• Sohwi-Ly Sahtel

Sustainable and healthy design checklist

For harmony with the planet

Use "green" materials and products - nontoxic, nonpolluting, sustainable, renewable, low energy consumption, low environmental and social costs, biodegradable, reusable, recyclable.

Integrate with the local ecosystem. Plant indigenous tree and flower species, promote biodiversity. Compost organic waste, garden organically and use natural pest control. Recycle greywater, collect, store and use rainwater.

Design the house to be intelligent in its use of resources and complement natural mechanisms. If necessary, integrate systems to regulate energy, heating, cooling, water, airflow and lighting.

Site, orient and shelter the home to make best and conserving use of renewable resources. Use the sun, wind and water for most of your energy needs and rely less on supplementary nonrenewable energy.

For peace of mind and spirit

Make the building harmonious with its environment, blending in with the community, the building styles, scale and materials.

Participate in the design process at every stage. Include specialists and use personal ideas and skills in order to achieve a holistic, living design.

Use proportions, forms and shapes that are harmonious, creating balance and tranquility.

Use colors and textures of natural materials and natural dyes, paints and stains to create a healthy, healing and personalized environment.

Site and design the environment to be life enhancing and increase the well-being or the vital life force - ch'i of its occupants.

For health of the physical body

Create a healthy indoor climate by allowing the house to "breathe", use natural materials and processes to regulate temperature, humidity, air flow and quality.

Site the house away from harmful electromagnetic radiation from power lines and away from negative ground radiation. Design to prevent build-up of static and electromagnetic fields from domestic equipment.

Provide safe and healthy water and air, free from pollutants (i.e. radon), with good humidity and neutral boosting fragrance. Use natural air flow and ventilation.

Create a quiet home, protected and insulated from external and internal sound pollution. Use acoustic materials with natural sound absorbing and dampening properties.

Design to allow sunlight and daylight to penetrate and rely less on artificial lighting. Allow yourself to follow the natural rhythm of night and day.

Based on the natural house principles by David Pearson's "The New Natural House"

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