The case for a EcoLiving Solutions Center (EcoCenter)
While we have the Global Ecovillage Movement, and there are some compelling projects such as Gaviotas, Auroville and Finhorn that have put in place “Holistic Sustainability”, there is a need for a clear cut approach to building Modular EcoCenters.
The benefits of modular ecocenter model is to develop technologies and approaches that can be easily and rapidly incorporated into comprehensive global effort to create a global network of EcoCenters/EcoVillages or Sustainable Habitats.
This is based on a simple concept of considering the basic Ecocenter prototype, scaling that out so that it completes the key criteria of holistic sustainability such as the important building blocks needed for a holistic sustainability model:
- Biomass Nutrients Recycling – Thanks to Per Bondesen who reminded me that three is no such thing as waste in nature and thus one goal is to work to eliminate the word from not only the human vocabulary but the human consciousness. This includes everything in the human system habitat that is from the biosphere. And of course the linkages with Water and Food Production. Water should be used to move these nutrients from one stage to another rather than as solids because its more efficient to make them water soluble than to have move them as solids. Recycling of these nutrients ultimately involves there use again as sources of food habitat supplies and in some cases the building blocks for the habitats themselves
- Water Management and Conservation – Water is life and so it must be treated with care. Primary sources of water should be collected via surface such as rain water, river water, or recycled from waste water. Future sources may also include the air. Subsurface wells should be used only as backup systems in the case of severe and prolonged drought.
- Sustainable Food Production – Systems make use of nutrient loads through recycling as mentioned above in 1 and effectively used in greenhouses, gardens and fields. Greenhouses should when possible using organic hydroponics with fertigated water is recycled through the system from fish or other animal sources to minimize work and maximize productivity
- Renewable Energy Systems – Interconnectivity within various subsystems mentioned such as using biomass nutrients recycling to create biofuels as in the case of biogas, gasification and alcohol production. Also includes the design passive solar systems such as greenhouse to help heat human habitats
- Sustainable Building Materials – Includes the use of local low impact materials when possible with heavy insulation and the maximum use of solar gain to heat the habitat
- Integrating Culture & Art into EcoCenter Design –
- Modular Systems Design –
The EcoLiving Solution Center is a place designed to offer a prototype of locally relevant EcoLiving Solution Sets.
The basic tools and resources sets are:
- Appropriate Technologies in the EcoLiving Solutions Sets
- Information Technologies including modelling systems, control systems and social networking tools
- Global and Local Networks with the glue being the Information technology
- Holistic Sustainability Approach as the driving methodology