Sustainable Living Communities

December 11th, 2009

Located on 750 acres of beautiful land in the mountains of Tennessee, is a sustainable living community called The Village on Sewanee Creek. It is an experiment in living wisely. The members of the community have a vision of living simply, practically and within their means.


One of the main projects at The Village is looking at real-world, sustainable, alternative energy sources. Forsaking many of the fads in the green industry, Grant Miller, the developer of the community is looking to develop real, always-on fuel sources. Whereas solar panels and windmills provide seasonal and weather based power, Mr. Miller is looking to an old technology known as Wood Gasification which turns good into electricity. Since trees are abundant in certain areas and a constantly renewing resource, it makes perfect sense to consider them as an alternative energy source. Many people think that burning trees is bad for the environment, but actually, the burn cycle of wood is completely natural. Another virtue about wood is that truly allows for self-sufficiency and independence. If you own land with trees, you can produce your own electricity.


Some of the members of The Village are using rainwater collection systems on their roofs to collect and store their own drinking water. Water is the essence of life, and having your own water on hand in case of a drought can be critically important. Rainwater collection systems allow you to conserve all that rain falling on your roof throughout the year and put it to good use.


Outdoor wood furnaces have become the most common form of hot water heating and even whole house heating. Outdoor furnaces have the benefit of not polluting your indoor air with toxins from smoke. Plus, they are much more efficient at heating. They keep water in the loop at about 180 degrees and require filling once in the morning and once at night. The 180 degree water can be used for a variety of things from heating a greenhouse in the winter to heating the concrete slab in your basement to keeping a never ending supply of hot water in your tank.


All members of the Village will be looking to grow their own food. Some are even looking to grow 100% of their own food and gain food independence. Raised bed gardens and greenhouses for organic gardening are being used. Also, at the current time, chickens are being used to produce eggs and rabbits are being raised for meat. Some members have plans to raise their own beef cattle and others to grow Tilapia.

Getting control back over our food supply is a major goal of many of the people in the community.

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3 Responses to “Sustainable Living Communities”

  1. Fresh From Twitter: Sustainable Living Communities … /  Worm Farming Books on December 11, 2009 10:14 pm

    [...] Sustainable Living Communities at Wise Living Journal: Raised bed gardens and greenhouses for organic gardening are… [...]

  2. Kathryn on November 6, 2010 4:41 am

    I really like your site as it mirrors what we advocate in self-sufficient living and sustainability.

    Would you be interested in swopping links? I deep link usually creating a paragraph on a page where we share the same keywords, where I will then mention that my readers should visit your site.

    Hope to hear from you soon.


  3. Aileen on February 2, 2011 7:55 pm

    Certainly! Just recently recharged and going again, exchanging links is a good idea. Please respond to: and we’ll get busy.

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