An autonomous building is a building designed to be operated independently from infrastructural support services such as the electric power grid, gas grid, municipal water systems, sewage treatment systems, storm drains, communication services, in some cases, public roads. Advocates of autonomous building describe advantages that include reduced environmental impacts, increased security, lower costs of ownership; some cited advantages satisfy tenets of green building, not independence per se. Off-grid buildings rely little on civil services and are therefore safer and more comfortable during civil disaster or military attacks. Most of the research and published articles concerning autonomous building focus on residential homes. In 2002, British architects Brenda and Robert Vale said that "It is quite possible in all parts of Australia to construct a'house with no bills', which would be comfortable without heating and cooling, which would make its own electricity, collect its own water and deal with its own waste...
These houses can be built now. It is possible to build a "house with no bills" for the same price as a conventional house, but it would be smaller." In the 1970s, groups of activists and engineers were inspired by the warnings of imminent resource depletion and starvation. In the US a group calling themselves the New Alchemists were famous for the depth of research effort placed in their projects. Using conventional construction techniques, they designed a series of "bioshelter" projects, the most famous of, the Ark Bioshelter community for Prince Edward Island, they published the plans with detailed design calculations and blueprints. The Ark used wind based water pumping and electricity, was self-contained in food production, it had living quarters for people, fish tanks raising tilapia for protein, a greenhouse watered with fish water and a closed loop sewage reclamation system that recycled human waste into sanitized fertilizer for the fish tanks. As of January 2010, the successor organization to the New Alchemists has a web page up as the "New Alchemy Institute".
The PEI Ark has been abandoned and renovated several times. The 1990s saw the development of Earthships, similar in intent to the Ark project, but organized as a for-profit venture, with construction details published in a series of 3 books by Mike Reynolds; the building material is tires filled with earth. This makes a wall. Berms are placed on exposed surfaces to further increase the house's temperature stability; the water system starts with rain water, processed for drinking washing plant watering toilet flushing, black water is recycled again for more plant watering. The cisterns are used as thermal masses. Power, including electricity and water heating, is from solar power. 1990s architects such as William McDonough and Ken Yeang applied environmentally responsible building design to large commercial buildings, such as office buildings, making them self-sufficient in energy production. One major bank building in the Netherlands was constructed to be artistic as well; as an architect or engineer becomes more concerned with the disadvantages of transportation networks, dependence on distant resources, their designs tend to include more autonomous elements.
The historic path to autonomy was a concern for secure sources of heat, power and food. A nearly parallel path toward autonomy has been to start with a concern for environmental impacts, which cause disadvantages. Autonomous buildings can increase security and reduce environmental impacts by using on-site resources that would otherwise be wasted. Autonomy dramatically reduces the costs and impacts of networks that serve the building, because autonomy short-circuits the multiplying inefficiencies of collecting and transporting resources. Other impacted resources, such as oil reserves and the retention of the local watershed, can be cheaply conserved by thoughtful designs. Autonomous buildings are energy-efficient in operation, therefore cost-efficient, for the obvious reason that smaller energy needs are easier to satisfy off-grid, but they may substitute energy production or other techniques to avoid diminishing returns in extreme conservation. An autonomous structure is not always environmentally friendly.
The goal of independence from support systems is associated with, but not identical to, other goals of environmentally responsible green building. However, autonomous buildings usually include some degree of sustainability through the use of renewable energy and other renewable resources, producing no more greenhouse gases than they consume, other measures. First and fundamentally, independence is a matter of degree, with many choices. For example, eliminating dependence on the electrical grid is easy. In contrast, running an efficient, reliable food source can be a chore. Living within an autonomous shelter may require sacrifices in lifestyle or social opportunities; the most comfortable and technologically advanced autonomous homes could require alterations of residents' behavior. Some may not welcome the extra chores; the Vails described some clients' experiences as inconvenient, isolating, or as an unwanted full-time job. A well-designed building can reduce this issue, but at the expense of reduced autonomy.
An autonomous house must be custom-built to suit the location. Passive solar techniques, alternative toilet and sewage
Independence is a condition of a person, country, or state in which its residents and population, or some portion thereof, exercise self-government, sovereignty, over the territory. The opposite of independence is the status of a dependent territory. Whether the attainment of independence is different from revolution has long been contested, has been debated over the question of violence as legitimate means to achieving sovereignty. In general, revolutions aim only to redistribute power with or without an element of emancipation, such as in democratization within a state, which as such may remain unaltered. For example, the Mexican Revolution chiefly refers to a multi-factional conflict that led to a new constitution. However, some wars of independence have been described as revolutions, such as the ones in the United States and Indonesia, while some revolutions that were about a change in the political structure have resulted in breakaway states. Mongolia and Finland, for example, gained their independence during the revolutions occurring in China and Russia respectively.
