About Salman Zafar

Salman Zafar is the CEO of BioEnergy Consult, and an international consultant, advisor and trainer with expertise in waste management, biomass energy, waste-to-energy, environment protection and resource conservation. His geographical areas of focus include Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Salman has successfully accomplished a wide range of projects in the areas of biogas technology, biomass energy, waste-to-energy, recycling and waste management. Salman has participated in numerous national and international conferences all over the world. He is a prolific environmental journalist, and has authored more than 300 articles in reputed journals, magazines and websites. In addition, he is proactively engaged in creating mass awareness on renewable energy, waste management and environmental sustainability through his blogs and portals. Salman can be reached at salman@bioenergyconsult.com or salman@cleantechloops.com.

Why it is Important to Recycle Used Filters and Oil

Illegally or inappropriately disposed of used motor oil can have a grievous impact on the environment. Studies conducted indicate that a single gallon of used oil can pollute up to a million gallons of water. Used oil filters are made of steel which means they can be recycled. In some developed countries, they are the most recycled materials and dumping them in landfills is illegal in other countries, while some have stringent laws that define how they should be disposed of.

Regulatory organizations such as the environmental protection agency reiterate that used oil filters should only be recycled or disposed of once all the free flowing oil has been drained. Presently, oil filters manufactured in the United States are not subject to dangerous waste regulation provided the filter is:

  • Hot drained then crushed
  • Broken through the anti drain valve or the dome and hot drained
  • Hot drained then dismantled

Hot draining is the process of draining the oil filter near or at engine operating temperature above 60ºF. Basically, the filter is either crushed or punctured while still warm in order to clear any surplus oil. The environmental protection agency recommends hot draining for up to 12 hours.

While lubricating oil hardly wears out, it gets dirty. Foreign bodies such as chemicals, water, dirt or even metal scrapings can mix with it and lower its performance capability. Contaminated oil should be replaced either with re-refined or virgin oil in order to execute its job appropriately.

The contaminated oil can be taken through used oil recycling procedures with studies indicating that approximately 380 million gallons of contaminated oil are recycled annually. Recycled oil is often taken through immense re-refining to eliminate all the impurities in order to produce pure oil.

The end product referred to as re-refined oil should fit similar rigorous compounding, refining, and performance principles as pure motor oil. Re-refining is an environmentally and energy valuable method of managing used motor oil. Producing a gallon or re-refined base stock requires less energy that producing crude oil base stock.

Advantages of Recycling Used Filters and Oil

Oil re-refining helps reduce heavy metal emissions and greenhouse gases as opposed to combusting it as fuel. Re-refining is an ideal way of managing used motor oil, it is environmentally friendly, and converts used oil into a renewable resource. Re-refining used motor oil reduces a nation’s reliance on foreign crude oil.

Used motor oil filters contain oil at the time of disposal. Having the ideal recycling company recover them ensures that the oil is recovered and re-refined. This also helps safeguard landfill space.

Collection of Materials

The manufacturers of oil tanks and filters are responsible for the materials. Many times, they provide big containers for disposing of the used filters especially in large volume shops. Recycling companies however can provide bins or drums for used filters while the shops provide waste oil storage facilities.

While used oil tanks will not be replaced when service providers are changed, shop managers must analyze the state of their used oil storage facilities to rule out spillage or loss when oil is transferred to an oil truck.

If need be, many recycling companies can also provide storage facilities. Used oil filters do not necessarily have to be crushed or drained before being recycled provided they are kept in a bin or drum.

What Next?

Oil filters are broken down into small fragments while the metals are removed and sold as scrap. Eventually, they are used to manufacture various products such as manhole covers and rebar. The contaminated oil is sold recycling companies. A huge percentage of the used oil is refined, drained, and used as an energy alternative to natural gas while the remaining percent is processed into hydraulic oil.

Finally

Used oil can be detrimental to water bodies and the environment in general. Companies should incorporate stringent recycling strategies for both used oil and filters to protect the environment and conserve space in landfills.

3 Things to Consider While Using OBD2 Can Scanner

One of the easiest ways to check the efficiency of your car’s engine and its components is to use an OBD2 scanner. An OBD2 scanner is a diagnostic tool that is used to read and clear codes, run system checks, and sometimes make adjustments to a car’s CPU.

Most OBD2 diagnostic scanners also include a feature called live data, or data stream, which is what you’re looking for if you need to do some efficiency checks. A diagnostic scanner with a live data function is the best thing to use to check the efficiency of your motor.

car-scanner-diagnostic

We can use the live data function to look into fuel economy, thermal efficiency and general engine performance. Using OBD2 scanners to delve into the live data of your car is a much cheaper alternative than sending the vehicle off for testing, and you can get a good idea of how the engine is performing just by using the scanner. This of course saves a lot of time and money.

