Are Earthships SAFE?

28 02 2012

The MOST Sustainable Housing Design?

SAFE Sustainable Autonomy For Everyone

I bought the T-Shirt it says SAFE Sustainable Autonomy For Everyone. The fancy more colourful green one was not available in my size. The only XL sizes were the SAFE Sustainable Autonomy For Everyone shirts. We’re talking Black and White.  I decided to grab whatever I could rather than go home empty handed after meeting with the great man . Maybe I will have the shirt framed and show it to my grandchildren. Now kids . . .this is the T-Shirt from the man who saved the world. And this is a picture of him drinking my brand of . . . yes he sipped a premium Aussie, errr Tasmanian . . . actually . . .there is no other way of saying this . . .beer. Oh yes. Michael Reynolds did not step down from the podium robed in white to lead us all in a class of Hatha Yoga and chanting of Mantram. Nothing quite so transcendental. Nope. He drank beer. One of my favourite brands. So there it is. Well they are called EARTHships. And they are SAFE Sustainable Autonomy For everyone.

It’s a fascinating thing this matter of a great person’s habits. In the battle for the planet known as World War 2, the two opposing leaders Winston Churchill and Adolf Hitler demonstrated this point to a fault. Churchill drank like a fish, smoked strong cigars almost constantly and was know to enjoy a good tuck in to a manly side of beef, lamb or pork. Hitler on the other hand was a tea-totalling vegetarian. Oh but that’s different I hear you say. Is it? Well the inventor of Earthships invented this slogan to describe his sustainable housing design. SAFE Sustainable Autonomy For Everyone.

Let’s look at that. Sustainable: This simply means that Earthships would not threaten our common future, or the ability of future generations to enjoy an abundant fulfilling life on Planet Earth. Autonomy: This means that an Earthship allows you to go off-grid. No need to suck coal fired electricity. No need to draw water from the government – or even worse the corporate owned – water supply. You don’t need to pump your sewage into the government – or corporate – sewage system and possibly into the river lake or ocean. And last but certainly not least you can grow much of your basic food needs in your home. Wonder of wonders. Well that’s the heavy hand of government, corporations not to mention supermakets taken care of. For Everyone: Everyone can live in an Earthship. Indeed they are ideally suited for both developing world and can even be tailored to big cities. There are plans to put one into New York City. Yes you can use the design concept for multi story buldings. SAFE Sustainable Autonomy For Everyone

Books & Videos on Earthships including titles by Michael Reynolds: Step With Life

The Official Earthship site: Earthship Biotechture  

Earth Ships, Underpants and The Garbage Warrior

7 05 2011

Michael Reynolds Earth Ships: The Garbage Warrior

Earth Ships are a revolution in sustainable housing; it is a remarkable sustainable building concept that was forged in the mind and in the creative architectural play pen of a remarkable man, one Michael Reynolds AKA The Garbage Warrior. We do have him to thank for giving birth to something which has both enormous creative and design appeal AND is a hugely practical solution to a very real problem.  That practical breakthrough is: Sustainable, affordable housing which can be aesthetically appealing. In addition there is the roundness factor. Earth Ships have round bits in them and allow for a fair bit of organic bumpiness without falling into the abyss of abysmally under-developed.


Dr Quantum has been getting much feedback and interest in a subject that was touched on briefly in a recent blog: EarthShip Dreaming – Confessions of a Techno-Yurt Wannabe. So i thought it might be of interest to both regular readers and to the many who visit these pages from all over the world via the amazing power of search engines (a term that didn’t exist in the general vocabulary 20 years ago). It seems that EarthShips are taking off, powered by the Quantum Search Engine Warp Drive – think about it.

There are half a dozen online resource links provided at the bottom of this post. Yes folks it’s an Earthship Quantum Search Engine Warpdrive for modern lovers.

TO learn more about Earthships there are plenty of on-line resources. One thing that Dr Quantum highly recommends is a DVD movie about Michael Reynolds and his journey to have the Earthship building concept and output accepted by the State Legislature of New Mexico USA. The movie DVD is called The Garbage Warrior and is both informative and enormously entertaining. You will learn a lot about the man and his building passion. He doesn’t call it architecture by the way he prefers the term Biotechture.

For Michael Reynolds the journey has also included what can only be described as a remarkable contribution to empowering people in developing countries to rebuild after natural disasters like the 2004 Asian Tsunami. The guy is a genuine global Eco Hero. Bards and wandering minstrels  will be singing songs about him in a thousand years.  You’ll see.

One of the things I really love about Earthships and Micheal Reynolds‘ concept is that it has now been clearly demonstrated that you can build your own affordable, sustainable housing solution out of recycled materials (AKA Garbage). Once built, Earthships have the potential for a high sale and re-sale value. This all depends on how nice it looks and how well built it was in the first place.  Just like other more conventional houses. The added benefit is that Earthships can be completely off-grid. Yes folks it’s true. As sad as it makes Dr Quantum to admit it Earthships demonstrate that you don’t need an army of overpaid, overly controlling, beaureaucratic sociopaths telling you what do do about your Water, Electricity, Sewage and what colour underpants to wear. I ring up my local council every day and ask them. The conversation goes like this,

Dr Quantum: Hello is this the council?

Operator: Yes how may we be of service today?

Dr Quantum: Can you put me through to the Underware Colour co-ordination reporting line please?

Operator: Putting you through

I swear to the New Age God(dess) of truth liberty and rainbow coloured toenails, that is exactly what happens . . .every day.

Some Resources

The Garbage Warrior Documentary available on Step With Life click here

Earthships in Australia Click Here.

EarhShip Biotechture Click Here.

