The Root Center will acquire 50-100 acres of land and construct a 60-foot diameter, fully insulated geodesic dome. This will serve as the organization’s offices as well as housing for some of its employees and volunteers (WWOOF and others). This dome will further serve as a demonstration of green architecture as it will be able to heat itself entirely through passive solar heating (no gas, electric, etc. needed!) even in Vermont winters. All of the dome’s energy needs (appliances, lights, etc.) will be provided by solar panels and vertical axis windmills.
The Root Center will expand its food production and hire additional, experienced farm workers to further develop a system of greenhouses, in-ground crops, grow wheels, hydroponics, aquaponics and aeroponics, using crop-specific growing techniques for maximum nutrition and production.
Clean energy systems will be expanded to include solar tractors and other farm equipment, methane collectors in combination with living machine waste removal systems and organic fish farms, water wheels in combination with rainwater collection and filtration systems, and vertical axis windmills in combination with emerging battery technology.
In addition, The Root Center will use some of its grounds as a public forum and community outreach center, hosting educational speakers, conferences, farmers’ markets and more. Performance spaces (including a large amphitheater) will be constructed for fundraising events such as concerts, festivals, theater productions, etc.
Second stage funding will come from ticket sales from concerts, festivals, conference and theater-production hosting, some donations and grants, and sales of a small percentage of produce. Throughout this stage additional programs will be added outside of the clean energy and food production initiatives, the primary purpose of which will be income generators to completely remove the need for donations.
Benefits from The Root Center during the second stage include (but are not limited to):
- Donations of a majority of the produce to local food shelves
- Hands-on learning about sustainable agriculture, clean energy, organic farming and green architecture for the public.
- A focal point and living laboratory for integration of emerging technology, with an ongoing internship program for students.
- A prototype, fully sustainable farm, the design of which can be copied or incorporated into existing farms throughout the world. Sustainable in this use of the word means The Root Center will provide for all of its energy needs without fossil fuels or bio-diesel, while producing at least as much, if not more than, comparable-sized conventional farms. In addition, The Root Center will recycle 100% of its waste through living machines and will filter clean drinking water directly from the air through atmospheric condensers and rainwater collection systems. Last, but not least, sustainable means that The Root Center will have a balanced budget that does not include any donations received. These donations will serve to further expand The Root Center, not to maintain it.
- Publications, instructions and newsletters designed toward helping citizens incorporate green architecture, clean energy and organic gardening at their place of residence.
- Publications will also include instructions for entrepreneurs looking to follow in our footsteps at other locations worldwide to create their own sustainable farms.
- A healthy, sustainable, source of organic fish from one of the continent’s first certified organic fish farms.