I have some land. I have a book, some drawings, and a vague picture in my mind of what I want.
I have some time, and some money, neither in particularly large quantity.
I have some badgers, and some bats, and some trees, each the subject of different people's affection.
And I have a large tank, the former Barnton water supply. My aim is to construct a home that is comfortable to live in, beautiful to look at, sympathetic to its surrounding, acceptable to my neighbours and planners and, requires almost no energy to heat.
Why no energy to heat?
It would be fashionable here to profess an interest in icecaps and polar bears, weather patterns and droughts, sea levels and flooded coastal cities, and all these things would be relevant. If it is true that we have [come within five years of triggering irreversible climate change] then the carbon dioxide emissions associated with heating our homes matters.
But my motivation is far more immediate than that.
Energy will very shortly become unaffordable, then unavailable. I want a home that uses very little energy in keeping me warm and dry because that is all there will be.
On the way, I want to contribute to my local economy through the choices I make about where I get my home's materials, and who I get to help me build it. And I want to encourage others who might be interested in protecting their families from our energy deficient future, but are unsure what practical step to take.
But all of that is for future posts. For now, the fascinating task of creating an ultra-low energy home begins.
Thanks for reading – do keep in touch.