Garbage Warrior
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Garbage Warrior

2007, Environment  -   148 Comments
Ratings: 8.45/10 from 94 users.

Imagine a home that heats itself, that provides its own water, that grows its own food. Imagine that it needs no expensive technology, that it recycles its own waste, that it has its own power source.

And now imagine that it can be built anywhere, by anyone, out of the things society throws away. Thirty years ago, architect Michael Reynolds imagined just such a home - then set out to build it.

A visionary in the classic American mode, Reynolds has been fighting ever since to bring his concept to the public. He believes that in an age of ecological instability and impending natural disaster, his buildings can - and will - change the way we live.

Shot over three years in the USA, India and Mexico, Garbage Warrior is a feature-length documentary film telling the epic story of maverick architect Michael Reynolds, his crew of renegade house builders from New Mexico, and their fight to introduce radically different ways of living.

A snapshot of contemporary geopolitics and an inspirational tale of triumph over bureaucracy, Garbage Warrior is above all an intimate portrait of an extraordinary individual and his dream of changing the world.

Directed by: Oliver Hodge

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148 Comments / User Reviews

  1. Watch this its worth every minute.
    May thinking like this continue to flow through the minds of generations to come.

  2. God bless his soul and many blessings to his crew for changing the world and introducing the gift of freedom to this country. Self sufficient eco friendly homes will be the future of the earth...yeiii!!!

  3. Yes here in New Zealand they have the resource management act that is a barrier to developing lands also councils charges to change your bath room around cost you an arm & a leg - $2,100 for the application, must have an approved master builder $10 to $15 thousand, qualified plumber $3000 & council must come and tick of the work and that is additional fee. All up $20,000 to change your bathroom - daylight robbery.

  4. Brilliant stuff, True grit till the end and he finally got the so called right to build.... Right to build, what a joke. Im from the UK and like the US its got some stupid rules and bs statutes to follow, Look deep and they are all about whether the Governments or the (already) stinking rich can make a easy buck out of you. Freedom is the future, Money and riches are the past. the sooner the money system is sunk the better.

  5. A very frustrating video to watch, because it doesn't explain anything, but have to say that I only got half way through it before I gave up.
    For intance this tyre thing? What is the thermodynamics behind it? How does he drive his computer? What does he plant in his garden and how is it used? How much rainwater does he harvest and is it enough? Questions, questions and no answers.

    1. Go to
      It is the official website linked to this technology and its creator.
      You can take classes online or in person to learn more.

    2. Those details r in other programs that have been done about Earthships. I've seen several, google and you'll find them. This film was not about those details.

  6. These guys are leading the way... take the ideas and make them fit your situation. A lot can be achieved by understanding the passive design techniques they are using... bottles in the walls might not be your ideal solution but the solar heat gain is much lower than a window and it still allows natural light into the space. Take these ideas to the next level!

    Great documentary, thank you so much for putting this on the web!!

  7. "We're running out of WATER"..... "It gets negative 30-35 degrees FAHRENHEIT here".... alright turned off this documentary finally.

  8. Good example of nothing repeats like history, as the depression rolls on there will be more building's like this , now you have 3 generations of families living under the one roof and modifying their homes to suit.
    Just shows how we have wasted money of stupid laws to help support the blood suckers who sponge of the sweat of others.

  9. Why would you want to be self sufficient. When you can work hard to line the pockets of your local power, gas and hydro companies. Or pay top dollar for "cookie cutter" houses. I can't see that bill ever being passed. Not unless the people take back their government. But of course they would have to learn to think for themselves first.

    Awesome documentary. Well worth the watch.
    I'd like to get a hold of some building plans too please!

    Oh yea! Seeing them go assist the people of The Andaman Islands. I could really see all the Relief Fund Donations at work. Perhaps they just forgot to send it?

  10. loved this; now where do 'we' get a hold of those home building plans?


  11. absolutely love this and I am glad he finally got his law passed. I have 2 concerns - rain water can be polluted so I think he needs a filtration system in use. Secondly, while it does take a long time for plastic to break down, it does eventually do so, so I would not want to use it in my structure. More laws to further a project like this will be much more difficult as it will start cutting into others profits and they will fight it - unfortunately.

    1. Plastic bottles used in houses will take far, far longer to break down than a conventionally built house will last.

  12. Inspiring, intelligent, funny, and just a good story.

  13. This documentary is brilliant! I was laughing my ass off, felt inspired, provoked, and well-informed. I literally watched it twice all the way through, and watched the court house scenes about 5 times. So funny. Love it.

