[permaculture] 'Can someone turn the heat down' of Greece ;-)

Kelly Finigan kfinigan at spots.ca
Mon Jan 26 18:55:59 EST 2004

Glad to hear you are warm and safe!

A few ideas (may not apply because of your site / slope, etc):

- first: finish weatherproofing /insulating the building...less heat loss 
means less heat to generate - build a second "skin" for the house if you 
have to;
- attach an animal shelter to the north side of the building, providing an 
additional "air lock" from the wind and a source of body heat for the house;
- I second Sharon's wind-to-energy idea...it may be possible to 
use the wind for a mechanical purpose as well(e.g. grain milling, water 
pumping) with a residual "waste heat" for the house...
- air source or ground source heat pump (of course, these rely on 
electricity, but they leverage the electrical power into more heat 
than an electric resistance heater can provide – generally about a factor of 
5 to 6);
- use white reflective surfaces / a pond on the ground to the south of the 
building to "concentrate" as much winter sunlight as possible;
- coppice fast growing trees/shrubs for wood supply;
- use a "Russian stove" or "Kacheloffen" (large thermal mass stove with long 
internal exhaust flue from the fire). I know a house here (winter design 
temperature -33 celsius, -28 celsius as I type) of about 2400 sq ft that is 
heated by solar gain and one small fire per day in an oven like this - you 
can also use it to bake;
- recover any heat leaving your building including from bathwater drains;
- for cooking, use a “haybox” to preserve heat.

- if none of this is workable, start looking further from the house: 
is there a stream nearby to make electricity to bring back to the house?
is there a sunny place where you can put tubing with glycol inside and have 
the heated glycol rise by gravity (or a small solar pump) to the house where 
you can use the heat?
- as a last resort, consider bringing in a propane cylinder and stove for 

I hope these help/make sense (if I saw the land, I might not even mention 
some of these but alas I cannot see it, so...)


Kelly Finigan, M.Sc. P.Eng. Permaculture Designer
~ Sustainability consultant & ecological designer ~ 

744 - 4 Street NW
Calgary, Alberta T2N 1P2
phone 1-403-283-7270

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