Tag Archives: energy efficiency

Eco Compound is 17 years young!

17 years ago the Eco Compound project was passed for construction by the Cottesloe Council.

Eco Compound

Eco Compound

It seemed to be a turning point in thinking at the time. We buried a time under the house explaining why there was such a strong focus was on Sustainable Architecture from the beginning of the 20th Century.

See the then Mayor Rob Rowell and then leader of the Opposition / future Premier Colin Barnett, Julia Hayes and Garry Baverstock putting some weight into the shovel.

Mayor Rob Rowell and then leader of the Opposition / future Premier Colin Barnett, Julia Hayes and Garry Baverstock

Mayor Rob Rowell and then leader of the Opposition / future Premier Colin Barnett, Julia Hayes and Garry Baverstock

Passive solar design of houses is needed more than ever. Energy efficiency measures are a step forward but it really is up to the community to do something positive to avert Climate Change. Building a passive Solar home or retro-fitting to lower energy use is still the most effective way

to lower emissions in the atmosphere. Ecotect Architects can advise you on this.

Unfortunately the architecture and building professions have over the last decade taken the foot off the pedal in pushing this invaluable approach to home design.

Now that Climate Change ravages are starting to bite into our economic future, it is time for a resurgence in designing and building our homes to maximise energy efficiency. We need to use the sun to maximize the heat our homes in winter and ventilate and shade for natural cooling in summer.

Foxcliffe Farm Ecovillage

Mike Hulme recently sent this update on the Foxcliffe land development at Witchcliffe.

Foxcliffe Farm Ecovillage

Image retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/24/nyregion/nyregionspecial2/24farmli.html

Dear Friends of Foxcliffe Farm Ecovillage,

I am delighted to inform you that the Augusta Margaret River Shire Council unanimously passed the amendments to the Witchcliffe Village Strategy and Local Planning Strategy that are required to enable the Foxcliffe Farm Ecovillage project to proceed to WAPC for approval.

This is the first time in two and half years, since purchasing the property, that I can write to you with some confidence that the Foxcliffe Farm Ecovillage will proceed!

The approval will enable up to 180 homes to be built on the 160acre farm. This will enable around 80% of the Foxcliffe Farm Ecovillage to be utilized for public open space, community vege gardens, dam, orchards, vineyard, recreation, community centre, backpackers/tourist accommodation, etc…

We are confident that we can achieve all of this and 100% self sufficiency in energy and water at an affordable price point of around $400,000 for house and land.

For those of you that haven’t had the opportunity to visit the Foxcliffe Farm Ecovillage it is a magnificent property with an abundance of water and great soil, immediately abutting the wonderful little town of Witchcliffe (at the intersection of Redgate Rd and Bussell Hwy, 10k’s south of Margaret River & 6k’s east of Redgate Beach).

We are hoping to receive WAPC approval by around January 2013, after which we will still have to rezone the town planning scheme (TPS), which will take us the best part of 2013. However, once we have received WAPC approval the project will have the certainty required to complete the detailed planning during 2013, so that we are ready to lodge subdivision and development applications as soon as the TPS amendment is formally gazetted.

We are very excited to be moving forward and thank the Shire’s planning officers and Council for their solid support.

We now have over 200 people who have registered interest in the Foxcliffe Farm Ecovillage; I look forward to keeping you all informed of our progress.

Kind regards,

Mike Hulme

Smart Power Grid

Smart Power Grid awareness will cause us to use our energy at the least expensive times of the day, thereby reducing energy costs and reducing the load on our power plants during the peak periods. At the same time we will reduce the CO2 in the atmosphere, positively affecting  our contribution to Greenhouse gases.

PV Panels Efficiency

Retired academic and author Peter Little describes in a letter below how we can use green building products such as  PV panels and insulation between double brick construction to greatest efficacy by adopting Smart Power Grid  behaviour.

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Green Architects

Green Architects can save the client 60-90% on energy costs in their new home.


This solar movie opens the scope of solar design to commercial, institutional industrial buildings, as well as the smaller scale of residential design, including the retro-fitting of existing ones.

Prominent Green Architects Perth

A number of prominent Perth green architects are interviewed in this video together with planners who point out that well thought-out land subdivisions and master planning are crucial for the success of this strategy.

This solar movie about green architects was made in the 1990s for the Australian Institute of Architects. Dr Bill Parker was involved in the production and direction. The movie entitled ‘Green by Design’ won a government energy efficiency award in 1998.

Green Architects Discuss How to Design for Energy Efficiency

The messages on going green by design and the benefits of using green architects are still very relevant in the developed world.

to learn the basic principles and how you can best orientate and design your house for optimal comfort and energy efficiency download the Climate Sensible Designs video showing why it pays to use  green architects.  Go to the www.solar-e shop to view this and other DVDs