Posts Tagged With: Environment

An Environmental Wonder!

Here are some stats on why tiny houses are fantastic energy savers.  What this does not take into account is the HUGE reduction in additional building materials (outside of lumber) and the huge reduction in STUFF needed to fill the house.

I don’t cool THO and will being next year in burning wood scraps in my mini 12.  Because I was not there this year I cannot do the carbon footprint for 2014, but in 2013 it was 1.1 carbon tons – however with 10 acres of untouched forest we contribute back far more than we could ever use even with having two houses.  Our forest, I estimate covers the foot print for 10 normal homes plus our own footprint.

Thanks to Tiny House Build for creating this info graphic

Thanks to Tiny House Build for creating this info graphic

Categories: Environmentalism, Erazim Kohák, Forest | Tags: , , , , , | 4 Comments

Carbon Footprint

I took a test this morning to see what the carbon footprint for Tiny House Ontario is.

Here are the results

House 0.03 metric tons of CO2
Flights 0.00 metric tons of CO2
Car 0.00 metric tons of CO2
Motorbike 1.22 metric tons of CO2
Bus & Rail 0.00 metric tons of CO2
Secondary 1.76 metric tons of CO2

Total = 3.01 metric tons of CO2

It went on to say:

  • Your footprint is 3.01 metric tons per year
  • The average footprint for people in Canada is 20.00 metric tons
  • The average for the industrial nations is about 11 metric tons
  • The average worldwide carbon footprint is about 4 metric tons
  • The worldwide target to combat climate change is 2 metric tons

It is a pretty good result, but I have to say that I am very surprised to learn that I am over consuming in the secondary section.  Here are the answers that I gave:

Carbon Footprint Screen Shot 2013-01-18 at 2.44.03 PM

I guess this means that next year I have to hope for a better growing year so that I can reap as much as I sow. I am not sure how else I can reduce really as my bike is essential for me to get around and I really don’t buy much besides food and things to complete THO.  This gives me a lot to think about!

What are your results?  Do you see any way that you can reduce this number?


Update: I just found that an acre of 15 year old forest will carry 1-2 cubic metres of carbon per acre.  THO forest is at least 9.5 acres of forest which means that it likely carries at least 19 cubic meters… not sure still what the different measurements are, but this does make me feel a little better.

Categories: Off Grid, Open your eyes, Simple living, Sustainable living, Tiny House Ontario, View | Tags: , , , | 11 Comments

Please, help me until I can help myself

No one has asked but I think that it is important to note that I built the tiny house very far away from where I normally live. Eight hours away by roadway (because I drive a small motor bike), four hours by highway, if I get a lift, and 6 hours by train if I get a good connection.  Obviously, I would need some help.

Obviously I needed a place to stay while I was building. Here in I let you know about my family/friends Liisa and her daughter Lydiah. Liisa is the daughter of Woodchuck John. Niece of Builder Leo. This family is a part of my life since I was a little kid. The significant thing, should anyone have missed this, is that I have a strong emotional connection to them and that they are my family by osmosis.

So, back to the issue of how I survived the build. I basically landed in on Liisa’s small home and took over Lydiah’s room from April 23rd until June 16th of 2011. That is right, me, I am the houseguest from hell. I planted myself, like a shit on a wool blanket, for about 35 of 54 days in their sweet little home. I could, I suppose, have stayed in a hotel, tent or borrowed a trailer – but Liisa and Lydiah opened their home which was both economical and fun as well as convenient. Too, I really love them both, so it was great for me! When I was not with Leo on the land, I was with the girls having a good time. Lots of laughs, which is my favourite thing to do!

Further than that, when they finally got me out of Lydiah’s bed. I still did not get out of their hair until fall. I was there nearly every day still because I stored my dog’s raw food at their home, I filled water containers and also showered at their home all summer and fall. Still more! I also charged my cell phone and drill as well as used their wireless. Without Liisa and Lydiah I would have been mighty stinky, dehydrated and also quite stir crazy because I do love my technology!

Next spring, I plan on some additional conveniences. I still cannot afford to drill an 80 foot well, so I will still have to run after fresh water. This said, while I will not have fresh water, I have already started a rain water collection system – this will mean that I can wash at the tiny house using my rain water! I also intend on putting in a small solar array in order so that I can run a fridge, lights and charge my own drill and wireless device.

For the upcoming summer, just like the last one, I will get water from Vernie and Liisa but with the rain water collection, I should not need nearly the same amount because I will, of course, wash in the rain water and I think if I boil this I can also wash dishes in it too.

Unfortunately, I did not take a photo of my rain barrel, so this is not mine (nor is it my photo) but mine is similar. I will raise mine up on a platform in order so that I can secure flow in at sink level and this should allow me to be able to wash quite nicely there as well.

Categories: Environmentalism, Sustainable living, Tiny house | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

Interior and life in motion

The inside of my Tiny House got a lot more comfortable this summer.  Not bad for a few months of work!

Getting a solar light installed was a great thing!  Hopefully next spring I can get a little more power going for a little fridge, lights and also to plug in my iPad.

My dogs and I were happy there but we stayed only until early fall, because there were other things pressing me – both financially and family wise – in Hamilton.

This is the first house I built… My Tiny House is fantastic but, still lacks a few things… Here is what I don’t have yet.

No main source of power (except the small solar light).

No heat source.

No running water.

No garden.

No indoor toilet facilities.

No exterior board and batten…

but all the same, for 100 days this summer.  I painted, had friends in, worked, pursued The Artist’s Way, wrote and enjoyed my life. I learned that it is surprising what you can do without, really!  My friends Liisa, Lydiah, John and my cousin Vernie helped me with computer use, water and laundry.  Next year I hope to be even more independent.

Yes, 2012 is another year…

For any of you who are interested in actually pursuing this sort of life style, the costs will be looked at in a future entry or entries.

With the above said, I have a disclaimer, I made a fatal error that cost me exactly $2800 extra – this number is one I recall quite readily.

Here is what it looked like in August 2011

Categories: Environmentalism, Sustainable living, Tiny house | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

The cloth porch

There was nothing that made my life as comfortable at my Tiny House, as the cloth porch!  I build this from a cheap screen door, 7 left over boards, $20 worth of deeply discounted ugly fabric, a few screws and and two boxes of staples… I think this was money, and time, really well spent!

No black flies, deer flies, horse flies and a semi private place to bathe.  Also it is a pretty big room to have a party in!  Big!  9×12!  It is really a matter of perspective.

Here is what it looked like in July 2011

Categories: Environmentalism, Sustainable living, Tiny house | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment