The Ecological Campus (EcoCampus) is a prototype model for sustainable development and offers residents daily opportunities to experience living together as a micro community, creating an integral part of the educational experience. The mission of the EcoCampus is to teach and empower residential program participants to live an ecological lifestyle, to maintain a low carbon footprint and to advance environmentally appropriate housing and technologies.
The housing units are created from geodesic dome frames, straw bales and earth plaster. The straw bales and earth plaster together create super insulated structures with thick interior mass for temperature stability. In winter months the buildings are passively heated by sunlight entering the southern windows, where the heat is then stored in the walls and the floors. Nightime ventillation in the spring and fall cools the buildings which remain comfortable all day when the window shades are closed. In the summer the energy efficient domes out-perform all of the conventional buildings in the region by using considerably less electricity for cooling. The neighborhood is Carbon Negative as the solar panels produce more electricity than is needed to run the the air conditioners and all the other applicances. Cooking gas is methane, produced by our unique biogas digester from kitchen scraps. The biogas system was built by our students and international experts Read More on Solar CITIES...
Why Straw & Mud & Geodesic Domes?
Straw bales are a renewable agricultural waste product that is readily available. Earth plasters are a local and abundant resource of the Arava Valley. Together, these materials produce walls that are energy efficient, fire proof (Israeli Standards Institute approved) and carbon neutral (due to sequestered carbon in the straw). The geodesic framework is hand-fabricated and engineer approved to survive earthquakes.
The EcoCampus was built by students and continues to be developed today. Students partake in the construction and daily maintenance of the EcoCampus and there are a variety of opportunities available for new infrastructure projects throughout the year.