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Lammas eco-village
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emordnilap



Joined: 05 Sep 2007
Posts: 14525
Location: Houǝsʇlʎ' ᴉʇ,s ɹǝɐllʎ uoʇ ʍoɹʇɥ ʇɥǝ ǝɟɟoɹʇ' pou,ʇ ǝʌǝu qoʇɥǝɹ˙

PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2016 5:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Automaton wrote:
PS_RalphW wrote:


It will take a long time and a very low population and/or a lot of active intervention to restore forestation or fertility to former levels.


It's surprising though: I was in Glen Affric a few years back with a reforestation project there. One year after an area was fenced off to stop the deer and the sheep, there were approximately 100 Scot's Pine seedlings per square metre in many areas. So take away the grazers, and there would soon be forest again.

The grazers are fine; it's the predators that aren't.
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woodburner



Joined: 06 Apr 2009
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2016 6:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's ambiguous. Do you mean that grazers are no threat, or they are not threatened? Do you mean we should get rid of predaors, or that predators are having a hard time and so need some help?
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emordnilap



Joined: 05 Sep 2007
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Location: Houǝsʇlʎ' ᴉʇ,s ɹǝɐllʎ uoʇ ʍoɹʇɥ ʇɥǝ ǝɟɟoɹʇ' pou,ʇ ǝʌǝu qoʇɥǝɹ˙

PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2016 10:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are reports that wildlife is doing fine around Chernobyl; bring on MAD. Laughing
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Pepperman



Joined: 10 Oct 2010
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 03, 2016 4:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I visited Lammas ooh about 6 or 7 years ago when I ddi a tour of Wales one spring. It was an impressive set up they had going back then and I'm sure it's even more so now. They were just about to re-commission a defunct small hydro installation there I think so they've probably got more power than they know what to do with and internet was on the way.

The income they derive from the land is actually very relevant to them because there were (probably still are) requirements in their planning approval (under One Planet Develvopment) as to what proportion of their income had to be derived from the land. I forget the details.

I thought that the One Planet Development policy had been abandoned a few years back but I see there are some news articlles from 2015 referring to new developments so maybe it's still active? It really would be nice if that kind of thinking could come to England as well but I'm not holding my breath.
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Pepperman



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PostPosted: Sat Sep 03, 2016 4:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If anyone's interested in visiting they have days of the week when you can have a tour during summer I think. I was travelling around by public transport when I was in the area and from memory it was a little awkward to get to but not impossible.
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Pepperman



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PostPosted: Sat Sep 03, 2016 4:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah yes, 27kW of hydro!

http://lammas.org.uk/ecovillage/

They definitely have more power than they know what to do with! They must be having to dump quite a lot unless they can shut it down.

I'm surprised that it says that it started in 2009/10 though. I must have visited in 2010 or 2011 I guess and it was already pretty well established although some families were still in caravans at that point I think.
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adam2
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 03, 2016 6:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

27KW is not actually that much PER DWELLING, but still very useful indeed.
If no higher value use for the electricity exists it might be worth use of some electric heating, thereby conserving fire wood for sale.

(remember that many grid connected houses have 24KW available, for one family. A HMO might be 72KW)
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Catweazle



Joined: 17 Feb 2008
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 03, 2016 6:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just because it's capable of producing 27kw doesn't mean it will often do so, rainfall has been quite low here.
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Potemkin Villager



Joined: 14 Mar 2006
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Location: Narnia

PostPosted: Sat Sep 03, 2016 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

[quote="UndercoverElephant"][quote="clv101"][quote="UndercoverElephant"]
clv101 wrote:


In fact, if increasing biodiversity is what we are aiming for, this could be achieved with zero effort by everybody in the country who has got one to allow a third of their garden to grow wild, maybe getting rid of aggressive patches of brambles and nettles, but otherwise letting nature do its thing.

But people prefer neatly trimmed lawns. Or in some cases (like my neighbour), large patches of bare earth. Or astroturf, or concrete slabs.


