Growing Eco-Communities: Practical Ways to Create Sustainability
In his first book Ecovillages, Jan Bang explained at the principles and practice of setting up a sustainable community, including difficult decisions about management, design and architecture, farming and food, water, sewage, energy sources and economics. Growing Eco-Communities looks at what comes next. Groups aren't fixed by those earlier decisions and directions: they grow and develop, and not always in expected directions. Jan Bang here provides a comprehensive overview of the different changes that groups can undergo and offers experienced advice on how to handle particular situations. As in Ecovillages, the book is anchored by numerous case studies of real-life communities and how they've dealt with change. There are sections on The Pioneering Phase (including 'everybody does everything' and 'decisions over dinner'); through the Maturity and Stability Phase (including 'Procedures for new members and the rule of law' and 'I want my own room'); to Old Age (including 'the professionals take over', 'the next generation' and 'dynasty!'). Throughout, the author addresses practical issues of flexibility, self-sufficiency, neighbours, technology, spirituality and money, among others. This is a candid, inspiring and practical book which should be essential reading for anyone involved in a community or non-residential group, club or assosication.