Causes for a country or province wishing to seek independence are many, but most can be summed up as a feeling of inequality compared to the dominant power. The means can extend from peaceful demonstrations like in the case of India, to a violent war like in the case of Algeria. Autonomy refers to a kind of independence, granted by an overseeing authority that itself still retains ultimate authority over that territory. A protectorate refers to an autonomous region that depends upon a larger government for its protection as an autonomous region. Sometimes, a state wishing to achieve independence from a dominating power will issue a declaration of independence. Declaring independence and attaining it however, are quite different. A well-known successful example is the U. S. Declaration of Independence issued in 1776; the dates of established independence, are celebrated as a national holiday known as an independence day. There have been three major periods of declaring independence: from the 1770s, beginning with the American Revolutionary War through the 1830s, when the last royalist bastions fell at the close of the Spanish American wars of independence.
Independence constitution Independence referendum List of national independence days List of sovereign states by date of formation Lists of active separatist movements Secession Special Committee on Decolonization War of Independence Unilateral declaration of independence United Nations list of Non-Self-Governing Territories
Renewable energy is energy, collected from renewable resources, which are replenished on a human timescale, such as sunlight, rain, tides and geothermal heat. Renewable energy provides energy in four important areas: electricity generation and water heating/cooling and rural energy services. Based on REN21's 2017 report, renewables contributed 19.3% to humans' global energy consumption and 24.5% to their generation of electricity in 2015 and 2016, respectively. This energy consumption is divided as 8.9% coming from traditional biomass, 4.2% as heat energy, 3.9% from hydroelectricity and the remaining 2.2% is electricity from wind, solar and other forms of biomass. Worldwide investments in renewable technologies amounted to more than US$286 billion in 2015. Globally, there are an estimated 7.7 million jobs associated with the renewable energy industries, with solar photovoltaics being the largest renewable employer. Renewable energy systems are becoming more efficient and cheaper and their share of total energy consumption is increasing.
As of 2015 worldwide, more than half of all new electricity capacity installed was renewable. Growth in consumption of coal and oil could end by 2020 due to increased uptake of renewables and natural gas. At the national level, at least 30 nations around the world have renewable energy contributing more than 20 percent of energy supply. National renewable energy markets are projected to continue to grow in the coming decade and beyond; some places and at least two countries and Norway, generate all their electricity using renewable energy and many other countries have the set a goal to reach 100% renewable energy in the future. At least 47 nations around the world have over 50 percent of electricity from renewable resources. Renewable energy resources exist over wide geographical areas, in contrast to fossil fuels, which are concentrated in a limited number of countries. Rapid deployment of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies is resulting in significant energy security, climate change mitigation, economic benefits.
In international public opinion surveys there is strong support for promoting renewable sources such as solar power and wind power. While many renewable energy projects are large-scale, renewable technologies are suited to rural and remote areas and developing countries, where energy is crucial in human development; as most of renewable energy technologies provide electricity, renewable energy deployment is applied in conjunction with further electrification, which has several benefits: electricity can be converted to heat, can be converted into mechanical energy with high efficiency, is clean at the point of consumption. In addition, electrification with renewable energy is more efficient and therefore leads to significant reductions in primary energy requirements, because most renewable energy technologies do not need a thermodynamic cycle with high losses. Renewable energy flows involve natural phenomena such as sunlight, tides, plant growth, geothermal heat, as the International Energy Agency explains: Renewable energy is derived from natural processes that are replenished constantly.
In its various forms, it derives directly from the sun, or from heat generated deep within the earth. Included in the definition is electricity and heat generated from solar, ocean, biomass, geothermal resources, biofuels and hydrogen derived from renewable resources. Renewable energy resources and significant opportunities for energy efficiency exist over wide geographical areas, in contrast to other energy sources, which are concentrated in a limited number of countries. Rapid deployment of renewable energy and energy efficiency, technological diversification of energy sources, would result in significant energy security and economic benefits, it would reduce environmental pollution such as air pollution caused by burning of fossil fuels and improve public health, reduce premature mortalities due to pollution and save associated health costs that amount to several hundred billion dollars annually only in the United States. Renewable energy sources, that derive their energy from the sun, either directly or indirectly, such as hydro and wind, are expected to be capable of supplying humanity energy for another 1 billion years, at which point the predicted increase in heat from the sun is expected to make the surface of the earth too hot for liquid water to exist.
