The Old Stone Mill will be powered by as much site-generated energy as possible to make the building become a net producer, not consumer of energy. Ideally, all energy needs will be met through non-fossil-fuel and on-site generated means.
Aside from heating some key zones in the building with high efficiency heat pumps (yes, currently powered from the grid), our first clean energy experiment is going to be a compost heating system. Working with AgriLab in Vermont, and TAM, a local waste / composting firm already traveling through Berkshire Co., we’re going to be testing this new system being developed for our project.* *
We hope to include other possible power projects such as a passive solar trombe wall for heat through use of the large masonry mass on the south wall, solar thermal for hot water and possibly further space heating, photovoltaics (solar electricity) and local biomass compost heating.
We are also planning a Green Energy educational sculpture garden on the grounds as a public space where people can learn about gaining power from the sun, wind and human-powered devices.
A PLACE TO EXPERIMENT
The Old Stone Mill would also provide space for experiments in other methods like pedal power and piezoelectric generation, methods of energy storage such as seasonal water tanks, thermal mass and others still to be explored. We are interested in consulting local clean energy advocates and with nearby colleges to possibly include students and/or faculty who would like to conduct independent energy experiments in a real world setting.
A PLACE TO SHARE KNOWLEDGE
Green energy related programs will include talk about the building and its energy systems; speakers from the clean energy field, including local innovators operating in Adams and nearby communities; talks and workshops about energy use and climate change; hands-on DIY workshops such as building your own solar oven or solar collector; an outdoor green energy park open to the public; access to machine shop and space for further clean energy experimentation.