Aiming for a sustainable life
How has Japan been
changed? How happy were people with
changes to the social environment? Here is my brief synopsis of our
history in finding a more ideal life. (1) For a start toward a
|Humans still had the same
feelings as animals.
language was introduced for communication. The start of logical
thinking (left brain). Japan had already a population of one million by
around 0 BC.
|Introduction of foreign
cultural influences were introduced from China. 4, 5 centuries. The
population was 4 million which is the same as the current
population of NZ whose land area is 80% of Japan.
|Blossom of Japanese culture
to 11 centuries. Admiration of foreign cultures and strong efforts to
create own. The population grew rapidly from 4 to 10 million.
|Warring State Period
and turmoil. Justification of the winners. How did the then
intelligentsia behave? Not much population increase - 10 million until
the 15th century.
|The feudal system and
subordination of the public. No individualism.
260 years from the 17th cent.. Variety of public arts. It is
interesting to see the social background to how they were created. The
population reached 40 million. The population in these two periods
was increased to the limit of sustainability, because they
only on organic farming.
of the country by external pressure. The population was 40 million in
the 19th century and it jumped 130 million in the next 100
The yearning to travel abroad. The dawn of industrialization and the
transition to it. The sudden population increase was caused by the
illusion of sustainability. Meantime, traditional Japanese
started to fade. The society was switched to materialism.
|First World War
|Rise of militarism
|Second world War
|Its haughtiness and
strategy of the US.
the War The straight line towards materialism leading to spiritual
collapse and decadence. The breakdown of the bubble economy
decadence, emptiness and pessimism.
The transition of the
population was referred to in a material at a round-table talk on the
Journal of the Architectural Institute of Japan.
During conservative times,
people were imposed on to work by the
local lord. After this period, they had more choice of jobs and were
able to work with machines and might have felt less displeasure with
fewer complaints. Yet a few people controlled and manoeuvred them from
behind in the same way as before. When we look back in time since Japan
was opened, the present society (especially after World War II) chose
to be an economic animal and played a big role in the move to
globalisation with the US. Consuming huge amounts of energy, it never
thought of the environment or of our vernacular culture, 'Wabi' and
'Sabi', instead living in concrete boxes. It never changed the strong
hierarchies or drives to use other people. We are all hemmed in by this
Now, when were we relatively happy? How
can this be
developed? Having reached the age of 70, I feel my childhood was the
happiest when I could have admiration and longing for nature. Why? We
have to practically predict and plan our future with a cool and
composed mind. This is the time when we have to do this planning in a
concrete way from many directions. The time is coming when one has a
bottle of mineral water in one hand and a cylinder filled with fresh
air on the back, as I mentioned before. It is known that the fossil
energy will finish sooner or later leaving contamination and pollution.
However, we keep constructing huge buildings which need a lot of energy
to build and need a lot of energy for ongoing use as well. Public
opinions and critics do not arise against this. The exhaustion of
fossil energy may come suddenly as developing countries use it in the
same way as developed nations. The world will be confused and chaotic.
It is not difficult to imagine that people will swear and blame each
other. People's already weakened immune systems will be worse, human
values will not be respected and discrimination will increase.
is no easy solution to reforming this social system that allows the
present situation. Our society is composed of a very rigid structure
and framework, and we rely on and use each other so much. I think we
have to start to solve this issue by establishing a sustainable way of
living. The origin or a starting point where one is liberated and made
free is important and necessary to this. There exists an opinion that
we will find new sources of energy, but this is just an extension of
present decadent thinking and, were it to happen, would constitute a
new hierarchy under an energy source again. Thinking how wonderful
contact with nature is, we should use this as the new starting point.
in this direction will be rendered sterile and washed away by economic
concerns if we can not provide quantitative persuasive arguments. This
should be done through careful measurements and analysis, and
simulations provided to further the quantitative discussion. A life
plan should be created through the application of the simulation, by
knowing and understanding its premises but also feeling and believing
the immeasurable joy of living in nature.
solar energy is everything. On the time axis what does the eventual
perishing of the sun mean? What does it mean physically? When it ends,
how will human life be positioned or ranked? If we are able to keep
living until then, we must find a new philosophy and the next plane.
The sustainable way of living is not only to be self-sufficient, but
also not to harm nature and to live each one's life fully until the sun
dies. And this means that we have to find the next spiritual world and
think of a continuous transition to it.
It could be said that
sustainable living is how well we take solar energy to live our whole
life while not harming our earth. However, this is a narrow definition
of sustainable living and we should develop our spiritual world to the
next plane as well. This is the widened definition for the
sustainability that I mean because the physical sun perishes and the
earth will die.
Fighting against human
greed is a
negative act with environmental hormones as its results. Accordingly,
if we make efforts to solve this without living sustainable, a vicious
circle results which is a war against the evil that is created by
greedy people. The introduction of GE foods will create a vicious
circle as well; while we will keep trying to mend the results caused by
it we can not get return to how it was before. The distortion will
remain in society for ever. It can be only positive to "live" and to
create in beautiful nature. We should derive our interests and
questions from observing the complex mechanisms of nature and being
melted into it. This should be the new start for science in the future.
this chapter, I give my foresights into future ways of living using the
knowledge obtained in Chapter 1.
Developing solar energy use
amount of solar energy that falls over the earth in the year is in the
order of 1.21x1017watt/hr. This is 15,000 times the energy that we use.
When we look at the situation in Japan, the solar energy that falls
over the land is 100 times the country's total yearly energy
consumption. If the sea within 200 nautical miles is included, solar
energy is 1,000 times the annual use. If 10% of the 6 world major
deserts were to be covered with an energy transformation efficiency of
5%, the world could reach the energy consumption predicted for 2020.
The above comes from the report by Takashi Horigome in the Asahi
Science, 16p, March, 1991. This ratio can be compared with the
photosynthesis energy transformation efficiency of plants of usually
4.7 to 4.8%. It is clear that we have to research further to develop
the use of, and be able to rely on solar energy.
veggies and crops that have the above energy efficiency, we are able to
obtain almost of the energy to maintain ourself and an amount of them
necessary to get biogas. If we were to enter them directly into the
septic tank, we have to recalculate the transform efficiency ratio and
have to work and use energy in the collection. There are different ways
to collect the solar energy such as using dung for the septic tank or
Let's consider eating. Food
is a great
energy collection indeed. For example, rice as a food. A bowlful of
rice comes from 1.5 stocks of rice, if a person eats two bowlfuls a
day, in a year they eat the rice from 1,095 stocks. If 9 stocks are
produced in 1m2,
the area of 121m2
is necessary in a rice paddy just
to provide for a single person’s rice needs. The amount of
energy through photosynthesis needed to grow crops is large indeed. We
tend not to pay much attention to our bodily waste. It is not much
energy, but we should note that it gives us a steady amount of energy
A sheep called Tintin was with me for 7
months and a
proportion of his manure was given to the Ozeki septic tank during this
time. This manure appeared to have more calories than the human
equivalent ? the digestion system of a sheep must be
different. For other animals an estimation of their output in calories
should be conducted. Communing with other creatures is very important
to understand nature, and in addition they mow and give us fertilizer
and an energy source for the septic tank. A sheep gave me wool on top
of this - although it is difficult to use for any other purpose, as it
is hard to decompose.
The biogas from the Ozeki
is 60% methane and 40% carbon dioxide, and is 4,500kcal/m3
after the deodorant under atmospheric pressure. The
deodorant absorbs carbon dioxide too. The precise relationship between
an intake and the biogas on a given day will be available when the
historical records are collected and analysed.
system with photosynthesis is introduced in a desert, thus producing
water and growing plants, desertification can be conquered. I met a man
who is developing a cylindrical windmill that can be hung on a rope and
can collect water from the air using the heat pump principle. I think
that this is a great idea.
Energy from weeds can be obtained
burning, compacting them so as not to expose the oxygen less directly,
and/or biogasification. However, it appears better to grow trees and
get energy from them, e.g., through coppicing.
is longer and the height of the sun is higher after the winter
solstice. We surely receive more direct energy, though the heat storage
of the earth delays the air temperature rise until later. The Maori say
that as long as direct energy is being used, spring has started. They
celebrate New Year’s Day with the Matariki, i.e.,
A season affected by the heat storage of the earth does not
linearly and is affected by the huge energy consumption of human
beings, as a result the prediction of a particular climate is very hard
and a steady pattern can not be expected. It is already known that this
result affects plants and animals and even human lives.
various uses of solar energy were discussed in Chapter 1 in detail, it
can be summarized as follows;
* Direct collection of
Energy collection using photosynthesis
(2) Solar cooker
(3) Two dimensional
(4) Sky radiation
(5) Absorption by porous
(6) Solar panel by thermo-siphon
Sterling Engine and/or bimetals for temperature difference
(8) Carbonation of
Energy collection through natural phenomena
(9) Biogasification of organic materials by the
Ozeki septic tank
(10) Kikuyu burning for bathing
Active use of the solar energy at a house planning and designing (13)
(12) Ground heat use
we start to consider the variety of uses of solar energy, good planning
with solar energy in mind is most important and of the highest
priority. The direction of the house, the roof slope, the location and
dimensions of openings, the finish of walls, etc should be first
predicted with a computer program and evaluated. Depending on the local
climate a cool tube system may be necessary.
for cooking are (1), (2), (8) and (11) (only during strong wind).
Number (8) is especially convenient because it can be stored. (9) will
be mainly used to ignite charcoal. However it may be used for cooking
with the assistance of animals like chickens and sheep. If we eat raw
foods to have the enzymes from them, cooking energy will also be saved.
With an area of 1.8m x 2.4m (6) supplies hot water for having
showers and doing dishes through almost the whole year. If tree
branches, fallen leaves, Kikuyu etc are burnt at the wet back and
slightly wider solar panels are installed, hot water can be available
for a four member family who have a careful and saving attitude. The
solar panel receives sky radiation even on a cloudy day as shown in
Chapter 1. At a practical planning level, the transient behaviour of
the solar panels should be combined with an indoor climate prediction.
Alternatively, calculated results should be prepared on various
occasions especially for a cloudy winter day.
(11) should be
first for communication through Internet and Email. When the wind does
not blow, a few additional generators are necessary. A Sterling engine,
bi-metals and a direct solar energy collector which is under
consideration should top up the energy sufficiently. To avoid the
natural discharge and harmful material use of a deep cycle battery,
capacitors should be introduced and replaced.
thin ceiling with ventilation gaps which was thermally insulated to be
without gaps in April 2005. In late winter, the temperature in the
living room was never below 14 degrees. The ventilation holes from the
basement were closed and still the thermal transfer through the ground
floor was retained. For heating, the stored heat with thermo-siphoning
in the solar room can be circulated to radiators in the living room.
The hot air right under the ceiling of the solar room will also be
guided into the basement with the expectation that the heat will be
stored in walls. All the energy arriving in the solar room will be used
in the living level. If the inside wall of the eastern wall was to be
plastered, the predicted (by computer program) living room temperature
will be raised by 0.6deg. The wall will be cobbed.
the heat transfer from the basement made the living level adequately
cool enough even though there was no lifting power from the solar room.
(10) is thought for relaxation, and not completely necessary.
for cooking was mentioned above. Good planning is needed to have enough
available through the year. For instance, if the wind blows and the sun
is shining, (11), (1), (2) and (7) can be used, and (8) can be saved.
When the wind does not blow but the sun is shining, (1), (2), (8) and
(7) can be used. The development of the Sterling engine and bi-metal
systems are expected to also help.
energy sources have ecological and technological elements. When they
are arranged with the two extremes, ecological to technological, the
order might be something like this
(13) (8) (9) (1) (2)
(3) (4) (5) (7)
much energy does a human consume? Most of the intake energy say
2,400kcal/day/per day, is used in self-maintenance, while the body
radiates 100 ? 150 watt and bodily waste is a small component. We have
a circle from the sun - crops - human beings - a part of energy being
given back to the air - energy returning to nature and again the circle
of human life. This circle must be estimated quantitatively as the
energy consumption system of a human and how much solar energy is
needed for it. Not only this circle, but the energy system for a
sustainable way of living must be estimated carefully. It means that
not only the energy for maintaining a human life, but also the energy
for building shelter, movement and transportation, machines for daily
use and so on should be added.
There are a lot of other ways
develop solar energy collection. It would be interesting to look at the
possibilities in exchanging energy between the Northern and Southern
hemispheres, and between day and night times. This could never be done
with an on-off switch and storage would be an issue ? perhaps snow
and/or ice could be used until summer and heat could be held in rocks
or water until winter.
The main energy need for the average
person’s daily life is energy for heating. As
earlier, the hot water obtained by thermo-siphoning in the solar room
is circulated to the radiator in the living level, and the hot air near
the ceiling can be circulated via the air duct to the basement through
the house, with priority for heating in winter. All the solar energy
entering the solar room is now used in the house.
important too to discuss not only to obtaining energy but also saving
it. We experimented with a few ideas on how to not waste energy during
cooking. We put a pot of rice into a thermal box after it was boiled to
save the energy normally used for simmering. Another is to give a skirt
for a flame not to spread and dissipate. White rice was cooked well
with our own homemade thermal insulated box in the
on we got a 'Hakase-nabe' commercial pot which utilised these two
points. We also got a 'Shuttle Chef' pot with a thermally insulated
cover case. It is thermally insulated with vacuum. If the pot had a
reasonable skirt, the saving energy at cooking can be further improved.
There are some things in the kitchen which could be improved.
frying pans, kettles ? all should have appropriate dimensions and shape
for the relevant family size. A cup can be thermally insulated. The
height of a counter should be discussed with users. These items are of
used repetitiously in daily life and tiny waste adds up.
know precisely how much energy we can get through a year. What does a
period of no wind over a month mean? No windmill power generation. The
300w one which is the most sensitive should be kept for any breeze with
two others at 1kw. Candles need to be prepared. This situation occurred
on the 6/08/03. In order to protect the batteries, a few new devices
will be necessary like a Sterling engine, bimetal, a reflector to
follow the sun etc.
Recently, I learnt that a luminary diode
consumes only one watt. Using this we need not worry about the energy
In such a way, we have to predict the
acquisition from each source, and make an energy plan for every day.
Most of the energy source performances are monitored at the
experimental house, and the data will be discussed later.
