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admin | Category: What Cause Ed | 18.02.2014
There are many reasons why an increasing number of people are choosing to disconnect themselves from the grid. Electricity: No one wants to go so far as to do without all the electronic toys we’ve come to rely upon. Another way to generate electricity is with a small wind turbine, but our neighbors who have them use them as a secondary, back-up source of power. Kim Robson lives and works with her husband in the Cuyamaca Mountains an hour east of San Diego. With the widespread and prolonged power outages across the northeast this week, we were intrigued to think about the concept of "living off the grid." Sure, it might sound like more of a hassle to maintain and live off your own sewage, water or electrical systems. In the HuffPost Live segment above, energy specialists and editors discuss why some people choose to live in this style. French photographer Antoine Bruy spent several years hitchhiking around Europe, documenting the lives of men and women who have abandoned the bustle of cities to live, as they say, off the grid.
Existing on mountainsides and river valleys left fairly untouched by the greater human population, the individuals -- adults and children -- live largely without access to commodities like running water, central heat and big brand grocery stores. The collection of images, titled "Scrublands," showcase ramshackle shelters and the bold adventurers who reside inside them.
If you’re on Whidbey Island and are interested in off-grid ideas, you should consider installing a 500 watt wind turbine like the one I have on my boat.
Romanian non-profit green-tech firm Justin Capra Foundation for Sustainable Technologies and Inventions (or FITS), has unveiled the Soleta zeroEnergy range of sustainable off-grid homes.
The Soleta zeroEnergy range comprises several homes, ranging from a small unit with just 48 square-meters (516 sq ft) usable floor space (plus attic), up to a relatively sizable model suitable for a family of five, with a main area floor space of 100 square-meters.
While the name may imply that these homes have no energy needs, they've actually been designed to utilize renewable energy sources to allow residents to jump feet-first into the off-grid lifestyle.
Depending on need and budget, each zeroEnergy home can incorporate a geothermal water heating system, wind power, solar power, and water collection.
The houses are reportedly manufactured from 97 percent recycled materials, with wood being the primary material of choice.
The Soleta zeroEnergy range of homes are by no means the only viable fully off-grid abodes we’ve covered here at Gizmag, and Studio H:T’s effort springs to mind as an appealing alternative. The range starts at €25,000 (roughly US$32,000) for the smallest zeroEnergy One, with the larger zeroEnergy Two unit commanding a cool €57,000. Money is tight for most of us at the moment and living off grid can be tough when you’re short of cash. It’s true, there could exist nothing more absurd in this wild place than the over sanitized intrusion of a portaloo.
In the early 90’s Emma and her then husband bought a remote farm house a few fields away from the patch of land she now lives on. Vegetarian Emma keeps chickens and goats and grows an array of vegetables on a half-acre plot just outside her woodland.
She is keen to stress to me that she is definitely not obsessed with only living and eating on her land. I would love to know more about this and the communities people who want to live in this way. Hi Emma my 3 friends and myself would love to come and see you in spring we intend coming to Wales for. Attracted by Ben Fogle’s living off the grid in the UK I am fascinated by your story and intrigued about what it would be like to live like our ancestors.
Hi Emma my wife and i would love to be in touch with you not sure how to get your contact details but would love to hear from you. I watched the programme last night in awe and admiration, at last someone with the courage of their convictions, what an incredible lifestyle you have created for yourself. This is the real way of life and living total respect it takes dedication and will power many pepole would break after 24 hours.
Your life style is one that people dream of, you have created a little bit of Eden, a spiritual safe space, for people and your animals.


