Now I’m in the midst of building planning again, but this time based on the new building laws. This time a passive house using straw bale techniques is being planned. This according to the EU’s norms. It also meets the specification demands for passive houses in Sweden – energy efficient homes as a basis. What is a passive house? A passive house is a building in which one has reduced the heat losses so much that no radiators or floor heating are needed. On the coldest days light preheating of fresh air is enough to keep the house warm. The reduced heating losses are achieved through building the house so tight that ventilation takes place through the ventilation system and not through gaps. That means that one can recycle the warmth in the heated air. The house is also insulated better and has fewer thermal bridges. This time the planning is taking place with an Austrian eco-architect. This is because Ecotopia’s energy advisor is Austrian and the language bridges ought to be as few as the thermal bridges 😉 In addition we cannot find wheat straw in the local society that meets the quality demands. This has been a problem throughout the whole of Ecotopia’s construction. In Austria there are farmers that deliver high quality straw bales in the desired size for straw bale house building. It is certainly absurd that one must import straw bales! We really hope that a Scanian farmer invests in this in the future. So great is the interest for straw bale building in this country.
On the 20 November Hans-Eric Hagentoft, who is professor in building and environmental technology at Chalmers, is giving a lecture. The theme evening concerns House insulation and Low energy consumption. (Details in Swedish >>> here)
The forest garden’s green manure is as green as it can be. The peppers are harvested and seeds of every variety are lying at rest. We are hoping they grow just as well in 2015. I just want to share the life-affirming seeds with friends in the seed bank and community cultivation group. Fresh salad is still standing beautifully in the ground and the carnations are blooming in the flowerbed. But the warm autumn means that large parts of the autumn-sown rapeseed are at risk of being destroyed. The plants have become too large and will have difficulty surviving when the winter cold comes. It is not easy to be a farmer today in the time of climate change. It demands new thinking and innovation, besides lowered emissions of course. On Sunday my friend Sylvia and I went around Stenshuvud. It was a wonderful trek in the forest, on the heath, and along the coast. There are certainly wonderful areas of nature in Österlen! See the lovely pictures she took 🙂