Climate change and global warming concerns, coupled with high oil prices, peak oil, increasing government support, are driving increasing renewable energy legislation and commercialization. New government spending and policies helped the industry weather the global financial crisis better than many other sectors. According to a 2011 projection by the International Energy Agency, solar power generators may produce most of the world's electricity within 50 years, reducing the emissions of greenhouse gases that harm the environment; as of 2011, small solar PV systems provide electricity to a few million households, micro-hydro configured into mini-grids serves many more. Over 44 million households use biogas made in household-scale digesters for lighting and/or cooking, more than 166 million households rely on a new generation of more-efficient biomass cookstoves. United Nations' Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has said that renewable energy has the ability to lift the poorest nations to new levels of prosperity.
At the national level, at least 30 nations around the world have renewable energy contributing more than 20% of energy supply. Na
Economics is the social science that studies the production and consumption of goods and services. Economics focuses on the behaviour and interactions of economic agents. Microeconomics analyzes basic elements in the economy, including individual agents and markets, their interactions, the outcomes of interactions. Individual agents may include, for example, firms and sellers. Macroeconomics analyzes the entire economy and issues affecting it, including unemployment of resources, economic growth, the public policies that address these issues. See glossary of economics. Other broad distinctions within economics include those between positive economics, describing "what is", normative economics, advocating "what ought to be". Economic analysis can be applied throughout society, in business, health care, government. Economic analysis is sometimes applied to such diverse subjects as crime, the family, politics, social institutions, war and the environment; the discipline was renamed in the late 19th century due to Alfred Marshall, from "political economy" to "economics" as a shorter term for "economic science".
At that time, it became more open to rigorous thinking and made increased use of mathematics, which helped support efforts to have it accepted as a science and as a separate discipline outside of political science and other social sciences. There are a variety of modern definitions of economics. Scottish philosopher Adam Smith defined what was called political economy as "an inquiry into the nature and causes of the wealth of nations", in particular as: a branch of the science of a statesman or legislator a plentiful revenue or subsistence for the people... to supply the state or commonwealth with a revenue for the publick services. Jean-Baptiste Say, distinguishing the subject from its public-policy uses, defines it as the science of production and consumption of wealth. On the satirical side, Thomas Carlyle coined "the dismal science" as an epithet for classical economics, in this context linked to the pessimistic analysis of Malthus. John Stuart Mill defines the subject in a social context as: The science which traces the laws of such of the phenomena of society as arise from the combined operations of mankind for the production of wealth, in so far as those phenomena are not modified by the pursuit of any other object.
Alfred Marshall provides a still cited definition in his textbook Principles of Economics that extends analysis beyond wealth and from the societal to the microeconomic level: Economics is a study of man in the ordinary business of life. It enquires how he uses it. Thus, it is on the one side, the study of wealth and on the other and more important side, a part of the study of man. Lionel Robbins developed implications of what has been termed "erhaps the most accepted current definition of the subject": Economics is a science which studies human behaviour as a relationship between ends and scarce means which have alternative uses. Robbins describes the definition as not classificatory in "pick out certain kinds of behaviour" but rather analytical in "focus attention on a particular aspect of behaviour, the form imposed by the influence of scarcity." He affirmed that previous economists have centred their studies on the analysis of wealth: how wealth is created and consumed. But he said that economics can be used to study other things, such as war, that are outside its usual focus.
This is because war has as the goal winning it, generates both cost and benefits. If the war is not winnable or if the expected costs outweigh the benefits, the deciding actors may never go to war but rather explore other alternatives. We cannot define economics as the science that studies wealth, crime and any other field economic analysis can be applied to; some subsequent comments criticized the definition as overly broad in failing to limit its subject matter to analysis of markets. From the 1960s, such comments abated as the economic theory of maximizing behaviour and rational-choice modelling expanded the domain of the subject to areas treated in other fields. There are other criticisms as well, such as in scarcity not accounting for the macroeconomics of high unemployment. Gary Becker, a contributor to the expansion of economics into new areas, describes the approach he favours as "combin assumptions of maximizing behaviour, stable preferences, market equilibrium, used relentlessly and unflinchingly."
