Green Team to help with eco-friendly house


The Green Team will soon decide how to work with the Evanston Ecology Center, in order to promote the latter’s environmentally sustainable “tiny house.”

GREEN THIS ONEpngBuilt by students from Northwestern’s McCormick School of Engineering, the Tiny House, which is built on the Ecology Center’s land, is a 128-square foot house where people will eventually live in a sustainable way.

“We’re visiting the Tiny House, seeing what it looks like and whether Green Team members could learn how these processes work,” said Marjorie MacLean, sponsor of the Green Team. “It’s important to learn how you can contain your own water, your own electricity, and your own waste.”

The house includes a roof composed of 95 percent plastic, LED lighting, Forest Service certified wood, a floor made from bamboo, and low-emission coating windows. It has zero net energy.

The Ecology Center, which built the “Tiny House,” belongs to the City of Evanston, which uses it as part of its ongoing promotion of environmental sustainability.

“We’ve had several meetings with Claire Alden (the head of the Ecology Center), talking about what our students can do with them,” said MacLean. “It is important to enhance the environmental sustainability goals of the city and of the Ecology Center.”

Evanston’s government has made environment sustainability a major goal. According to the their website, they divide their efforts into seven categories: Renewable Energy, Energy Efficiency, Transportation, Waste Reduction & Recycling, Water Conservation, Food Cycle, and Land Use & Development.

The Tiny House movement, and its main advocate, Tumbleweed Tiny House Company founder Jay Schafer, inspired the building of the house. Schafer’s company builds houses from 117 to 874 square feet.

“We’re seeing if we can lead tours or do community education in the summer,” said MacLean. “First we’re going to see what it is, how it works, and if it is even feasible in our community.”

Dante Hart, senior and vice president of the Green Team, said he felt that things like the Tiny House were important to gaining support for environmental sustainability.

“I’ve cared about the environment for my entire life,” said Hart.