Showing posts from February, 2012

The winds of change

Principle 1: Observe and interact

Proposed development near Seymour
The Cherry Tree Wind Farm, located about 15km east of Seymour, is in the early stages of development. The plan (not yet submitted to council) is to install 12-16 turbines to generate about 40-50MW, sufficient to power about 22,000 'normal' homes. The size of the project is limited mainly by the capacity of the nearby transmission lines. Infigen Energy (an Australian company) have held a couple of information sessions late last year in from people about the proposal along with an independent acoustic expert to answer questions. Unfortunately we didn't make it to the sessions. There has been quite a reaction about the proposed development's impact in the local newspapers since, most of which is quite outrageous.
The company was a late addition to the Seymour Alternative Farming Expo where they displayed some photo montages of what the windfarm could look like from various locations and to explain to peopl…

A carport without the car

Principle 7: Design from patterns to details

We've always wanted an undercover outdoor space so we can enjoy the outdoors whatever the weather. It's the sun more than the rain that prevents us from having meals outside, especially at this time of the year (mid-summer). The temptation to shade the north (sun) facing deck with sails has been there, but from what I've seen is that once they are set up they are rarely taken down when they should be; which defeats the purpose of passive solar design.
I've found that we use our north deck as a space to make the most of the sun, for drying clothes and for dehydrating food. I'm keen to make a solar cooker for use in this space too, as the deck has great access to the kitchen. In the longer term I think that a deciduous vine would be welcomed over most of the deck, leaving some space open to take advantage of the sun's free energy.
While thoughts of the best way to make use of our primary outdoor space (the deck) has be…