StrawJet: A Solution to Deforestation

Posted by & filed under Building, Energy Systems, Waste Systems & Recycling.

StrawJet has developed a unique process in response to agricultural waste around the world. They basically gather agricultural waste (stalks ranging from rye to corn) and bundle them tightly into ‘cables'; solid tubes of condensed stalks tightly wrapped in nylon thread. These cables are then either used as fuel (preferably in a rocket-stove like machine)… Read more »

Sinking the Lifeboats: Reflections on a Visit to Herbaiet A Nabi, South Hebron Hills

Posted by & filed under Aid Projects, Building, Community Projects, Courses/Workshops, Energy Systems, Land, Society, Village Development, Waste Systems & Recycling.

It was on the second week of the PermaNegev course that I arranged a visit to the small village of Herbaiet a Nabi in the south Hebron Hills. We were going to inspect the renewable energy installations put in place there by the Israeli NGO Comet-ME (, and to gain a better understanding of the… Read more »

Life is Simple When You Live Simply

Posted by & filed under Consumerism, Courses/Workshops, Demonstration Sites, Education Centres, Energy Systems, Society, Village Development, Waste Systems & Recycling.

My husband Tom and I live with my 11 year old son in a small Queenslander on Australia’s Sunshine Coast. Our property is 34 acres, which we have converted to a permaculture demonstration site. We now run permaculture and self-reliance courses on the property. Geese and chickens in the resource paddock, and goats on dam… Read more »

A Permaculture Consultancy in Ethiopia

Posted by & filed under Aid Projects, Building, Community Projects, Land, Village Development, Waste Systems & Recycling.

Two hundred kilometers south of Addis we turn left at a little town called Achamo, and dive off the tarmac into a dusty, bumpy adventure somewhere in the middle of nowhere in the green rolling steppes of the south Ethiopian countryside. This is my first foray into Hadiyya country. We’ve just passed Siltie, my own… Read more »

Preparing Our Children For a Resilient Future, Part I: Recycling

Posted by & filed under Consumerism, Education, Waste Systems & Recycling.

Our Role as Facilitators Having been a home educator for nearly 18 years, I have become aware of the value of hands-on experiences for helping children learn and really understand concepts — experiences that are relevant to their lives and help prepare them for a real future, in much more than just academic ways. We… Read more »

Maya Mountain Research Farm Update: Pigs and Biochar

Posted by & filed under Compost, Energy Systems, Fungi, Livestock, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Rehabilitation, Waste Systems & Recycling.

Maya Mountain Research Farm (MMRF) is a small NGO and working farm located in southern Belize. The farm has about 20 acres of managed land, with the remaining 50 acres managed for limited extraction of timber, fuel wood and medicinals and as a wildlife corridor between the Columbia River Forest Reserve and the Columbia river…. Read more »

Geoff Lawton’s Zaytuna Farm Video Tour (Apr/May 2012) – Ten Years of (R)Evolutionary Design

Posted by & filed under Animal Housing, Biodiversity, Biological Cleaning, Bird Life, Building, Commercial Farm Projects, Compost, Consumerism, Courses/Workshops, Demonstration Sites, Education, Education Centres, Energy Systems, Fencing, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Irrigation, Land, Livestock, Nurseries & Propogation, Plant Systems, Potable Water, Society, Soil Conservation, Soil Rehabilitation, Structure, Trees, Village Development, Waste Systems & Recycling, Water Conservation, Water Harvesting.

Paradise Dam, April 2012, from the now-climaxing food forest Photos © Craig Mackintosh (unless otherwise indicated) Zaytuna Farm Video Tour, duration 41 minutes Note: Switch YouTube player to HD if your internet connection allows Having spent the last few years seeking to establish and assist projects worldwide, and hearing some readers requesting more info on… Read more »

Tyre Tank Stands

Posted by & filed under Aid Projects, Building, Irrigation, Waste Systems & Recycling, Water Conservation, Water Harvesting.

A finished tyre tank stand You may remember reading about the work of FoodWaterShelter to develop a sustainable home for vulnerable women and children in Tanzania. And you may recall their innovative approach to water storage. Well here’s another innovative use for old tyres — and one that may alleviate some potential concerns of unwittingly… Read more »

When “Eww” Turns to “Ooh!”

Posted by & filed under Compost, Potable Water, Soil Erosion & Contamination, Soil Rehabilitation, Waste Systems & Recycling, Water Conservation, Water Contaminaton & Loss.

Photos © Craig Mackintosh You’ve heard the Zaytuna Farm composting loo story before, but since this is the first time I’ve personally seen ‘the great chamber changeover’ take place myself, during one of my own visits, I thought I’d share the tale once more.

Domestic Uses for Wood Ash

Posted by & filed under Consumerism, Waste Systems & Recycling.

Wood ash can be obtained by sieving the remains of burnt, non-treated wood. The composition and amount of the ash will depend on the type of combustion (higher temperatures will lead to fewer ash residues). Normally, remaining ash will represent 0.43 — 1.82% of the initial wood weight. Although poor in nitrogen, wood ash is… Read more »