Sustainability

Downsized Homestead: Big Life in a Tiny House

Jul 21, 2015

In 1974 the average new home in the U.S. was just shy of 1,700 square feet. By 2014 the average new home size was over 2,600 square feet.  Even with that trend there is an opposing one where homes are shrinking to sizes smaller than the average living room.

Today, we meet Karl and Hari Berzins who, along with their two children, live in a Floyd County home that's only 8 feet by 21 feet in total size.

Teaching Stewardship with a Children's Classic

Apr 22, 2015

Environmental ethics...it’s the balance between nature and human interaction, and it can be a weighty topic.

The Roanoke City School system is among those divisions starting the discussion early, getting 2nd graders to think about natural resources. They’re doing it with the help of a book, written back in 1942.

The Little House, written and illustrated by Virginia Lee Burton, tells the story of a house built on the top of a hill, far out in the country. Eventually, Walt Disney turned Burton’s story into an animated short film.

The Brock Environmental Center

Dec 2, 2014
Chesapeake Bay Foundation

Many people spend their weekends looking at houses. Some are in the market to buy.  Others are just nosey, but recently Virginians toured a new building like no other in the nation – a place that gets all its water from rain, generates all the power it needs, has not a single flush toilet and keeps the floors clean in an ingenious way. 

Mapping the Ocean

Oct 21, 2014
Nature Conservancy

There's been lots of reporting on the decline of coral reefs in tropical seas.  Now comes word that we have coral right off the coast of Virginia -- an important piece of news for fishermen and for environmentalists who are mapping the oceans.

 

On a sunny weekday  last summer, Captain Monty Hawkins prepared to take fishermen cruising off the coast of Virginia and Maryland.

“Hey, Jay.  Tell those boys to throw the lines off.”

American Chestnut trees used make up twenty-five percent of the Appalachian forest.  A blight, in the early 1900s changed that, and today they’re all but gone from the forests from Georgia to Maine. 

But the tree left us a way to resurrect it from the dead, and with it, a kind of message:  Only with the help of human beings will the towering Chestnuts return. 

"I was raised here in the valley and when I started hunting, about 1960 or so there were still these old gray giant trunks standing in the woods," says Carl Absher a semi-retired forester from the Catawba Valley.  

Pages