use of electrical appliances along with water usage for domestic and industrial purposes. This phenomenon is continuing in Bahrain and other GCC countries since past two decades with high annual electricity and water consumption rates compared with the rest of the world.

Bahrain’s energy requirement is forecast to more than double from the current energy use. The peak system demand will rise from 3,441 MW to around 8,000 MW. While the concerned authorities are planning for induction of more sustainable renewable energy initiatives, we need to understand the energy consumption scenario in terms of costs. With the prices of electricity and water going up again from March 2017 again, it is imperative that we as consumers need to think and adopt small actions and utilize practices that can conserve energy and ultimately cost.

The country has already embarked on the Energy Efficiency Implementation Program to address the challenge of curbing energy demand in the country over the next years. The National Energy Efficiency Action Plan and the National Renewable Energy Action Plan (NREAP) have already been endorsed. The NREAP aims to achieve long-term sustainability for the energy sector by proposing to increase the share of renewable energy to 5 percent by 2020 and 10 percent by 2030.

Per capita energy consumption in Bahrain is among the highest worldwide

Per capita energy conservation in Bahrain is among the highest worldwide

As individuals, we need to audit how much energy we are using and how we can minimize our usage and conserve it. Whenever we save energy, we not only save money, but also reduce the demand for such fossil fuels as coal, oil, and natural gas. Less burning of fossil fuels also means lower emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2), the primary contributor to global warming, and other pollutants. Energy needs to be conserved not only to cut costs but also to preserve the resources for longer use.

Here are few energy conservation tips we need to follow and adopt:

  • Turning off the lights, electrical and electronic gadgets when not in use.
  • Utilizing energy efficient appliances like LED lights, air conditioners, freezers and washing machines.
  • Service, clean or replace AC filters as recommended.
  • Utilizing normal water for washing machine. Use washing machine and dish washer only when the load is full. Avoid using the dryer with long cycles.
  • Select the most energy-efficient models when replacing your old appliances.
  • Buy the product that is sized to your actual needs and not the largest one available.
  • Turn off AC in unoccupied rooms and try to keep the room cool by keeping the curtains.
  • Make maximum use of sunlight during the day.
  • Water heaters/ Geysers consume a lot of energy. Use them to heat only the amount of water that is required.
  • Unplug electronic devices and chargers when they are not in use. Most new electronics use electricity even when switched off.
  • Allow hot food to cool off before putting it in the refrigerator

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Save Dead Sea from Extinction

The news headlines read that the Dead Sea is dying so fast that it could totally disappear by the middle of this century. With the waters dying up, the exposed land is cracked and salt encrusted. Sinkholes are appearing as well and adding to the level of natural destruction. The rate of this process is being monitored by measuring the rate at which the water line is retreating. It is presently receding at the rate of one meter each year.

The Dead Sea region is of great importance to three main religious groups: Jews, Muslims and Christians. The Dead Sea Scrolls were found in this region. It is believed that Jesus was baptized in the river feeding into the Dead Sea. And today its of importance for agricultural purposes, and especially for tourism as well as being the home for both Jordanians and Israeli people.

red-sea-dead-sea-agreement

The consequences of this drying up of the saline waters are drastic. The tourist industry in the area will totally disappear. The sinkholes are swallowing up roadways and buildings as well as causing long term damage in the natural environment. This is not a recent concern. The various authorities in Jordan have been deliberating over the situation for the past 20 years.

To date, more than 6,000 sinkholes have appeared in the area, both on the Jordanian and the Israeli side. In fact, Israel has already closed resorts in the area and sections of Highway 90 have already disappeared due to the sinkholes.

Depletion of Dead Sea

The major reason for depletion of Dead Sea include human activities such as damming the river upstream and aggressive mining.  Syrians had down on the Yarmouk River and the diverting of the natural river flow by the Israelis. In addition,  the rainfall rate in the ten-year period from 2004-2013 has been below the long term normal rainfall. Other hydrological data is also disappointing.

The Dead Sea also received replenishment from groundwater but these waters are also diminishing.  The Disi aquifer that feeds into the Dead Sea is nearing exhaustion. It has a possible expected life span of about 30 years. The surface Dead Sea waters are also evaporating at a significant rate that is increasing due to warmer temperatures. This is another impact of global climate change. The temperatures are also predicted to increase over the coming years. The increment could be in the range of 5-11 degrees centigrade while rainfall is expected to decrease by a possible 30 percent.

In addition to hydro- and meteorological predictions, these is aggressive mining for minerals in the area. The salt waters are siphoned off from the Dead Sea and deposited in evaporation pans. The waters are then naturally evaporated leaving minerals such as bromine and potash. It is estimated that over 60 billion gallons are pumped out of the sea every year.