One commentary characterizes the remark as making economics an approach rather than a subject matter but with great specificity as to the "choice process and the type of social interaction that analysis involves." The same source reviews a range of definitions included in principles of economics textbooks and concludes that the lack of agreement need not affect the subject-matter that the texts treat. A
Permaculture is a set of design principles centered around whole systems thinking simulating or directly utilizing the patterns and resilient features observed in natural ecosystems. It uses these principles in a growing number of fields from regenerative agriculture, rewilding and organizational design and development. With its system of applied education and citizen-led design permaculture has grown a popular web of global networks and developed into a global social movement; the term permaculture was developed and coined by David Holmgren a graduate student at the Tasmanian College of Advanced Education's Department of Environmental Design, Bill Mollison, senior lecturer in Environmental Psychology at University of Tasmania, in 1978. The word permaculture referred to "permanent agriculture", but was expanded to stand for "permanent culture", as it was understood that social aspects were integral to a sustainable system as inspired by Masanobu Fukuoka’s natural farming philosophy, it has many branches that include, but are not limited to, ecological design, ecological engineering, regenerative design, environmental design, construction.
Permaculture includes integrated water resources management that develops sustainable architecture, regenerative and self-maintained habitat and agricultural systems modelled from natural ecosystems. Mollison has said: "Permaculture is a philosophy of working with, rather than against nature, they include: Observe and Interact and Store Energy, Obtain a Yield, Apply Self Regulation and Accept Feedback and Value Renewable Resources and Services, Produce No Waste, Design From Patterns to Details, Integrate Rather Than Segregate, Use Small and Slow Solutions and Value Diversity, Use Edges and Value the Marginal, Creatively Use and Respond to Change. Several individuals revolutionized the branch of permaculture. In 1929, Joseph Russell Smith added an antecedent term as the subtitle for Tree Crops: A Permanent Agriculture, a book which sums up his long experience experimenting with fruits and nuts as crops for human food and animal feed. Smith saw the world as an inter-related whole and suggested mixed systems of trees and crops underneath.
This book inspired many individuals intent on making agriculture more sustainable, such as Toyohiko Kagawa who pioneered forest farming in Japan in the 1930s. In Australian P. A. Yeomans' 1964 book Water for Every Farm, he supports the definition of permanent agriculture, as one that can be sustained indefinitely. Yeomans introduced both an observation-based approach to land use in Australia in the 1940s and the Keyline Design as a way of managing the supply and distribution of water in the 1950s. Holmgren noted Stewart Brand’s works as an early influence to permaculture. Other early influences include Ruth Stout and Esther Deans, who pioneered no-dig gardening, Masanobu Fukuoka who, in the late 1930s in Japan, began advocating no-till orchards and gardens and natural farming. In the late 1960s, Bill Mollison and David Holmgren started developing ideas about stable agricultural systems on the southern Australian island state of Tasmania. Dangers of the growing use of industrial-agricultural methods sparked these ideas.
In their view, these methods were dependent on non-renewable resources, were additionally poisoning land and water, reducing biodiversity, removing billions of tons of topsoil from fertile landscapes. They responded with a design approach called permaculture; this term was first made public with their publication of their 1978 book Permaculture One. Among some of the more recognizable names who received their original training within Mollison's PDC system would include Geoff Lawton and Toby Hemenway, each of whom have more than 25 years experience teaching and promoting permaculture as a sustainable way of growing food. Simon J Fjell was a Founding Director of the Permaculture Institute in late 1979 and a teacher of the first Permaculture Design Course, having first met Mollison in 1976, he has since worked internationally and is listing a major social enterprise on NASDAQ. By the early 1980s, the concept had broadened from agricultural systems design towards sustainable human habitats. After Permaculture One, Mollison further refined and developed the ideas by designing hundreds of permaculture sites and writing more detailed books, such as Permaculture: A Designers Manual.
