In this video John Talbott the Director of Findhorn Ecovillage presents a different way forward for development and housing. I find it interesting that he says that modern towns and cities look like cancer cells from the air.
Findhorn Ecovillage is based at a Park, in Moray, Scotland near the village of Findhorn. The ecovillage's main aim is to demonstrate a sustainable development in environmental, social, and economic terms. The idea is simple - wastage is simply energy in the wrong place.
Work began in the early 1980s under the auspices of the Findhorn Foundation but now includes a wide diversity of organisations and activities. Numerous different ecological techniques are in use, and the project has won a variety of awards, including the UN-Habitat Best Practice Designation in 1998. According to the wikipedia's sources a recent independent study concludes that the residents have the lowest ecological footprint of any community measured so far in the industrialised world.
Ecovillages are intended to be socially, economically and ecologically sustainable intentional communities. Most aim for a population of 50-150 individuals because this size is considered to be the maximum social network according to findings from sociology and anthropology.
Ecovillage members are united by shared ecological, social or spiritual values (see Intentional community). An ecovillage is often composed of people who have chosen an alternative to centralized power, water and sewage systems. Many see the breakdown of traditional forms of community, wasteful consumerist lifestyles, the destruction of natural habitat, urban sprawl, factory farming, and over-reliance on fossil fuels, as trends that must be changed to avert ecological disaster. This is certainly true of a way of seeing things that I have found myself adopting.
Ecovillage members see small-scale communities with minimal ecological impact as an alternative to the cancer like big city approach. However, don't think of them as isolationists such communities often cooperate with peer villages in networks of their own. This model of collective action is similar to that of Ten Thousand Villages, which supports the fair trade of goods worldwide.
The Living Machine TM Wastewater treatment plant at Findhorn. Photo: L. Schnadt.
See a bigger version of this image
In 1995 Jonathon Porritt opened this ecologically engineered waste water treatment system which is designed to treat sewage from a population of up to 350 people and in common with a number of other such systems also provides a research and educational facility to promote the technology. It was constructed with assistance from the European Union. The invention of Canadian scientist John Todd, they use tanks containing diverse communities of bacteria, algae, micro-organisms, numerous species of plants and trees, snails, fish and other living creatures to treat the water. At the end of the series of tanks, the resulting water is pure enough to be returned to the local water table. Plans to use the water for irrigation have been considered but not implemented to date.
Parts of this article are based on text from the wikipeida
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