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In this month’s Building Sustainability podcast we talk with Kiko Denzer.

Kiko is perhaps best known as the author of ‘ Build Your Own Earth Oven‘ (A book that made it into our favourite books list).

The interview is a meandering discussion featuring the topics of

  • Spoon carving
  • Natural Building
  • Christopher Alexander
  • Bill Coperthwaite

…..And a whole lot more!

Podcast links for more info –

Aprovecho Sustainability Education Centre

Aprovecho is a non-profit organization located in Oregon’s Willamette Valley, on a beautiful 40-acre land trust outside of Cottage Grove, Oregon. Since its founding in 1981, Aprovecho’s land and its community of educators has been a regional resource for researching, demonstrating, and educating the techniques & strategies of sustainable living.


Christopher Alexander – Pattern language

A Pattern Language: Towns, Buildings, Construction is a 1977 book on architectureurban design, and community livability. It was authored by Christopher AlexanderSara Ishikawa and Murray Silverstein of the Center for Environmental Structure of Berkeley, California, with writing credits also to Max Jacobson, Ingrid Fiksdahl-King and Shlomo Angel. Decades after its publication, it is still one of the best-selling books on architecture.[1]

The Nature of Order

The straw bale recording booth

Bill Coperthwaite

William S. Coperthwaite was an architect, author, maker, visionary social critic, and homesteader. He inspired many thousands by his life led close to nature and in opposition to contemporary society, Mr. Coperthwaite was often compared to Henry David Thoreau. Similar to Helen and Scott Nearing, who were his friends and mentors, Mr. Coperthwaite led a 55 year-long “experiment in living” on the coast of Maine where he created a homestead of wooden, multi-storied yurts, a form of architecture that he adapted from Mongolian culture and helped to make popular in the United States. More than an architect, Mr. Coperthwaite embodied a philosophy that he called “democratic living” which was about enabling every human being to have agency and control over their lives in order to create together a better community. The central question of Mr. Coperthwaite’s life and experiment has been “How can I live according to what I believe?”

Photo from Shelter Publications –

The Basket Yurt

Catching Fire – How Cooking Made Us Human

Wikipedia link

Catching Fire: How Cooking Made Us Human (2009)[1] is a book by BritishprimatologistRichard Wrangham, published by Profile Books in England, and Basic Books in the USA. It argues the hypothesis that cooking food was an essential element in the physiological evolution of human beings. It was shortlisted for the 2010 Samuel Johnson Prize.

Scythe Festival


Firespeaking is currently represented by Max Edleson and Eva Edleson. We pride ourselves on good designs and the ability to carry them through to completion. We are dedicated to combining the inspiration of beauty with the precision and engineering of function in order to create magic and a continual reminder of the sacredness of daily life in our homes and public spaces. Our work can mostly be categorized as “architectural” with a strong emphasis on wood-fired heating and cooking, and natural building techniques.

Max and Eva – Masonry Heaters

Cob Cottage Company

Website Link

George Mombiot

Our Podcast Recommendations

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