Twin Oaks: Living a Sustainable Lifestyle
A 450 acre farm in Louisa County creates very little waste and uses very little electricity. The Twin Oaks Intentional Community is living a sustainable lifestyle and keeping the environment in mind. Members do that, in part, by sharing everything they have.
This concept of sharing allows the community to consume less. Everything they do revolves around this idea, from feeding the cattle to heating their homes. Clementine Lazar wakes up early to gather eggs. "I work with the chickens a fair amount and right now I'm incubating about 20 new little chicks." She stated.
The hen house is just one source of food that feeds about a hundred people at the Twin Oaks. The farm strives to be environmentally friendly and sustainable by sharing everything from food to housing, cars and clothes.
Lazar stated, "The real thing that makes us consume less than the average Virginian isn't that we're more conscientious about turning off the light, it's that we're living collectively."
Fruits and vegetables come from an organic garden so less waste is created from packaged goods. Community member Paxus Calta stated, "We have about 10 percent of the solid waste per person of the average American."
Members use about 66 percent less electricity than the average American. Buildings and homes are heated mostly by burning wood and powered with solar panels.
Part of the message Twin Oaks has is to show it is possible for main stream communities to adopt similar ideals.
Member Keenan Dakota stated, "You could plant a garden for instance. People in the neighborhood could cooperatively all buy a lawn mower together so everyone has one lawn mower instead of like eight separate lawn mowers."
Members also say mainstream communities can invite neighbors over for dinner and alternate meals at each other's homes as a way to share and conserve.