This past weekend was spent at a seminar learning how to build sustainable, off-the-grid homes at the Earthship headquarters just outside of Taos, New Mexico.
The homes are not your run of the mill green homes. Architect Mike Reynolds has been building these structures for about 40 years and they are, in large part, made out of trash – specifically used tires, cans, and bottles.
Since he started back in the 1970s, the homes have been refined to allow for recycling all waste [grey and black water], organic greenhouses, water collection and purification, power generation, and temperature regulation….even in extreme weather locations.
We got hands-on experience learning how to pack tires into the load bearing and thermal mass foundation for the homes, build can and bottle walls, and how to plaster interior walls with a mixture of mud, sand, and hay. In addition, we toured many of the homes on the site in Taos. Mike has developed several models over the years and we were able to get inside and explore the size and benefits of each option.
I recommend anyone interested in green build to visit them and take the seminar. You can find more information here. A good article here. And the trailer for the Michael Reynold’s documentary, Garbage Warrior is here.
Many more photos here.