1-2) Vernacular attitude towards house
egoism has been changing the ecological system on the earth in an awful
manner. In Northland, the original biological ecosystem is almost
completely changed. The native environment was cultivated for millions
of years, and imported plants and animals might be weak in a different
It is necessary to make a certain amount of
return the original environment, and to find an ongoing way to maintain
them. Tea-tree oil for a cold or wound, spider webs to stop bleeding -
the Maori have discovered and developed natural gifts. The attitude to
learn from local nature and enjoy it is very important, I think. This
is the same for arts, festivals and other things too.
of using local materials to build a house is fundamental, because this
can go back to the earth without any harm. Radiata pines introduced
from California in the USA need a lot of treatment to be used
building material, as they are eaten by borers or easily rotted
if untreated. Native trees are grown through the generations,
we should establish a method of construction as the vernacular
technique after studying their characters against the climate. Using
this point, Japanese traditional technique were developed, but they are
fading rapidly. We must make an effort to protect this.
let's look back briefly on the Japanese vernacular. A house is
basically timbered. Wonderful timbers such as cypress, cedar, pine (a
Japanese pine tree grows much slower but stronger than NZ pine) are
used. They are strong against insects and easy to work with. They show
their own toughness and are resistant against earthquakes.
wall between timbers is cobbed over a 'Komai' lath of split bamboos.
This is strong against the type of bending caused by an earthquake. The
cobbed coat is dry and hard clay mixed with cut hay, and clings on the
lath so as not to fall, as mentioned Chapter 1.
thatched using 'susuki' pampas grass, reed or rice straw. The thatching
technique is similar to that of many countries as shown in Chapter 1.
The thatchers skill and knowledge of local weather and conditions are
important and a valuable resource.
can be made with cypress bark such as used in a Japanese shrine. As
examples of the space use under a thatched roof, a traverse or a loft
where silkworms can be kept or foods stored because it is dry.
Kenko Yoshida pointed out in the 14th century, a house should be built
by thinking mainly of summer conditions. By then sliding doors
'Fusuma' and 'Shoji' - had been developed. When they are doubled with a
thin air gap between, they can be used for a partition or even an
outside wall with good thermal insulation. They are useful traditional
techniques to keep. When they are used with other devices appropriate
to the Japanese climate, a wonderful indoor climate can be created.
lot of side products are obtained from rice straw: rope, mats, pairs of
sandals, thatching material, cut straw for cobbing, brooms and so on.
house built with local natural materials becomes artistically old, and
from this the concept of 'wabi'(humbleness) and 'sabi'(agedness) was
created. The habitual attitude to respect and adoration of nature
created a lot of culture in Japan, especially public types. Festivals
arose in many local places and have been enjoyed through many
generations. However, the country was homogeneous in feudal times and
people must have had great complaints. With outside pressure as well,
the country was opened and people jumped to introduce foreign culture.
This pushed forward the movement to materialism and resulted in
decadence and destruction under globalisation, as I mentioned before.
It will be a great help for a sustainable living to cycle back to
It would be interesting and meaningful to
people from different areas and countries about their traditional
trades. This information should be collected from Japan too and used to
learn from each other to find ways for sustainable living.
I have learnt that some alternative lifestyle people make walls with
straw bales, plastering both sides. Another example is a block made of
shaved wood. They can be used in certain walls while the main timber
frame bears the load of the structure. The wall thickness becomes
relatively thick, but the overall coefficient of heat transmission is
small. The rammed earth method is tapping earth and hay in a frame and
building from the bottom up to make a wall. People are developing a
variety of methods which are nature-friendly when dismantled.
a house environmental plan, comfort is not the only goal. We must not
forget that we develop a strong immune system in the wide changes of
the seasons and that we have to enjoy these seasons and get joy from
them. The present medicine is based on allopathy. It is important to
find out the process by which sickness happens, life style, diet,
living environment and so on. They must be all related. Then a total
remedy which may be called preventive medicine can be developed, based
on how they should be changed.
Cleansing at the source causing no harm to the environment
the types of things discarded from a house are examined, the main
things which can not be processed are often plastic. When I was a
child, my mother got sliced meat wrapped in a large bamboo skin.
Newspaper was used often for wrapping. Oil, shoyu, sake were filled in
bottles which were brought to the shop by customers. My mother used her
own shopping bag. The best way is not to use any plastic.
recycling of plastic, after getting rid of chlorine petrol should be
derived. Reuse after collection by the type of production process seems
to be the best route to take. Plastic can be separated into 8 types,
but the point is how each type will be reused - most of them are burnt.
Preventing oxidation, cleaning the dirt after use requires a lot of
energy. One possible way is to use strictly recycled plastic to
construct an Ozeki septic tank, I think. However, the tank must be made
strong enough to resist the pressure of the soil in the ground.
a BOD value was measured some years ago for the grey water ponds it
showed 170ppm at the entrance, decreasing to 21ppm at the exit for the
original first pond. This good result was obtained not only because of
the absorption and decomposition by the plants but also because of
bio-degradable soap use. The amount of soap used was as little as
possible, additionally warm water was used along with a brush for doing
dishes. Continual efforts are very important even though their effects
may be only a little at a time. The contamination in the agitation pond
was in the permissible range for frog and mosquito larva. There looked
to be not many mosquitoes. There was sediment in the agitation pond and
we should investigate why it was produced and what it was. As frogs
were able to exist there, it was not poisonous and could be decreased
In such a way, if each house cleanses
exhausts, the remainder will be from factories. These can be specified
and are much easier to process at the source than after mixing them. If
they notice hard to process types, they should bravely stop producing
Many fish and shellfish are contaminated in
area of the New Zealand sea. A huge amount of pollutants are drained
into the sea. Chemical fertilizers contribute greatly to
eutrophication. Phosphorus causes a lot of algae to grow. A lot of
fertilizers run over land into creeks and the sea. Besides this, the
bodily wastes from animals in their meadows contribute a lot to the
contamination. On this, it is said that the bodily wastes in a meadow
arrive in the creeks an average of 75 days later. An Ozeki septic tank
needs at least 125 days to decompose given organic matters. Booklets to
explain the Ozeki septic tank in detail have printed. It would be
wonderful if it was to be used at farms here in NZ. Further, it is
possible that ultraviolet rays through the depleted ozone layer and
radio waves generated from artificial satellites might kill microbes
and sever the natural circulation chain. Indeed, we have to identify
all human loads on the earth and think of ways to clean them
Here I want to emphasize
again that there is
no other way to clean up the pollutants than to do this at their
sources. Only at the source, is it possible to find a way to reuse and
recycle. If they are mixed with other pollutants, they can only be just
When the situation is considered from the side of the
receiver, it is the same. For instance, with a traffic noise, if the
noise power at a source is decreased, the noise environment is
improved, the necessary sound insulation will be less for a building or
a house and there are direct connections to saving energy.
1-4) Self-sufficiency based on organic
of the things that I feel sad about since I came to NZ is that there
are young women in even just their 40s who suffer from cancers. It can
be imagined that herbicides, pesticides, antibiotics, hormones etc
which are used a lot here are taken in through foods and trigger
illness. It should be analysed with the theory of quantification to
find what most contributes to this. On one hand, there are many people
who buy organic foods. Needless to say, self-sufficiency based on
organic farming is the answer. If we keep living as we are, it will be
the time not to live but to survive, saying that this and that is bad
for our health. This was already predicted by the American Indian Chief
Seattle in 1854.
We have to be modest in choosing foods. If we
this and that, that is based on materialism. Each person should grow
their own foods self-sufficiently, learning dietetics, food science,
cooking, recipes etc and deciding on the necessary crops to grow. I
think the reason why the Japanese have a long life expectancy is not
only based on a traditional diet but also an improvement, especially in
protein intake after World War II.
At this stage, I
plan to produce the following foods:
Rice (brown to eat),
potato, kumara: carbohydrates, vitamins, essential amino acids
beans: protein (shoyu, tofu, miso, natto)
Plant oil: olive,
black sesame (antioxidation)
Vegetables: vitamins, fibre
Nuts: vitamins, minerals
weeds: minerals, vitamins, fibre
Fish: proteins (canned or dry
fish these days)
Chicken eggs: chickens have not yet been
raised. They are for protein, biogas and chicken tractors.
boiling sea water with a solar cooker. The rest of the liquid is used
for fixing soya protein to become tofu.
Wine or beer: grapes
will be grown.
Honey: not only for nutrients, bees are
important for pollination.
above are items which are planned to be basic foods at this stage. Ones
which are not started yet are seaweed collection, fishing, extraction
of salt, grape growing, beekeeping etc. A variety of herbs, mint or
turmeric for repellent, leaves of loquat, persimmon, ginkgo. They are
good to activate the immune system. There are many items left but I
believe I can obtain them.
Xylitol from corns is good against
periodontitis. I want to learn more about such natural remedies.
have not mastered growing rice yet. I have made a lot of mistakes and
tried to overcome them. I think this process is very
and will be helpful for solving problems in the future. If we learn
only the established way to produce a good harvest, we can not solve
any problems which are likely to happen and will not make any progress.
Mistakes are very important and agriculture comes from experience. With
the transfer of knowledge we have to leave not only the logical and
successful results but also experience gained from mistakes.
one of the most interesting things I have learned while growing rice. I
used the perennial character of rice for the next year’s
started to leave the old roots in a few lines every year and now all
the lines are from the old roots. They already start sprouting again
from the harvest. Newly transplanted seedlings were affected by the
climate of the given year, but the grass from the old roots gives a
steady harvest from the results of the past five years.
2005, all the old roots were left in the paddy. Unfortunately, the
harvest in 2006 was a disappointment. The harvest amount was only 38kg
which is the least in the past five years. There are two main reasons
for this. The first reason is that their roots did not get enough
sunlight and oxygen in spring, because of the plastic covering over the
whole area which was to suppress couch grass. The second reason is that
I did not give them much fertilizer. Unfortunately I have to keep
covering the area against couch grass for the next season, but I will
add compost fertilizer as much as possible this year. Still, the way to
grow rice using its perennial character can not be denied and I feel it
keeps giving me insights into the interesting aspects of plants. I have
a few concerns, however, for example if there should be disease after
some years, whether new seedlings should be the replacements and also
how fertilizer should be used.
If the special farming
traditions from different nations were to be examined and shared we
might get some wonderful results. The mild climate in NZ might lose
some originality, but it could be wonderful to cook and use crops in
other ways ? although they would need to be checked rigidly and
strictly to make sure they are not harmful before they are introduced.
is very important to investigate in detail how a given piece of land is
exposed to the sun for farming as well as housing. Dividing the land
into blocks and looking at the norm for each division,
(1) It can be found
whether it is in the shade or not and
(2) The curvature of the
land can be found if it crosses every other division or not
towards the sun.
shade of a tree can be similarly found.
area sufficient for a vegetable garden can be calculated. It is
calculated that a person eats 65kg of veggies in a year and that 6m2
can produce 16kg of veggies. The area that is necessary for a person is
Four members of a family need 24.4m2x4=100m2.
area is just for veggies and some more is necessary for potatoes, soya
beans etc. At present 69m2
on the hill in Kaiwaka is used for veggies,
on the foot of the hill is used mainly for soya beans, potatoes,
kumara etc, and 20m2
in the bottom is used mainly for water melons,
melons, pumpkins etc.
With respect to rice, it is said that
typical Japanese farmer can produce 540kg/1,000m2
in a year. If a
person eats 120g per day, 480g is eaten by four members of a family a
day and 175kg by them over a year. The present rice paddy has 131m2
produced 66kg on average which is converted to 53kg of brown rice. For
a four member family, a rice paddy of 432m2(=131m2/53kgx175kg)
needed. In there crops such as buckwheat can also be rotated.
such a way, 500m2
for a four member family is a reasonable area. A lot
of labour is necessary to grow rice at this stage, but if a paddy is
established using perenniality, and the appropriate timing for weeding
is found, with cooperation between corresponding family
four times this area does not require four times the amount of labour.
for veggie growing, with good planning in order to repeatedly use the
area of 120m2
it is possible to supply sufficient amounts for four
people. As I feel that for potatoes, kumaras and soya beans, some more
area is necessary, 300m2
is given as a guide. As it is wisely said that
agriculture comes from experience, harvests will be increased after
establishing good farming practices. As for the present crops listed in
Chapter 1, they are already sufficient for my needs if I diet properly
while considering the correct balance of nutrients.
density of mammalian habitats is said to be nearly inversely
proportional to their weight. For a human mammal, it could be in the
order of one person to 1.44km2.
The density of habitat for Japanese who
lives at a density of 320 persons to 1 km2
is 230 times more than this.
The reason why we are still alive is that we rely on imported foods.
However, we are different from other mammals because we can cultivate
land. It means we can use land very efficiently, though if we rely on a
meat diet this becomes difficult.
The transition to a
diet will be a necessary one. We Japanese as well as other Asians are
lucky to be used to foods based on soya beans. And many Europeans love
soya beans product nowadays.
In northern Europe, where it is
grow veggies and even grass, the inhabitants eat reindeer meat. Letting
reindeer eat the grass, which is the collection of solar energy over a
wide field, they use the results. Observing how natural lives exist
through the year, they use this in their eating habits. If we eat
calves while they are still young (veal), we can double the yield in
the same period. Another example would be eating salmon eggs ? while
they are kinds of energy storage, it must be remembered that it is
During the dry period from Dec.17 1997 to
Jan.11 1998, I
thought that it must not be just a short term plan to save enough water
or enough food and other things. We have to check if each others plans
are prepared for such unusualness and emergencies. How should crops be
protected against damage from cold weather? How can we preserve our
foods and what kinds of storage are possible? Providing is preventing.
On this point, rice is a good food in terms of storage. The reason why
we insist on rice is not only for this reason of storage but also
because it has a good balance of nutrients. As a result, we need not
require many other foods to add nutrients.
I plan to learn how
keep and/or preserve tomatoes, peaches, apples, apricots, figs,
cucumbers, kiwi-fruits, all of which grow in large quantities at a
time. To control the ripening speed of fruit, the wide range of
temperature in the house can be utilised.
unexpected difficulties. The mild climate here at Kaiwaka is very good
for growing food but it is good for unwelcomed guests as well. Kikuyu,
couch grass(weeds from the same family of rice), wasps, sparrows,
opossums are examples of this. It affects even bacteria and viruses. In
terms of this, it is fortunate for the Japanese that they have two
As mentioned before Kikuyu grass has almost
the efficiency of photosynthesis compared with any other grass. I was
used to weed a bit from my childhood, but this is exceptionally hard to
suppress. Northland may be covered with the grass sooner or later. It
has only been present in the past 50 years or so and it already
occupies almost half of the area. It is clear that the other area will
be covered with it. At present, large machines can be used to dig deep
in the ground and remove it but there will be no way to do this when
petrol becomes hard to get. When couch grass penetrated my paddy I had
to cover the whole area except for around the roots with black plastic
sheets. You can see more about this in Chapter 5.
When we rely
foods produced by organic farming, the soil quality becomes very
important. Sheep in NZ are supplemented with some substances like
selenium, salt and minerals. The long life of Japanese might be given
by the land they live on. It would be interesting to compare the soil
qualities of both countries. Foods are related with the land and are a
gift from the nature god.
