The project was founded in Germany in 1978. In 1995 it moved to Portugal. Today 170 people live and work on a property of 330 acres.
The founding thought was to develop a non-violent life model for cooperation between human being, animal and nature. The ecological and technological research of Tamera includes the implementation of a retention landscape for the healing of water and nature, as well as a model for regional autonomy in energy and food. Through the Global Campus and the Terra Nova School we are working within a global network on the social, ecological and ethical foundations for a new Earth – Terra Nova.
Facing climate change, widespread hunger and the destruction of the Earth's ecosystems, we urgently need viable ecological solutions and alternatives in order to survive. These solutions must be tested and optimized before they can be applied on a large scale. We will need to make fundamental changes in the way we think and act in our contact with nature: humans must reintegrate into the ecological cycles. We are working on cooperation and contact instead of exploitation; for open, holistic, decentral systems instead of central control and for diverse biotopes instead of mono-cultures.
The focus of the ecological work in the emerging healing biotope of Tamera is on building the Water Retention Landscape as a far-reaching approach to healing the land. Through this approach to water management we create a regenerative basis for autonomous water supply, for the production of healthy food, the regeneration of topsoil, pasture and forest, and greater diversity of species. The new cultural impulse which is starting to emerge could enable many people to return to the countryside or to create urban ecosystems in the cities.
“Energy autonomy,” is the most important, overarching theme of the arriving Solar Age. The use of regionally-produced energy, from sustainable resources, makes possible not only a liberation from outside control… it makes it possible to create autonomous, networked structures, assembled from the growing subsistence systems, even in the most economically-impoverished and rich-in-sunlight regions on earth.
The fundamental thought behind the “Solar Power Village“ was born out of compassion, for the conditions in which the poorest people live, who are forced to burn the last remaining wood to be able to cook, and who have no prospects for a rich life, with simple technical possibilities. A real possible solution is made visible here, which is relevant for all areas of life.
Tamera created a “test field” for this idea, the Testfield 1. This is where Jürgen Kleinwächter’s inventions are tested and integrated into daily life, along with complementary elements like Scheffler mirrors and biogas digesters. The main sources of mechanical power here are low-temperature Stirling motors. The Stirling motor, invented in 1815, is an engine that turns temperature difference into mechanical energy. The Stirling motor is thus an example of the transformation of a form of energy that is difficult to use (thermal energy) into the more easily-applied mechanical energy. The fundamental principle upon which this machine operates is not disintegration and breakdown, but creation and assembly.