You can find lots of information about various OBD tools at https://obdstation.com, who regularly review different OBD2 scanners. Head there to find out about the best OBD2 scan tools that have live data functions included, which you can use the check the efficiency of your car’s engine components.

If you already have an OBD2 scan tool and want to investigate your car’s efficiency, then there’s a few key things that you’ll want to look into. The first is fuel economy.

1. Fuel Economy

You want to make sure that your engine is using fuel at the correct rate for your vehicle. If an engine is using too much fuel, then the engine will have a very low economy and be more expensive to run. If an engine is overusing fuel, then this could suggest a few different problems with the fuel system, which we’ll talk about later.

So, how can you use an OBD2 scanner to investigate fuel economy? Well, part of the live data stream from an OBD2 diagnostic scan tool that is displayed is a reading called Fuel Trim. Fuel trims basically refer to how much fuel is being released into the engine by the fuel delivery system. Fuel trims are represented on the OBD2 screen by a percentage, where a percentage of 0.0% suggests that the fuel system is working perfectly, with the right amount of fuel being released into the engine.

If the reading is a positive number, so above 0.0%, then this means that too much fuel is being released. If the reading is negative, below 0.0%, then there is too little fuel being released. An OBD2 scanner will give two values for fuel trims, a long term fuel trim (LTFT) and a short term fuel trim (STFT). They both represent the same thing, LTFT is just calculated over a longer period of time, so is more of an average value.

Of course nothing is perfect, so you probably won’t be seeing readings of 0.0% for both STFT and LTFT. However, you’d expect a healthy engine with a properly functioning fuel injection system to have an STFT reading between -10.0% and 10.0%, and an LTFT reading between -5.0% and 5.0%.

If the fuel trims are both too high, then your car is using too much fuel, which means it’s not at its best efficiency. The problem could be caused by the fuel injection system overcompensating for a vacuum leak for example. Having said that it’s also a problem if the values are too low. Even though the engine is using too little fuel, this will be made up by issues in other areas, which will result in a less efficient engine and therefore a more costly one to run.

2. Engine RPM

Another indicator of how efficiently your engine is operating is its revolutions per minute (RPM). Even a basic OBD2 device should display the idle RPM of the engine. Note that the RPM will change if you touch the throttle, so we’re focussing on the idle RPM here.

Most cars have idle speeds of between 600 and 1000rpm, whilst for trucks its around 600rpm, and motorbikes are higher at around 1200rpm. Be sure to check the car manufacturers handbook or research your vehicle online to find out what RPM its engine should be at.

If the RPM is too high, then this will definitely result in your engine being less efficient. If it’s too low, then it won’t be generating the right amount of power, so again will be less efficient. If your RPM is too high or too low, then it’s probably down to an issue with idle control valve, or a vacuum leak.

3. Manifold Absolute Pressure (MAP Sensor)

Manifold Absolute Pressure is another factor that can have quite a big influence on how efficient an engine is operating.

The MAP sensor data readings are usually specific to fuel injected engines. MAP sensors measure the air pressure in the intake manifold, which helps the engine CPU decide on the correct air/fuel ratio. Having a correct balance is key for efficiency, so that the engine isn’t using too much or too little fuel.

Like the Ignition sensors, faulty MAP sensors will lead to an incorrect fuel/air balance, resulting in excessive fuel consumption, lack of power, and failed emissions tests. Again, this is useful data to indicate possible problems with your car.

What is an OBD Scanner?

An OBD Scanner is a car diagnostic device used by mechanics to read vehicle trouble codes, turn off the check engine light, install third party components, run system checks and include lots of other advanced features. OBD scanners are an essential tool for the workshop, and save mechanics a lot of time and cash.

They are effective tools for looking into an engine’s efficiency and performance.

How Can an OBD Scanner Help your Cars Efficiency?

Although an OBD scanner won’t solve any problems by itself, it is a fantastic investigation tool that will show you how efficiently your engine is operating and will highlight any problems with the engine that will be reducing its efficiency.

You can gain lots of information about fuel economy, thermal efficiency, and engine performance, The ease of use that an OBD2 tool will offer makes it a great alternative to sending vehicles off for complex testing.

What is the best auto scanner for the money?

There are lots of great scanners out there. The most important feature to look out for if you want to check your motor’s efficiency is live data streaming. The best OBD scanners will all offer this service.

Landfill Liners and Alternative Daily Cover

The old garbage dumps of days gone by are no more. Today’s waste disposal solutions are increasingly sophisticated. Environmental regulation, recycling, and the development of plastics – of all things – have contributed to far more tightly managed landfills, with goals inching towards zero waste.

