I am an alumni of Carleton University’s Faculty of Engineering and Design. Therefore, I receive the Ingenious magazine biannually. There are some great articles in this magazine of alumni and current students doing great things. One article in the last issue really caught my eye because it was based on the tiny house movement. To be honest I’ve been following the movement on HGTV with shows like Tiny House Hunters and Tiny House, Big Living. I find the space saver options and designs ingenious, pardon the pun. But what Carleton University is doing now is they are working on a tiny house that is sustainable! More specifically a net-zero energy and water house! Some items in play include renewable energy options such as solar panels and heat pumps, air obtained water, spray foam insulation and energy efficient windows.
The Northern Nomad is a great example of a pragmatic project. The spray foam insulation may not be biodegradable and there have been no claims that the project is zero-waste as well. That said, just because a project isn’t 100% environmentally friendly does not mean we shouldn’t support it. This is pragmatic environmentalism at its best. This group is doing ground breaking work to promote a society who believes in a smaller ecological footprint and in using renewable resources. I will certainly be watching to see what great ideas come out of this research project. Great work Northern Nomad team!