More than ever, we earthlings are wondering how best to live on our planet in an efficient and environmentally friendly way. There is an entire community that has been doing just that since the 1970s in New Mexico. Their homes made out of surrounding dirt, old tires, bottles, cans, refuse and waste. Even though it is past due, Earth Ship sustainable housing is an idea whose time has come. No longer marginal or a quasi-secret that travels almost under the radar in environmental or architectural circles, finally, Earth Ships are making their way to the mainstream. An article about them appeared yesterday in an article on Common Dreams, reprinted from The Independent/UK.
A friend and I were on the outskirts of Taos, New Mexico a few years ago and became curious about a strange-looking community in the distance announced by a sign that beckoned us to discover these architectural wonders as known as Earth Ships. See what some of them look like on a Flickr photo site devoted to Earthship biotecture.
These passive solar Earth Ship houses are totally off the grid, self-sufficient, sustainable, environment and climate controlled, have their own rainwater collection system, and are attractive and utterly fascinating. The model house we visited on a very hot summer day was actually cool inside the more than 2′ thick walls, and not only had plantlife growing and a water cistern inside, but also a wonderfully substantial cocoon-like ambience and yet, it was filled with natural light from multiple skylights and windows. It was one of the most interesting environments I’ve ever experienced. Perhaps most impressive of all, now Earth Ships are justifiably touted to help in the fight against global warming. Check out what people who like Earth Ships are saying.
And now, Earth Ships are going global. Their inventor, architect, designer and creator Michael Reynolds, who calls himself a ‘biotect’ is now building Earth Ships all over the world. See a video of Reynolds talking about Earth Ship construction methods and giving an informative tour HERE.
And don’t miss the DVD about Michael Reynolds and his bioarchitecturally sustainable Earth Ships called “Garbage Warrior.”
Writer, editor, photojournalist, and cartoonist, Beverly Spicer is a diarist of almost 200 volumes of illustrated journals and author of two books. Her undergraduate degree is in physiological psychology and biology, and she holds a Master of Science in Architecture in interdisciplinary studies, combining architecture, neuroscience, and Middle Eastern studies. She is E-Bits Editor for The Digital Journalist, an online magazine for visual journalism. Earlier in her career, she was a researcher in animal physiology at the University of Virginia, later was programming associate at KRLU-TV Public Broadcasting Station, and before that worked at Texas Monthly magazine in Austin.