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Family live in a greenhouse

Living in a greenhouse in Sweden

Published torsdag 27 juni 2013 kl 14.14
"We use up all our own waste"
(5:01 min)
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A view from the top of the house. Photo: Dave Russell/Radio Sweden
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A view from outside. Photo: Dave Russell/Radio Sweden
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A pathway leads around the house. Photo: Dave Russell/Radio Sweden
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A spiral staircase leading to the waste treatment room. Photo: Dave Russell/Radio Sweden

Charles Sacilotto, a former nuclear power engineer in his native France, has gone back to nature by living in a greenhouse in Sweden. The 46-year-old, who now teaches maths and science at a school in Stockholm, has built the 216 square metres greenhouse around his house on Ingarö, where he lives with his wife Birgitta and three children.

"I got the idea ten years ago when I read a newspaper article describing how a family in Dalsland had built a similar house and I thought it was a kind of Utopia to live like that ," he tells Radio Sweden.   

Radio Sweden's Dave Russell met the eco enthusiast. Listen here:    

Charles Sacilotto thought about the idea for several years before contacting architect Bengt Warne who built Sweden's first nature house in Saltsjöbaden in 1976.

Warne helped him design the greenhouse and the waste storage facility which allows the Sacilotto family to use their own human waste as soil fertiliser for the large variety of vegetables which thrive in the hothouse atsmosphere.

"It's much more than a house, it's a philosophy to use all the resources which nature provides us."

A large tarpaulin protects the roof of the greenhouse from letting in too much sun and the family can always open a few windows to cool the atmosphere in the hot summer months. Charles Sacilotto says that it is never hotter than 28 degrees celsius in the house, which was built in the 1950's and has been renovated completely by the woodwork enthusiast.

Future plans include an economically viable solution to harnessing the warmth generated by the greenhouse in the summer for use in the cold winter months.  

Our journalism is based on credibility and impartiality. Swedish Radio is independent and not affiliated to any political, religious, financial, public or private interests.
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