WONTHAGGI based Ecoliv Sustainable Buildings will be exposed to a national audience next week when Sunrise weather presenter Edwina Bartholomew moves into one of their homes in Melbourne’s Federation Square.
Bartholomew and her crew will live in and film from the Ecoliv home from Monday to Thursday as part of the 2014 Sustainable Living Festival.
The Ecoliv crew and their tradesmen will move the one bedroom home into Federation Square on Sunday night and will have just six hours to have the house prepared for when Sunrise goes to air at 6am.
The popular presenter is taking part in ‘The New Joneses’ – a social experiment like no other.
Bartholomew and her crew will live in the most eco-friendly and sustainable way possible, with a minimal waste lifestyle that will educate Sunrise viewers and Federation Square visitors about energy efficiency, the second hand economy and reducing food waste.
They will drive a Nissan electric vehicle and purchase fruit and vegetables direct from farmers to reduce carbon emissions and transport costs.
After broadcasting live from the Inverloch Jetty last week, Bartholomew and her team stopped in at the Ecoliv Display Centre on White Road to inspect their accommodation.
“We’re not quite sure what to expect really. When we were approached about the project we thought it could be interesting.
“Last year we covered the story when someone else did the experiment so we thought, why not do it ourselves,” she said.
“We were expecting a bit of a tin shed, to be living in a shack for three days, but we were pleasantly surprised this morning that it is a really nice house. ”
“It’s going to be fun; it’s going to be weird. I travel with four boys anyway and we are normally living in close quarters, but we have never had to live in public in a house Big Brother-style before so it should be interesting.”
Eddie, as she is more commonly known by Sunrise viewers, said she is looking forward to the challenge right in the heart of Melbourne’s CBD.
“We turn up on the Monday in nothing but a bathrobe and during the day we source all our clothes, furniture and food,” she said.
“The idea is that we won’t have to buy much for the three days and use those lessons to teach people at home how they can do similar things in their own lives.
“It’s really nice that through these initiatives we can support local businesses. These guys at Ecoliv started with a new initiative in 2008 so it’s nice to give that a national stage to showcase what they do.”
Ecoliv tradesmen have been in a race against time to have the home ready for transportation on Sunday.
The home will be hydraulically lifted into Federation Square at midnight, before the clock starts ticking again to have the home ready for the first cross to Bartholomew.
The eight-star energy-rated Ecoliv home will demonstrate how prefabricated homes can significantly reduce household energy requirements and generate their own solar power and water, saving greenhouse gasses and utility bills into the future.
Ecoliv buildings incorporate design, construction and operational practices that significantly reduce or eliminate the negative impact of development on the environment and occupants making each home as sustainable as possible in the short and long term.
The local company was approached to be part of the project in late October and Ecoliv’s Ashley Beaumont said he was excited for the opportunity and the challenge.
“It’s definitely a big challenge but we have a lot of good tradespeople involved and I’m confident it is all going to go smoothly,” Beaumont said.
“I’ll be there the whole time in Fed Square, answering questions from the general public and taking a few tours coming through from the Sustainable Living Festival from Friday through to Sunday.”
It was an opportunity not to be missed according to Beaumont.
“We are excited about the exposure and the opportunity that has come along for us so we have to maximise that as much as we can,” he said.
“The TV exposure will just be unbelievable. I’m a little bit nervous about being on TV, but we are really excited to be involved in the project – I just can’t wait for it to come around.”
The house also features a composting system, green wall vertical herb garden, a grey water recycling system, The Little Veggie Patch vegetable garden boxes and its very own hen house.
Bartholomew won’t be the only person in on the fun, with local school kids touring the house, gathering fresh eggs provided by the resident chickens and feeding them with kitchen food scraps.
Kids will learn how to repurpose existing goods and think about where waste goes before throwing it away.
This project challenges Australia to keep up with ‘The New Joneses’ sustainable lifestyle and do more with less waste, so we can preserve our resources for future generations.
So make sure you are tuning into Sunrise next week to see a local business in the spotlight,
For more information contact Ecoliv Buildings at email@example.com or call 03 5672 5196.
A video on ‘The New Joneses’ can be found at www.youtube.com/watch?v=wwiaOcGvbH0, with more information at http://www.thenewjoneses.com