We only have one planet, and so we should use it wisely. You know, kind of like that saying about our health. Well, some of you may have heard that one, and if not, I believe you still get the gist of it. Think about this: our planet and its resources are like our body in a way, and so harsh treatment will eventually wear it out… Unless, of course, we change our mindset about almost everything. So, what should we do about it?
The Netherlands may have an answer to our predicament. It isn’t a new concept, mind you, but it’s certainly a rather renovated idea. Like the Amish, this project provides the means to be self-reliant, but unlike the simplicity of the Amish, this concept retains high-tech capabilities.
When it comes to being self-reliant, we’re talking about whole villages, not just one home. After all, self-sustainable living can be accomplished more efficiently by working together, family with family, friend with friend. That’s why, a community pilot project, the brainchild of ReGen Villages, a California-based developer, will see its completion in 2017. We will see entire villages which will operate from within! How amazing is that! This concept starts just outside of Amsterdam, but plans are to share these innovations with Sweden, Denmark, Germany and Norway.
Basically, what I’m getting at, is the off-grid community plan will use the power of modern technology to create and retain self-reliant wants and needs: growing foods, water filtration and the like.
ReGen Villages CEO James Ehrlich told Fast Company,
“Were really looking at starting off as the Tesla of Eco Villages. We are redefining residential real-estate development by creating these regenerative neighbourhoods, looking at first at these greenfield pieces of farmland where we can produce more organic food, more clean water, more clean energy and migrate more waste than if we just left that land to grow organic food or do permaculture there.”
With this idea, ReGen Village can be power positive, able to use its own technology to meet day-to-day needs. It’s more than just depending on your own ingenuity, it’s about having the same amenities as those who live on the grid and yet having the ability to be free from its restraints.
What’s more, is that the surplus energy generated in the Villages can be fed back to the nearby electrical grids. It helps many others as well.
Ehrlich told Fast Company,
“We anticipate literally tonnes of abundant organic food every year- from vegetables, fruits, nuts, legumes, fish, eggs, chicken, small animal dairy and protein-that can continually grow and yield in the vertical gardening system all year long.”
The project was presented at the Venice Biennale, with design completed by Effekt, a Danish architecture firm. The Village will be constructed in Almere, 20 minutes from Amsterdam, and will initially include 25 pilot homes and 100 in total when complete. Success for ReGen Village means an expansion across all of the Europe and into the Middle East. There are even plans to expand as far as Sub-Saharan Africa and India in the future.
Such an outstanding idea can definitely change the way we care for our planet. With each of us taking the responsibility for what we take and return to the earth, we can have everything we want and need without the over-abundance of chemicals and other pollutants. Maybe the ReGen Village will spread the entire world over, crossing every ocean. Until then, we do what we can to be better.
This is one reason I still have hope for our world.