Define Ecovillage

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Dallas-Fort Worth, NorthCentral TexasDefining an EcovillageJust what is an Ecovillage?

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Robert Gilman, along with his late wife Diane Gilman, arerecognized by most as not only defining the ecovillage movement but also shapingthe direction of the global network for ecovillages.

According to the Gilmans: "An ecovillage is a human-scale,full-featured settlement in which human activities are harmlessly integratedinto the natural world in a way that supports healthy human development, andwhich can be successfully continued into the indefinite future."

It is, perhaps, similar to a precept of the Great Law of Peace of theHaudenosaunee (Six Nations Iroquois Confederacy) which mandates that chiefsconsider the impact of their decisions on the seventh generation yet to come.

An urban ecovillage is a housing settlement which strives for sustainability indesign and cooperation among residents. It may be comprised of cohousingcommunities where residents share common spaces and some common land while retainingtheir privacy with individual home ownership. The cohousing site design resembles avillage green. Additional land is shared by all communities in the ecovillage.Often that extra land is placed in a conservation easement.

Living in an ecovillage should be like sharing a large extended family without loosingthe privacy of your own home or the bonds of your nuclear family. When peoplecare for, and are cared for, by their friends and neighbors, a safety factorarises that can not be assured by modern civilization in any other way.

An ecovillage assures alarge degree of sustainability by the use of passive solar designs, clusteredhomes and parking, and energy-efficient building techniques and materials.Alternative energy sources are used and when practical or affordable the community.might live off the grid.

And ecovillage can also take co-operative housing a step forward by joining several communitiesto provide an economy of scale in construction and amenities.


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