Why does a bird not harm
eats foods which are around on a given day and eats just the necessary
amount. This way is established in nature. Why does a fish not harm
nature? It eats food in this same way - which is not common of human
beings, though there may be struggles between species over food. Why do
plants not harm nature? They stay in a single place. Therefore they
take a lot of time to grow. They do not open or bloom until the proper
time comes. They may need the help of a particular animal to find a
proper place to grow. Why do beasts not harm nature? Their competition
may be fierce, but when they are satisfied they have a rest.
is basic and fundamental. We need a quantitative measure to estimate
for a place how much potential there is in nature to support our lives,
even though expressing things this way is a bit arrogant. As part of
this discussion, how do we estimate such actions as concreting the
coasts and river banks? At the very least, there is a loss of fish as a
result and thus human activity must be estimated as a large negative
It is fundamental to learn the best way to
compost. Though no cultivation and no fertilizer may be one of the end
targets, it is important to first make the land fertile for veggie
gardens, by creating good soil for bacteria. A certain amount of time
is required to establish this condition. When a veggie garden, a rice
paddy and an orchard are estimated at 120m2,
respectively, how much compost is needed? 2,500m2
is the starting
supposition for a four member family. Questions should be asked like
where weeding should be done, how many compost boxes are necessary, how
big they should be. A compost box must be located relative to the sun.
Kikuyu is never welcome, but if it is well decomposed, it can become
good compost too. Kikuyu must be checked to make sure it is completely
decomposed, else it can comes back and start another generation - even
from 1cm of long grass around a joint.
The present compost
at the house are temporary. Concrete blocks or planks can be used for
walls. The liquid which is produced in the bottom must be collected. It
must contain good nutrients because grass grows quite well where it
To get rid of slugs and snails, the leaves of tomato,
shungiku, kumara, potato, labiate etc, would be good material for mulch
as they don't get eaten.
The residue in the third section of
Ozeki septic tank must include a lot of trace elements and I think it
would be a good supplement for organic compost. As it has been
processed in anaerobic conditions, it should be spread in the compost
and exposed to the air for some days. When it was used in the rice
paddy as fertilizer in 2004, it was exposed to the air for a few days.
If it is mixed as it is, it appears to be too strong and even kikuyu
was almost killed. As preparation 500 needs exposure to the air, so
does this I think.
I started to raise a sheep on the 20th of
October, 2003. His name was Tintin. When he arrived, he still needed
milk though after a while he ate only grass and grew bigger. His
cooperation was valuable, he weeded and his manure was added to the
septic tank and a compost box. We anticipated using his sheared wool
Unfortunately, he died on the 20th of June 2004
was in Japan. He got facial eczema and his liver suffered. Later, he
lost his back hair to a width of 3 to 5cm and the coldness of winter
went into him from there. It was only 8 months but I enjoyed living
with him. He taught me the importance of having contact with animals.
From the previous discussion, here
collected in a list are the necessary areas for sustainable living for
a four member family:
items with * can be used as a recreation area, or to enjoy
|Veggie garden (vegetables)
|Field (potatoes, beans etc)
|Fruit and nut farm
|Copse (fire wood)
(education, handicap, social service etc)
the Kyoto paper in Chapter 5, the total area for sustainable living was
proposed as 1,600m2,
looks more appropriate.
is obtained from the experience at Kaiwaka and should be changed for
different places. The basic concept is on solar energy, a correction
factor could be cosβ/cosα where a given latitude is
and KW's latitude is α, namely 2,500m2
Other factors should be added for such things as the climate, the
geography, the culture etc.
of having more and more of different things, it is better and more
meaningful to grow suitable crops in the place you are, to harvest and
eat at the appropriate time, with foods with a proper nutrient balance,
then to refine the tastes of dishes. Cooking is an important and joyful
thing. It would be good fun to do historical surveys of local cuisines
which have been loved by the local people. Of course, they will have
been cooked with local natural materials and we should look at this
too. It would be also be meaningful to re-create new cuisines with
local materials, retaining their original aspects. Collecting various
country's cuisines in such a way at the experimental house, enjoying
cooking practically, and tasting them, we find new ways of using
materials from our site which will be good additions to our sustainable
living. We may be able to make them even tastier than the
In 2004, one of our themes
was to make
tasty Ratatouille. This is a cuisine from Southern France which is a
stir-fry with vegetables, mainly tomatoes, zucchinis and eggplants and
accented by olive oil, pepper and salt. Any other veggies of the day
can also be added. Since I found that with veggies alone the taste is
very profound, I often enjoy it. I have tried to keep harvesting
tomatoes as long as possible. In spring 2004, 14 species of tomatoes
were sown, and I had new ones until the end of June (equivalent to
December in the Northern hemisphere). The taste depends on the veggies
of the day and is always slightly different from the original, and I
serve it to friends calling it the Kaiwaka Ratatouille of the Day.
Around the middle of November, the veggie garden is filled with
vegetables, although it is a bit early for summer ones including
tomatoes, and stir-fried veggies has already become the main dish. I
sometimes drink the green juice of veggies in the morning which gives
me a nice feeling.
It is part of a cook's wisdom to use
leftovers the next day and this is an important part of family cooking.
have relied on experts for their specialized products. After a long
period of division of labour, specialized trades are open to the
public, especially in countries where the idea of the independence of
individuals is developed. There is a steady movement in this direction.
Cooking and confectionary are widely and well explained to the
layperson. A book can be copied onto a small corner of a CD disk. It is
easy to read a book on a monitor screen. It is possible to do farming
by oneself. The functions of a library are dramatically changing. The
development of communication networks makes not only information
transfer possible but also such things as remote medical checks and
Relying on the mass production system for
can easily obtain alcohol. It might lead me to be alcoholic and I say
to myself that if I can not grow grapes and ferment them into wine,
don't drink. This idea may come from a negative direction, but it is a
valuable comment and it could be a priority for farming. I plan to buy
seedlings for Pinot Noir, Shiraz etc.
Brown rice can
well like white rice if it is soaked overnight and sprinkled with a bit
of salt. If a cooking tool with the vacuum thermal insulation, like the
Shuttle Chef is used, the energy for simmering can be saved. We once
made a thermal insulation box for cooking. There is also a cooking tool
which has a skirt so as not to spread heat during cooking and whose air
gap is used for thermal insulation. This is an interesting subject for
study in the near future.
The preservation of food related
processes of production is important. It could be a form of
preservation, for instance, to keep veggies growing in the garden or
fruits on a tree. At the experimental house, rice, sweet potatoes etc
are kept in the basement. If appropriate sized potatoes are harvested
and small ones are left in the ground, the ones left grow larger later
on. Through trial and error, the distance to nature becomes less. The
attitude of buying mass produced processed foods looks to be false. It
is a natural life to catch a fish from the sea and get veggies from the
I recently attended a meeting of people who eat most
raw. They cook 15% of food , like crops, but they eat most of their
other foods, veggies, fruits and even nuts raw. The act of cooking
causes enzymes to be lost, which works as a catalyzer for digesting
protein. This way also gives a saving in energy otherwise used for
cooking and further benefits I have yet to learn.
why fermented foods, such as yoghurt and natto, are good for us is that
they are already working like a part of the digestive system of a body,
I guess. An explanation of this is referred to in the section on the
Ozeki septic tank in the anaerobic conditions.
1-4-2) Episodes in rice growing
I was a child, I spent summer vacations at my grandparent’s
in the countryside and saw how farmers grew rice. A few textbooks
taught me a lot too. Now rice growing is established here at Kaiwaka,
and people have started to show interest. Information has been spread
through an interview by a radio station, a lecture at a local green
market, articles in a few local news papers and so on. People are
trying to grow rice in Maungaturoto, Warkworth, Rotorua, Wellington,
Nelson etc. I donate my seeds to a seed bank who emphasize the
importance of keeping seeds from the original species.
NZ imports rice from Australia. I hope that rice growing will
spread and become well established through NZ before the fuel needed to
import food is finished. I have heard that three and half generations
are needed to make imported plants adapted to the local climate. I have
harvested six times in autumn by 2006 and my rice can be
Here, I briefly review the rice growing
history at the Experimental House. Details are given in Chapter 5.
(snow light)’ was brought from Japan as seeds in 1999. They
harvested in 1984 in Hokkaido. ‘Nihonbare’ and a
seeds were brought in vain. If the growing of
becomes established, I want to try an improved species in Hokkaido. The
outline for each year is given in the following.
was planted in a stream which was naturally formed by the overflow of
the neighbour’s pond. It was shaded by the hill of the
and the inside of the rice was not filled while having pale yellow
grains on top.
paddy was moved to a corner. A few ways were tried, but the rice had no
inside grain again and was thus a failure.
paddy and an irrigation pond were formed. Water was provided by a hand
pump but the soil was sandy and did not retain it. Some rice
grew through sprinkling water. From April 11 to May 14, some ripe tops
of the rice were harvested and the grain filled two yoghurt
containers. These became seeds later. The paddy was filled with a
30cm layer of clay and retained top soil was refilled over the
top. Now, the rice paddy was properly formed.
43kg was harvested. Quite large amounts were eaten by birds. The
harvest was estimated to be more than 60kg. Later, a firm bird
was constructed with fence posts.
harvested. This corresponds to 91% of Fukuoka's harvest. Yet anxiety at
the sowing time remained. And an interesting attempt to use it
perenniality started with three lines of rice.
was harvested, an unexpectedly small amount. This was caused by an
unusually cool climate. The proper sowing time remained to be found.
was harvested. The paddy looked to be fertile and to a certain extent
the method was established, however the use of perennial
and sowing time was left for the next year.
harvested. An interesting result from perennial use was seen in that
the transplanted seedlings were directly affected by the climate of the
year, but not the perennial roots. They produced more than the
transplanted seedlings. The 5 year average harvest in the paddy of
is 66kg. This is converted to 53kg in brown rice. It is said that
in Japan they eat 44kg per person per year in Japan and I have
never had a shortage of rice.
was harvested which was an unexpected fall. It was caused by the
plastic sheets that covered the entire paddy in order to suppress couch
grass. Namely, the old roots did not get enough sunlight and oxygen,
and I did not add enough fertilizer.
time is coming when we can not import rice from
Australia because of the energy crisis. We have to prepare for such a
time. A country such as Japan which has a long history of say 2000
years or more, have had rice harvests 2000 times. They have had
opportunities to improve it 2000 times. If we understand history in
such a way, it changes the feeling over a long period such as 2000
years. Meantime rice farming was continuously developed. However, if we
cooperate well with a variety of methods and results, we can find the
next best way over even a short while.", was my comment at a lecture
about rice growing.
A survival struggle for food
experienced in the past and overcome with a lot of effort. Organic
farming is fundamental. On the other hand, modern science has been
developed quickly and greedy people have used it. Finally it gives us
an illusion that we could have more foods easily. The concept is even
opposition to the god that governs the great universe and it reflects
life in the imaginary world which human beings make up with their
logic. Let's start to create a world where we can have spiritual
progress, establishing a life with rich foods under the smile of nature
and denying materialistic attitudes.
become conformed and restrictive. I think we need further careful
discussions on methods of growing, e.g., rice depending on climate,
geology, landform etc. This means that better ways to grow rice should
be researched looking at a variety of factors, using the theory of
quantification I. This can be said to apply to any other farming as
The following factors have been
affecting the growing of rice, when the theory of quantification I is
applied to predict a harvest with them:
outsider or the target of prediction
|the harvest per a square meter
|Species of seeds
between two neighbouring stocks
Kind of composts
Climate of the year
Kind and amount of weeds around (Possible internal
correlation with compost)
Seedling or direct sowing
it was transplanted
those factors which contribute to the outsider and are
independent of each other, having sufficient sampling, and applying the
theory of quantification I, a place's harvest can be predicted. In
other words, the best way to grow rice at that particular place is
found. Methods using perenniality must be analysed to predict harvest
in the same way.
When this metrology is applied to any other
products and the quantification method is prepared, anybody can produce
results easily. When it is applied to the perma-cultural way utilising
companionship, the items which have strong internal cor-relationship
are combined into one factor and the method can be applied.
learn and follow only the historic established method for growing and
encounter a problem, it is hard to correct it with knowledge.
Everything doesn't always turn out right and mistakes are important.
The experience gives us broader knowledge and makes us think again
about the right direction. There is no progress where the way is
Layout of the section
the first section is for solar energy collection, growing crops are one
of these ways of collection. Namely, mowing grass, decomposing it over
time and using this on the farm. This process utilises solar energy
itself. We have to observe and know how the sun shades at the site, how
grass grows etc and to from this learn to surely catch the gift of
If this understanding is expanded, it is also through
sun that we get what is necessary to build a house using local
materials. An attitude of not contaminating the surroundings saves the
energy needed to cleanse contamination too, and decreases the surface
which can not be used because of contamination. In such a way, we can
not discuss anything while forgetting the benefit of nature.
mentioned before, a very important subject is to see what size area is
needed for a family when it is used most efficiently.
it egoistic for human beings to limit a certain necessary area to
themselves and could it be the way to live in harmony with nature?
However, it gives us a wonderful space and opportunity at least to talk
about it. Even if it we find the necessary area for sustainable living,
it is still an ongoing process to find better conclusion.
wonderful it is to imagine the next plane by living in the smallest
area in nature, enjoying harmony with the great earth, and feeling and
When the flow of economical
Japan is looked back on, first of all the development of division of
labour changed the society of the time. At that time people such as
footwear makers, blacksmiths, weavers, carpenters, joiners, hand
workers, farmers etc, still had contact with nature and partly produced
their own foods. There were people who could produce basic foods such
as wine, tofu, honey, and dairy products well. They would have taken
part in barter. Then an exploiting class emerged using political and
social means, e.g. feudalism.
Mass production started. Larger
amounts of energy were demanded. Hydraulic power plants were developed.
Mass production became huge and fossil and atomic energy occupy the
positions of main energy sources. Both of them stimulate each other and
the division of labour developed further. Mass production and energy
development are a pair and they compose part of the strong hierarchy of
society. When we look back our society, the extreme division of labour
and the mass production system have destroyed a sustainable way of
We have a space where we rely on others (or are not
involved and related). We have to change this carefully and rationally.
We have constructed subconsciously such a society where we use other
people under the concept of the division of labour.
by somebody else and even delivered to the work place, and one finishes
one's job of the day. On the other hand, if there is a change to a
sustainable way of living, with only a tiny bit of time one can enjoy
growing foods and eat them.
subject of UNESCO; Threatening food crisis and environmental problems
is growing and we are gradually coming to a time when we can not grow
any crops including rice because of acid rain and earth contamination.