Mollison lectured in over 80 countries and taught his two-week Permaculture Design Course to hundreds of students. Mollison "encouraged graduates to become teachers themselves and set up their own institutes and demonstration sites; this multiplier effect was critical to permaculture’s rapid expansion."The permaculture movement spread throughout Asia and Central America, with Hong Kong-based Asian Institute of Sustainable Architecture, Rony Lec leading the foundation of the Mesoamerican Permaculture Institute in Guatemala and Juan Rojas co-founding the Permaculture Institute of El Salvador. The three core tenets of permaculture are: Care for the earth: Provision for all life systems to continue and multiply; this is the first principle. Care for the people: Provision for people to access those resources necessary for their existence Fair share: By governing our own needs, we can set resources aside to further the above principles; this includes re
YouTube is an American video-sharing website headquartered in San Bruno, California. Three former PayPal employees—Chad Hurley, Steve Chen, Jawed Karim—created the service in February 2005. Google bought the site in November 2006 for US$1.65 billion. YouTube allows users to upload, rate, add to playlists, comment on videos, subscribe to other users, it offers a wide variety of corporate media videos. Available content includes video clips, TV show clips, music videos and documentary films, audio recordings, movie trailers, live streams, other content such as video blogging, short original videos, educational videos. Most of the content on YouTube is uploaded by individuals, but media corporations including CBS, the BBC, Hulu offer some of their material via YouTube as part of the YouTube partnership program. Unregistered users can only watch videos on the site, while registered users are permitted to upload an unlimited number of videos and add comments to videos. Videos deemed inappropriate are available only to registered users affirming themselves to be at least 18 years old.
YouTube and its creators earn advertising revenue from Google AdSense, a program which targets ads according to site content and audience. The vast majority of its videos are free to view, but there are exceptions, including subscription-based premium channels, film rentals, as well as YouTube Music and YouTube Premium, subscription services offering premium and ad-free music streaming, ad-free access to all content, including exclusive content commissioned from notable personalities; as of February 2017, there were more than 400 hours of content uploaded to YouTube each minute, one billion hours of content being watched on YouTube every day. As of August 2018, the website is ranked as the second-most popular site in the world, according to Alexa Internet. YouTube has faced criticism over aspects of its operations, including its handling of copyrighted content contained within uploaded videos, its recommendation algorithms perpetuating videos that promote conspiracy theories and falsehoods, hosting videos ostensibly targeting children but containing violent and/or sexually suggestive content involving popular characters, videos of minors attracting pedophilic activities in their comment sections, fluctuating policies on the types of content, eligible to be monetized with advertising.
YouTube was founded by Chad Hurley, Steve Chen, Jawed Karim, who were all early employees of PayPal. Hurley had studied design at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Chen and Karim studied computer science together at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign. According to a story, repeated in the media and Chen developed the idea for YouTube during the early months of 2005, after they had experienced difficulty sharing videos, shot at a dinner party at Chen's apartment in San Francisco. Karim did not attend the party and denied that it had occurred, but Chen commented that the idea that YouTube was founded after a dinner party "was very strengthened by marketing ideas around creating a story, digestible". Karim said the inspiration for YouTube first came from Janet Jackson's role in the 2004 Super Bowl incident, when her breast was exposed during her performance, from the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. Karim could not find video clips of either event online, which led to the idea of a video sharing site.
Hurley and Chen said that the original idea for YouTube was a video version of an online dating service, had been influenced by the website Hot or Not. Difficulty in finding enough dating videos led to a change of plans, with the site's founders deciding to accept uploads of any type of video. YouTube began as a venture capital-funded technology startup from an $11.5 million investment by Sequoia Capital and an $8 million investment from Artis Capital Management between November 2005 and April 2006. YouTube's early headquarters were situated above a pizzeria and Japanese restaurant in San Mateo, California; the domain name www.youtube.com was activated on February 14, 2005, the website was developed over the subsequent months. The first YouTube video, titled Me at the zoo, shows co-founder Jawed Karim at the San Diego Zoo; the video was uploaded on April 23, 2005, can still be viewed on the site. YouTube offered the public a beta test of the site in May 2005; the first video to reach one million views was a Nike advertisement featuring Ronaldinho in November 2005.
Following a $3.5 million investment from Sequoia Capital in November, the site launched on December 15, 2005, by which time the site was receiving 8 million views a day. The site grew and, in July 2006, the company announced that more than 65,000 new videos were being uploaded every day, that the site was receiving 100 million video views per day. According to data published by market research company comScore, YouTube is the dominant provider of online video in the United States, with a market share of around 43% and more than 14 billion views of videos in May 2010. In May 2011, 48 hours of new videos were uploaded to the site every minute, which increased to 60 hours every minute in January 2012, 100 hours every minute in May 2013, 300 hours every minute in November 2014, 400 hours every minute in February 2017; as of January 2012, the site had 800 million unique users a month. It is estimated that in 2007 YouTube consumed as much bandwidth as the entire Internet in 2000. According to third-party web analytics providers and SimilarWeb, YouTube is the second-most visited website in the world, as of December 2016.
