I liked it then, and I still like it now. Back then, most of the benefit came from the idea of burying a good portion of the home to save on heating and cooling requirements. Now, with the improvements in personal power generation that have come about, you can literally go off-grid in them as well, and not give up any of your creature comforts.
[…] Half buried in the dry, red earth of New Mexico, are a series of buildings, unconventional in appearance and radical in design. They’re Earthships — sustainable, self-sufficient homes — and the 50 or so that are scattered outside the New Mexico town of Taos constitute the Earthship world community.
Earthships are the brainchild of Michael Reynolds, a motorcycle-riding son of the counter-culture movement of the 1960s and 1970’s. Having trained as an architect in Cincinnati he moved to New Mexico to experiment with his designs, ride motorcycles and avoid the Vietnam War.
From building houses using aluminum cans in the 1970’s to the state-of-the-art Earthships currently being built around the world, Reynolds has devoted his life to building self-sufficient homes. It’s been an evolutionary process.
Steel and aluminum cans, tires and other reclaimed materials are all used in Earthships, but they are far from primitive frontier cabins. Rather they are self-sufficient, off-grid homes that provide their own water, power and heating. […]
ETA: Much better website here.