Garbage dumps used to be large holes, usually on the edge of town, where garbage could be buried. While this was an improvement on how people have historically dealt with their trash – by throwing it out the window, into rivers and fields, or alongside the road – it was still a health hazard, an increasingly offensive thing as populations grew, and an environmental burden.

 

In the United States, the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, passed by the US Congress in 1976, changed how garbage is processed, managed and stored. The garbage dumps of the past were simply places where garbage was buried. Today’s landfills are much more complexly engineered sites.

They are extensively planned locations that are constantly monitored. This move toward increasingly more environmentally sound methods has also increased the efficiency of these sites. Before selecting a site for a landfill, city planners must work with engineers to determine what the effects a landfill will have in the long term.

An additional safety measure came when the EPA examined using alternative materials for landfill “daily cover”. Landfills are required to be covered at the end of each working day, and the original method was to use a layer of soil. This was obviously wasteful of resources, and used up the landfill quickly.

Since the EPA report in 1993, landfills and state regulations have increasingly adopted alternative daily cover (ADC), typically turning to geosynthetic materials such as polyethylene and PVC, which work well both to contain and to filter, and can be manufactured in very large and custom-fitting sheets.

Geomembranes and geotextiles (the “geo” part simply means working with the land) had already been used as part of the liner underneath the landfill. It now became possible to use them as the top cover also.

Landfill Bottom Liners and Top Covers

One of the biggest issues surrounding landfills is their impact on the environment, particularly the potential of contaminants reaching the groundwater supply. To prevent this, a bottom liner is used. While it is well known that placing large qualities of garbage in one location can have long lasting consequence, scientists and engineers continue to work toward better solutions that are more environmentally friendly.

The EPA constantly works to regulate how landfills are designed and managed so that any new discoveries of more environmentally friendly methods can be incorporated quickly. Currently for landfill liners, it requires multiple layers of materials be used for landfills.

The underlying liner of new landfill sites will often consist of a soil or clay layer combined with a geotextile – a synthetic permeable membrane that screens solids out from the ever-present liquid descending from the trash, the “leachate”. This liquid is a severe pollutant and is contained and directed to a treatment process by yet another geosynthetic layer, this one impermeable. And underneath this layer will often be another impermeable layer of dense clay.

Landfill daily cover used to be almost as elaborate, taking 6 inches of soil or clay for each day’s landfill cap. With the continued improvement of geosynthetic materials, these over-engineered solutions can be replaced by a more plastic material. Landfill covers made of a synthetic reinforced polyethylene can create greater safety for the environment, combined with being easier to use, and less costly than other alternative daily covers. They can also be re-used.

Daily cover must contain gasses generated by the garbage, control odor and dust, minimize windblown litter, discourage birds, and prevent pests and the spread of disease. Geomembranes do all these things very well, as well as reducing fire risk, improving community tolerance of the landfill, and most importantly, shedding surface water efficiently – thus avoiding adding to the leachate.

The light yet tear-resistant qualities of geosynthetic materials make them easy for operators to install. To further reduce the risk of tears or holes, manufacturers can create the liner in very large or even one piece to fit the landfill size.

The benefit of using this type of cover is that it reusable. This saves cities a lot of money. Also, because operators don’t have to add additional materials to landfill, the lifespan of the site is extended. The combination of a good landfill liner and an alternative daily cover significantly decreases the long term impact the landfill has on the environment.

The federal government provides oversight of landfill operations to ensure that improvements are made Landfilthat make them more environmentally friendly. This involves tracking recycling and composting efforts. Both government and operators are also exploring ways of generating energy from waste processes.

The United States generates 262.4 metric tons of solid waste each year. That number has grown each year – but efforts in recycling and composting have caused it to plateau, and since 2005, the growth has been minimal.

Bottom Line

Landfills are becoming better about preserving the environment. Their efforts, coupled with increased recycling efforts, are improving how waste is managed in the United States. The development of synthetic materials for landfill liners and alternative daily cover has significantly advanced the design and management of landfills.

Managing Occupational Risks in the Renewable Energy Sector

According to recent estimates, the renewable energy sector employs 12 million people worldwide. Keeping workers safe is vital in any industry but as the use of clean energies rapidly expands around the globe, more workers are putting themselves at risk climbing wind turbines, maintaining remote solar panels and dealing with flammable biofuels. By identifying and managing the risks involved, a range of safety interventions can be used to reduce the risk of injury to workers.

drone at a wind-farm

Reducing The Risks of Wind Turbine Maintenance

As more wind turbines are constructed, the number of accidents associated with their maintenance and repair has also risen. When a worker is injured on site, a personal injury lawyer will investigate the circumstances and potential causes of the accident. As well as helping to secure appropriate compensation for injured workers, the information gathered can be used to prevent similar accidents happening again.

