SCI-218 Final Project- Tiny Living.docx - Tiny Living...

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Tiny LivingMarissa R. FreemanSouthern New Hampshire University
Tiny LivingIntroductionThe size of your home is directly related to your personal energy consumption and carbonfootprint. While we may be choosing more energy efficient appliances, electronics, and even light bulbs for our homes, these choices are outweighed by the increase in average home size in the United States. The average home size in the United States has grown from 1,525 square feet in 1973 to 2,169 square feet in 2010 (U.S. Census Bureau, n.d.). The average size of a tiny houseranges from 200 to 400 square feet, and are considerably smaller than the average home in the United States in 1973 (Owen, 2016)An average sized home requires 45 light bulbs using an average of 12,773 kWh while a tiny house requires an average of six light bulbs using an average of 914 kWh a year (Constellation Energy, 2017). Reduced energy usage begins with building a tiny home rather than an average sized home. To build an average sized American home seven trucks of lumber are required, while a tiny home only requires half of one truck load (Constellation Energy, 2017).With less lumber needed to build a tiny home, the carbon footprint of that home is reduced from the beginning; there are fewer trees required to be cut down, less machinery required to cut downthose trees, less energy used to transport the lumber, and less energy required for the building process. Lowered energy use continues throughout the lifetime of the tiny house. “More than 85 percent of the energy used in the world is from nonrenewable supplies” (Fazeli, 2018). “Non-renewable energycomes from sources that will run out or will not bereplenished in our lifetimes—or even in many, many lifetimes (National Geographic Society, 2013). With so much of our energy coming from nonrenewable sources, it is important that we
work to reduce our energy usage. History and Contemporary ViewpointThe idea of living in a tiny home isn’t really a new one, though it has been gaining popularity in the United States in recent years. Tiny homes can be found in many different parts of the world, and have had many different uses throughout history. Tipis and yurts have been lived in for thousands of years and are two of the best examples of tiny homes in history. Tipis and yurts were popular with nomadic people because they were simple, easy to move, and easy to construct (Hunt, 2009). Because of their smaller size, tipis and yurts were also easy to keep warm during cold winter months, but also easy to ventilate and cool in warmer months. Yurts have historically been used by the people of Mongolia. These yurts were constructed from flexible trees like willow and covered with felt. Multiple layers of felt could be added to yurts in order to maintain comfortable temperatures inside (Hunt, 2009). Tipis, much like yurts, were constructed with wood poles typically made of willow and then covered with animal skin or eventree bark. In the winter months, an additional lining could be added inside of the tipi to maintain warmth (Tipi, 2018).

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