UNESCO must discuss quickly and practically the matter of preparing for
shortages of foods and crops. It should work on establishing a food
strategy on a sustainable way of living for each local place, and on
predicting the amount of foods and ways to improve the present affected
situation, I think. For instance, collecting statistical data for rice
growing from each corner in the world and analysing it with the theory
of quantification, should help find the best way for every place to
Information can be collected through the
and should guide the world on the basis of good scientific analysis. We
should research using the same methodology for all other types of foods
as well. Then, we should prepare for various kinds of food emergencies,
investigating kinds of crops, places for them, their amounts, the
duration of their supply and suggest improvement strategies against
Food strategy must not be used to control
should be part of world wide cooperation against emergencies,
improvement against possible human made changes, the recovery from
them. The crises are not only on the land but also in the sea.
The preparation of globalisation of
sustainable life style
this should be done by UNESCO. It should find the least area needed to
live sustainably depending on the natural condition of a place and
secure the right for each individual to have this space. The layout
from this project could be a point of reference for this.
is not easy to pick up on all the related items here, but at the least
the following should be investigated in different places in the world
and be discussed in terms of sustainable living: solar energy, rain
water, wind, temperature, land quality, trees, vegetation, farm crops,
vernacular aspects (traditional house plans, roofs, walls, festivals,
social circumstances) and so on.
House planning aiming for a sustainable way of living
It should be essential and
fundamental to plan a sustainable
life using quantitative predictions. By using the gift of energy from
the sun a plan can be confidently proceeded with. In this section,
quantitative and practical methods are discussed as the prelude for a
utopia village scheme.
It is nature that allows us to live. We
should not be allowed to disturb and/or change it. Accordingly, we have
to establish the cycle of each person’s way of living as a
system that does not cause any harm to nature.
moved to NZ, they tried with a lot of effort to simulate the
environments of their native countries. It was easier to introduce and
follow the same methods there. However, there were some failures and
now a severe quarantine checking system is required. Shouldn't we make
further efforts to return to the native environment by extending the
A classification into agricultural
hunting tribes is too simplistic. The greed of hunting tribes who
looked for the good taste of animal protein resulted in a change to
intestine length. The oriental eating habits and philosophy should be
referred to as a model. Though it is impossible to completely change
one's lifestyle, but it can be done partly through a gentle change, and
partly a drastic and enthusiastic change.
We must not look
comfort. We must not forget that we develop and strengthen our immune
system from wide ranging seasonal changes. The present medicinal system
tries to cure only the part which is found to be sick without looking
at how it has happened in a holistic way. The situation in this respect
looks to be the same as how public nuisance matters are handled. The
method to cure a resultant disease is in the negative sphere. Having
thoughtful eating habits, which pays respect to the Chinese thought
'Medicines and foods have the same origin.', the remedy must come from
the point of enjoying a healthy life. For that purpose too, it is very
important to establish good house planning.
valuable to research how individual countries functioned before fossil
energies were used. In parts of Russia they live at minus 40 degrees
centigrade (I was once given a recommendation to apply their heating
system by a Russian woman in Auckland), and not much rubbish would be
found in the bin at my parents home in my childhood. Only hydraulic
power was used for electricity generation at that time. What kind of
living standards did they have? It would be interesting to look back at
living levels related to electrical power consumption and this could be
developed into a reference point to measure sustainability. The Kyoto
protocol is not enough, because we already were using a lot of energy
in 1996 (which is its baseline).
I want to dig up wonderful
trades used by craftsmen and use them in a sustainable life. I want to
encourage people to keep them and not lose them. The things which have
been developed locally through a long history can be great and
precious. Japanese wooden houses are wonderful and one of these
These should be viewed separately from
which are obtained with the present short term outlook, and it is time
when a future plan based on them should be created. The globalisation
of materialism based on mass production and the strategic invasion
using it must be rejected and forgotten at an individual level.
mats were a measure to estimate the indoor climate. They absorb
humidity and from them an estimate on how humid the room is can be
derived. This is a great idea of the ancestors in Japan. Bulrush has
porous filling inside the straw, which absorbs and release humidity.
The people of the past chose proper materials. If it snowed, they put a
snow screen on. If the sun shine was strong, they put on a sun screen.
With a little effort, they could make extreme climates less
We must have a plan for the future,
at a long period over multiple generations. For instance, securing
timber for house renovation requires the consideration of time.
Estimating the number of years for 'hinoki' Japanese cypress to mature
at least 35 years, how many are necessary and how wide an area of
forest would they need? At present it is difficult to get reeds in NZ
and rice straws are the replacement. How much of this is produced in a
year and how long does it take to produce a sufficient amount?
Naturally, short straws are returned to the paddy which must also be
taken into account.
Good timber, e.g., kauri, rimu in NZ,
ceder in Japan can be used for years. A recycling and reusing system
must be constructed not only for timber but also other building
After World War II when Japan was
broken, the time of industrial production started. They were forced to
develop while leaving contamination and pollution. Social habits to
hide these things from public also developed, I guess. The production
system and its spiritual background became criminal as a result which
can be charged to the society.
Human made unusual climate and
great wave of nature. Rice has been brought up in a composed manner
without encountering the former situation. We have to think seriously
about the possible situation of acid rain causing rice to not be able
to be grown. Of course the cause of the acid rain must be stopped at
As a result, further discussion and work on the
project will be indeed needed with regards to the final
conclusions on sustainable living. The present situation uses a lot of
artificial products. For instance, mirror plates, an ignite stone, wind
mill blades, electrical tools for the windmills, family appliances, a
toilet stool and so on are currently in place. Aiming towards
sustainable usage, further efforts are necessary in this direction.
if the assumption of 2,500m2
for a four member family is applied to
Japan, how does it fit with the whole country?
118,450,000 people (Its density
in the flat areas is 1,500 persons per 1km2)
families (averaged by four); 29,612,500 houses
for sustainable living; 2,500m2x29,612,500
houses = 74,031km2
ratio of the sustainable living to the whole area;
74,031／372,313x100 = 19.88％
Japan has 17% flat land (13% of farm land and 4% residential
area), if 2.9% of gentle sloped area is added, it is very certain from
the figures that it is possible to keep the present forests. The
present situation where only 4% of the land is used shows how easily
realized the sustainable way of living could be.
am 70 years
old in the year 2008 when I write this. I want to emphasize that even
old people can take part in sustainable living and encourage
myself too. I need the help of old people who have a lot of spare time.
We don't have the power we used to, but we can make it with numbers.
One thing is evident - that the younger one starts, the denser and
richer sustainable living can be obtained. However, I want to find out
a proper plan to carry out physical and materialistic work for the aged
I was told by a Swiss woman that they educate young
especially girls, to live standing on one's own feet. I think this is
right and if one has a sustainable life one can live in such a way.
Japanese women, stand on your feet. This can be applied to NZ women
too, where they won the right to vote first in the world.
2-1) Planning a sustainable way of living
climatic data necessary for house designing should be picked up and
looked at; we need to get practical data from the local
meteorological station which should be used for long term planning. We
would like to ask any local stations to help and respond to requests to
record data. It is interesting to know for example how automatic
recording is done in weather conditions such as fine, cloudy or rainy,
in what amount of cloud is possible to measure luminance etc.
Cooperation in house planning is largely expected. This record can be
used not only for indoor climate prediction but also for a solar cooker
and/or a solar oven to find how often they can be used.
important are the local climate, geography, landform, vegetation etc
which are provided by nature, they need to be observed for at least for
a few years and the results carefully applied to house designing.
Security against flood, stormy winds, tornadoes, earthquakes and other
climatic events is important too.
The design must match and be
harmonized to nature. The materials should be locally produced ones. It
may be only my taste but a roof design is most the important here. As
thatching materials susuki grass, water reeds, rice straws, wheat
straws can be used. Rice straws stored in the past four years are shown
in Fig.2-2-1. Shingles of cypress or podocarp, or cypress barks can be
used for roofing. When roof tiles are used their colour and touch must
match the surrounding
Drying stored rice straws
A present sketch of the
Experimental House site, the location
of plants and tools outside for energy collection, and the
architectural drawings of plan, section and elevation are shown in
Fig.2-2-2 (a) The
present layout of the site
The meanings of number and a
character are given bellow.
plum(red), 2. plum(yellow), 3. plum(red), 4. fig, 5. kiwi(♂♀), 6.
almond, 7. blueberry(♂♀), 8. apricot, 9. hazelnut, 10. apple (Fuji),
11. apple(Golden Delicious), 12. avocado, 13. cherry, 14. peach, 15.
nashi pear 16. chestnut, 17. feijoa, 18. loquat, 19. macadamia nut, 20.
persimmon, 21. quince, 22. olive, 23. grapefruit, 24. citrus fruits,
25. walnut, 26. alder, 27. acacia, 28. poplar, 29. Japanese ceder, 30.
banana, 31. mulberry. A. rice paddy, B. veggie garden (upper), C.
veggie garden (middle), D. tree seedlings, E. asparagus garden, F.
veggie garden(lower), G. shed, H. ground tank, I. solar panel, J.
compost box, K. store shed for the solar cooker and oven, L.
amphitheatre, M. windmill.
for the ground floor
|Plan for the basement,
for the second floor
Fig.2-2-2 (b) Plans
of the Experimental House
floor: A1, 2. bed rooms, B. closet, C. living room, D. kitchen, E.
shower room, F. toilet, G. porch, H. electrical corner, I. battery, J.
water pump, K. shed, L. header tank, M. ground tank, N. store shed
(solar cooker and oven), O1,02,03. deck, P. air duct, Q. green house,
Q1. agitation pond. Basement: R. seed bank, S. tools shelf, T. food
storage. Second floor: U. solar room, V1, 2. book shelf, W1, 2. air
duct, Z. PC for recording.
Characters in the figure show the
followings. Unit is in mm.
(c) Sections of the Experimental House
Elevations of the Experimental House
is human egoism to define a particular living area as necessary. Is it
possible for human beings to live in nature with a good balance, if
they live there saying it is sustainable? However, this could be a
space to consider the attitude towards nature. Even if we define
something as the area for sustainable living, it is still progress on
the way to a definite figure. 2,500m2
for a four member family is a
Every effort will be paid off. Saving
a direct return and is a wonderful virtue. We were often taught "What a
waste! (Mottainai!)". For example washing or rinsing oily dishes with
hot water from cooking. We can make a variety of things with off-cuts.
Some examples are shown in chapter 3, like foot stands, tables, book
shelves, dried flowers from rice grass.
A house should be
to be as small as possible. Look at a bird nest for example. It is a
good and wonderful thing to see that they have babies there and
diligently give feeds to their babies.
When Europeans moved in
they lived in small houses. David Studholme, a friend of mine from
Waimate, keeps his ancestor's house, which is called "Cuddy", in his
garden. It is thatched (by Norbert as well) and has a floor of 5m x 3m.
It has a bed corner, a kitchen sink and a living room. It is shown in
Fig.2-2-3 "Cuddy" at David
This is a good example of
modest living. It must be
interesting to introduce knowledge on sustainable living to it. The
result can be a good example for the Utopia Village Scheme as given
The temperature distribution in a house
from low to high. It occurs naturally and it could be a good idea to
live on the low level for summer and the high for winter.
ceiling of the ground floor was thermally insulated in April 2005, so
as not to lose the heat there. There are no ventilation holes in it at
present and the cool tube system with the lifting power of the solar
room does not work. However, heat transfer through the ground floor
occurs and the temperature of the living room and other rooms was a bit
lower than the outside air temperature in summer. This was much
appreciated in the summer of 2006.
solar room gets
very hot in the day time, but it loses a lot of heat through night
radiation. It was observed and compared with the next room during the
night after a fine winter day. If loss is prevented, the solar room can
be used as a nice living space in winter.
As it is a bit
a sleeping room could be built with thermally insulated walls in the
basement for winter. The heat radiated from a human body can be used as
Houses must be well planned for handicapped and old
people. Depending on the handicap, it should be discussed at the time
of planning the flatness of a floor, free movement for a wheelchair
both in- and outside, bathroom and toilet design etc.
fireplace where firewood can be burnt in winter should be planned. At
the Experimental House, it is installed for the wetback in the shed. It
was not done inside because of the fire risk and litter distribution.
If a house’s whole roof is thatched, a detached house is
recommended in case of emergency.
In the following ways, there
some mistakes at the House: the staircase to the second floor, the
trusses to bother movement, the basement unnecessary for living at
Kaiwaka, thermally insulated larger opening towards the sun for winter
heating, the shorter eaves, the summer air-conditioning by air
ventilation through windows not to allow mice intrusion, the shift of
the solar panels to be more western because of shower time in the
evening when the angle's cosine must be not much less than the one
during 10am to 2pm.
design depending on
the climate is worthy of discussion. Most clothes are separated into
halves and at the feet. The latter split makes one feel cold. A vest
should be designed for addition to pyjamas.
2-2) Planning indoor climate
even a method for prediction is arrogant, it needs to be expressed in
terms of quantity, otherwise it can not persuade others and can be
washed out by strong economic power. We need quantitative discussion
and prediction and planning after measurements, analysis, and
simulations take place. This attitude and effort introduce further
scientific development and changes the direction towards a proper
science for sustainable living.
Various methods to
solar energy were mentioned earlier on. The most important method is
that of house planning and it must be done with precise and deep
consideration related to the sun. Observing and grasping the site
situation, a plan must be made with quantitative estimation: to locate
and direct the house with consideration of the geography, existing
plants and grass, seasonal change etc, and to decide the material to
use, the finish of the enclosure, the location and dimensions of the
openings and their finish and so on.
Now the role of the field
used to be called Architectural Planing Principles has become very
important as it has studied the science on Japanese traditional wooden
houses. As it is called the planning principle, this is the area of
learning about Mother Nature, study on Architectural (built) science,
and finding how comfortableness can be obtained and improved.
introduced a method to have a synthesized evaluation on the subjective
scale of uncomfortableness for three heterogeneous environmental
factors in a room being solved with the theory of quantification II.
This will be shown in the next section as the method to create or
improve an indoor climate. With the introduction of it, housing can be
treated as a system and a computer program flow chart can be drawn as
shown in Fgi.2-2-4.
strength estimation, cost performance and the estimation for
sustainability as well as synthesised evaluation of the indoor climate
are done with the data base and fed back, hopefully in real time, to
the Architect. He can talk and discuss about the results with his
client and work to design and plan the house.
Fig.2-2-4 Computer program flow chart for
house planning to support an Architect.
strength estimation computer program must be prepared for a variety of
designs. It must be applicable for a 2 x 4 structure, a partition
structure, a pillar structure like a Japanese house with wet plastered
walls, a truss structure and so on.
Cost performance can be
with a building material price list which is updated every year. The
database must be available for each computer program and tailored
directly to the Architect's design.