To further limit the risks to turbine workers, drones are regularly used to carry out hazardous and labor-intensive jobs including the inspection of turbine blades. Drones can now be equipped with extra tools such as AI which enables them to store, analyze and report the data they collect to wind farm managers.

Mitigating the Dangers of Solar Panel Installation

Due to their placement on high roofs and in remote locations, solar energy systems also pose a risk to workers when they are installing, maintaining and repairing solar panels. Taking into account the amount of power generated, working with solar energy is three times more hazardous than wind power and results in up to 150 deaths around the world each year. Risks include exposure to high temperatures, electric shocks and falls, all of which are increased if work has to be carried out in adverse weather conditions.

solar panels pigeon issue

To mitigate these risks, safety interventions to mitigate these risks can include the increased use of specially designed training modules, the automation of certain tasks and changes in shift patterns to avoid fatigue amongst workers.

Reducing Exposure to Hazards in BioFuel Production

While biofuels produced from renewable resources such as plant biomass and vegetable oils are safe to use, they can be dangerous to manufacture. They are highly flammable and can produce potentially hazardous chemical reactions.  These can result in burns and other  injuries caused by exposure to fire, chemicals or explosions. Manufacturers of biofuels should follow the standard safety guidelines for working with chemicals which include storing products correctly, providing adequate personal protection equipment to workers and training them to handle hazardous substances safely.

hazards of biofuel production

As many biofuel businesses are small, in the US they can access consultation services from the Occupational Health and Safety Administration which will give them advice on programs to protect workers and what to do in the event of an emergency.

Bottom Line

As more workers are employed by the renewable industry, the numbers of occupational accidents and injuries are likely to rise. By identifying and managing risks as they become known, safety interventions can be implemented promptly.

PSA System for Biogas Upgradation

Pressure swing adsoprtion, also known as PSA, is emerging as the most popular biogas upgradation technology in many parts of the world. A typical PSA system is composed of four vessels in series that are filled with adsorbent media which is capable of removing water vapor, CO2, N2 and O2 from the biogas stream.

During operation, each adsorber operates in an alternating cycle of adsorption, regeneration and pressure buildup. Dry biogas enters the system through the bottom of one of the adsorbers during the first phase of the process. When passing through the vessel, CO2, N2 and O2 are adsorbed onto the surface of the media. The gas leaving the top of the adsorber vessel contains more than 97% CH4

Biogas upgradation through PSA takes place over 4 phases: pressure build-up, adsorption, depressurization and regeneration. The pressure buildup is achieved by equilibrating pressure with a vessel that is at depressurization stage. Final pressure build up occurs by injecting raw biogas. During adsorption, CO2 and/or N2 and/or O2 are adsorbed by the media and the gas exits as CH4.

Depressurization is performed by equalizing with a second pressurizing vessel, and regeneration is achieved at atmospheric pressure, leaving a gas that contains high concentrations of CH4 to be re-circulated. During the regeneration phase, the bed must be regenerated by desorbing (or purging) the adsorbed gases. Purging is accomplished by reducing the pressure in the bed and back-flushing it with some of the concentrated gas product. The gas pressure released from one vessel is used by the other, thus reducing energy consumption and compressor capital costs.

Special adsorption materials are used as a molecular sieve, preferentially adsorbing the target gas species at high pressure. The adsorbent media is usually zeolites (crystalline polymers), carbon molecular sieves or activated carbon. Aside from their ability to discriminate between different gases, adsorbents for PSA systems are usually very porous materials chosen because of their large surface areas.

6 Alternatives For Small Business Financing

The requirements that a small business must meet to get financing from traditional lenders are challenging to achieve, particularly for startups. Often, business owners have to go through a drawn-out process, in addition to providing collateral before they can get the much-needed funds for their businesses. The credit score also comes into play, and a business owner must prove the ability to repay the loan without any difficulties.

However, business needs such as challenges with working capital won’t wait for you to build your creditworthiness before getting financing. Fortunately, there are other alternative financing options you can look at and get quick financing without as much hassle as with traditional lenders. Look at these six alternative options for financing your small business:

Alternatives For Small Business Financing

1. Merchant Cash Advances

This is one of the quickest ways to get financing as a small business, although relatively expensive compared to most other financing options. In merchant cash advances, the financier offers you a lump sum amount and then recovers the sum. Typically, the cash advance buys the merchant rights to a percentage of your sales.

For instance, if you get a business cash advance from Credibly or any other merchant, you’ll need to give them a portion of credit or debit card sales until you pay the advance in full. It’s a convenient but relatively expensive way of acquiring financing for your small business. Using a merchant cash advance is an excellent financing option if you’re struggling with bad credit or can’t qualify for other financing options available for small businesses.

