City Hippy

The diary of our struggle to live a green and fair life.

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Sunday, May 14, 2006

REVIEW: Episode 6 - Its Not Easy Being Green

Continuing from last week's progress, the Strawbridge family were equally as productive in episode 6 of Its Not Easy Being Green. Dick Strawbridge and his right hand man, Jim, installed a solar heating system for the spring water. The solar kit according to Dick, was reasonably priced and the Strawbridge's now have free hot water. In the winter, the woodburner will be used to heat water, whilst the immersion heater is a 'last resort'. Despite a mass of pipework, Jim declared that a general plumber could 'easily' build a similar hot water system. Their aim to be self sufficient for energy is clearly going really well. Even the water wheel is providing excess electricity and Briget Strawbridge was able to power fairy lights on a garden tree.

In contrast to the positive eco-house renovations was the subdued slaughter of the pigs, which they had reared on the farm. As well as providing food, the pigs had done a good job improving the land; as Ander, the gardener put it, the pigs were "nature's own tractors and rotovators". There was a clear gender divide; Briget did not want to see or become involved in the subsequent slaughter. Dick and son James on the other hand saw this as a job that had to be done. Together with the slaughterman, the father and son slaughtered the animal in the most 'efficient' way. They justified their actions; James stating that its better to know that the animals were well cared for. He noted that they now have a full understanding of what happens before a piece of pork is served up on a plate. Briget felt that this may be her turning point to vegetarianism.

Next episode - a compost loo is built, together with a bigger wind turbine. Plus Donnachadh McCarthy returns to cast a professional eye over their new greener life. Its Not Easy Being Green is shown on Tuesdays at 8.30pm, BBC2. For more information and links on the products used see the Its Not Easy Being Green website. There is also a book to accompany the series.


(Pictured: Water Wheel, Its Not Being Green Website)

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