In this week's Newsletter: Check out our 2018 Program Report, volunteering as a cure for loneliness, the best way to boil water and much more!
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Check Out the 2018 Solar One Program Report


2019 is almost half over, but if you want all the details about what we were doing last year, please check out our 2018 Program Report. It includes stats, program details, some great pictures and a full review of all the work we accomplished last year. We're pretty impressed with it, and we think you will be too.

You can download the 2018 Program Report from our website here. If you'd like a hard copy, you can email info@solar1.org and we will send one to you!

Can Volunteering Cure Loneliness?

Loneliness and isolation can be problems even for people living in major metropolitan areas, surrounded by other humans. In fact, it's possible that being surrounded by people but lacking connection to them makes loneliness even worse. 

But there's some good news: Two large-scale research projects, one using 6,000 subjects in the US and the other 10,000 in the UK, showed that lonely single adults who volunteered two or more hours per week lowered their levels to feel no less lonely than married people do. And the older you are, and the more often you volunteer, the more beneficial effects will be evident.

Volunteering can also help alleviate the sense of meaninglessness that often accompanies loneliness. By volunteering for social causes that are important to us, we can gain a sense of purpose, which in turn may shield us from negative health outcomes. For example, purpose in life has been linked to a reduced likelihood of stroke and greater psychological well-being.

Volunteering can also help stave off dementia and other kinds of cognitive decline, by keeping volunteers mentally stimulated and communicating with others, having a schedule and keeping it, and being needed. 

These insights may be especially relevant for the growing senior population. By 2030, one in five residents in the US will be of retirement age, may no longer have work to provide purpose and connection, and will be prone to isolation due to increased physical limitations and loved ones passing away. Given that loneliness seems to be most prevalent among those over 65 and under 25 years old, mentoring across ages could be a powerful way to volunteer and connect.

So hopefully by now, you want to sign up to volunteer with Solar One! Now that it's summer, we have lots of volunteer opportunities in Stuyvesant Cove Park, from watering and weeding to research and plant identification. Please email Park Manager Emily Curtis-Murphy for more information about volunteer opportunities, including student volunteering and corporate volunteerism, at murphy@solar1.org.

The Best Way to Boil Water

Modern day life is complex, especially for those most concerned about climate chaos. Even activities as basic as boiling water can have different climate effects depending on the source of the energy, so what's the most efficient method?

In this article from 2012, a researcher at the University of California-San Diego decided to find out what the efficiencies of the various water-heating methods in his home actually were. He tested a copper-bottomed pot without the lid, the same pot with the lid, a stove top kettle, an electric kettle and a microwave oven. He also tested the efficiency of his hot water heaters and gas oven. We won't spoil the surprise by printing the results here, but they might surprise you!

Spoiler: The electric kettle was by far the most efficient of the methods tested. If you're a tea drinker and you don't have one, what are you waiting for?!
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Upcoming Events at Solar One

5/25
Community Volunteer Day
Stuyvesant Cove Park, 23rd Street & the East River, Manhattan, 9am-12pm, free
For more information and to RSVP, email Park Manager Emily Curtis-Murphy. Pizza lunch will be served.

Upcoming Events

6/1
E-Waste Recycling with the Lower East Side Ecology Center: Queens Village
Alley Athletic Playground, 97-20 Winchester Boulevard & Union Turnpike, Queens, 10am-4pm, free

Lemon Creek Walking Tour
Amboy Road & Penton Street, Staten Island, 11am-1:30pm, free

Go Green BK! Festival
McCarren Park, 860 Lorimer Street bet Bedford & Driggs Aves, Brooklyn, 12-5pm, free

6/2
Great Fish Count
Various locations across the NYC Metro & NJ area, 9am-6:30pm, free

6/4
Meet the Fishes!
The Wetlab, 92 Hudson River Greenway, south side of Pier 40 near Houston St, Manhattan, 4-7pm, free

6/5
Conquering the Energy Code for Architects & Engineers: Commercial
Urban Green Council, 55 Broad Street, 9th Floor Blue Room, bet Beaver St & Exchange Pl, Manhattan, 9am-5pm, $199 general admission/$175 Urban Green members

East Side Coastal Resiliency Project Open House
Peter Cooper Village, 360 First Avenue, Lower Level, bet E. 21st & E. 22nd Sts, Manhattan, 4-8pm, free

6/6
Uncovering LGBTQ History at the Brooklyn Navy Yard
Brooklyn Navy Yard Building 92, 92 Flushing Avenue bet Adelphi St & Carlton Ave, Brooklyn, 8:30am-3pm, $35 general admission

Conquering the Energy Code for Architects & Engineers: Residential
Molloy College Sustainability Institute Farmingdale, 7180 Republic Airport, Farmingdale, 9am-5pm, $199 general admission/$175 Urban Green member

East Side Coastal Resiliency Project Open House
Peter Cooper Village, 360 First Avenue, Lower Level, bet E. 21st & E. 22nd Sts, Manhattan, 2-8pm, free
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