2. Invoice Factoring

Another alternative financing option available for small businesses is invoice factoring. It can be a quick solution to cash flow problems in a business. In essence, you’ll be selling your unpaid invoices or account receivables to a factoring company instead of waiting for your clients to pay. The application process is usually straightforward and takes a short time to process.

There are two common ways to factor in your invoices: recourse and non-recourse. Your business will have to buy back all the invoices that the factoring company couldn’t collect from your customers in recourse factoring. On the other hand, the factoring company assumes all the risk in non-recourse factoring.

3. Peer-To-Peer (P2P) Lending

P2P lending happens over the internet between the lender and the small business and eliminates the need for intermediaries. This quality makes this type of financing quite appealing to many small business owners. The transaction happens through a P2P website that connects borrowers to investors in an easy and hassle-free process.

However, like many other types of financing, including when taking personal loans, your financial credit score needs to be in good shape if you are to qualify for P2P funding. All you need is to research on a reputable P2P site and register.

4. Purchase Order Financing

This alternative financing method is similar to invoice factoring, except that you use outstanding purchase orders. You can use your purchase orders to get financing from a lender by advancing you money to cover costs associated with the order. To benefit most from this type of financing, you need to have a large order from a reputable customer.

It also helps if you’ve already signed an agreement with your customers such that it’s almost certain that the order will go through. However, ensure you have clear terms on costs and fees with the financier. You don’t want to receive unpleasant surprises when the financier gives you their charges.

5. Business Line Of Credit

A business line of credit gives you access to a predetermined amount of money, typically based on your company’s cash flow and credit rating. This type of financing is more like using a credit card than taking a loan. You don’t have to use the credit line until you need it, and you won’t be charged interest on any funds you don’t utilize.

You’ll be required to start making payments immediately after borrowing the funds. As you pay the debt, your credit line is replenished. This means that as long as you can borrow and repay, you’ll always have access to the available funds within your limit.

6. Small Business Grants

Grants for small businesses allow business owners to start or expand their businesses without worrying about repaying the money they receive. Government agencies, nonprofits, and corporations often target and offer grants to specific types of businesses or specific industries.

personal loan faq

Businesses that don’t have access to traditional debt financing can benefit from small business grants. Free funding has the drawback of being sought after by everyone. Finding and applying for grants is a time-consuming process, but the results could be worth the effort in the long run.

Takeaway

The requirements by traditional lenders before financing small businesses can lead to more of them missing out on the much-needed funds to grow their businesses. Alternative financing options are a game-changer. Business owners now have a new way to get cash, bypassing traditional lending sources. Channels like those discussed above allow small business owners to get financing when they need it most.

How to Choose Tile for Your Living Room?

What role does your living room play for you? It is usually the heart of the whole house. It is the place where you socialize when you have visitors or the place where you relax with your loved ones at night. Therefore, it is natural that there are a lot of things to consider when choosing tiles for your living room. Follow this guide to find the right tile that suits your lifestyle.

1. Ensure a Suitable Atmosphere

Getting a space that has a homely feel is an essential factor to consider when choosing tiles for the living room. After all, this is the room where your loved ones and guests spend the most time. So how do you choose the tiles for your living room?

tile-living-room

To make it a comfortable space for everyone, choosing the right colors is essential. It is well documented that the colors of an environment can affect the human subconscious. Therefore, the color scheme in your living room should favor soft colors and avoid extremes. Some of the favorite colors used in living rooms are brown, beige, gray, and amber colors.

Consistency in how you choose the tiles for your living room between the flooring and the furniture design is also crucial in getting the perfect space.

2. Choose Wood Look Tile, if You Like the Aesthetics of Hardwood

Hardwood floors look excellent in the living room, but they scratch easily and can be challenging to maintain. If you like aesthetics of hardwood but want the hassle, go for ceramic wood look tile. It is really durable and resistant to both moisture and scratches, which means your floors will look great for a long time.

You can buy ceramic lumber that mimics the look of almost any type of tree. Keep in mind that real wood floors are softer and warmer than ceramic wood, which can be hard and cold. However, ceramic wood look floors are easier to clean than real hardwood floors. This type of flooring can be expensive to install, however. Car title loans can be the perfect way to cover those costs, and have your living room looking stunning!

engineered-wood-flooring

3. Pick Ceramic or Porcelain Tile for a Solid and Dense Flooring

Ceramic and porcelain look-alike, but porcelain is slightly denser and slightly less porous than ceramic. If you have children and pets, this can be a good option as it can handle a bit more action (and is less likely to get stained).

