Sustainability on the menu
WANT to radically reduce your home energy costs?
As a warm up to national Sustainable House Day next month, Lismore City Council and Rous Water are hosting a seminar and trade show on September 6 at Invercauld House where two local experts on sustainability, Dr Leigh Davison and Dave Lawrence will speak.
Together they have been at the forefront of sustainable living and home design for two decades.
The trade show opens at 5pm and will showcase local businesses and consultants from across the region.
Dr Davidson and Mr Lawrence's presentations will kick off at 5.30pm followed by a warm supper ahead of a panel discussion on the pros and cons of DIY retrofitting at 7.30pm.
Numbers are limited and registration is essential so those keen to get along should contact the Council on 1300 878387.
Dr Davison and his wife Ellen, built their home using every possible feature to minimise cost and maximise energy and water efficiency.
This includes a composting toilet, a grey water system, recycled building materials, solar panels and a micro hydro-electric generator.
As a senior lecturer in the School of Environment, Science and Engineering at Southern Cross University, Dr Davidson has not only passed on his passion for living sustainably to the thousands of students over the course of his career, but also practiced what he 'preached' at home.
"It was fun to build my house," Dr Davidson said.
"Because the electrics are 12 volt I was able to wire it up myself, and the great thing about doing it yourself is that if something goes wrong you can fix it yourself."
Dr Davidson's fellow speaker, Mr Lawrence, is an educator at the Byron Community College where he teaches energy efficient house design and sustainable building and construction.
Mr Lawrence started the first residential retrofitting consultancy in energy efficiency 17 years ago.
Following the Thursday seminar, four local home owners - including Dr Davidson - and one business, will throw open their doors to the public on Sunday to demonstrate first-hand eco-home design and retrofitting for energy and water efficiency.
Sustainable House Day gives people the chance to get a real-life look inside houses that have been designed, built or fitted-out with sustainability in mind - and talk to owners who aren't trying to flog them anything and who can give unbiased advice.
Now in its 10th year, this year an expected 200 homes nation-wide will be opened up to an estimated 40,000 visitors.
People interested in showing their homes can still register online before August 31 at the Sustainable House Day website.