Straworks Blog

Read about Straworks projects in progress and find out more about Straw Bale building

Building a Low Carb straw bale house

Today started building a house and it’s my ideal project: straw bale, one storey, 1200 sq.ft., designed and costed out by me, 40 min. from home, for a client I really like (Judy) and her border collie Tucker (my favourite breed) and best of all with Sean (pajama pants) and Sol. Two talented and seasoned builders that I have had the pleasure to work with over many builds. I’m the happiest D around from Peterborough County, to the Ottawa Valley to the homeland across the pond!

This will be the best house we’ve ever built. Why? Because its LOW CARB. Its on a LOW CARB DIET. Not carbohydrates (been there done that) but CARBON. I’ve been deeply worried about climate change since I was 12 and an activist since around then too. In my mind is the word’s biggest problem—the one that makes most problems worse. It’s fuelled by carbon emissions and as a passionate Canadian I can confidently say we are the worst! From the tar sands, to Fort McMurray burning, to our per capita consumption being one of the highest in the world, we are the worst or we have the greatest opportunity for growth, for reducing our carbon emissions. Solomon, Sean, Judy and I are going to do something about it this summer by building a LOW CARBON house compared to a conventional super insulated house.

Follow this blog and you’ll see how we do it step-by-step. How we build a Straworks Wall System No.1 house and  how much carbon we consume in the process. Some weeks we will loose big time like this week when I call Roger and order 9.2 cu.meters of concrete for our footings which is responsible for 1705 kgCO2e or 1.7 tons of carbon! I will feel a whole lot better when Wayne delivers the 300 bales of straw that we will use to insulate our walls which is only responsible for 61kgCO2e. Watch as our carbon emissions rise and fall with each material choice and how by design we will come out on top and achieve a LOW CARB house. By tracking it we will know how we can do things better next time because our next house will be the best one we’ve ever built.