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It’s easy to take flush toilets, grid-power, and fresh water on tap for granted. I can’t blame any of us for thinking that all these modern conveniences are normal… it’s the only normal we’ve known. Due to this most folks have a hard time imagining an off-the-grid life because it’s not clear what’s needed to make the leap. So here’s a crash course in practical and sustainable solutions for moving yourself off-the-grid. Photo of The Urban Rancher and his off-grid cabin. Pee and Poop
This challenge, started on my 35th birthday and lasting 1001 days, will run for about 2.75 years. I'll share some of my stumbles and accomplishments along the way through blog posts and will continually update the details of it all on this page (in red for now). Thanks for cheering me on! Start date: November 29, 2011 End Date: August 26, 2014 To calculate 1001 days from now, go here )
In an increasingly globalized world, it’s still sometimes shocking to see just how disparate our lives are compared with other human beings around the world. A book of photographs by Peter Menzel called "Hungry Planet: What the World Eats" ("©Peter Menzel www.menzelphoto.com . Ten Speed Press, published in 2005) makes a relevant point with great irony: at a time when hundreds of millions of people don't have enough to eat, hundreds of millions more are eating too much and are overweight or obese. In observing what six billion eat for dinner the authors note, "Today, more people are overweight than underweight." It is these cultural differences, emphasized and reinforced by the author, which exemplifies the lifestyles and dietary habits of people around the world.
In accordance with our four-phase global change strategy , we are open source project-launch blueprinting the earthbag village (Pod 1) as maximally affordable sustainable housing. We will showcase this as an artistic, durable, easy to build, and completely ecologically friendly and sustainable home model that can be constructed for under $1000 per structure from materials that can be locally sourced or easily and affordably shipped anywhere in the world. The 150-200 square foot size free-standing structures design will allow most people in most counties in the US to duplicate our designs without permits (ours will be permitted) and, as we build the 64 structures of this village model at One Community, we will explore and demonstrate a broad diversity of artistic external and functional internal options that we will also open source share to increase interest and global support for this method as a duplicable teacher/demonstration community, village, and city construction option.
The Torus Design concept was inspired by the movie Thrive, which outlines ways of creating prosperity and equality in the world. The design brings together three emerging trends: increasing self sufficiency — including renewable energy and food production, families moving back together to save money, and sustainability. These trends are evident in the growth of home gardens, organic food, green building, eco-conciousness, off-grid homes, do-it-yourself attitudes, and cost cutting strategies such as bartering and trading for goods and services. The current version could be used as a duplex (rent the other half to slash your bills).
Solar heaters (or solar furnaces) make use of the sun to turn cold air into warm air. That warm air is then pumped into your home to heat it. People with regular-sized homes or even larger homes have used solar heaters to help supplement their home’s heating system.