Porcelain generally costs a bit more than ceramic, but it usually lasts a bit longer. Porcelain tiles come in many different designs and colors, so you’ll have plenty of options!

4. Install Mosaic Tile for a Patterned and Textured Flooring

Mosaic tile may look strange for a living room, but it can really add a lot of color, texture, and artistry to your space. It works well if you want the rest of the room to be simple, and at the same time, you want an explosion of color or design in the room.

Mosaic tile is ideal if you want to create a design yourself, it lasts a long time and is easy to clean.

5. Consider Durability and Maintenance

When choosing tiles for your living room, durability is an essential factor to consider. Not only does your living room floor get a lot of human traffic, but it’s also exposed to falling and spills objects that can cause damage.

For durability, porcelain tile is always the top priority. Porcelain tile is harder than old-style ceramic tile and most natural stone tiles. Regardless of the finish, the hard body ensures that they will retain their original appearance for a long time.

Most porcelain tiles are stain-resistant, which means they are virtually maintenance-free. This is because most porcelain tiles are pre-glazed or sealed, so surface porosity is kept to a minimum.

6. Choose Flooring that Suits Your Daily Lifestyle

Don’t buy fancy flooring for entertainment purposes. If your floors are regularly subjected to heavy traffic, you shouldn’t add glazed or slippery tiles to your rooms, particularly when you have children or pets in the house.

Having a tile floor makes you vulnerable to slips and minor accidents. Therefore, consider the daily needs of your family members when choosing a tile for your living room.

wood-flooring

Parquet wood floors are back in vogue

7. Make a Small Room Looks Bigger by Choosing Lighter Colored Tiles

Ceramic and porcelain are decent options for small living rooms, as are all other tiles in white, beige, or cream. Light colors give the room a more open look.

Ultimately, you need your tiles to be a color that you don’t mind looking at every day. Take home samples of different colors and styles to see what works best for your living room before making a final decision.

8. Choose Large Tiles to Make Your Living Room Appear Spacious

The larger the tiles, the bigger your room will appear. Look for tiles that are 13 x13 inches (33 x33 cm) or larger. There will be fewer grout lines in your living room, simplifying the space.

That also means you have to clean fewer grout lines. Larger tile looks more modern than smaller ones. However, remember that small tiles are more slip-resistant than large tiles.

9. Select a Matching Grout to Create a More Cohesive Room

If you don’t want your floor to get a lot of attention, choose a grout that matches the tile of your choice. Similar colors will make the tiles appear to flow together, making the living room perfect.

An off-white or gray grout will bond light tiles and draw less attention to the floor. Select a grout that matches the color of the tiles for the perfect look.

10. Take Pictures of Your Furniture and Paints to See How Things Blend Together.

Take some photos of your living room before going to the store. Think about the decorations, doors, curtains, furniture, and artwork that you have in the living room. It will always be tough to say precisely how things will look together. Still, having the photos should help you narrow down your options.

If you have fabric or paint samples from when you painted or bought new furniture, take those with you too. Be sure to bring photos of the room with you when you buy tiles.

What is Revegetation and Why is it Important?

Revegetation is a vital step in facilitating a successful soil restoration in disturbed lands. It can occur naturally through plant succession and colonization or accelerated human-driven land changes meant to repair damage caused by severe events like floods, wildfire, or mining. The original technique involved applying fertilizer and seeds to vulnerable lands.

For those unfamiliar with revegetation, you’ll want to review its benefits to prevent soil erosion successfully, reduce wind erosion, and boost soil’s ability to soak up water that runs off the surface. Without employing revegetation-based erosion control strategies, plant communities and delicate habitats may sustain avoidable damage.

revegetation

Benefits of revegetation

Unlike the normal tree planting process, revegetation requires pre-planning activities like land designing. In the designing phase, you’ll outline which type of plants to use in specific areas and perform soil compatibility studies. Proper environmental and landscape analysis are the key to successful revegetation. Proper planning ensures that you allocate money and resources wisely and fare a better chance of achieving your goals and earning a profit.

Some native plants can only grow in specific areas, so it’s essential to identify which plant types can endure your region’s climate. Homeowners complete the revegetation process for various reasons, including its ability to benefit governments, private individuals, communities, and companies, alike.

If you need a solid Colorado seed company that provides conservation and reclamation seeds, check out Granite Seed; they’ve been implementing soil erosion control measures and distributing products across North America for more than 30 years. For optimal results, consult the professionals.

Soil erosion control

Revegetation is crucial, as the risk of erosion damage increases when the land is bare or contains little vegetation cover. Plants offer a protective barrier and prevent soil erosion by slowing down water runoff and encouraging more water to seep into the ground. Additionally, the roots hold the soil intact while protecting the plant itself from powerful rushing water that can wash it away. This plant life also assists in stabilizing slopes and embankments, lowering the terrain’s susceptibility to landslides.

