Green future is possible! Here’s an example, the eco house of Simon Dale

The house; It was built by myself and my father in law with help from passers by and visiting friends. 4 months after starting we were moved in and cosy. I estimate 1000-1500 man hours and £3000 put in to this point. Not really so much in house buying terms (roughly £60/sq m excluding labour).The house was built with maximum regard for the environment and by reciprocation gives us a unique opportunity to live close to nature. Being your own (have a go) architect is a lot of fun and allows you to create and enjoy something which is part of yourself and the land rather than, at worst, a mass produced box designed for maximum profit and convenience of the construction industry. Building from natural materials does away with producers profits and the cocktail of carcinogenic poisons that fill most modern buildings. Main tools used: chainsaw, hammer and 1 inch chisel, little else really. Oh and by the way I am not a builder or

carpenter, my experience is only having a go at one similar house 2yrs before and a bit of mucking around inbetween. This kind of building is accessible to anyone. My main relevant skills were being able bodied, having self belief and perseverence and a mate or two to give a lift now and again.This building is one part of a low-impact or permaculture approach to life. This sort of life is about living in harmony with both the natural world and ourselves, doing things simply and using appropriate levels of technology. These sort of low cost, natural buildings have a place not only in their own sustainability, but also in their potential to provide affordable housing which allows people access to land and the opportunity to lead more simple, sustainable lives. For example this house was made to house our family whilst we worked in the woodland surrounding the house doing ecological woodland management and setting up a forest garden, things that would have been impossible had we had to pay a regular rent or mortgage. Why are we doing this? First answer: It’s fun. Living your own life, in your own way is rewarding. Following our dreams keeps our souls alive. Second answer: Our society is almost entirely dependent on the availability of increasing amounts of fossil fuel energy. This has brought us to the point at which our supplies are dwindling and our planet is in ecological catastrophe. We have no viable alternative energy source and no choice but to reduce our energy consumption. The sooner this

change can be begun, the more comfortable it will be.For our energy consumption to decrease we must reduce consumption and dramatically increase the productivity of our land. This will require developing infrastructure and skills to enable locally self-reliant living. The simplest, sustainable solutions involve small-scale permaculture type land management systems centred around individual or small groups of dwellings. There is significant and growing energy at the grass-roots to start implementing these low impact developments. This enthusiasm comes from a combination of intellectual concern and the innate appeal of living closer to nature. The major obstacle is access to land. The price of land with residential planning permission is not commensurate with the income from this type of living. This will change, but these projects need time to develop and reach productivity. A few people are taking direct action but the numbers are far short of the critical mass that could be realised. If allowances can be made within the planning system to grant access to land, and the right to live on it, to those wishing to live this life, we can allow a grass-roots tide of people to make real progress towards a sustainable society. Ecological crisis is not a future possibility but a current reality. Current rates of species extinction are at their highest since that of the dinosaurs. Ninety percent of the large fish in our seas have gone. Anthropogenic climate change is happening one hundred times faster than our best models have predicted. This change threatens not only the extinction of individual species but the collapse or death of entire ecosystems. We are faced with the question of whether it is too late for

us to take any effective action. The fact that this crisis is already happening means that the question is not to do with whether it can be averted but what we can do to stop exacerbating it and to cope with its effects. It is not about what we can do tomorrow but what we can do today. As such the answer is no, it is not too late, anyone can today take locally effective actions.Climate change and ecological crisis require an urgent and dramatic cut backs in fossil fuel use. If we do not move first, they may well be forced on us soon by dwindling supplies and an over-extended global economy. There is currently no other viable energy source to continue our escalating growth.The transition to energy decent will be difficult. However, the sooner we can start preparing for it, the easier it will be. We need to make local communities self reliant and resilient. We also need to restore the fertility and productivity of the land. We need to develop and adapt supporting infrastructure as well as learning basic skills. permaculture is an effective approach which we can use to make these changes.There is a strong grass-roots enthusiasm to make changes in this direction as well as accelerating positive feedbacks. If a workable route can be made within the planning system to grant access to land, and the right to live on it, to those wishing make these changes, we can allow a rising tide of people to make real progress towards a sustainable society. If a workable route is not found, we will be reliant upon the increasing numbers of people ready to take to the land without permission. News from:  Simon Dale

Advertise your Green company with Good News, for a greener world! Click here: ECO partners

Support the only e-magazine dedicated to the good news with your donation ≈ a € x a smile

Editing & Publicity Tel. +39380 2664166

Share This Post