Permaculture in a post Covid 19 society

The role of permaculture in a post Covid 19 society

“Permaculture is the philosophy of working with and not against nature, after a long and thoughtful observation.” – Bill Mollison

Covid-19 is not the first pandemic we as humans have been faced with. Sadly, it won’t be the last either. Scientists and doctors will inevitably develop a cure and when they do the world as we remember it could go back to normal. But perhaps normal isn’t good enough anymore? Perhaps it is time to take the positives of what lockdown has taught us and change the future of the planet forever?

For instance, to live slower and be more aware and observant of our surroundings. To appreciate small things and value people. To consume less and spend more time enjoying the “free” things in life like nature, sunshine and fresh air. Lockdown forced all of us to look at the world differently. And perhaps with this notion still fresh in our minds, now could be a good time to change the way we think we ought to live forever.Did you know that 20 of the world’s warmest years have been recorded in the past 22 years? At this rate temperatures could rise by 3-5 degrees Celsius by 2100. Even the slightest change in temperature can have a dramatic effect on sea levels, the temperature of our oceans, acidity levels and affect food production.

Climate change is a real threat to everybody and everything on earth. The only difference is that the problem feels “far away”.

In the 1970s Australian ecologists David Holmgren and Bill Mollison introduced the term “Permaculture”. A set of principles of living that encourages humans to lead more eco-friendly, sustainable and ethical lives to the benefit of the human race, the earth and all living things. Permaculture, aka permanent culture can be applied to a variety of disciplines from agriculture and landscaping and of course architecture.

The principles of permaculture in architecture

According to Holmgren and Mollison the principles of permaculture in architecture encompass the following:

  • 1. Building in accordance with the true needs of the user. In this way a home becomes more efficient and appropriate.
  • 2. Observing nature and mimicking nature’s best-practice.
  • 3. Catching and storing energy.
  • 4. Using less energy and resources to build.
  • 5. Creating buildings that serve a larger purpose and add value to the community and those who worked on the project.
  • 6. Creating homes where waste is managed effectively.
  • 7. Building with the future in mind by self-regulation.
  • 8. Creating buildings that are able to form relationships with the surroundings and support one another.
  • 9. Allowing for diversity on all levels.

The advantages of a permaculture suggest whole-system thinking where homes aren’t just built for aesthetic reasons but to serve a greater holistic purpose.

At Veld Architecture, we are committed to observing the natural landscape and designing homes that make a minimal impact on the environment. Leading a quality, happy life is something that often starts at home. That’s why nothing brings us more joy than being able to design buildings that are able to encourage the health of the occupants. We do this by applying regenerative, sustainable and permaculture architectural principles and designing homes with longevity and purpose in mind. Reach out to us to find out more about the way we work.

Email me, Gillian@veldarchitects.co.za or Anien@veldarchitects.co.za

Lots of love,

Xxx

Gill

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