Trees, grass, crop residue, and plants offer ultimate soil coverage and intercept all falling raindrops, acting as the most effective soil erosion control measure. Mulch provides additional protection from wind and rain before the newly-planted seeds take root while minimizing soil moisture loss during prolonged dry periods.

Mulching is crucial in halting destructive erosion and establishing vegetation in places with severe exposure to natural and human-driven erosion. Experts advise utilizing hydromulching in such conditions. The absence of windbreakers like crop residue, trees, and shrubs leads to more soil displacement, thus increasing erosion and abrasion.

Conservation

One of the primary roles of revegetation is to connect lost patches of natural habitat. It serves as a crucial tool in areas that have suffered extensive natural vegetation clearances like urban environments. Research shows that revegetation can facilitate the restoration of significant urban bird populations by connecting the existing habitat with new patches, enhancing bird species diversity.

Developing large habitat patches is an effective method of increasing bird abundance. Therefore, revegetation plans should carefully consider how to connect the new vegetation patches with the existing habitats for the sanctity of bird populations. Revegetating agricultural zones, in specific, can encourage breeding.

For the most part, revegetation favors thriving and common species of birds over declining, rare types. Despite its favoritism, revegetation provides a home to millions of species like small mammals, insects, and birds, when successful.

Soil fertility restoration

Activities like mining lead to extensive topsoil damages as reinstatement, stripping, and stockpiling causes soil degradation. This damage occurs through accelerated soil erosion, soil structure loss, soil PH reduction, organic matter depletion, compaction, reduced microbial activity, and heavy metal accumulation. Topsoil management is essential for restoring fertility and minimizing nutrient losses.

Revegetation via forest vegetation restores soil fertility by improving the capacity to exchange cations, organic matter, and available nutrients while sustaining biological activities and improving physical conditions.

This method is beneficial, but it takes prolonged periods to regenerate the soil to its original state. Some of the ideal trees for revegetating mined lands are grasses, legumes, trees, and herbs N-fixing species. The favorable tree species are Leucaena, Acacia, and other acid-tolerant legume trees, which provide the soils with substantial organic matter.

Pollution reduction

Revegetation and reforestation play a significant role in minimizing pollution. The net carbon release from deforestation was estimated at 1-2 billion tonnes in 1980 and between 1.5- 3 billion in 1989. There’s enough evidence to verify a significant increase in deforestation since 1980 in multiple tropical areas. Revegetation offers a long term solution to sequestering carbon (IV) oxide because as trees mature, they eliminate Carbon (IV) oxide, thus slowing down carbon buildup in the atmosphere.

Beautifies the landscape

Besides purifying the air by filtering pollutants and harmful dust and gifting human beings with life-supporting oxygen, vegetation also makes the environment beautiful. Revegetating bare land makes it attractive, restores its appearance, and can even boost its value.

college-green

If you notice your yard is looking dull or lifeless, vegetation can add color to a property’s outdoor living spaces. For example, trees bear beautiful flowers, magnificent leaves, and fruits, which can sprinkle vibrant accent colors throughout your back and front yard. For more information on how to keep your trees healthy, check out this article.

It would be best to seek an expert before embarking on your revegetation project, as it can be a meticulous process. A revegetation expert will offer expert insight and advice on how to proceed.

Home Gym Equipment To Own Today

Your home is the only sanctuary that will stand strong even through challenges and struggles. Making space for personal fitness and health can be an essential tool for improving your quality of life. You can do this and save a huge amount of money on gym membership fees. But why do you have to spend your time and money on the gym when you can be fit at your home? With this, you will never have to deal with bad gym music again.

Having exercise gear will help you stay consistent with your routine. This is true whether you have the latest gym equipment or just a yoga mat. With this, you can turn your home bodyweight circuit into a full-fledged body conditioning plans.

Now, you can cancel your expensive gym membership and grab this gear so you will never have to leave your home. Here are some of the things you can’t miss for your personal space:

Battle Ropes

Challenge yourself to let your cardio workout be better with the use of these battle ropes. Do the waves, slams, and other exercises. However, you must have plenty of space at your home and have a stronger anchor. Grab this from home gym equipment Australia

Gym Rings

If you are thinking about old-school workouts, then you can take these gym rings. Hang on it the entire day and build your body. If you are thinking about adding a twist on nail kips or pull-ups, this can be a great addition.

Heavy Bags

If doing the cardio is not your thing, this heavy bag is a nice alternative for getting rid of those body fats. This can aid you to build your power and speed. With the wraps and gloves included, you will find yourself ready to rumble.