The retreating shoreline is exposing saline lands unsuitable for agriculture or any other use. Other farms in the area are also going out of business because of the extent of change in the natural climate of the area has become far less humid meaning the farmers need to locate other sources of moisture to irrigate their crops. This is a major challenge in a water scarce part of the globe.

Red Sea – Dead Sea Project

One suggested remedial action is to build a desalination plant in southern Jordan along the Red Sea and deposit the brine residue (via a pumping pipeline) into the Dead Sea. A desalination plant is an expensive project, and this proposal is an even more expensive solution. The projected cost is in the range of US$1.5 billion.

The interest and investment in the Red Sea – Dead Sea project will help to alleviate some of the water issues in the region. First and foremost, the issue of water availability in a water scarce region. This is a vital resource for the growing population and the need to continue producing foods for local needs and for the international export market. Such a project as this water initiative will also impact the political and social relationships between Jordan and Israel, as well as the State of Palestine. The new collaborations will strength the 1994 Peace Treaty signed between Jordan and Israel.

The project does have complications and requires focused understanding and anticipated impact of bring in waters from the Red Sea and adding the resource to the Dead Sea which has a very distinct set of water conditions and characteristics. If excessive amounts  of water are introduced it could cause such changes as flourishing the growth of algae, adding gypsum to the natural composition of the waters which could cause the waters to turn a milky colour and cause crystallization on the surface waters.

The project has a high priced tag with two-thirds of the costing needing to be covered by the private sector and the other third to be covered by both Jordan and Israel through a variety of funding resources from local and international bodies. The project is nearing the point of opening up for bidders and tenders. Therefore, the project could start by 2021 and would take 3-4 years for completion. As with any significant project, there is also heavy criticism that the project will fall far short of the quantity of waters needed to stabilize the levels of the Dead Sea as well as support agriculture in the region.

Conclusion

The future of a very unique region is being held in a very precarious situation as scientists, agriculturalists, tourists, developers and politicians strive to identify the best action to sustain the local environment.

Green Career Tips by Salman Zafar

Salman Zafar, Founder of EcoMENA, talks to Bhavani Prakash of Green Collar Asia about cleantech industry trends, and offers tips for professionals trying to enter renewable energy and waste management sectors. This interview was originally published on www.greencollarasia.com . 

Green Collar AsiaHow did you become so interested in renewable energy and waste management technologies?

Salman Zafar: I am a chemical engineer by education. After completing my Master’s degree program in 2004, I got the opportunity to work as a Research Fellow on large-scale biogas power projects which initiated me into waste management/bioenergy sector.

During the course of my fellowship, I was involved in the design, operation and troubleshooting of waste-to-energy plants and biomass energy projects. The idea of converting wastes into clean and useful energy appealed to me in a big way, and after completing my education in 2006 I started writing articles and blogs on biomass energy and waste management which were well-received around the world. A Swedish gentleman read one of my articles and was so impressed that he asked me to prepare a comprehensive report on biomass energy situation in Southeast Asia and there was no looking back from that day onwards.

Green Collar AsiaAs a leading authority in Asia and the Middle East in this realm, can you give an overview of waste management trends in the region?

Salman Zafar: The rapid increase in population, rising standards of living and scarcity of waste disposal sites has precipitated a major environmental crisis in Asia and the Middle East. Municipalities are finding it extremely hard to deal with mountains of garbage accumulating in and around urban centres. Reduction in the volume and mass of municipal waste is a crucial issue especially in the light of limited availability of final disposal sites in many parts of the world.

The global market for solid waste management technologies has shown substantial growth over the last few years and has touched USD 150billion with continued market growth through the global economic downturn. Over the coming decade, growth trends are expected to continue, led by expansion in the US, European, Chinese, Asia-Pacific and Indian markets. Asian and Middle Eastern countries are also modernising their waste management infrastructure and have seriously begun to view waste-to-energy technology as a sustainable alternative to landfills for disposing waste while generating clean energy.

Green Collar Asia: What are the drivers that are required for waste-to-energy technologies to scale up? What kind of policy support would be conducive?

Salman Zafar: Waste-to-energy technologies cannot prosper without political, legislative and financial support from different stakeholders. Close and long-term cooperation between municipalities, planners, project developers, technology companies, utilities, investors and general public is indispensable for the success of any waste-to-energy project.

Energy recovery from wastes should be universally accepted as the fourth ‘R’ in a sustainable waste management program involving Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. An interesting fact is that countries (like Sweden, Denmark and Germany) which have reduced dependence on landfills have the highest recycling rates, and they have achieved this in combination with waste-to-energy.

