October 08 2012

Sustainable Living in Turkey: Güneşköy Ecovillage in Ankara

Turkey EcoVillage

Our present era is related with globalization, speed, and consumption. This understanding has affected societies around the world, especially large metropolitan areas. People who live in big cities escape to ecovillages to move away from the fast life; to live in a more sustainable and natural environment.

A group of people have established the Güneşköy Cooperative near Ankara. Güneşköy, which has 9 members, is a member of Global Ecovillage Network (GEN-Europe).  This foundations’ purpose, which doesn’t seek profit, is to be a model community with its projects, while providing better conditions to live within a more natural and healthy environment.

These are activities which are practiced in the village:

  • Put into practice academic, technological, and scientific studies regarding a lifestyle appropriate to nature;
  • Produce clean, healthy, hormone-free, unsoiled organic food, while building an agricultural, social, and economic system appropriate to sample production;
  • Develop natural pest control systems;
  • Provide an opportunity for villagers to sell their products in the city center or shops;
  • Develop solar energy and other renewable energy sources;
  • Design buildings which have natural heating and cooling systems, while using natural materials, and designing urban planning according to sustainability criteria;
  • Implement sustainable transportation systems such as biking;
  • Recycle and reuse materials.

Turkey EcoVillage “Our Garden” and the “Straw Bale Home Workshop” are considered the most important projects of Güneşköy because they develop relationships with individuals concerned with these subject matters. In the “Our Garden” project, harvested crops are distributed to about 100 families every week. These families pay a specific amount of money annually and take a box of fresh vegetable home every month. Vegetables are produced with ecologic methods on Güneşköy lands. “A Straw Bale Building in Güneşköy Ecovillages’ ” purpose is to introduce straw bale construction; a method which is completely ecological.

What should we do to make Ecovillages widespread, which develop high quality, low impact lifestyles?

Credits: Images and data linked to sources.

Selin Mutdoğan

Selin Mutdoğan holds a PhD degree in interior architecture and environmental design from Hacettepe University in Ankara, Turkey. Her dissertation was focused on sustainable residential interiors and research containing not only cases from Turkey, but also well-known green bulding certification systems used worldwide. She currently works at the same university as a full-time instructor. She is strongly concerned about sustainability, within all dimensions.

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This entry was posted on Monday, October 8th, 2012 at 1:53 am and is filed under Community/Economic Development, Land Use. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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One Response to “Sustainable Living in Turkey: Güneşköy Ecovillage in Ankara”

  1. Creating Sustainable Communities: Kerkenes Eco-Center in Ankara, Turkey | The GRID | Global Site Plans Says:

    [...] an increased awareness of the subject of sustainability and sustainable communities like the Güneşköy Ecovillage Project, in [...]

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