Off-the-grid is a system and lifestyle designed to help people function without the support of remote infrastructure, such as an electrical grid. In electricity, off-grid can be stand-alone power system or microgrids to provide a smaller community with electricity. Off-grid electrification is an approach to access electricity used in countries and areas with little access to electricity, due to scattered or distant population; the term off-the-grid can refer to living in a self-sufficient manner without reliance on one or more public utilities. Namely the electrical grid. People who adopt this lifestyle are called off-gridders. Off-the-grid homes aim to achieve autonomy. A common misconception is that a true off-grid house is able to operate independently of all traditional public utility services. Although this is not the case; the term "off the grid" traditionally refers to the electrical grid only. The idea has been popularized by certain celebrities including Ed Begley, Jr. who stars in the Living with Ed television show on the Home & Garden Television network.
Actress Daryl Hannah promotes off-grid living and constructed her home in Colorado according to those principles, as does survival expert and Dual Survival co-star Cody Lundin, who lives in a self-designed, passive solar earth house in the high-desert wilderness of Northern Arizona, collecting rainwater, composting waste, paying nothing for utilities. Electrical power can be generated on-site with renewable energy sources such as solar, micro hydro, geothermal; such a system is called a stand-alone power system or sometimes referred to as a Hybrid power system. In addition, it is possible to eliminate electric power such as in Old Order Amish and Old Order Mennonite communities. Remote locations that are expensive to connect to main electricity grids are suited for off-grid renewable energy developments, for example remote islands or tundra locations. Self-supply of water and sanitation, e.g. independence from municipal water supply and sanitation services is possible. On-site drinking water sources can include wells, streams, or lakes.
These sources may require filtration, purification or disinfection. Rainwater can be harvested. Off-the-grid dwellings are not connected to sanitary sewers, but may instead rely on septic tanks or various types of dry toilets, such as composting toilets or urine-diverting dry toilets. On 13 April 2006, USA Today reported that there were "some 180,000 families living off-grid, a figure that has jumped 33% a year for a decade," and cited Richard Perez, publisher of Home Power magazine, as the source. Assuming the same rate of growth, there would be a quarter million off-grid households in the United States by late 2007; because many Third World citizens have never had the chance to go on the grid, current estimates are that 1.7 billion people live off-grid worldwide. A wave of TV shows and articles came out after the publication of "Off the Grid, Inside the Movement for More Space, Less Government and True Independence in Modern America" by Nick Rosen in 2010; the concept of a sustainable off-grid community must take into consideration the basic needs of all who live in the community.
To become self-sufficient, the community would need to provide all of its own electrical power, food and water. Using renewable energy, an on-site water source, sustainable agriculture and vertical farming techniques is paramount in taking a community off the grid. A recent concept design by Eric Wichman shows a multi-family community, which combines all of these technologies into one self-sufficient neighborhood. To grow the community you add neighborhoods using the same model as the first. A self-sustained community reduces its impact on the environment by controlling its waste and carbon footprint; the State of California is encouraging solar and wind power generation, connected to the electrical grid to avoid the use of toxic lead acid batteries for night time storage. Grid-tie systems are less expensive than off-grid systems due to the lack of additional equipment like charge controllers and the batteries. However, some systems may mitigate this difference by using old car batteries that can no longer supply enough current to start a car.
It is done to residential buildings only occupied, such as vacation cabins, to avoid high initial costs of traditional utility connections. Other persons choose to live in houses where the cost of outside utilities is prohibitive, or such a distance away as to be impractical. In his book How to live off-grid Nick Rosen lists seven reasons for going off-grid; the top two are saving money, reducing the carbon footprint. Others include survivalists, preparing for the collapse of the oil economy and bringing life back to the countryside. Environmental concerns in Canadian off-grid communitiesCanada has about 175 aboriginal and northern off-grid communities, defined as "a community, neither connected to the North American electrical grid nor to the piped natural gas network; this contributes to climate change. Fuel must be transported long distances by airplane, truck or barge, leading to a greater risk of fuel spills; the transportation of f