As an extremely technological society we have become critically dependent on electricity. The resources that we depend on to produce electricity are becoming scarcer every day and are definitely not unlimited. If there is not some kind of change in the future with the level of dependence we have on natural resources as well as how wasteful most people in the world are with these resources the world will eventually be depleted. If this happens, humanity will wither out and ultimately become extinct. In my research I have found one solution for these problems that could help turn this epidemic around and give humanity a fighting chance. They are called earthships and they are an innovative new way to construct buildings in which the resources that are used to create them are all recycled, the energy from them is self-sustainable and they run completely off the grid. This means that there is no need for fossil fuels as well as little to no energy waste. These building are absolutely 100% sustainable residences that are surprisingly cheap to construct and really cool to live in. They provide amenities like no other style of building in the world and in my opinion can help us change the world.
Earthships were first introduced to the world in the 1970’s by an architect named Michael Reynolds. The concept is that by using waste tires, glass bottles and cans a structure can be created that would minimally impact the environment. These buildings are “off the grid”, make their own water as well as generate their own heating and cooling. For several millennia homes have been built from naturally occurring materials that are indigenous to the area the homes have been built in. Materials like rock, reeds, logs, and wood have been found in most parts of the world in abundance. Through the centuries civilization has already created an unimaginable amount of by-products that are readily available in virtually every part of the world. These by-products are seen as the natural resources of the modern world. Earthships make use of these materials through a concept called embodied-energy. Embodied-energy is the use of these modern natural resources with building styles where the skill required as well as the price can be easily accepted by the common person. The basic idea is that the less energy required to use these found objects the better. The exterior, bearing walls of these impressive homes are built of earth filled waste tires. Of the many products that communities around the world have a hard time disposing of as well as one of the most abundant are rubber tires. There are tire dumps all around the planet that store and dispose of millions of tires per year and most of these dumps will pay you to take them off their hands. Now considering that the foundations of these earthships are constructed almost completely of earth filled tires, this is a very inexpensive way to create the foundation of your new home. I don’t know about everyone in here but the last time I was involved in the construction of a home we were definitely not paid to take the materials needed to create the foundation. A virtually indestructible, load bearing wall is created when these waste tires are filled with compacted dirt forming a rammed earth brick enclosed in steel belted rubber.
Following the construction of the exterior walls we need to find a material that is in abundance to the indigenous area that also adheres to a specific characteristic of the earthship ideal; low impact to the environment as well as being able to be fashioned with little to no energy consumption. Building materials are found all over the planet however if these materials need to be shipped over long distances then they are not sustainable and use excessive amount of energy, this would contradict the basic concept of the earthship ideal. Therefore we must find a material that is already located in all area as well as being available in abundance in order to make these