An estimation for
sustainability is still under discussion, but the following items
should be included:
energy in the construction process, its type and the method
*The amount of energy
to live there
*The amount of energy
necessary to renovate the house
*How long does the
design last? If it is badly designed, it will need to be changed too
*The duration of each
toxicity: the building materials, the machines, tools etc to be used on
the construction process, the treatments on wood of antiseptic and/or
repellent, bonds etc.
much of the used energy is possible to recycle and/or reuse? And its
method - how much new energy is used for that? Are there any harmful
*How rubbish and
refuse from daily life pollute ? looking at carbon dioxide, BOD, COD
possible synthesized estimation is to compare the total points giving
± points against the present Experimental House on each item
The estimation has a broad range of issues to look
each definition must have a common understanding. After scientific
experiences to accumulate this we will have to find consensus to
The computer program on the flow
needs a check point before it will be used. Too many different items
are included and it should be made validated against certain references
to ensure the proper output.
Synthesized evaluations of indoor climate and living circumstances
Synthesized evaluation of indoor climate
environments have some heterogeneous physical factors: noise level,
thermal conditions, light condition, colour, odour etc. and we often
estimate them not independently but in total. If one of them is
dominant, we estimate it with its specific subjective scale. For
instance, if we are in a dominantly noisy circumstance, we say,
"noisy", "loud" etc.
Here, a method to have the
subjective scale for three heterogenous factors, i.e., noise level,
thermal conditions and light condition is explained and is introduced
as an estimation function to estimate the indoor climate. The details
are given in chapter 5.
It is not difficult to
estimate a room environment as 'neutral', 'slightly uncomfortable' and
'uncomfortable'. An artificial climate room was made in the anechoic
chamber by lining it with wallpaper.
noise levels 40, 50, 60 and 70Leq (A), thermal conditions 21.8, 26.2,
30.7 and 34.6SET* in summer and 15.0, 18.5, 22.7 and 26.1SET* in
winter, and light conditions 170, 700 and 1480lx were given for
different room climates. A tested person was asked to choose one of the
three criteria mentioned, after doing a Kraepelin test. This is a
simple task of one figure addition. The results were quantified for
each category using the theory of quantification II. Each category
score is given in Table 2-2-1. The effect of these heterogenous
physical conditions is now estimated by a subjective scale figure.
|(i) in case of
(ii) in case of winter
Category scores for three different environmental factors on
The dividing points on the
total score to judge one of three
uncomfortable criteria with the highest provability are given in Table
Here are a few examples in the use
of the method.
The dividing points on the total score to judge one of three
when the noise level is 55Leq (A), the thermal condition is 28.4deg
(SET*), and the light is 700lx, the category score is 0.102, 0.443 and
0.006, respectively, with linear interpolations.
score is 0.551. Compared with the dividing points in Table 2-2-2, this
environment will be evaluated to be neutral.
should thermal conditions be designed, when the 'neutral' criteria is
aimed at, and a noise level 50Leq (A) and illumination 700lx are
inevitable? The total score needs to be more than 0.55, and the noise
level gives 0.151 and the illumination 0.006. Solving an inequality
equation, 0.151 + X + 0.006 > 0.55, the solution, X >
obtained. So, it is found from this that the temperature conditions
should be adjusted to be lower than 28.9SET*.
In such a way,
discussion can be made on the figures of the common subjective scale,
what factors can be chosen in design or to improve the room climate,
and the technological difficulty and economical efficiency can be
evaluated on the figures equally.
Among three factors, the
contribution of the thermal conditions to the room climate is dominant
(see more details in the paper in Chapter 5). Accordingly, it is the
most important factor during house planning. Namely, how solar energy
can be taken into it is the key.
The geological formation of
site, trees and grass around, the direction of the house, where and how
large windows and doors should be made, the structure of the walls and
their total thermal coefficients and heat storage, all directly affect
the indoor climate. The planning method for this is given in 2-4).
the method, the Experimental House thermal conditions are discussed for
winter conditions. When the noise level is at 0.436 for 40Leq (A) and
the illumination 0.006 for 700lx, and the criteria being aimed at is
'Neutral', the thermal conditions need to be larger than 0.088 from the
inequality equation, 0.436 + X + 0.006 > 0.53. The score of
needs 18.7SET* or higher.
After the ceiling was
isolated in April 2005, it never went down 14 deg in the night until
the 20th of July 2005 and it retains temperature in the day time. If
one wears thicker clothes in the night, this would be acceptable.
2-3-2) Synthesized estimation of a
method to estimate a living environment as a whole was proposed using
the theory of quantification II as well (See the paper in chapter 5.).
A questionnaire for a living environment was made, composed of 22 items
based on the four factors chosen by WHO, i.e. safety, comfort,
convenience and health.
It was given to a resident
living environment is different in the Kinki area. The result was
analysed by the theory of quantification II. The questionnaire was done
on 22 items but some of them showed strong correlation and the analysis
was done with 8 items as a result. Their scores are shown in Table
2-2-3 and it was estimated weighing in order public morals, winter sun,
noise, greens and so on. The dividing points to judge a living
environment are given in Table 2-2-4.
2-2-3 Score for each category of the eight items in a living environment
Dividing points for judging 'Good', 'Neutral' or 'Bad'.
With this method, an
overview estimation of a place can
easily be made, and with discussion and estimation for each item,
planning can proceed.
If this scoring is applied to the
House at Kaiwaka, the total score for the living environment is 0.733,
because shopping is inconvenient this scores -0.25, the winter sun is
very good and gets 0.303, the illumination of the road at night is bad
and scores 0.113, the noise level is good and gets 0.241, safe
transport is good and rates 0.023, the greenery around is very good and
gets 0.216, public morals are good and scores 0.382, and the safety for
children's play is neutral and gets 0.068. This is in the region of
'Neutral' but very close to 'Good'. For instance, if the convenience of
shopping was to be improved, it would move to the criteria of 'Good'.
This result coincides with my impressions of daily life.
2-4) Planning of the thermal environment
mentioned previously it is dominantly important for the adjustment of
the thermal conditions to improve the quality of an indoor climate. In
this section its planning is discussed.
Persons who are not
interested in the technical aspects need not to understand the details,
however, please examine what can be calculated and how it can be used.
details of heat and thermal transfer in a building and house have been
studied a lot. For instance, people study wind pressure distribution
around a house, and look at all its details. If one studies thermal
transfer in walls, one mainly focuses on this. By contrast, we try to
take an overall view connecting recent results for the purpose of
predicting indoor climate from both the outside one and also as
compared to the field measurements. Namely, how the overview
calculation meets the measured in practice and whether it can be used
for prediction of an indoor climate. With this access, the parts that
are erroneous and need refining can be found and the next emphasis for
more research discovered.
At the Kaiwaka Experimental House,
following items, outdoors and indoors, have been monitored for some
years: direct solar radiation, sky radiation, wind speed and
direction(2m under the middle windmill, 15m away from the house to the
southern western point, about 7m high from the ground. Later it was
moved to be 15m west to it, at 7m high from the ground, in order to
avoid the windmills' disturbance), outside temperature and humidity. In
the house, air temperature at various points, air movements (at five
points-two ground floor ventilation holes and three western cool tube
inlets), two humidity sensors (outside and in the living room), two
glove thermometers(in the northern bed room and the living
Azumi, who was one of my
students and is a lecturer at Soai University, calculated the thermal
conditions in the house and compared them with the measured results for
his doctoral dissertation.
2-4-1) Thermal condition calculation
predict the indoor thermal conditions from the outside climate, we have
to solve two linked equations at the same time. One is the heat balance
in the room as shown in Eq.2-3-2. The heat which comes through the
walls, the floor and the ceiling, the heat taken by the air ventilation
and the generated heat must be balanced. The heat transfer through the
boundaries is solved by Eq.2-3-1. The second one is the air movement to
the surrounding spaces which depends on their air temperatures and is
given by Eq.2-3-3. The first equation Eq.2-3-2 changes the air
temperature and then the second equation Eq.2-3-3 gets different air
movements in between, and they should be solved together.
then Eq.2-3-2 is expressed by a partial differential equation, for the
practical calculation it is changed to differences as shown in
Eq.2-3-4. As the heat balance and the air movement influence each other
in such a way, their behaviours are divided by a unit time and solved
time by time and their time responses are obtained.
2-4-2) Simulation at the Experimental
House for thermal conditions
results by Dr. H.Azumi are compared with the measured results at the
northern and southern bed rooms of the Experimental House, in winter
and summer of 1996 to 1997. The measured result is shown with a thick
black continuous line, the calculated result with a red continuous line
and the outside temperature with a thin black continuous line.
As they are shown, the calculated results follow the measured
temperature change quite well. With this computer program, temperature
change in the house for building or renovating can be predicted using
local meteorological station data.
There are a lot of factors
affect an indoor climate: outside climate such as direct solar
radiation, sky radiation, wind direction, wind speed, outside
temperature and humidity etc, the shape of a house, surface finish, the
location and dimensions of windows and doors and their finishes, the
thermal conductivity and heat capacity of the enclosure, area of air
gaps, inside partitions, air ventilation between rooms etc. All these
conditions affect both equations. Many of them affect steady thermal
behaviour too. However they must be solved as the thermal transient
response, otherwise it does not mean much to the indoor climate
estimation. In general, if the heat capacity of a house is large, the
thermal peak is delayed and lower. This is often experienced in summer.
To be able to predict this kind of behaviour accurately with these
equations and plan well with the results, the indoor climate must be
As these calculations are a bit
they should be done by experienced persons. It is important and urgent
to educate those specialists.
The calculated results follow
measured results well. They differ at the largest by 1.5degrees, which
is guessed to be caused mainly by human disturbances. The total change
is well captured in particular, as shown from Fig.2-2-5 to 8. This
computer program is practical enough to predict the indoor thermal
conditions before a house is built. On top of this aspect, if noise and
light environments can be calculated, living comfortableness can be
predicted by the estimation method in 2-3-1). These computer programs
will be required soon.
With the computer program it
easily calculated how much solar energy is obtained by a house in order
to estimate sustainability. This can be found by summing how much of
the solar energy is obtained through the walls and windows with the
equivalent temperature on their surfaces.
As the Experimental
doesn’t have a problem with noise and light environments, if
possible the thermal conditions should be improved. In April 2005
Norbert put the thermally insulated ceiling under the existing one. The
living room temperature did not drop lower than 14deg in winter. The
improvement was provided because air convection in the larger volume
was stopped, the volume of the living room became less, and given and
generated heat were trapped there with the ceiling thermal
insulation. At this stage, the ventilation holes in the
do not reach right through.
In addition to this improvement,
the eastern inside wall was to be plastered over, the total thermal
coefficient would be less and the winter temperature can be expected to
be higher by 0.6deg according to the computer calculation. As the
winter temperature in the basement changed a bit more, through thermal
transfer from the ground floor, it is imagined that the temperature in
the living room will be improved. The first summer after the ceiling
thermal insulation was installed was comfortable, and the living room
temperature well controlled in both extreme seasons.
2-5) Summary of the section
following were written as my notes about how a house should be
practically designed under Kaiwaka conditions.
first four items of the Kaiwaka project i.e. natural energy use, local
material use, no contamination and self-sufficiency, must be a given.
*A house should be
small as possible.
indoor climate calculations, especially thermal conditions planning
(the direction of house and its openings, eaves, heating equipments
etc) for the optimum design.
location of a toilet must be chosen to allow an Ozeki septic tank to
operate well.*Summer environmental controls rely on air ventilation
through windows. The double glazed windows and doors are for winter.
*The shape and
arrangement of windows use non linear lines of natural materials, with
each level not on a line.
water obtained in the solar room, a solar cooker and a solar oven must
be treated as the systems to obtain solar energy. Some of them can be
used for winter heating.
*Resume or conclusion
for each section would come here.
*Though based mainly
on a vegetarian diet, 2,500m2
is necessary for a four member family
Village Scheme (Togen-kyo Scheme)
literally means the village of the origin of a peach. It was coined by
a Chinese poet, Tou Enmei who lived from 365 to 427AC. Another poet, Ri
Haku, who lived from 701 to 762AC, referred to it in his poem which was
influenced by Tou's poem. When he was walking along a creek, he found a
pretty peach floating. He was interested to find where the peach came
from and kept walking upstream. When he entered a valley, suddenly a
village full of flowers caught his eyes. There young and old were full
of smiles and welcomed him. He thought this village must be the one
where the peach came from and called it the village of the origin of a
peach. The name has been referred as an ideal peaceful village. The
village that I dream of might have existed then there.
place full of nature, we can learn how to live from the lives of
various creatures. From the process of growing crops, raising animals,
we can learn and feel a lot of joy often. Sustainability is basically
of one's mind and spirit. It is the space to seek how we can get to the
next plane where everybody has to go. The present society gives us
various thoughts when we look for it. It is to a certain extent
necessary to criticize people who come on strong for themselves, people
who avoid confronting difficulties, people who behave cunningly
in-between and so on, and to tell them such a way does not make any
sense or give results, and is at a low spiritual level. And we should
find the real meaning of life beyond it. Sustainable life gives us
courage and confidence.
many Japanese villages have the fundamental conditions for
sustainability. There is a wonderful stored infrastructure to collect
water from the mountains down to flat fields including irrigation.
Basically human houses do not adapt themselves to natural surroundings.
A house design needs a lot of effort to be adjusted. If houses which
have not had this effort cluster, they leave only an awful atmosphere.
In Asia, people tend to live together and depend on each other. This
easily yields the soil of a power structure. On the other hand, in NZ,
especially in the countryside, they tend to live independently
according to individualism. A strong personality is needed. However, a
certain amount of effort is necessary to create culture. If an
individual is respected by others and has good spirit and behaviour,
helps the weak, and keeps their mind toward creating culture, they will
show great potential toward sustainable living. My impression when I
travelled in Italy is that they design houses respecting the
surrounding existing houses and place a great importance on group
expression. As a result they create a wonderful space and atmosphere.
If it is filled with culture, the basic level for reference is further
enhanced and a more refined culture is created. Italy is filled with
difficult to define tax for income from nature. Basically it is tax
free. If the smallest tax is paid not by money but by things, the rich
will not exist. People tend to wish to be rich because of the existence
of money, expecting 'I wish I could have more money.' If barter is
applied, one has to think of things and the concept of saving fades
away. Points would be given in barter and accumulated points used for
the next planned shopping.
In sustainable living
one must not
use farming as a means to earn money from other people. However, we
have to grow extra for handicapped people, old people, social services
etc. How much should be estimated?
*How many years one
can not work when one becomes old?
*What percentage of
disabled people does the community have?
*How many medical
doctors does the community need?
many people are needed for social services, policemen, bureaucrats etc?