I sometimes get ribbed for not keeping the nettles and brambles (and ivy) well, maybe wee bit more under control! I am quite happy to get up the noses of various anal neighbours lavishly applying glyphosphate and clipping hedges to within an inch of their life. However this obsessive neat and tidy approach to land management seems very deeply ingrained. Most folk moving into the countryside around here are very intent on retaining a suburban vision of life.
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PS_RalphW



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PostPosted: Sat Sep 03, 2016 9:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Our house ( 4 people, electric cooking, shower and car) uses 8-9 KWh a day, or on average 0.4 KW approx. 27KW would produce enough energy for 50 homes like ours, if demand was evened out.
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woodburner



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PostPosted: Sat Sep 03, 2016 11:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Potemkin Villager wrote:

I sometimes get ribbed for not keeping the nettles and brambles (and ivy) well, maybe wee bit more under control! I am quite happy to get up the noses of various anal neighbours lavishly applying glyphosphate and clipping hedges to within an inch of their life. However this obsessive neat and tidy approach to land management seems very deeply ingrained. Most folk moving into the countryside around here are very intent on retaining a suburban vision of life.


Good for you. I don't get ribbed as no one talks to me but I have loads of nettles, some over 7' tall, plenty of brambles, a hedge about 8' deep though hardly "thick". I get lots of hawthorn blossom in the spring which pervades the garden. The neighbour on the other side of the hedge trims it every few weeks and uses his ride-on mower to cut the grass Rolling Eyes still it does give the blackbirds and woodpeckers some forage space. I haven't had the mower out at all this year, all the cutting is done with scythes as it's quicker than getting the mower out. A rougher finish in some areas, but some is as good as a mower can do and no limit to length of grass I can cut.
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Catweazle



Joined: 17 Feb 2008
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Location: Little England, over the hills

PostPosted: Sun Sep 04, 2016 8:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Does anyone make a load sensing device that can open a sluice gate / valve "on demand" ? It could be linked to hydro RPM.

That would make the mill pond approach more useable.
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clv101
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 04, 2016 8:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pepperman wrote:
I thought that the One Planet Development policy had been abandoned a few years back but I see there are some news articlles from 2015 referring to new developments so maybe it's still active? It really would be nice if that kind of thinking could come to England as well but I'm not holding my breath.


Far from abandoned! See the One Planet Council, there are now 21 OPD smallholdings with more on the way.
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adam2
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 04, 2016 9:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Catweazle wrote:
Does anyone make a load sensing device that can open a sluice gate / valve "on demand" ? It could be linked to hydro RPM.

That would make the mill pond approach more useable.


Such equipment is available but normaly only used for large scale plant. A hydroelectric generator of many MW and connected to the grid is often controlled thus.

For small scale equipment it has been tried but usually with little success. Any likely valve or sluice gate takes several seconds to react, maybe tens of seconds and the turbine and alternator take another second or two to react.
This is far too slow for most small plant to accept a load changes if say a vacuum cleaner or power tool is used.
There are ways round this, including adding batteries and a large inverter, but these add costs, losses and complications.

Also, were is this control valve to be fitted ? If fitted at the top of the system near the inlet, then partial closure will result in a vacuum with adverse effects.
If the valve is fitted at the bottom then it must handle considerable pressure and only be closed very slowly to avoid damaging peak pressures.

Some small water turbines have several jets whereby the water impinges on the rotor. These can be opened or shut for part load operation and often are. Automation is not that easy and it is usually done manually.
For example a 4 jet turbine might be used as follows

1 jet, only in time of drought, extreme economy in electricity use required.
2 jets, normal daytime operation
3 jets, used from dusk to midnight when most lighting is used.
4 jets, only used when there is exceptional demand and plenty of water.

In general, off grid water power to generate electricity for domestic purposes needs EITHER a battery and inverter bank, OR the acceptance that a lot of the energy will be wasted.
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Pepperman



Joined: 10 Oct 2010
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 05, 2016 8:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

adam2 wrote:
27KW is not actually that much PER DWELLING, but still very useful indeed. If no higher value use for the electricity exists it might be worth use of some electric heating, thereby conserving fire wood for sale.

(remember that many grid connected houses have 24KW available, for one family. A HMO might be 72KW)


It is when you're living the kind of lifestyle they're living (i.e. not supplying your core heat needs via electricity most likely but it would make sense for them to be dumping excess to hot water, indeed with hydro you have to dump unless you can modulate the supply). We manage just fine for about three quaters of the year on an off grid 1kW solar supply and a hydro supply is much more firm than solar.

Catweazle wrote:
Just because it's capable of producing 27kw doesn't mean it will often do so, rainfall has been quite low here.


This is true.

clv101 wrote:
Far from abandoned! See the One Planet Council, there are now 21 OPD smallholdings with more on the way.


Amazing. I don't know why I thought that.
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