During my week’s stay I visited several companies and co-operations. Despite the restricting sanctions there are many possibilities to deepen our relationships with North Koreans! Let me share some impressions from my very full Programme with you:
In 2013, and thanks to the support of many Swiss people, we were able to demonstrate the major energy-saving impact that insulation has on typical Korean village buildings on a vegetable farm in Ryokpho. I spent an afternoon here again to see how the Minergy buildings are faring. While we are inspecting the home built in the traditional style, the host, the chief engineer of the cooperation, is beaming with enthusiasm. He proudly lets us feel the hot water from the Roof collectors – and we almost burn our fingers!
Then we sit down in the livingroom and he serves Daechu (Jujube). During his report he gets very excited and tells us that he can also use the solar water heater in winter – thanks to a tip that running water does not freeze. He says that it actually works, as he always makes sure that some water is running and that he adjusts the flow to the outside temperature and sun. Even on cloudy days they had warm water of about 45 degrees. In summer the water is hot enough to cook eggs or soup.
Many people ask him what it is like to live in such a house and he often reports about it. He presented the houses at the local trade fair. He also encouraged the residents of a farm on which many hot water modules are installed to use them according to his instructions.
It is obvious that we found the right host as a multiplier – in a responsible, initiative, and also creative chief engineer who understands cooperatives and does not only understand his subject but shares his knowledge and experience with others.