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11 Years Living Off-Grid in an Earthship Style House

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Hélène Dubé and her partner Alain Neveu from Es-Cargo (http://www.es-cargo.qc.ca/) have lived off-grid in Quebec, Canada for 11 years in a self-built earthship style home made of recycled tires filled with earth and large south-facing windows.

Hélène is giving a workshop on April 1st if you want to check it out:

Hélène donne un atelier le 1er avril intitulé: “Planification d’un rêve, techniques de construction et réglementation.” Pour en savoir plus:

Their water is gravity fed from a spring-filled cistern placed up the hill from their home, their power comes from solar energy, and they use a composting outhouse toilet.

For refrigeration, they make their own ice during the winter by freezing water in recycled windshield washer jugs outside, and then they store them in a root cellar inside unplugged chest freezers insulated with sawdust. They manage to keep their food cold with these homemade ice blocks from January to July, and then they get ice blocks from a neighbour.

For hot water they use approximately 200 lbs of propane each year.

For heat they have a homemade rocket stove that is an efficient way to burn wood, and they also use it as a cooktop in the winter.

They would eventually like to be self sufficient in their food production and have gardens, hens, and they’ve begun to build an aquaponic system as well. But they do find that growing all of their own food, running workshops, and staying on top of all their other projects to be an incredible amount of work for just two people.

They’re hoping to attract more people to the property to form a small community of inspired and like-minded permaculture enthusiasts.

To learn more about Hélène and Alain’s off-grid lifestyle and about any upcoming projects and workshops, you can check out their website and follow them on Facebook:

Es-Cargo: http://www.es-cargo.qc.ca/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ESCargoQc

Their posts are in French but they both speak French and English.

Thanks for watching!

Mat & Danielle


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Blog: www.exploringalternatives.ca
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Music & Song Credits:
All music in this video was composed, performed, and recorded by Mat of Exploring Alternatives.

Editing Credits:
Mat and Danielle of Exploring Alternatives

Filming Credits:
Mat of Exploring Alternatives


Vivian Viljakainen says:

I pressed thumb down only because her place was messy . Looks like a house of hoader

2 demons attached says:

How much £££ did the land cost?? Bet that wasn't low cost.

Julia Stowe says:

If I was given the opportunity, I would move there and live in a yurt, purely to farm and grow as much food as I possibly could!

nat saxon says:

Not hard to live in the country when your rich. All you "off grid" people are frauds.

Cindy Ann says:

I love your kitchen!

Lydia Benavidez says:

I wish I could live this way

Katherine McChesney says:

trashy looking interior.

She Wolf says:

I love the idea of a livable greenhouse. It would be great to combine Mike Oehlers underground house with greenhouse but the only way, probably, to do that is via skylights.

Lovepeacejoy says:

My husband and I built our own earthship and moved in in 2008. It is currently snowing outside and it was 65 degrees inside when we woke up. I have never lived in such an earth friendly and warm house. We heat with wood but really do not have to. Off the grid also. I would never live in another house. It is like Spring inside right now in January and I have tomatoes, greens, beets and kale growing. The peppers overwinter just fine. They are definitely worth building.

sophiesmom2009 says:

How do you keep the bugs and snakes out of the home>

Hemingway Hummingbird says:

I've gotta say, I just discovered your channel & I love it. I've always been an outside the circle kind of person. I want to do this so bad. My problem is no money & I live in Orlando. I sincerely feel like I am being held hostage in this city/state/country. I also feel exploited by the ridiculous costs of it all. Currently watching my parents (in their late 60's & old hippies) getting harrassed by the bank for being to months behind on their mortgage. We (my family) have always been working class. Paid taxes for me 4 decades & my folks almost 7. That money has been used by our government to fight wars & fund corporations. I am in physically good shape & a very hard worker. I get along with others. I'm a musician and artist. Not by profession but been playing guitar and writing for years. If ANYONE needs my labor in exchange for room & board please let me know. Also, if ANYONE has any ideas on how to help my folks please let me know. Thanks again. Sending you good vibes. ▪️✴️💥⚛️💫🌎🧘‍♂️☸️⚰️&repeat. 🙏

northofyou33 says:

I love the idea of an earthship, but aren't tires toxic?

Willem Venter says:

concrete not very durable! Glad you stay in that dump you try and convince us to be a home

Will G says:

The place looks like a pile of junk on the outside and the inside.

Will G says:

One of the comments mentioned the solar system that uses the sun to heat water. In the 1970s, there was a lot of hype about these systems but it all disappeared rather quickly. Such systems have so many problems that they are completely impractical. One problem is that during very cold nights, the water in the system will have to be drained, or it will freeze. I think we all know that water freezing in pipes is not a good thing. There are other problems, such as the buildup of scale, corrosion, and the breakdown of pumps from scale and corrosion. Yes, a solar water heater requires a PUMP..and a pump requires POWER. Why use electricity or gas to power a pump to send water through an array of pipes in order to get heat from the sun..when one could use the electricity or gas directly to heat the water? Solar electric panels are very expensive, they are subsidized by the government and therefore have the illusion of being cheap, but they are not. The manufacture of solar panels produces an immense amount of very toxic waste. This is why all manufacturing has moved to China, where a bribe to a government official allows the manufacturer to dump the chemicals into the local water supply. If they were produced in the US, their cost wold be astronomical as the cost of disposing of the waste would not be avoidable by the manufacturer.

Will G says:

"concrete is not very durable"…uh…really? Ever heard of "The Colosseum"?

Corey Mondello says:

Canada has much too offer, probably less expensive than USA, but, the cold is bad enough where I am in New England!

ma ws says:

I would love to partner with you! That is the life style ive longed for my entire life. I had a taste of it when i was young. Unfortunately i do not have my own piece of land to do this. You are inspiring and thank you for posting this video!!!

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