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endless warm solar hat & glove concept



This innovative entry in Design Boom’s Green Life contest was submitted by German designer, Yiran Qian.

This hat and glove combo would utilize solar energy to keep your hands and noggin toasty.

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Monday, November 30, 2009

Ford to introduce 30mpg Mustang in 2011


Looks like Detroit is finally getting the message on fuel economy.  For instance, that icon of American muscle cars, the Ford Mustang, is will soon be sipping a lot less gasoline.  The 2011 Ford Mustang will put 305 high-performance horses in the hands of V-6 coupe buyers with a new all-aluminum dual-overhead cam (DOHC) engine that will deliver a projected 30 mpg of highway driving fun with a six-speed automatic transmission.

For 2011, Mustang’s new 3.7-liter Duratec 24-valve V-6 uses advanced engineering to deliver its power and economy – the engine is designed to crank out torque down low, rev to 7,000 rpm and deliver the mechanical music sports coupe lovers crave (we could do without this feature).

“Mustang is completely transformed with this new engine,” said Derrick Kuzak, group vice president, Global Product Development. “Everything people love about the car is still there and now under the hood is a V-6 engine that uses premium technology to deliver the power, the feel, the fuel efficiency, even the sound of the best sports coupes in the world.”

Extra horsepower and refined engine operation will be the most noticeable features to new 2011 Mustang 3.7-liter V-6 buyers while projected class-leading fuel economy, also a standard feature, offers a big eco-friendly bonus.  The new Mustang possesses some very non-muscle car fuel economy stats:

  • 19 mpg city/30 highway with six-speed automatic transmission – up from 16 mpg city/24 highway on the 2010 model with automatic transmission
  • 18 mpg city/29 highway with six-speed manual transmission, up from 18 mpg city/26 highway on the 2010 model with manual transmission

Refinements throughout Mustang’s body, powertrain and chassis design contribute to the improved fuel economy numbers. Examples include:

  • The new Electric Power Assist Steering (EPAS) system which eliminates the drag of an engine-operated hydraulic power steering pump
  • Six-speed transmissions that allow lower cruising revs without sacrificing off-the-line performance
  • Aerodynamic improvements such as a new front fascia, tire spats on the rear wheels, modified underbody shields, a taller air dam and an added rear decklid seal

source: ford motors press release

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a hefty bundle of green news


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Coca-Cola Leases Nissan’s First Fuel Cell


The ink has just dried as Nissan leases its first fuel cell SUV, the X-TRAIL, in America. But don’t expect to see it making the rounds with U.S. soccer moms though, this lithium-ion-powered cruiser is now in the hands of the Sacramento Coca-Cola Bottling Company for at least one year.

The zero emission vehicles have already banked nearly 300,000 miles in healthy on-road testing as a part of Nissan’s ongoing performance monitoring.  Says Eric Noziere, VP, Corporate Planning, NNA in a recent press release, “Test programs like Sacramento Coca-Cola X-TRAIL FCV lease help us keep our momentum going in this arena, even as we’re getting ready to roll out the new Nissan LEAF electric vehicle in the next year.”

You can catch a glimpse of the X-TRAIL as it hits public events near Sacramento throughout the year.  And hopefully, we’ll be filling you in on the first consumer lease of LEAF before too long…

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My Green Gift Holiday Wish List

You know that college student who’s really hard to shop for because they rant about consumerism through most of December?  As the token hippie in my family who hates frivolous gifts, I’m here to tell you how to shop for that person!  I won’t lie, this is essentially my wish list this holiday season (beefed up with items my friends have requested, and things I think are cool), and it probably applies to many a college student or sustainable derelict this year.


(pictured above, L to R)
Tiffin box: my friend has one of these food storage systems and I’m endlessly jealous.
Bamboo Bites: bamboo utensils and a cute little carrier!  No more stabbing myself with stray forks at the bottom of my backpack.
Filter in a Bottle: For your geeks who love water, take this everywhere and drink tap water with pride.

(pictured above, L to R)
Thermos: even Fair Trade coffee just isn’t as good when it’s lukewarm.
Panniers: for all that schlepping to the farmers market, the peace rally, classes and back.
Over the Shoulder: more ways to lug your stuff across town on your bike!

(above L to R)
Ponoko: a membership at Ponoku means you can design something and have it made.  Perfect for the DIY project you could never quite make happen.
Preserving Set: I’ve always wanted to make jam and jelly, but I’ve also always had a deep seeded hate for botulism.


Bamboo Bike:  (above) If I lived in NYC, I would LOVE this.


Run Hippie Run:  (above) New Balance’s shoe  is partly made of recycled materials.


Seeds Galore: (above L) One for every month!
Kill-A-Watt: (above R) I’m getting this for my parents to try to shock them into turning the TV off before they go to bed.


Happy Fish: (above)  Hopefully you throw the fish back after they fall for these green lures.

*Tip: some of your friends might ask you to give to a charity this season.  Be sure to check out the charity with to ascertain most of the money is going to actual work, rather than overhead and salaries.

Sustainable Harvest: a donation here helps a Central American family with training and tools to overcome poverty through farming.


Voces y Manos: (photo above) A donation to this charity promotes medicine and health awareness in Guatamala, (bonus points because the organization was started by an alumni of my university)!

NOTE: many links have been removed.

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