Have you ever heard of an Earthship? Does it sound like something from a sci-fi movie? It’s actually a self contained, autonomous home that can provide for a person’s basic needs and may be built from upcycled and earth-friendly materials.
I WANT ONE.
Once considered a fringe-dwelling hippy hut, Earthships may very well be the genius home design of the future.
You can find out all about Earthships online. There are countless YouTube videos showing the process of building what is, basically, an earth-bermed home that utilizes passive heating and cooling, water collection/recycling and indoor food growing. Some are rudimentary, while others are impressively stylish. This one in Australia is absolutely darling.
I’m not going to dive too deeply into the design elements; the system is simple to understand once you watch a couple of videos. What I will say is that an Earthship home is a brilliant way to utilize natural elements of thermal mass (which helps keep it warm in winter and cool in summer), sunshine and earth’s temps, and rainwater collection. It’s a home a human could survive in if the grid went down, regardless of severe hot or cold temps. Like a ship at sea, it’s self contained.
As I become more aware of the need for self sufficiency, I’m drawn to this idea of living simply. And considering the skyrocketing price of building materials, one can hardly argue with the practicality of building walls with bermed earth or old tires. I’m grateful for the creative genius of Michael Reynolds, who decades ago rocked the architecture world with his far out idea.
He was ahead of his time. The time has come.