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Figure 7 Figure 8 Figure 9 Figure 10 Figure 11


Ongoing Project Activities

Ongoing activities, around which further development continues to take place, can be classified as follows:
1. Controlled irrigation and reuse of grey water;
2. Recycling and composting;
3. Use of renewable energy;
4. Alternative building materials such as mud-bricks, pressed mud blocks, straw bales and papercrete;
5. Research and dissemination of information.

Controlled Irrigation and Reuse of Grey Water
Project activities initiated in 2002 continue to progress, the garden program (Fig. 7) having already yielded interesting results. Both the grey water scheme and the drip or controlled irrigation for the vegetable garden have successfully demonstrated that limited water resources can be stretched for a maximum yield. A new experimental system for controlled irrigation using ODE geotextile wrapped around perforated pipes was set up in 2004. Mehmet Ekmekçi and Harun Aydin from the Department of Hydrogeology at Hacettepe University have studied the water resources of the area and a scheme for the management of water and the use of wind pumps awaits funding. Geologist Tuygun Savaci from the Yozgat Köy Hizmetleri has conducted surveys in an attempt to resolve the seasonal water crisis in the village.

Recycling and Composting
Solid waste is separated at Kerkenes. Organic waste is composted in a discrete feature within the garden while a shelter has been built to store bottles and cans for reuse in construction of walls. Plans to recycle paper in the village are being considered. It is to be noted that the lack of local recycling plants makes recycling impractical in many cases, as the waste collected has to be transported to remote facilities at great cost.

Use of Renewable Energy
The advantages of using a solar water heater were clearly attested when the first unit was installed on the bathroom building roof in 2002. A second unit was purchased before the 2003 fieldwork season for installation above the roof of the main building to serve the kitchen and bathrooms within the house.

Alternative Building Materials
Other activities included the production of mudbrick (Fig. 9), the recycling of waste (Fig. 10) and the construction of a small mudbrick building to house the Village Association and its first activities. The key to the success of the Kerkenes Eco-Center is its sustainability. It is anticipated that the center can become self-supporting through the activities and enterprise of the Sahmuratli Village Association. Small-scale workshops with local labour would help regenerating the rural areas of Turkey. Sahmuratli has the potential to be a shining example on a regional and even perhaps a national scale.

Research and Dissemination of Information
During the 2003 fall semester, a poster (Fig. 11) on ‘Comparative Studies of Traditional and Contemporary Construction in Turkey’ was prepared for the PLEA (Passive and Low Energy Architecture) 2003 conference in Santiago, Chile. This presentation summarised the 2002/03 studies conducted by Françoise Summers, Nevin Gezer and Ömer Tugrul Karagüzel from METU (Ankara) and Simos Yannas and Yasemin Somuncu from the Architectural Association (London). Ongoing studies are funded by the British Council Britain-Turkey Partnership Programme between the METU Department of Architecture and the AA Environment and Energy Studies Programme. In addition, a paper entitled ‘The Future of Rural Housing in Turkey: Back to Earth?’ was presented by Françoise Summers at the ‘Modern Earth 2003’ conference in Berlin. The Kerkenes Web Page is also used to disseminate results and information on the Kerkenes Eco-Center and associated environmental studies through the world wide web.

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