Book Review | Wolf Haven by Brenda Peterson & Annie Marie Musselman

wolf haven cover.jpegPartially funded by a Getty Images grant, Wolf Haven : Sanctuary and the Future of Wolves in North America‘s collaboration between photographer Annie Marie Musselman and writer Brenda Peterson yields an informative and striking book about the history and ongoing battle of North America’s endangered wolves and offers readers a comprehensive introduction to Washington’s Wolf Haven sanctuary. In addition to being a lovely coffee table photo book, scientific and political backstory are woven in to help readers understand the hot topics of the wolves endangerment and conservation efforts. Individual wolves from the sanctuary are also introduced, some with more troubled pasts than others.

Overall, this book is very well done and would be palatable to a wide range of audience. The writing is clear and easy to follow without being overly scientific or poetic. This said, a few sentences are slightly embellished and a tad flowery. Most of the photos are truly gorgeous and appropriately captioned with only a few exceptions. Wolf Haven would serve as a great introduction to anyone looking to find out more regarding the story of endangered wolves in North America. Photography fans will also not be disappointed with this gem. Check it out from a library near you.

I received this book as a Goodreads giveaway in exchange for an honest review. Thanks to the authors/publisher for participating in the giveaway.

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What’s Net-Zero Water?

Bertschi School - solar panels, green living roofNet-zero water is a concept that entails separating your water system from the rest of the grid. When it rains, the water you collect in your rain barrels or on your roof will be the water that allows you to wash dishes in the sink or flush your toilet. Your used water will be treated on-site which allows for re-use several times. Water is divided into three categories: rainwater, graywater, and blackwater, depending on the level of pathogens. Both rainwater and graywater (water from sinks and showers) can be treated to be used later as potable water, but blackwater (dispoal or wastewater) cannot be made potable.

One recent example of a building working toward net-zero water is the Bertschi School in Seattle.  This article explains how the school is working to accomplish net-zero water including a composting toilet and a wall of plants. As water continues to be one of the most important and limited resources, net-zero water is getting more attention. While the standard may be too challenging for many, it’s always helpful to think of ways to help conserve water. This list offers 100 suggestions for water conservation.

GreenHouse Students Love Lake Mendota

The GreenHouse is a residential learning community in the Cole Hall dorm where students are able to learn about sustainable practices through action and involvement. It focuses on the ability to connect students “to social and environmental advocacy organizations on campus and in the community” and allows them the opportunity to take a hands-on approach.

Lake Mendota: We Love Our Lake—We Love Our Land is one seminar of several available exclusively to GreenHouse residents. This field trip based course, listed under Rural Sociology, is meant to “provide the opportunity to see first-hand the strong relationships between land use activities and the water quality of the lake” (course syllabus) and is being taught by Carolyn Betz, a science writer at the UW Aquatic Sciences Center. Learning is constantly taking place out of the classroom for students living in GreenHouse. A recent UW News article gives another example and explains a bit more about the residential community.

For more information about the current happenings at GreenHouse, see their blog or Facebook Page.

Photo from GreenHouse blog.