They should be counted with though, because we are in a multimedia
time. If databases and applications are well constructed, the present
work for places like the tax office could be much decreased.
certain extent of research is needed. Then the surplus can be bartered
with a point system.
complex mechanism of nature is impossible to produce on paper. I would
like to proceed with discussions and activities in a practically
depopulated village. From the discussions that arise from the case
study, sustainable village planning can be established. The link to
higher levels, such as cities, nations and the world must be developed
to overcome established concepts of the past. This needs a lot of
cooperation by people of goodwill. The experiences that have been
obtained at the Kaiwaka project are at least the start and consensus
must be found through meetings. It will need a lot of money, especially
wages, to construct a sustainable life. However, this is a deduction
based on the present social system where people use each other,
instead, we have to discuss the society where each one lives by
First, have workshops by interested
teach basic scientific knowledge, techniques of carpentry, the basics
of farming etc, and reaching consensus on constructing the village. The
master plan must be made by all the members. Next, the first family
house should be built so that sustainable life can start from the next
morning. Those family members need to work on the construction of the
next house. When the circle is widened, a village is formed naturally.
The experienced members volunteer for the next village.
liberated, becomes free, has a creative life, and cultivates and
refines oneself with each other. Such a village called 'Utopia Village'
Gifts given by nature
data through the year must be obtained. Summer and winter data is
especially important. If both seasons are extreme such as they are in
Japan, the introduction of ground heat use has to be considered.
disturbing the natural landform and vegetation, a plan must be
carefully designed to build a house and a farming area. Sunset and
sunrise through the four seasons needs to be well understood.
Especially in Japan, attention should be given to summer and winter.
Landform, geological details, population statistics, social background
including culture, festival, events etc should surveyed and put into
the planning. The benefits of seasons must be fully insinuated and
enjoyed in the dwelling. Weather forecasts are important - not only
whether it is fine or cloudy, but also what the pressure distribution
is. If contour lines are shrunken, wind tends to blow at a
right-angle to them. The weather forecast is used to predict how much
energy is obtainable the next day.
If clean water
obtained from a creek which self-purifies, this is ideal. Otherwise
rain water collection will be essential. If water is collected over the
surface of a thatched roof, the water must be well filtered and
sterilized before drinking. The glass roof surface of the green house
gets mouldy. As a material, tin or galvanized plate can be used. One
idea is to have a large tin roof on top. If underground water in a well
can be found, this is a good method as well. Water is filtered well in
the ground after many years. It can be possible to collect rain water
in a field into a well or a pond, using a slope to run rain water and
collect it in the bottom. A stepped rice paddies can do this.
of thatching materials: they use seaweed in Denmark. I expect that
cultivating rice will spread and rice straw will be available in NZ.
Water reed is a good material but it is considered noxious. I heard
recently there is a native water reed called KUTA. I want to
Discussion about wall plastering: it is
to find methods and material which are popular in different places. The
plastering method which has developed in a local climate should be
investigated and improved experimentally. A common expression in many
places is "a breathing wall". An interesting point is that in NZ,
Japanese plastering is applicable because both countries suffer
earthquakes. Japanese cobbing was explained in Chapter I.
renovation of an existing house, rice paper walls with an air space
in-between provide good thermal insulation. A timber house with a
thatched roof at the Shirakawa-go House Museum (Japan) has air gaps
here and there to allow the cold outside air in. It does not have any
heavy walls and a few shoji screens are used for sliding doors and
windows. If these screens are doubled and the gaps are sealed or made
air tight, the winter indoor climate could be much improved.
Japanese terrace paddy is a wonderful type of infrastructure. It is
knowledge stored from past experiences with nature. We must not lose
it. From careful observation of the sun, the natural flow of water,
soil reform and clay to hold water etc all have been learnt. As a
result, they prevent flash floods and hold the landform. Japanese tend
to live in the lowlands. If they live in the highland, particular rice
which does not need much water needs to be grown. We have to learn what
kind of taste it has and how it can be grown. Naturally constructed
infrastructure, i.e., a terrace paddy and ones which are constructed
for human convenience, i.e., a highway must be clearly distinguished.
have to collect and learn the knowledge that has been developed by
locals in the past. It is very difficult to localize a point in the
air. We found it very difficult to set a microphone with coordinates in
the anechoic chamber. The Maori's knowledge of sailing and navigation
by reading the stars and ocean streams is great and accurate. The
knowledge that a spider's web can stop bleeding is also a gift from
them. Manuka oil is often used on wounds. There are many herbs in Japan
that our ancestors used too.
If we leave nature
behind, it may be very difficult to get back there.
*To forget old farming
*To lose the ability
to think over a wide range of things and draw the wrong
conclusions, e.g., high tide and flood.
*To observe nature
with the sharp eyes which are necessary to cooperate with it.
child who can not touch worms, a man who thought potatoes grow on a
tree, a boy who said the colour of a flying bird is wrong, a student
who can not keep looking at stars because he is afraid to imagine
infinity. Already certain distortions are growing because of the
estrangement from nature. As well, human inventions from selfish
attitudes yield more confusion and make vicious circles.
is said to be sustainable living, the process of improvement is still
needed. It is not good to fix a given area to live. We have to review
and refine it for nature’s sake. However, if we make a start,
lot of new ideas and creation will follow.
3-2) Low hierarchy society
Kaiwaka, when people walk along a road, whether they are known or not,
they get waves and smiles from others driving in cars or walking, young
or old. Often people stop their cars to offer me lifts. It is just as
Tou Enmei experienced at the Togen-kyo Village. There might be the
potential to start a utopia village here. I tried to find how big it
is, but most people do not know and I have not succeeded yet. I smile
when I think of the generous aspect of the Kiwi mind. From my rough
calculation from car rides, 10 minutes to the east, 5 minutes north, 20
minutes west and 5 minutes south at a guessed speed of 40km/hr, give
6km, 3km, 13km and 3km, respectively. This makes (6km + 13km) x (3km +
3km) = 114km2.
Perhaps it is too rough a guess, but it can be used to
imagine how far the village stretches. The population is about 850 and
it spreads over 100km2,
yet there is no village chief. It is really of
low hierarchy. The emergency services and the fire brigade are
volunteered. This shows wonderful social ethics. People think, "I am
fortunate and this should be shared with others. When I am in trouble
they will help me." Kaiwakans care about me and my project. I
think each person lives for themself and respects others. The reason
why they don't have a mayor is that nobody is interested in such a
trivial thing, I think.
Many Kiwi alternative lifestylers
Kaiwaka from the cities and try to establish their way of living. There
are many people from other countries too. A German and an English
couple started an eco-village with various nationalities. A Dutch
couple built their house by themselves with a lot of their ideas. An
English couple has a cheese shop. A Swiss couple are going to make a
village for artists and scientists from overseas. Each one makes
wonderful efforts in living in their own way.
before, when we look at the economical society of Japan, firstly the
division of labour started to change the flow. People then were divided
into shoemakers, blacksmiths, weavers, carpenters, furniture makers,
farmers etc, but they still had contact with nature and had a
certain extent of food self-sufficiency. After, using political and
social means, an exploitative class emerged. Feudalism is an example of
Then national isolation ceased and Japan was opened to
world. They learnt western technologies and the days of mass production
started. People started to have large amounts of energy and developed
hydraulic power plants. As mass production grew, fossil fuel and atomic
power provided a large part of the energy for it. Both stimulated each
other and division of labour became extreme.
It is estimated
Japan had a population of forty million before it was opened at the end
of the Edo era (1868). They knew about having a good balance of organic
farming self-sufficiency. The population jumped to be three times
greater over the next 100 years. The introduction of industrialization
gave an illusion. Though the increase and popularity of medical
knowledge and stimulation by the then government to increase the
military forces to invade Asian countries also accelerated this
increase. When we look back on history in such a way, extreme division
of labour and mass production through huge energy consumption destroyed
a sustainable way of living.
If there are people in
who can make wine, butter, cheese, tofu, honey etc, i.e. lightly
processed basic foods, these can be bartered. Barter is the essential
distribution system at the Togen-kyo village.
systems everyone can do things that were once done only by specialists
during the long period where there was a division of labour. Especially
in countries where individualism is developed, there is steady movement
in this direction. Many cookies, dishes etc are propagated and cuisines
from local places can be cooked and enjoyed by everyone. We can search
for these though books, CDs, DVDs etc and on the Internet. The recent
development of information networks is wonderful. Even medical checks
can be done through it. Through the Internet network, and
correspondence by email we encourage the liberation of individuals and
the establishment of freedom beyond races and nations, and politics can
be pushed into a corner.
Birds make such small and
nests by themself, and fly freely in nature. Other creatures seem not
to take much time nesting. Human beings do not need a large house. What
is important is to live modestly, and we must not forget this
principle. How much living space is needed for a four member family,
indeed? We have to think over this subject in order to be able to live
with it for a long time. As was stated earlier, it has been estimated
For this, family cooperation is essential. Depending on
age, sex, health condition etc, work must be shared. The situation
where it takes an hour and a half to cook a meal can be eased by mutual
To live sustainably, one has to have a good
a place and stay there a reasonable period of time. If a person wants
to wander, they can be a Woofer. This organisation is composed of
organic farmers who have workers on their farms, offering meals and
accommodation in exchange. The word is abbreviated for 'Willing workers
on organic farms'. There are more than 400 farms in NZ and young people
come from overseas.
If someone tries to dominate a
they need to be removed. This is one of the fundamentals of
individualism. A way of organizing tradesmen in NZ has a low hierarchy
too. Each trade is clearly independent, a builder, a block-layer, an
excavator, a plumber, an electrician, a plasterer etc. They worked for
us in order to build the house by cooperation. Builders and tradesmen
respect their own trades and those of one another and the progression
of working went relatively smoothly. There are no contractors as is the
system in Japan which exploits tradesmen. Each trade has its own pride
in their speciality and makes an effort to understand their trade more
fully and refine it. The organization seems to be similar as in Japan
when tradesmen were under a carpenter chief, 'toryo'. At that time,
each tradesman was properly revered for his refined work and received
reasonable rewards if the chief was honest. Institutes to research
widely on methods of construction are needed, but for a tradesmen's
organization a low hierarchy is necessary.
who live in large cities give up on alternative living in Japan, but
there must be some people in the countryside who dream of a sustainable
way of living, and we should cooperate with them. I expect the village
to be composed of a variety of people, e.g., people who are interested
in natural foods and keen to grow them, people who have skills in
computer programming, people who are interested in science, people who
like to grow fruit, people who like to grow veggies and so on. People
who are interested in a particular thing are expected. I expect for the
scheme to appeal to people who want to gain knowledge and are
enthusiastic to have practical action and experience.
good opportunity to see how we can avoid the need to walk long
distances for shopping and post, and it can be ramped up for
sustainability. Mutual help in the community can ease this and
self-sufficiency should work to decrease the amount and the time needed
for deliveries. A representative of the village could go shopping, with
a list of orders made through a computer notice board. A courier makes
sense if they connect village to village for such orders.
1997 I visited a village in a suburb of Beijing, China, which was aimed
at sustainable living. It may have resulted from the social system of
the country and the oriental character. I felt that it would be very
fragile unless it can be maintained with the strong trust and respect
of the people. A bird or a fish acts by itself. On the other hand,
people need a chief because they are in a group. If one tends to rely
on the chief, an individual can not be creative and express oneself.
large septic tank or a methane digester was installed in the village.
One issue would happen at the division of this. The system needed to
burn 150kg of coal every day to warm the liquid and they collected
organic substances from every corner in the village that spent energy.
They used the residue for fertilizer, returning it to the
From the energy point of view, I had queries too. On the contrary, an
Ozeki septic tank does not need any energy to warm the liquid and can
be used at most by three to four families in a smaller size.
is tax charged at the Utopia Village? How can a tax be defined for
barter? How should a donation with love be treated? If one invites
friends for meals, how about that? We have to support old people,
handicapped people, social workers, medical personnel and researchers
who work on subjects common to the society. That all of them are
necessary is clear. When a community develops from a utopia village,
which is based on barter, to a town, a city, or a nation, what kind of
economy can be imagined?
The conformity of local societies
controlled by mass production in Japan killed their culture and
character. Are there any particular places that are worthwhile to
visit? Ironically, this saves energy in transportation. It is sad. We
have to revive and reconstruct these things including festivals. Some
festivals are shown on the news, but most of them have become
commercial and decadent. They should be more earthly.
sustainable way of living means in the physical sense to find a way to
keep living until solar energy finishes. For that, with natural energy,
without contaminating the earth, we have to live modestly and be
self-sufficient with organic farming. The social structure must be a
low hierarchy with a volunteer spirit. Then any wars which aim for
power will not exist any more.
For the further definition of
sustainability, we have to establish a life being oneself in nature and
having a creative life. Creativity will progress to the next plane
after one's death and the spiritual development continuous to this must
be obtained. Then, even if solar energy dies out, we can proceed to the
Methods for a sustainable village
villages have developed through bureaucracy. Developments which came
out of fervent discussions and creation were few, I think. In this
section, social functions for a sustainable village are discussed and a
few points on planning will be given. A society must always have a
starting point of a low hierarchy structure.
following functions are necessary:
hall: stronghold for club and cultural activities. It is also used when
the amphitheatre is unavailable because of rain. Accordingly it has a
shoebox shape. It would be an idea to have a corner to have common PCs
in this building.
place: shopping centre including a joint shopping area. Bartering with
points and mutual cooperation. A morning market can be there. Every
morning children carry goods on the way to school.
Second hand collection: second hand goods, off-cuts, left over building
materials. They are also exchanged with points. A reuse and recycle
system must be established in the village. All these things must be
strictly classified here as well as at home.
Library: access to information systems and databases. Necessary
information is stored on CD or DVD. The development of the village or
the village history must be recorded here.
* Research: done
through email, fax etc, e.g. IT.
Technology: contact outside the village and collection of information.
How can this be obtained in reality? If IT is introduced, even the
concept of a village would need to be changed.
seasonal festivals for music and arts and large village meetings.
mainly for school use, but also used for village recreation and used in
emergencies by helicopters (see the item for medical care).
workshop: Tools are bought for the village and used by villagers.
we should not forget that parents are the best and most important
teachers. A studying space should basically be in contact with nature.
Science, which is aimed at sustainable living, must be the centre of
study. Learning of so-called mass education items could be given
through multi-media and videos. Children need to learn self-sufficient
methods and the basic trades. On top of this, there should be a space
to teach culture and arts to express dialogue with nature.
Medical care: how should this be arranged using modern technologies?
Remote diagnosis through information systems using high resolution
screens with check lists in computer programs. How would emergency
medical treatment take place? With nearby villages there could be a
joint helicopter landing ground. A common hospital in a larger (higher
level) community could be constructed in a natural place. Medication
and rehabilitation could be done there, giving patients high
expectations and confidence (This kind of hospital does not exist in
Japan and patients become sicker.). An atmosphere of melting into
nature is very important in giving a strong desire to recover. Research
on the Internet on where this kind of hospitals exists should be done.
