Ecovillage 'Kovcheg'
Ecovillage "Kovcheg" (Russia, 140 km SW from Moscow)

English version:
* Main page
* Key facts
* About us (PDF, 5.2 Mb) (08.2011)
* Photos (essencially updated!)
* Meeting-2008
* Meeting-2009
* E-mail

Russian version:
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We are invite you
to Summer young camp - 2016

1-14 August 2016

Last serious news - Russian Government approve new settlement (point on the map) - our ecovillage. This is possible only with Putin signature in Russia and we are 7 years prepare many documents on local, municipal and region levels with many signatures for this final doc. Settlement legalization will simplify many formal things for us:

Russian Federation Government Resolution dated August 20, 2009 N 684, Moscow "On the naming of geographical objects in the Kaluga and Kostroma regions"
  • Published on August 25, 2009
  • Effective Date: September 2, 2009

In accordance with Federal law "On the naming of geographical objects" the Government of Russia decides:

Based on representations:

Legislative Assembly of Kaluga region - given the name "Kovcheg" village, created in Maloyaroslavets subregion Kaluga region;

Kostroma Oblast Duma - assign the name of "Levin" village, created in Sudislavskom subregion Kostroma region.

Chairman of the Russian Federation Government

So now we are become an official "new point on the map".

A Brief Description of the Kovcheg Ecovillage

Key facts     >>
    The idea behind the creation of Kovcheg was born of present day civilization. We live in a society that is stupidly wasting our natural resources through the senseless destruction of the environment. For future generations it is necessary to change the direction of our growth and progress to something that is ecologically sound. Our settlement is based on family owned land where each family owns one hectare of land to be kept in the family for generations. One hectare with woods, fruit trees, garden and a small pond can provide the family with all of life’s necessities. By using long ignored methods of cultivating the earth and harvesting in the context of preserving the earth for future generations, this hectare of land will produce enough for the family’s use with surplus. Besides agriculture, every community can develop crafts that can provide for the people’s needs for manufactured goods. The majority of people spend about 10 hours daily earning the money to buy two kilograms of food and for housing. This accounts for practically all of their useful time for life. With the use of “adobe” methods and/or timber, a person can build for himself inexpensive and practical housing of much better quality than that built by modern methods. Food grown in the garden is healthier and tastier than that purchased at the store. A person can much more efficiently satisfy his needs and spend the tremendous resource of extra time exploring the arts, pursuing invention and on self improvement. The general implementation of these ideas can lead to significant improvements in health, reduction in crime, strengthening of family relations and harmonious self development. This would decrease technology related catastrophes and create a drastic reduction in the exhaustion of natural resources for industrial production, and even the reduction of travel expenses and refocus the expenditure of energy from manufacturing, to rebuilding the environment.

    1. Community Government
      All important issues are discussed at town meetings and proposals implemented if they receive a 2/3 majority vote. Decisions for less significant issues are decided by a simple majority. The settlement is led by a chairman. Community projects related to infrastructure are undertaken by community members on a gratuitous basis, specialists being employed as necessary.

    2. Flora and Fauna
      The relationship with the environment is one of harmonious coexistence. No ecologically harmful manufacturing processes are permitted on settlement land. It is not possible to raise animas within the settlement for slaughter for food or other uses. Conservation practices are observed in agriculture. On ones property, one must preserve at least one quarter of their hectare under the natural cover of trees and bushes.

    3. Energy, Water and Refuse
      Currently, the settlement uses ordinary electricity. This is necessary to perform infrastructure tasks and civil works. At the same time, we are searching for safe, ecologically harmless, alternative sources of energy. Water for drinking and for food preparation is brought from springs and rivers. We have future plans for drilling wells. The majority of settlers plan to have a small pond on their land for water for planting and technical needs. Recycling is conducted by each family on their own land through the use of compost pits and other means. Every effort is made not to use materials that cannot be recycled naturally.

    4. Architecture
      In the construction of housing, local, inexpensive materials, generally lumber, is used. Presently, we are learning to build houses using wooden frames and walls made from a mud/straw material mix. The resulting house is warm, easy to erect with minimal skills, well insulated, durable and very simple and economical. Heating costs are considerably less than for typical houses. Such houses completely conform to our ecological ideals as they are created from recoverable, natural materials, require minimum energy expenditures and are completely recyclable after their useful life. In our settlement, over the last two years, 22 houses have been built for temporary and permanent habitation. In the summer, about 40 families live in the settlement. Of those, 9 families reside there year round.

    5. Economy
      Presently, the economy of our settlement is weak. The saw mill is working, providing construction materials for the local builders and construction brigades which are working on housing for the settlers. There are two tractors and a truck which are not being fully utilized in this work. The majority of the settlers work away from the settlement and come to the settlement on their free days to tackle the business of building temporary and permanent housing. The economic basis of the settlement will consist of timber resources, construction, farming, beekeeping and handicrafts. The creation of jobs in the settlement will be stimulated by people moving into the settlement permanently.

    6. Cultural Life
      Leisure activity presupposes the presence of free time and as we are generally involved with intensive construction activities, there is not much leisure time. Typically, evening brings the building of a large bonfire in the community and friendly song is heard until midnight. Otherwise, 2 or 3 times per year, larger celebrations are arranged which will, little by little, become tradition. These involve large banquets to which all members of the community are invited. These celebrations are very happy with games, jokes, singing and dances, etc. One has the sensation at these celebrations of one large, happy family.

    7. Accomplishments and Objectives
      The principal achievement to date in the settlement is the enthusiasm and determination of the people to adopt this ecologically sound way of life. This has facilitated the construction of the community lodge, sawmill and wood shop, the installation of electricity, repair of the highway and the intensive construction of houses. The number of objectives, as yet unrealized, can be attributed to the lack of funding. It is due to this that the development of the settlement has not proceeded as rapidly as desired.

Ecovillage "Kovcheg"
Russia, 140 km SW from Moscow, Kaluga region.
Living Ecovillage with ~120 permanent residents far from roads.