Controversial US eco-architect and founder of Earthship Biotecture, Michael Reynolds believes Australian houses made from recycled materials can be a reality in spite of regulatory barriers and may offer a significant contribution to managing climate change in Australia. Click Here

5 Prospective Property Sites For EarthShip Australia in Brisbane Click Here

Ethical Living – Earthships a World Wide Reality?  Click Here.

See you out there.


Earth Ships are a revolution in sustainable housing, a remarkable sustainable building concept that was forged in the mind and in the creative architectural play pen of a remarkable man, one Michael Reynolds AKA The Garbage Warrior.

Earth Ships: Round Houses are not Box Houses

5 11 2009

Beyond the Horizon of Taos, New-Mexico the box-houses sit squat and square much as they have done for over one hundred years. Ah the box-houses . . . And anyway, what’s so special about Taos, New Mexico?  It’s hard to believe that people for the most part are still living in houses that are like, well . . .boxes. And if that is what lies beyond the hoizon in Toas then what is in Taos?

Ah ha! Something different, something wonderful, something remarkable and magical. Truly so. Something pointed at the future. The butterfly is flapping it’s wings in Tokyo that will cause the hurricane in Texas. A beautiful chaos is brewing.

As far as i can make out the big benefit of box-houses is that they stack well.  This means that when it appears that you have run out of space in one of those very popular mega-huge mega-cities we are all so fond of nowadays, you can stack these big boxes one on top of another and then put humans in them. It’s a similar concept to keeping caged chooks. Very efficient. Bit boring for the chooks. But, problem solved right? Maybe.

It was noted by that great contributor to human welfare and evolution Stanley Dumbrovski that the arch is a far more human friendly portal than the square or oblong. Apart from being flat out booring the square doorway clashes with the round human head. Think aobut it. One might suspect that it’s not just square doorways but square hallways, square rooms and square televisions as well that mess with our heads. Apparently all the Euclidean (flat) planes in our houses these past few hundred years have produced all the square people now over-running the planet. A moment’s reflection will bear this out. Caves are organic roundish dwellings. Now the cavesperson as well as having adapted to his/her environment was not so rude and bad mannered or indeed so stupid as to wipe out all the other species. Jolly good show you cave chaps. Jolly good show.

Many races who followed the cave persons lived happy and meaningful lives in humpies, yurts, tee-pees and tents – all roundish organic shaped dwellings, note. The round house tribes managed to stay within the ecological limits, thus being part of rather than destroying, the ecological balance. Alas, since then humankind has been outright rude enough to “conquer” nature. Is this starting to make sense?

Instead of having nice round, circular time with days that loop and wobble organically with seasons, we straightened time with clocks that measure out a series of neat uniform little units – little boxes of time. Time used to be pulsating, round and circular. Not anymore. We bulldozed mountains and built bridges and we laid out flat ribbons of black tar to connect up all the boxes. And in the middle of all this flatness a truly sinister phenomenon. In this flat, linear, square and perpendicular world man declared that Man – not woman was the superior being. The boss, the bully the dominator the MAN.

In order to demonstrate his vast superiority over the weaker sex, nature and the elements, Man then proceeded to eat, kill, maim and torture as many plants and animals as possible by the might of his industrial, mechanical and militaristic muscle. This fed our glorious prosperity, our glorious growth and our glorious Ego.

Can you see where we might have made a few mistakes back there?

So anyway back to Taos, New Mexico and something special and round that’s been happening. There’s a crazy guy from Taos by the name of Michael Reynolds. He decided some time ago that old box houses are not the sane solution, not the way to go. And being an architect he did something about it. Michael Reynolds started designing and building houses that respected the fact that there is a thing called the Earth and furthermore he put some roundness into his houses. He doesn’t call them houses he calls them Earthships, and he doesn’t call his art Architecture he calls it Biotechture. Big difference.

These extraordinary, beautiful and organic Earthships feature lots of roundness; domes, circular sections, circling rooms and waving walls. Earthships are sunk in and dug into the Earth. They use much of recycled materials and transform garbage into building materials. Exactly what is needed right now.  Earthships are able to make maximum advantage of the sun’s heat in winter as their earthen mass captures and then slowly releases solar energy. In summer the process is reversed, drawing on cooler temperature that lies just beneath the earth’s surface – a standard solar energy design known as passive solar. Reynold’s evolved and integrated biotechture designs now feature full self-sufficiency with four grades of water recycling and technologically sophisticated living bio-organic water filtration systems. Active solar and wind power harness and storage that plugs into standard connections that electricians use to power your mod cons such as lighting and refrigeration. Reynolds has taken the whole green and sustainable housing approach to the next stage of evolution. Forget about taking it to the next level. Reynolds has taken it into another realm.

His journey has taken him into the State legislature where he fought for years to have a bill passed that now, finally, allows him to experiment and innvoate on the fly when building and designing his Earthships. Along the way he was invited into the Tsunami ravaged Andaman Islands. He and his team were able to build teach and transfer knowledge to the locals, unhampered by red tape that constrains developed world projects. But his approach is bearing fruit and he and his team have been involved putting Earthships into locations from the UK to Australia, India, Africa, Europe and South America.  Now the rest is history.

The Michael Reynolds Earthship story is a classic case of Chaos Theory in action. A new model is emerging and has became an attractor state. Instabilities in the global system opened up opportunity windows inside of which the small actions (butterflies) can generate massive change (the hurricane). The little Earthship butterfly flapped its wings and has created a huricane of sustainability change. Michael Reynolds hopes he has not emerged too late for the Earth and global warming. I suspect he has emerged at just the right time and his contribution will continue to expand and have major impact.

It’s all about sustainability and transformation these days and miracles are happening right now. According to Quantum Theory if you can see them you created them. Have you seen the Earthships?

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