Green Collar AsiaWhich areas/regions are investing most in renewable energy, or rather where do you see a lot of activity?

Salman Zafar: China, United States, Germany, India and Brazil are witnessing a good deal of activity in the cleantech sector. China has made rapid progress in renewable energy sector, particular in wind energy, and invested more than USD 6 billion in different renewable energy resources in 2012. India is among top destinations for renewable energy investments with more than USD 6.85 billion pouring in for solar, wind and biomass projects in 2012. Brazil has also made strong investment in clean energy and is the market leader in Latin America.

Green Collar AsiaAs a keynote speaker and panelist for several events, do you see a growth in the number of conferences in renewable energy and waste management, and new locations for these?

Salman Zafar: Yes, there has been significant proliferation in academic as well as industrial conferences in recent years. Renewable energy has caught the attention of the policy-makers, academic institutions, corporates, entrepreneurs and masses because of concerns related to global warming, industrial pollution and dwindling fossil fuel reserves. Infact, oil-rich countries like UAE, Qatar and Saudi Arabia are working on large clean energy projects to mitigate the harmful environmental effects of the oil and gas industry and to augment their fossil fuel reserves.

As far as new venues for cleantech conferences are concerned, countries like United Arab Emirates, India, China and Singapore are in the limelight. Worldwide enthusiasm for renewable energy and green technologies has increased dramatically in recent years, and hundreds of conferences and exhibitions are being organized each year at hitherto unknown destinations which is surely helping in raising environmental awareness and career development.

Green Collar Asia: What skills and competencies are required for this field?

Salman Zafar: Skills for cleantech jobs are more or less the same as that required for traditional jobs. The capability to transfer traditional skills to a green energy project is a crucial factor for any industry professional. Renewable energy jobs are heavily based on core knowledge areas like math, science, engineering and technology.

To get an edge, it would be beneficial to get specialized knowledge and experience in the areas of energy efficiency, waste management, environmental policies, natural resource management, sustainability, computer modeling tools, artificial intelligence, IoT etc. A wide variety of jobs are on offer in the cleantech sector, such as managers, process operators, analysts, engineers, IT professionals, systems engineers, designers, technicians etc.

Green Collar Asia: What advice would you give to professionals entering this sector?

Salman Zafar:  Being a relatively new industrial segment, it is advisable not to rush things while entering the cleantech sector. Focusing your education on core knowledge areas is the first step towards a green energy career. There is an avalanche of jobs in this sector, and key to success is to use your transferable skills to get a dream job.

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Water Line Maintenance: Importance and Benefits

Regular water line maintenance is essential as it ensures continuous water supply and prevents pipes from bursting which is costly to repair and replace. Water is vital to every home and hence the need to ensure that there is a good flow of water into your home. Some homeowners prefer to inspect their water lines to cut down costs but, in the long run, it will be costly if you do not get professional services. Various plumbing service in Singapore offer these services to homeowners, and you can use the internet to find the most reputable. Below are the importance and benefits of water line maintenance.

Identify water line problems early

When you hire a professional plumber to check on your water lines, they will use their equipment to determine if there is any problem that could arise in the future and they look for ways to prevent it. The technician will advise you on whether to repair and replace the water line systems.

Prevents water-borne diseases

When water pipe bursts and the water comes in contacts with sewage and other contaminants, this can lead to diseases such as cholera and other serious ailments. When you haven’t done repairs and replacements in your water line systems, they may get cracks which may give way to bacteria entering your water lines.

Therefore, to prevent water-related diseases, you need to make sure that your water line pipes are functioning well and that there is no room for contaminants to get into your water system. Sometimes you might find that the water coming from your water lines is not as clean as it should be and this might be caused dirt from broken water lines.

Saves time and money

When you get your water lines repaired on time, it will save you on costs that you would spend if the problem developed into a bigger issue. Also, when you hire a plumber who is an expert, it will take less time checking on the lines to ensure that they are working correctly.

However, repairing a whole water line system may take several days, which might cause you to stay without water as the water lines are fixed. The cost of hiring a technician to inspect on your water pipes is less compared to the replacing your water lines.

Reduces the water bills

When your water lines crack and pipes bursts, it may take you a while before you realize it and this leads to increased water bills. If you notice that your water bills are more than the normal bill, contact a plumbing company to inspect your water line and find out if there are burst pipes and cracks.

Maintenance of water lines should be done after every few years. You may ask for referrals from your neighbors and friends when searching for a plumber. The best Singapore plumbing service should have contact details so that you can call them whenever you want your pipes to be inspected.

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