In NZ, volunteer rescue groups and St Johns (ambulance service) are
Public offices, police and fire station: they should be organized
jointly and bridge the existing systems, dependent on the functions. We
need a natural close cooperation in a fire, an emergency, for missing
people etc. A vigilance committee should be composed with volunteer
spirit. There is no such organization in Japan, but in NZ these
functioning well. They work not only because of mutual help but also
because they are full of love.
cars which use local energies, like electricity generated by watermills
and windmills, alcohol from starch, methane etc are desirable.
Electrical cars are a hope. However, these cars could be used commonly
in the village. People should cooperate on this concept. It is expected
that there will be main railways from north to south in NZ and these
should be operated with hydraulic power.
Infrastructure: how should it be allocated? It must be decided on
considering and respecting the given landforms, geology, weather,
existing vegetation, etc. Also from the human side, what kinds of
functions are to be expected? The necessity should be first discussed,
and then the layout, which may be changed after life in the village has
production: thatching material, timber, reservoir, windmill, watermill,
forest, meadow etc.
village overall planning to support complete self-sufficiency.
foods (crops, vegies, fruits, meat) must be obtained at each
family. However, shopping other necessities outside
village, barter with other villages, cooperation to grow building
materials and care for common property, etc, are fundamental for
sustainable village life and have to be carefully thought over.
organic farming, companionship, clay-ball sowing, no cultivation,
multicultural etc should be used depending on the situation.
following are considered necessary for each family/unit:
Rice (brown), potato,
sweet potato (kumara)-starch, vitamins, essential amino acids
Soya beans (shoyu,
tofu, miso, natto): protein
Oil (olive, black
Vegies: vitamins, fibre
Fish (presently with
canned and dried fish): protein, mineral
Eggs: protein (not yet
done at Kaiwaka, but good for biogas production and chicken
Salt: from sea water
with solar cooker. The residue is used for tofu making
Wine, beer, honey (not
only to get sweetness, but bees are important for flower pollination as
the time being, these are the basic foods. If we cooperate to collect
seaweed and fish, and with the extraction of salt by the solar cooker,
the fermentation of wine and beer, honey etc in the village, we can
reach high efficiency in production. We can help each other when taking
a long term trip or at a contingency. I have to do further study on
what else I have to grow and produce for a better balance of nutrients.
electrical car can be quickly developed to be of practical use.
the same litre of petrol which car, a conventional one or an electrical
one, is more efficient to run? It has been reported that the latter
runs more efficiently. When a conventional car uses petrol, its
efficiency is ca.13% and if the same amount of petrol is changed to
electricity and an electrical car is operated, the efficiency is
higher. An electrical car has become a practical possibility because of
the development of a lithium ion battery. With a one time charge, it
can run 160km at 140km/hr. A recent study reports that an electrical
car has been developed by Keio Univ. whose batteries can be
charged to 70% in 30 minutes. It can runs 300km continuously and if it
uses cheaper electricity by charging during the night, it costs only
NZ$7 to run between Tokyo and Osaka (ca. 600km). The highest speed
reached is 370km/hr. The lead of the battery is collected and recycled
and it gets back on track (from the Internet news, April 1997). On the
other hand, a new condenser type battery, a capacitor, is being
developed using ammonium and carbon. We can expect great progress in
If we want to rely on energy from
the following calculation applies: normal plants have photosynthesis
efficiency to energy estimated at 4.7 to 4.8%. The land area of the
earth is 25%. If the land is covered by Y% and 40% of the energy could
be converted to biogas, the following equation is possible given the
15,000 energy multiple that human beings use:
15,000 x 1/4 x Y/100 x
4.7/100 x 40/100 = 1
the right hand side is the amount that the human beings need. When it
is solved, Y is 1.33.
1.33% of the land is covered by plants and they are bio-gasified, human
energy requirements can be met. However, this neglects the energy
needed to take the plants to the septic tanks. If this needs the same
amount of biogas energy, the 2.66% of the land must be covered.
generation by photovoltaic is less energetic than that by tree
photosynthesis, and the former produces hazardous pollution, while the
latter does not change the balance of the present environment. The
growth of acacias and pines is so energetic that the collection of
energy through them must be further studied.
construction is at the practical stage, with contour lines and the site
observation completed, the rolling nature and land relief should be
drawn using CAD. For windmill generation, a hill top is good but there
may be good spots in even a valley. Stronger wind occurs because the
buildings shrink the wind flow. A part of established hydraulic power
could be used to secure steady electricity for PCs and information
systems. Large sized machines, e.g. a tractor, an electrical car, or
even tools, should be used by each other.
In a snowy
snow can be melted for water using ground heat. The place where the
water is kept must be higher than the place where it is used, e.g. a
veggie garden, a house etc. If a down flow stream is made, it can be
drinkable and its heat can be used. A snow fence is a good idea using
its thermal insulation character. What kind of correlation exists
between wind and snow? Is a windmill applicable? Planning and designing
a house for sustainability in extreme climates should be attempted.
This should be done throughout the world, but it could be an idea to
start with Hokkaido as a cold area and Okinawa as a hot area. This must
be done with the cooperation of people in these areas.
a windbreak. This should be looked at for the village and each house.
Tree plantation should be done with foresight for the coming
generations. It must be habituated and the growth of building
materials, e.g., thatching grass, trees for timber etc and its
management planned. As long as there is a suitable climate, trees can
grow in a remote area of the village because the harvesting is not
needed often. To build a house how much metres of timber are necessary?
For specific purposes, how many trees must be grown? The best planning
is that it is important to not destroy existing nature.
holistic village design gives a long life. The establishment of
infrastructure, the introduction of curved lines for houses and roads.
Straight lines should be avoided, e.g., Geotheanom by Rudolf Steiner.
Straight lines are used for simplification and are heavy. From
simplification, no creative spaces are produced. Irregular and/or
curved lines give us imaginary spaces. The diversity and change in
taste for design, how can this be expressed to last the life
design? A new creative activity of design for sustainable living (if
something lasts for a long time, it saves a lot of energy.). "Wabi
(modestness)" and "Sabi (agedness)" are they special only in Japan?
discussion for a Togen-kyo village scheme in this section is expressed
in a sketch of Fig.2-3-1.
Fig.2-3-1 An example of the
layout of a Togen-kyo village.
raising for the Utopia Village (Togen-kyo) scheme
establishing one's own sustainable living, the younger one starts, the
easier and better it is both physically and mentally. As a result, one
gets more new ideas and findings, and can reach toward joy. One gets
leisure time when one becomes old. It is very difficult for willing
people to get money to start the project and we have to raise money and
make a foundation.
We need basic scientific knowledge which we
learn in the beginning and a consensus on the details of village
construction. We need a master plan in the beginning as using this
process will prevent troublesome problems later. We will construct a
house and cultivate land for the first family to be ready to live there
from the next day on. The family members will work wholly for other
people. Throughout this period, volunteers will get knowledge and
experience, and they will be living treasures in constructing the
village. People brought up through this process will share their
knowledge in constructing the next village. This is the basic strategy.
However, in the early stages we need some money. Unfortunately, house
design, construction, windmills, a septic tank etc are not free in this
world. I wish I could construct Togen-kyo villages for sustainable
living in both island countries.
Booklets will be published
for fund raising:
* How to
grow rice - through my experience at Kaiwaka
* Oseki septic tank -
published and on sale $20
* Sustainable house
design with the synthesized evaluation of an indoor climate
* Technical access to
a sustainable house - compact view of this home page
ask for your wonderful help and offer on all fronts.
Co-existence with other areas (What should a city stand for? How about
barter efficiently with other areas, the first stage is to establish
the attitude of supplementing shortages from adjacent villages. If they
can not supplement each other and need to go to more remote places,
they can cooperate in this.
Physical distribution is
between cities through a well established circulation system. Orders
from outside come in over the network. Incoming and outgoing items are
brought to the village from the bigger community. People in a shop are
now just guards who are not necessary any more and can not easily
control prices. Namely, the unfair exploitation by middlemen should be
Roads are filled up by too many cars. One reason
that workplaces and homes are too far from each other. Another reason
is that the division of labour makes buy variety of things and for this
one has to move around. The roads are used to deliver things in between
as well. If we live sustainably, the total area of roads - which is
almost the same as the area taken up by residences (as shown in the
statistical data of Japan) - will change dramatically.
construction the conditions which are necessary for a residence should
be loosened, e.g. with respect to sunlight, and they could be
constructed even on slopes. Communities should be woven together. The
passage for each house given in 2,500m2
can be in common use for the
village. The area for cities and the roads between cities already
exist. Urban renewals might need an additional 10%. The area for human
living would need ca. 30% of the land which would include smaller
factories. The distribution of goods from factories must be
rationalised via computer programs and distribution networks so that
traffic is decreased as well.
Village members who
excellent ability could be sent to a research center which is jointly
founded by other Togen-kyo villages. Research results are brought back
to the village. Larger projects could be done at a central institute
established by the communities. Scientific progress is always
important. The function and the role of a city must be defined and
related to the adjacent villages. First, Togen-kyo villages exists and
it is discussed how a city is needed for it. Then it should be looked
back from both directions. The necessity of a larger community occurs
when it gets common benefits and offers creative spaces for refining
and enhancing each other. Namely a village and a city are different
each other but they should well function and never compose a hierarchy.
Existing venal greed and voluptuary aspects should be denied and
eliminated. Appropriate aspects of a city is for it to be a centre for
culture, arts, science, literature etc and it should be a place to
research and develop these. It must never be lead only by economy and
At the development of a new product and/or a new
it must be well discussed how long can it serve, how much energy will
be used, and how it is important for a human life.
not given but needs to be created. A city must have such functions and
so we need transportation to the city. Japan is not narrow, but people
are pushed into a narrow space. The railway companies are responsible
for this. Our national railways had a grand idea that they could be
used through every corner of the country.
of a man
and a woman often gets separation. The property that has been
accumulated by both is shared half on the point, which is given to the
leaving person. If the person finds a new partner their points are
gathered. They can be used at any time in a community of the same
philosophy. Namely, progress from the past can be counted at a new
at an urban area
think an apartment building should have less than four stories. If
younger generation live at a higher level, any lifts are not necessary.
Its example is shown in Fig.2-4-1 which was sketched by one of my
students. A train of thoughts in this paper can be applied there and it
makes a sense to have multi-stories. Namely, if the land of each family
is gathered and a four storied apartment building is constructed there,
one quarter of the gathered land is used for it and three quarters can
be used for a green belt. They can enjoy growing veggies and fruits,
and they get necessary amounts. Crops and drinking water must be
supplied from other area, though. If each family brings 200m2,
families get 800m2.
is used for the apartment building, 400m2
for a veggie garden, and 200m2
is for fruits. The last 200m2
can be a
recreation area too.
Even if self-sufficiency of this
extent is possible to realize,
it is difficult to get land in an urban area, and an infra structure is
needed. It must supply drinking water and public transportation for
people and crops.
An example of an apartment building.
Their farm work except veggies and fruits
production would be asked to other people and Togen-kyo villages would
produce it in response. It is included in the extra work that was
mentioned earlier on.
The electricity produced by hydraulic
plants is used for the least steady consumption. If windmill generated
electricity needs 160watt for each family (a refrigerator: 80watt, TV:
160watt, an electrical hood: 40watt, lights: 80watt, a washing machine:
200watt at necessity) and the apartment building has 36 families, three
windmills of a 12m diameter or six windmills of 9m diameter with the
wind speed of 3 to 4m/sec are necessary.
point of a
reinforced concrete building is a large heat capacity. Accordingly, the
outside thermal insulation is necessary. If its construction method is
established, it would be estimated differently. For a four storied
apartment building, canopies and air ventilation give comfort at upper
levels and shades by deciduous trees at lower ones in summer. This is
the fundamental planning for them.
The concept of UNITE by Le
Corbusier is for economical efficiency of a multi-storied reinforced
apartment building. It is ironical that the concept was applied for an
office building first. In Japan, it has been used for an office
building and an apartment building as well. And high-rise buildings got
momentum because of the narrow land and frequent earthquakes.
Unfortunately, the Kobe earthquake left a lot of sad stories for aged
people and anxiety about the earthquake-proof construction technology.
By contrast, they don't forget to have the concerto to high-rise
buildings, introducing the anti-phase principle and or the damping
technique. It is the basic point of the anti-phase principle that each
story of a building must be flexible to move in anti-phase to an
earthquake. It is possible to respond against the wind, and it is
difficult for people who are sensitive to sea-sickness to keep working
for long time there. A damped structure changes movement into friction
heat while each story shakes. If a structure becomes large, the rising
time to a shake is slow and not in time.
Should we need such
high-rise buildings applying such complicated technologies? In
addition, if a building gets a large earthquake, the residue distortion
is left in the non-linear range, and it is not sure to be safe for the
For a high-rise building, in general, its
is 85% for the linear behaviour and 15% for the non-linear. Some of
structure engineers do work on the 15% area.
Summer in 1995, I
invited to a workshop in Hanover, Germany, for the preparation of the
World Exhibition in the year 2000. I met an American architect and he
said that they got buildings already more than necessary capacity.
Their buildings are saturated. It is guessed easily that Japan is
closely following the situation. Do we really need such high-rise
For a good network system, volunteer
necessary. The scientific, technological and medical facts, including
old and new, should be computer programmed and ready to be searched and
accessed to use for individual's purposes, just like with a dictionary.
For instance, if one wants to know the direction of the sun, one enters
the longitude and latitude, time etc, necessary data are given. If one
wants to know the diffracted noise level over a thick noise barrier,
one enters the dimensions of the barrier, the locations of a noise
source and a receiving point, one gets the receiving noise level. The
parameters must be used commonly on the computer program through the
subroutines and they must be well linked, which need a lot of
cooperation. Many measuring systems are on analogue expression and they
should be well linked to digital ones, and then for both sides.
internet is revolutionary on a point of individual’s freedom,
it needs certain knowledge to handle and it is not yet real
freedom to everybody. It should be easier to handle, establishing a
better man-machine system. Why some of them including me do not want to
touch a computer? Why anxiety goes ahead? We tend to think if it would
be broken. Especially for a person to rely on his hunch and scent or a
person who does not like to assemble one by one, he tends to feel weak
on it. I belong to them and honestly I don't like it. I do expect that
it would be much easier to use.
If the network for information
thus established for people under humanitarianism, it will be an
important access to the world happiness. An educational program of
sustainable living for each local place should be developed and opened
on the Internet. Needless to say, there are a lot of traditional trades
and works which can not be obtained without practice. They should be
well kept and succussed to the next generations.
It must be
to use the Internet and Email as a means to collect individual
information to use for moneymaking. The release of information will be
very important. As the development of a network has a great role for
individual's freedom beyond countries and regions, it is never admitted
to be interrupted by computer viruses.
