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Small Building Workshop

posted 15 Oct 2009, 07:59 by Chris Gibbings   [ updated 28 Feb 2010, 21:55 by Kestrel Maher ]
We were amazed to discover the wonders of small buildings at our recent ecological building workshop held at the Bellbunya Eco-Conference Centre in Belli Park.

We were fortunate indeed to have the founder of Herman's Huts, Malcolm Holtz, as guest speaker and singer.

With sustainable buildings, small is beautiful.

Despite ever increasing household sizes, the trend in Australia has continued to be for increased size of houses.  The average house size is now 245 metres squared for a household of just over 2 people and is continuing an upward trajectory.

Many years ago genius and inventor Buckminster Fuller recognised that unless we reduced the amount of resources we used in housing, there would be wars as there would simply be not enough resources. 

The larger the house, the more energy and resources to construct, the more mate
rials to be moved and generally the more amount of energy to heat and cool. This energy usually comes from the combustion of fossil fuels, depleting these resources and emitting greenhouse gases and pollutants into the air.

Small buildings can be cosy, more manageable, less money and effort to maintain and cheaper to build - making them a more sustainable way of life. 

One key to this is efficient use of space, good organization, and keeping possessions to a manageable level.  Another exciting opportunity we explored is building community. 

Bellbunya community is modeling shared resources and how buildings can be kept small by sharing resources.