Thursday, December 11, 2008

Thanks on Thursday

Several things come to mind this week that I am thankful for.

This week we Mahayana Buddhists celebrated the Buddha's enlightenment, known as Bodhi Day, or Rohatsu. Some at a local temple stayed up all night chanting. I had Dharma School.

I am grateful for these clever uses of technology that find second uses for energies that are basically thrown away. This could be the wave of the future of green technology, I think. There are so many ways in which we expend energy that could be captured for reuse.

In Tokyo, the pounding of many commuters' feet will provide the power for the ticket gates and display systems. Elsewhere, the kinetic energy collected by a revolving door will send electricity back to the grid. It may not be a lot, but imagine if every single revolving door collected energy this way. I am grateful too for coffee, which gives many people the energy to get started. The used grounds make great compost and repel ants, and now there is another use: biodiesel. Better than corn or soybean oil, used coffee grounds will not take away from food sources. It also has natural components that act as a preservative, so it will last longer even than petrol diesel. With coffee shops every few blocks, Portland could be a great place for this to take off.

Speaking of Portland, we got a great write-up as a green city at InHabitat. They love our transit system, our bicyclability, the ease with which we can buy local (which they call locavorism), and our green policies. We don't just recycle...our city wants to reach a 75% recycle rate by 2015. I am looking forward to the curbside composting. I am so grateful I live in Portland. And as I told Jason, it's all because of him that I live here, so I'm grateful to and for Jason. If he hadn't got married, and if my first husband hadn't gone to Seattle to attend his wedding, and if Jason hadn't told him that Portland was a more affordable Pacific NW city, I might never have come here.

1 comment:

Jason Sacks said...

Thanks so much for the shout-out, Heidi! I'm not surprised at all that you love Portland. It really is the perfect city in some ways. We've been starting to talk with Robin about colleges, and Portland seems a great city for the lifestyle she wants to live.

And I am thankful for you as well!