By the way,
artificial satellite waves affect or bother living things? The matter
is not only for animals and insects which do not sense them, but for
bacteria and viruses they might sense them and be dead by their
oscillation. Then the established chained system is broken and
gradually affects other existences. The whole area is exposed to them
and it is difficult to find any free area. A comparison experiment is
possible generating anti-phase waves. Here, I mentioned as my concern.
architect gives vegetation on his drawing. However, he does not insist
strongly at the construction, namely he does not plan it with deep
consideration. He easily deletes with an eraser and changes it. It is
not a good plan without knowing the vegetation. Kikuyu is a good
example. It can not get rid of so easily as delete with an eraser. The
present construction industry does just on the habit. Architects must
recognize it clearly and react it. They have to learn much more of
nature. To push people into a concrete box is to get rid of human
nature. Town planers are jackals of economical activity. They just daze
and blindfold a place taking natural human life away. They are fakes
and shams. They should be responsible to present crazy cities. Humans
must not be in frames, but a space with nature is a start for them.
is known that fossil energy dries up sooner or later. However, they
keep constructing large buildings using huge amount of energy, after
then they consume a lot of energy daily. There do not arise any
discussions and critics about them. The day when the fossil energy is
finished will come unexpectedly quicker and suddenly, because
developing countries started to use it in the same way. Then, the
society will be pushed into confusion and disorder. It can be imagined
that they abusively blame each other to other people's responsibility.
At the time, weakened immune system will be worse, human value is
little, and discrimination will be stronger.
There is no way
reform the present society. After all, we have to start to establish
sustainable way of living for finding a direction. When an individual
and his family are established, a village gets a meaning, and a town
and a city are needed. So the city must be the centre of culture and
science for the area. Active rumination must occur, and lively and
vivid flow of exchange and development will follow.
function to eliminate persecution and oppression inside as well as
outside and protect an individual's cultural, scientific and other
creative activities to be able to proceed safely and peacefully. And
each country in the world creates its own identity having the space to
polish and refine with each other.
Kyoto city, one
oldest cities in Japan, offered a competition for its future plan in
1998 to the world. It was a nice opportunity for me to think over city
planning based on sustainable living. The paper is shown in Chapter 5.
A bridge to the next generation
As I mentioned at the
section on rice growing, if each one's
experience on sustainable living is gathered, the same amount of
knowledge and learning is obtained as through many years, and
development becomes faster. More people appreciate them too.
one's experience, knowledge and learning are collected, being referred,
and they are left for following generations to progress.
important for me to leave my experience and results for younger people.
They will be discussed and live among them, even they are denied or
agreed. Accordingly, I could keep joining them to solve the subject for
the soul world.
At a certain stage of the project,
devices should be left for reusing and recycling improving them
further. Japanese traditional wooden farm tools and devices should be
well kept and reused. Such a movement is necessary after a good
research of them.
We need not to be apprehensive for
activity when we will be sustainable. Even new enterprises are
possible. Any excuses against the concept are not acceptable if it is
of its stagnation. Examples: Ozeki septic tank, the one by recycled
plastic, solar cooker and oven, condenser battery, things for windmill
etc. A few others are given in the next section.
use etc should be thought for coming generations. We should grow enough
building materials like cypress, ceder, kauri, kuta thatching grass
etc, and leave rice paddies, veggie gardens, sustainable houses and so
A few comments on early child education:
education is deformed by materialism. The importance of environments
must be strongly taught then. The parents who do sustainable living are
the best teachers. Education must not be directed to materialism but
towards sustainable living. They must learn to respect culture brought
up in the local nature, and get genuine and nature-respecting human
Some items left for later
Items under discussion are given in
this section. They are not
well arranged. I expect people to join to challenge them and help me
for calculation, experiments, works etc.
books are used under my pc to change easily direction and
If they are made by drawers of similar dimensions with a bit of
frictions in between, they would be useful.
If a dry
avocado's shell is lacquered and placed on a bamboo ring, it could be
used as a holder or a container.
Curvature on a surface could
be found by rolling sphere balls of different diameters.
water from a tap drops gently on the rear of a tea spoon, it gives
regular waves. Does the shape changes its non-linear behaviour into the
A few ways of cooking rice were
introduced in this
home page. They should be investigated how energy consumptions are
different, how much time do they need, and so on.
It needs landscaping at the native trees area, (1) to do
it like a Japanese garden and (2) to have a jogging course.
analysis, especially the theory of quantification II could find the
most influencing factors on a cancer and we should try to find the way
to overcome it.
Think when I would get gout and keep
medicines every day, when I would get diabetes and have limited foods,
or when I would get hyperlipemia and couldn't finish my life without
fulfilling the duty. Don't drink too much, Yoshi. Imagine when I would
be suffered from sickness. It is the wisdom to prevent it. Stretch
yourself every day.
Each one's character looks to
somewhat to a blood type. If we could find the distances between A, B,
O, and AB, the hybrid combination might result in a creative character.
It maybe a bit profanes deed.
data analysis about biogas amount from the past record must be done
sooner or later.
is a good idea to monitor how fast biogas rises at the Ozeki septic
tank after 0kPa. Biogas production will be known for the transient.
residue in the third section of the Ozeki septic tank maybe suppress
such as ringworm. If it is mixed into compost which is produced under
aerobic condition, it could eliminate the stress at the digestion of
nutrients. The research on anaerobic activity is very important,
I was told that they decompose
enzyme in France. It is reasonable to give garbage together in the
Ozeki septic tank. The enzyme helps decomposition, I guess.
different the gas comes back from the first section to the one at the
gas is thought to be abundant. It is a good idea to get hydrogen from
it. It can be used for a fuel cell. In Japan practically it is used for
an electrical generator and to operate a personal computer. However,
there are a few items to be discussed, e.g., the energy balance in
total, the harmfulness onto the earth environments and so on.
at Hokaido Univ. invented a ceramic catalyst which works on methane gas
from cows to change into benzene and hydrogen. Giving 750℃ and ca.5
atmospheric pressure to the methane and mixing his catalyst, 15% of the
gas reacts and produces benzene and hydrogen. The hydrogen is used for
a fuel cell. It would need a large sized system to establish using
enormous amount of methane gas. It must not be used to compose a
Researches on reaction and behaviour
under the anaerobic condition are important:
happening at each stage?
*What is generated?
*How long does it keep
*What is the energy
*What is fermentation
and how it occurs?
encountered the second tough weed, couch grass. It is named
Agropyronrepens, or called Himekamoji-gusa or Shibamugi in Japan. It is
in the same family as rice grass. It has been suppressed by plastic
A disease is concerned which is
called Youshou-katsuben-byo. Where did it come from?
ramming pump pumps up water using the water stream. It does not need
How to prevent the invasion of rats
Are there any better species which
have developed in colder areas e.g. Hokkaido or Korea?
The popularisation of a solar panel is quite behind in
Japan because of the water freezing in winter. To prevent it:
night radiation is expected to be large, it must be covered on the
surface with a silver sheet with thermal insulation beneath to reflect
the negative radiation.
Ref: the amount of night radiation
must be compared related to weather. How different is it on a rainy
(2)Though a solar panel is thermally insulated in the
rear, further insulation should be given even at the sides.
there any possibility to avoid it with changing dimensions?
the above discussions must be done on the transient formula.
the night sky radiation:
(1) The glass surface of the solar
panel was dewed, and
(2) The dew was frozen to ice on the
surface next morning.
observed on a winter day. The phenomena tell that the black surface
radiates heat as well absorbing the direct and sky radiation.
The black surface has already low temperature in the evening.
It becomes much lower in the morning when the air temperature was
night, the outside air temperature was 8deg, the bed room had 14deg,
and the solar room 11deg. The negative sky radiation must be counted
for indoor climate estimation, else it can not be explained that the
temperature in the solar room becomes lower than other surrounding
rooms in the night.
The solar panel
takes only the
positive day time radiation into the hot water cylinder, the cold water
in its bottom does not move in the night and the flow occurs only in
the day time with the thermo-siphon. On the other hand, the surface
temperature of a house is taken by the negative night radiation.
Namely, on the surface of the solar panel the temperature gets positive
and negative radiation but the hot water cylinder gets only the
positive. It looks like the combined behaviour of a rectifier and a
Temperature differences in the
experimental house are
18deg in winter (the basement 12deg and the solar room 30deg) and 39deg
in summer (the basement 16deg and the solar room 55deg). Is it possible
to use it for temperature difference electric generation?
the global warming would be at the finish of petrol? For the
earth that is covered by the great energy of the sun, how much portion
does the petrol energy occupy in the whole biomass?
a location is planned to build a house, the conditions for thermal
comfort in the house are given. For typical possible combinations of
them, such as dimensions of openings, thermal insulation factors of the
boundary, heat capacity, air gaps etc, various calculations should be
worked out at a model house. We could be prepared for an approximate
preparatory planning, extracting general concepts from them. For
instance, a small house would be recommended there. When weather
allows, the living space is stretched to a balcony or a deck.
of the total energy to be obtained and to be used through a year should
be done. Having its good observation, how energy collection should be
done depending on the time pattern will be discussed.
ceiling of the living room is thermally insulated and does not have any
ventilation holes to be connected to the solar room. It will be
observed how the living room will be air conditioned in summer by (1)
the heat transfer of the basement air temperature through the floor and
(2) the Venturi effect around ventilation holes on the floor. If it is
cool enough, the solar room is not necessary for the purpose.
much energy can be obtained with a movable glass house in front of the
northern bed room in winter?
Energy by photosynthesis
energy that collected by a tree opens our eyes wide. Acacias, radiate
pines, willows etc. We often burn them directly to energy, we do
carbonate them to charcoal, but we usually do not burn them to get
electricity. How about such a generator at each family?
production process of chlorophyll is used for a battery. If the energy
is from the photosynthesis, Kikuyu can be used more efficiently,
because its photosynthesis efficiency is 8.1%, while the others have
only 4.7 to 4.8%.
Learning the Acoustic behaviour at
every corner on the stage, where choirs, music instruments etc should
a language was introduced, its sound level is saturated and had to be
logarithmic. The non-linear process in the hearing system works in the
same way on a pure tone and a broad band sound, and each system has its
own transient response, I believe.
There must be a time window
the visual sensitivity works. The temporal comparison on
auto-correlation must be done as well. Thermal sensation must have a
time window too and judge the present sensation being correlated with
the near past. The loudness and annoyance sensation for a noise are
done with the correlation of the near past impression.
way, it is interesting to find the common characters of the three
different sensations about each time window and auto-correlation.
hot water was remaining in the bottom of an electrical pot whose top is
much narrower than the bottom, and warm water was filled the pot, the
hot water moved to the top quickly. The reason looks to have the wider
bottom. It could be possible to design a hot water cylinder.
year, a month and a day are understandable to be defined in the
universe. However, seven days in a week and typical working hours from
9am to 5pm, aren't they defined by people? The latter must be changed
depending at least on seasons.
education at a
present university lost the standpoint of a human's living space. For
instance, the non-linear analysis on structural engineering is far to
I live my life to be able
to jump and slide wonderfully to
the next plane. It is not for other people but for me. I must not
impose anybody my thought. My purpose is to live successively to the
Sustainable living→freedom and
liberation→joyful life→the next world. Believing
be new further development, I have to image and picture it.
individualism on sustainable living gives a great open and free space
to solve the last human subject, the world after death.
realization of sustainable living, the expression that we can live as
long as the sun is, is the source and origin of materialism. We have to
surmount and overcome the concept and obtain spiritual development. It
means the progressive evolution to the next space.
We have to
recognize that human beings and existences on the earth spend just a
part of the long history. Then, it is thought that a moment which is
different of time and space is given.
One's life is not only
generation. It must be succussed for the next generation's spiritual
progress and development, because solution for the sole and spiritual
world can not be found without cooperation beyond generations. Each one
leaves unconsciously its footprint and effect.
view, God might direct him to come back to the earth and keep pursuing
the subject. There comes the possibility of reincarnation. However, the
above discussion is preceded by thinking, and is not followed on the
reality of sustainable way of living.
Am I looking
transient process, do we have to go back olden times? I don't think so.
I want to live sustainably for a longer time and aim and find progress.
The way mentioned here to live in sustainable is actually
quality level of living. Namely, it is not difficult to live having
such huge energy from the sun.
Now, how is it in the sole
does not look to use at least any visible energy there. It looks to be
possible to live without any supply of energy from outside. It means
that our movement to the next plane, i.e., death is the evolution
itself. It is appealed that this process of progressive movement is
solved on sustainable living in the next 4.5 billions of years, I
If we put an emphasis on rationalization
and efficiency, we have to follow the same trace as we do. We have to
we must not forget to live in modest. "It is inexpensive." is not
enough. It should be inexpensive and no harm to environments and there
must exist the longing for rich creative space as the concept.
our eating habit, we must not look for only tasty foods, but first
think nutrient balance and in modest, because we live for thinking the
meaning of a life. However, it is very important to cook given foods of
own harvest most tasty, and it is a joy.
animals, flowers, trees and grass, and wind, seas and rivers, to these
great nature, solar energy must be shared fairly and properly. It is
absolute to keep and maintain the space and environments that are
created by God. It is said that a joy is an impulse from God. There the
concept to live in modest is introduced. It must be warned to use the
whole solar energy of 15,000 times the energy that we use and live in
luxury. Instead we should feel the greatness that maintains our earth.
However, we should be encouraged because the whole energy we use is
1/15,000 of the solar energy and sustainable living is just possible
We have to educate young people about it and
prepare to entrust to them. On the point of view of profiteering solar
energy, human beings are most greedy. We are referred to the most
active bacteria on an organic body. We have to learn from the noble way
of living by other creatures. And we need to teach and educate about it
Human beings themselves make not to
great nature. The relationship between human beings and the universe is
the fundamental for them to exist. A starry sky is one of it, the
expression of rare species to die out without enjoying a life together
is such an inestimable loss. This understanding is completely
forgotten. The expression of them can not be seen any more. The
recognition of 'how large the sadness is' is out of mind.
will be changed to be affected directly by climate and weather. It is
actually the space where we talk to nature and learn from it. Then we
feel much closer to it and know more of it. We will approach to the
The discussion on sustainability must not be
The development of science must not stay but advance. However, it must
go forward from nature. This attitude must be kept. It must be
developed, bravely and intellectually, though we have to know that it
is only shallow mind of human beings.
Any beings can
live with solar energy. Nothings are difficult. The beings other than
human are doing well. In our practical life, it is not that easy to
establish sustainable way of living and the cooperation with many
people is necessary. If it is done, how wonderful it would be.
a society on individualism under low hierarchy is established, any
power systems can not be constructed. Power struggles will never occur
there. We should stop power struggles and wars right now, and do
efforts to “live” until the sun dies. If this
sustainability will be in practice, a little temporary confusion might
occur. However, human wisdom will find a wonderful direction towards it.
and aged generations, let's think better further lives, and change and
evolute the present society with courage and bravery.