10 Good Reasons

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One Planet Development offers a transition to a more sustainable way of life, by providing a way for people to live and work on their own land, with measurable social, economic and environmental benefits. It’s good for both the rural and urban communities of Wales, and can serve as an inspiration to the rest of the world. Here’s how…


SUSTAINABLE LOW IMPACT HOMES
One Planet homes are required to have minimal visual and environmental impact. They must be constructed from sustainable or recycled materials, locally sourced where possible. Buildings must be energy efficient and generate their own renewable electricity and heat. Innovation and different styles of construction are encouraged as long as they comply with the stringent planning standards and meet building regulations.

CREATING SUSTAINABLE LIVELIHOODS
Practitioners of One Planet Development in the open countryside are required to meet their basic household needs (food, energy, water, waste assimilation, and money to pay for IT/communications, council tax, clothing, and transport) from land based activity within a 5 year period. A robust management plan is required at planning application stage to show how these needs will be met and to demonstrate the economic feasibility of the businesses.

AFFORDABLE HOUSING
One Planet Development requires the construction of simple, well functioning dwellings tied into sustainable land management. The necessity for self-build and the resourceful use of materials, means that they are much less expensive than the average home, even when constructed to a conventionally accepted standard. 

INCREASED LAND PRODUCTIVITY
One Planet Developments promote more labour-intensive food production which uses less chemical input but can still be highly productive. This is due to the extra human input of small-scale gardening, as opposed to huge monocrops which rely upon heavy machinery and artificial pesticides and fertilisers.  In addition, OPD practitioners make “value added” small-scale products rather than relying on bulk sales with small profit margins.

GOOD FOR THE LAND AND WILDLIFE
One Planet practitioners have a duty to conserve and enhance the biodiversity, cultural heritage and landscape of a site. The existing ecology is carefully preserved and enhanced by planting hedgerows, orchards and wetlands, as appropriate to the location. Produce is grown without the use of pesticides, herbicides or artificial fertilisers by using methods such as companion planting, soil care and encouraging natural predators of pests. 

EFFICIENT USE OF NATURAL RESOURCES
One Planet Developments are required to harvest their own energy using old and new renewable technologies. Water is sourced on site from springs, streams or rainwater collection, and wastewater is processed on site with the nutrients reused to encourage biodiversity and fertility. Composting of all biodegradable waste and non-biodegradable waste is minimised, re-used where possible and re-cycled off site as a last resort.

SUSTAINABLE TRANSPORT
One Planet Developments are structured around a low-transport lifestyle, with residents living and working on the same site. Sites should be located within walking or cycling reach of public transport and local communities to reduce vehicle dependence.

MEASURABLE
One Planet Development is quantified by ecological footprinting, which shows how much of the Earth’s resources people are consuming. When households reduce their own ecological footprints this helps their country reduce its overall footprint. Practitioners are required to log specific inputs and outputs so that data can be monitored for planning and research purposes.

GOOD FOR THE LOCAL COMMUNITY
One Planet Developments have much to offer both rural and urban communities. Surplus food and other land based produce and crafts are sold locally to generate income, which reduces food miles by offering affordable, fresh, healthy food. Open days provide a way for people to experience different examples of sustainable living. Educational courses bring people together to share tools, skills and resources. Employment opportunities such as apprenticeships may arise from land based enterprises.

GOOD FOR WALES AND THE PLANET
One Planet Development is open to people from all walks of life. The more developments that use different approaches to meet the targets and requirements above, the more exemplar models others will have to learn from. The Welsh Government have made a bold commitment to a sustainable future for current and future generations. This initiative can help Wales become an inspiration to people around the world.