Seeing you and the other wood folk, singing together Emma was lovely, it has encouraged me to fetch my singing bowl out….
Thank you for letting me see into your life, it has prompted me to try harder to care for the earth far more than what I do. I love the sharing, the living off the earth,…watching this settled easy on my soul, made me feel lifted.
About Off Grid WorldAll about off grid living, living off the grid, sustainable living, homesteading, prepping, survival, solar power, wind power, renewable energy, permaculture, hydroponics, recycling, DIY projects, and natural building. It’s estimated that about 250,000 American families have been living off-grid as of late 2007. This can be expensive, between $10,000 and $25,000, depending on how deeply they have to drill.
With this, a number of wells and tanks are plumbed into a stand-alone water system that may service only a few dozen people.
Many people, including many who live off-the-grid, have chosen to use their cell phones exclusively. However, most natural gas appliances like the dryer, heater and oven can be converted easily to use propane instead. Whether you grow food on your own land or join a community garden, it’s well worth the effort for so many reasons. But to whatever degree you are able to make the commitment, you’ll find the rewards far outweigh the cost of remaining dependent on faceless corporations for your daily needs. But what if you didn't have to depend so fully on a larger source, especially during times of distress?
Whether it's because you just want to live greener, are struggling financially or have just grown sick of our consumer society, cutting back on your energy consumption and dependence might be the right choice for you. Instead, they are seeking “greater energy, food, economic, or social autonomy," changing their relationship to their surrounding environment and living with the economic and social circumstances that arise from their decisions. The simple, manmade structures stand out against the sublime backgrounds, populated by thick forests and swirling hills.
Bruy has recently launched a crowdfunding campign on FotoFund to raise money to continue the project that began back in 2010.
We have spent many hours discussing, dreaming, and planning that perfect place we would build someday.
The flexible dwellings are available in several shapes and sizes, and combine rustic modular design with the proverbial kitchen sink of energy saving and producing technologies. If that sounds a bit too adventurous, modern amenities like running water and electricity can be hooked-up if desired. Large low-e windows and LED lighting feature throughout, and a pellet-burning stove is also available for cooler climes. Each unit is modular, and so if space does eventually become an issue, an extra section should be relatively simple to add.
A ten-year warranty is included with the sale, and FITS is currently exhibiting a show house outside the US embassy in Bucharest, Romania. Next to me an open fire radiates its welcoming orange cast, tinging all but the brilliant whites of the scene outside, trees freshly dusted with an icy coat of late January powder. As her children got older she recalls having a strong calling to live in closer proximity to the nature spirits she perceived around her and consequently built her first mud hut in the woods before leaving the farm to live without electricity or running water. Fortunately for Emma and her neighbours, Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority’s progressive policy on sustainability finally resulted in the granting of planning permission after almost a decade of negotiations. My partner and I are in our mid 50’s and your way of living is my future, we need help plz contact me. A week and are looking towards living off grid it would be amazing to see you and discuss off grid living as its what we are hoping to do,hope to get a reply and to hopefully see you we are all in our late 50s. This is how we should live, how I would love to live, giving back to and really appreciating all aspects of nature. There are a number of small water systems dotted around the mountains here, including one in our community.


After that, the tank will need to be pumped out once every seven to ten years, depending on usage. We’re located high enough that we can also pick up broadcast signals from San Diego and Los Angeles for free!
When natural disasters like Hurricane Sandy occur, getting your self-sufficient system back up and running might be easier than waiting for larger, municipal grids to be fixed. The faces of the young boys and girls bring an eerie sense of humanity to the pristine landscapes, giving just a faint glimpse into their lives, while leaving the viewer as a clear outsider. Head over to the site if you're interested in supporting the work and let us know your thoughts on the beautiful photographs in the comments. A little piece of land that we could grow a garden, raise a few animals, and be basically free from dependence on stores for our day-to-day needs. I don’t have solar panels on my boat either, but the wind provides enough power for everything but my electric heater (I use propane for heat). The homes can be built on either wooden foundations, or existing concrete foundations at lower cost. Today, unusually, the topic of my conversation has nothing to do with any prophetic Orwellian nightmares of oppression but rather the popular reality TV programme. Her matter-of-fact reply reminds me not to get too carried away with my overly romantic fantasies about her isolated lifestyle.
Amazing lady, I was completely blown away by you as a person, and by all you have achieved, even through the media of television the peace, tranquillity and spiritual nature of your lifestyle shone through, and made me feel as if I was at home in your worl, I felt at peace. Many local municipalities are allowing varying degrees of disconnection from the grid due to growing demand. Her interests include the environment, dark skies, astronomy and physics, geology and rock collecting, living simply and cleanly, wilderness and wildlife conservation, and eating locally. And, living without power for a few days might not be a little easier if we were already used to consuming a little less.
Or does this concept seem too challenging considering the lifestyle alterations you would need to make? It strikes me that this ubiquitous chore which I so commonly encounter throughout the world was one that I had never actually witnessed first hand in my own country before. Depending on where you live, however, disconnecting from certain utilities like water and sewer may not be easy. She tells me that shortly after my images were published in the media she received a call from the producers of the gameshow asking if she would like to become a contestant on the next series. I would love to know how to request a visit even if it was just for a week, a day or an hour! I’d be pleased to both contribute to her lifestyle both financially and by doing any jobs she needed to do. There is lots we all can do such as using less hot water, fading out mobile phone and computer use (hard but doable gradually), eating mostly fresh locally produced foods, growing your own, learning to live with less light, switching lights off, writing letters and using land line, cycling and walking everywhere, buying only second-hand clothes and other items, recycling, fixing old things instead of buying new, reduce TV watching, eating less, and less processed food, not wasting anything from food to household items, furniture etc. It’s so much fun and has given me a purpose in life again after the children have left home. Of course it must be brilliant to take the plunge and live completely wild like you, Emma, but we don’t necessarily have to go to those lengths to make real valuable and effective changes.
People, let me know of your ideas of improving energy consumption, waste production and harmful impact on animals and nature.
Part of living green means giving up those 10,000-square-foot McMansions and dozens of high-draw appliances.



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