Kettlebells

If you are planning for an all-around activity, you must have one kettlebell. You can perform various exercises even with limited space with the use of a kettlebell.

Power Cage

If you have enough space at your home, then you must get a power cage. You can achieve lots of exercises with the classic power cage. With this, the execution of various conditioning and strength workouts are achievable. For example, barbell squat, bench press, deadlift, and a lot more exercise.

Power Tower

Meanwhile, if you don’t have enough space for full power equipment, you can try some compact options like the power tower. This can help you pull off chin-ups, pull-ups, dips, and a lot more exercises.

Small Barbell

If you don’t have enough space for the Olympic-sized barbell, you can have this smaller option instead. It weighs around 15 kg and it is 6 feet long. This will not consume much room, unlike the standard barbell size. However, the small barbell can hold 700 lbs of weight. Rest assured that your workout won’t be limited because of its stature. Have this small barbell from home gym equipment Australia.

Yoga Mat

You don’t need to perform the vinyasa to make the yoga mat useful at your home. You can use the yoga mat for basic stretching or abs exercises. Thus, try one today!

How Eco-friendly Batteries Can Benefit From Biomass Energy?

Organisations and more importantly, battery manufacturers are recognising the need to overcome the problem of global warming. The objective is to develop ways of producing carbon-neutral sources of energy. One of the areas currently being explored is the use of biomass resources to create sustainable, eco-friendly batteries which are suitable for use across a wide range of business sectors. With different forms of biomass energy available, the challenge is finding products that provide high performance along with being commercially viable.

Biomass-Resources

A quick glance at popular biomass resources

What is Biomass Energy?

Biomass is something that we are all familiar with. It is derived from plants and animals and is now becoming an increasingly viable form of renewable energy. Initially, the energy comes from the sun, and in plants, it is converted via photosynthesis.

Regardless of its origin, the biomass will either be converted into biogas, biofuels or burnt directly to create heat. Of course, different sources of biomass produce varying amounts of energy, affecting their efficiency. As a result, high precision battery testing equipment is required to ascertain their viability.

Forms of Biomass Used for Energy

1. Wood and Products

Renewable sources of timber and the by-products of wood such as wood chip are burned in the home to create heat and in industry, burned to generate electricity. Typically, softwood such as pine is used as it is quicker to replenish than hardwood such as oak.

2. Agricultural Crops and Waste

With large amounts of waste produced from the farming sector, it is natural that this is an ideal source of energy. The materials are either converted to liquid biofuels or burned directly to generate heat or electricity.

3. Food and Household Waste

The amount of waste households produced has been increasing annually, and up until recently, the majority was disposed of it landfill sites. Nowadays, this garbage is thermochemically processed in waste-to-energy plants to produce electricity or converted into biogas at existing landfill sites.

4. Animal Manure and Human Waste

We frequently hear about the link between animal waste and global warming. Inevitably, the same is also true of human waste. Both can be converted into biogas and burned as a fuel.

How is Biomass Converted to Energy?

Biomass can be converted to energy using different methods depending on the source. Solid forms of biomass such as garbage and wood are generally burned to created heat while other types will be initially converted into either biogas or biofuels such as ethanol or other biodiesel-related fuels used to power vehicles or generators.

Human sewage and animal manure are placed in vessels known as digesters to create biogas. Liquid fuels such as biodiesel are derived from oils and animal fats. Any form of biomass must be burned at some point to generate energy.

Biomass and Batteries

The most common form of battery used in domestic appliances and mobile devices is lithium-ion batteries. However, the performance and capacity are still below what is demanded by manufacturers and consumers. As a result, manufacturers are investigating alternatives such as biomass. Naturally, high precision testing equipment such as that produced by Arbin is required to assess their potential and commercial viability accurately.

The potential of elemental sulphur has been explored although due to its poor electrical conductivity, has failed to make it onto the mass market. A composite of sulphur and porous carbon appears to be a far more viable option although this is a complicated and time-consuming process.

Carbon is one of the best conductors available, albeit at a relatively high cost. Therefore, the objective is to source carbon from biowaste, such as popular catkin that can be combined with sulphur. Popular catkin is a highly porous carbon and ideal for Li/S batteries.

High Precision Battery Testing

High precision battery testing is required to establish the commercial viability of popular catkin and other biowaste products. Marginal improvement could have a significant impact and give cell manufacturers a competitive advantage over their rivals.

Naturally, extensive research needs to be conducted to assess a variety of bioproducts that are presenting themselves as potentially viable alternative products. Increasing battery capacity and battery life is something that is required in several sectors such as with EVs, mobile devices and home appliances. Major manufacturers will be eagerly awaiting the findings of testing that is currently ongoing.