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New Skills for 2015: Short Courses

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2015: A crucial year for our changing planet

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Power in the Land

We are excited to hear that the North Wales arts collective X-10 are opening their new show Power in the Land this weekend. The dynamic, diverse and multi-talented group of ten artists were inspired by the closure and decommisioning of the last nuclear power station in Wales – Wylfa in Anglesey – at the end of 2015. The resulting work – two years in the making – is an engaging medley of work in video, sound, performance, installation and... Read More ››

World Wetland Day 2016

The Centre for Alternative Technology sits in the Dyfi Biosphere, a UNESCO world heritage site. We were give the status largely due to our proximity to Cors Dyfi, a unique peat bogland site. Wetlands host a huge variety of life, protect our coastlines, provide natural sponges against river flooding, and store carbon dioxide to regulate climate change. Unfortunately, wetlands are often viewed as wasteland, and more than 64% of our wetlands have disappeared since 1900. Many of the short... Read More ››

Holly Owen – artist in residence

Holly Owen, environmental artist, came to live at the Centre for Alternative Technology seven months ago as our artist in residence. Holly’s time here has been inspiring, not just for her artistic practise, but for all the staff that have been a part of her continuing journey into low impact art. “Playing with materials bound to the earth lifts us out of the commonplace and into a world re-imagined. Art has the ability to re-enchant our consciousness with the... Read More ››

The Low Carbon Breakfast

Here at the Centre for Alternative Technology, we run a wholly vegetarian restaurant. Catering for our own MSc. students, staff and people participating on our short courses, no-one goes hungry here. In an attempt to showcase a low or zero carbon future, we demonstrate dishes and techniques that have a decreased impact on our environment. Laura Blake, CAT nutritionist, says, “Reducing your red meat consumption is the single most effective and important thing you can do to lower your... Read More ››

The Heathrow 13: Airport expansion or a taming of the few?

On 24 February 13 protesters against airport expansion, already convicted of ‘aggravated trespass’, will be sentenced. The Plane Stupid protesters, who occupied Heathrow’s north runway for 6 hours in July last year, are likely to be jailed for 3 months for protesting against airport expansion and its impact on climate change. Regardless of the outcome of this case, expanding Heathrow is thought to be at odds with meeting the UK Government’s legally binding targets under the Climate Change Act. The... Read More ››

Andrew is challenging the conventional role of the architect

Andrew Lees studied MSc Architecture: Advanced Environmental and Energy Studies at CAT (this course has now been replaced with MSc Sustainability and Adaptation in the Built Environment). He graduated in November 2015, and I took the opportunity to catch up with him and speak about his experience on the course. Kit Jones: What was your background before this course, and why did you decide to study at CAT? Andrew Lees: I’m an architect, and I signed up to the... Read More ››

Architecture Professional Diploma Students Exhibition – 15th January 2016

On Friday 15 January, the work of the Graduate School of the Environment’s Professional Diploma students will be exhibited at the Centre of Alternative Technology for the annual end of year exhibition. All welcome to attend this event to celebrate the students work. Read More ››

Rammed Earth Vault – a world first?

I have spent time over the last couple of months building a vault out of un-stabilised in-situ rammed earth.  Without known precedent, it is believed to be a world first.  Although there is a pre-cast example built in Austria by students under the supervision of Martin Rauch, there are significant challenges relating to the in-situ construction process that I was testing.  The vault is a 1:5 mock-up of part of my Final Major Project proposal for sustainable Greenbelt Development... Read More ››

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