  14. Absolutely inspiring, and what a dumb legislature body we have! These people are like snails and all day long they push papers! We need smarter people in these offices.

  15. Maybe he should do it on the Indian reservations because laws are different there aren't they?

  16. Yes but tires can't be used like that here it is illegal to have tires on the ground without rims on them...something to do with polluting the ground.And can you build them in New England with our kind of weather?

    1. the tires can't be on the ground without the rims because they hold water and they become breeding place for mosquitos. However, in these buildings, tires are filled with earth and there is no room for water to stay stagnant in them to become home for mosquitos' eggs and larvae.

    2. tires only pollute because it doesn't decompose in the ground, so this concept of using tires to build walls makes sense because you can re-use the same materials for hundreds of years without polluting because it is above ground and isn't decomposing in the earth. And just look around on youtube for videos of earthships in winter conditions.

      Also I just want to mention that out of all the 'environmental' type documentaries I've seen, this is one of the only ones that provides a solution to the average person and if applied on a large scale it can have a global impact. Sure these earthships aren't perfect yet, but it's a lot closer to perfection than your current home in a lot of ways.

      I'm concerned about one issue if I were to embark on the 'off the grid' lifestyle, how would I connect to the internet without paying a company for it? What if I bought some property and it was out of range of an internet signal? I am too accustomed to having the spoils of the internet at my disposal to give it up for the sake of self sustainability, but I really want my cake and eat it too.

    3. I agree. I would love to have one of these homes, be off the grid as much as possible, and yet still be connected to the Internet. Satellite Internet service is probably the only bet out there. It might be worth setting up fiber optic lines yourself and sending the lines to the ISP -- in effect bringing your house to the ISP rather than the other way around. Hopefully the lawyers wouldn't make you define "service" and "provider" and waste 3+ years of your life...

  17. very inspiring documentary! brilliant

  18. bravo!!!!!

  19. What an awesome tale. The old adage fits: You've got to help a bunch of people get what they need in order to get what you want. When the crew got outside of themselves and went overseas to help others, their protagonists learned of this service and could not be seen as holding back the visionary success. Bravo!

    Do you know of colloidal silver?

  20. Enjoyed this doc. This doc provides hope in regards to ones spirit of endeavour. Mr Reynolds self belief, commitment, and determination won through regardless of the politics and what ifs . . . that were faced.

  21. Michael Reynolds and his posse are an inspiration.

  22. Bravo.

  23. my dream house!

    1. me too

  24. This documentary is inspirational, not only for Reynolds persona and vision of a more humanistic future; but for all his creative and hand work. As well as Reynolds are his followers and those make the leader.

    I do hope people be inspired by this documentary, because in history what made our lives change for better are people like Reynolds and friends.

    Thank you

  25. Nevermind the stream of arguments on this comment string, this documentary is truly inspiring and if you think it might be cool, be ready to be blown away by sheer awesomeness

  26. im glad to see they focused their energy on India, i think mike would have a much easier time selling this brand of housing in the slums of india or the favalas of brazil where there is less redtape bullshi# and a much worse problem with overcrowding and sanitation. he was screwed from the beginning in new mex. they have a long tradition of hating the desert rat hippies that go off the grid there. there is a great doc you can watch on snag called off the grid: life on the mesa that details the lives of some true crusty desert hippies.

  27. when the revolution comes after the impending class war in America, once occupy turns to destroy and rebuild, which it soon will, bureaucrats and corporate lobbyists will be among the first to be liquidated.

  28. that lady Zee from the judiciary review committee is a shining example of what a public servant is supposed to be, a diamond amongst dirt clods.

  29. His Divine Grace A.C Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada preached simple living as part of the ultimate knowledge from Lord Sri Krishna .He also set up community farms to show how it should be done .
    Not much mentioned in the doc about the food probably because your animals ate it all.
    You would need to grow more food for the animals than for yourself .It takes 4 pounds of grain to produce 1 pound of meat .It is not sustainable.It is not efficient use of food when you consider that 1 single grain can produce 1 ear of 20 grains ,and 20 grains can then grow 20 ears totaling 400 grains and so keep multiplying but if that single grain is eaten by an animal it produces a tiny amount of stool thats all and not even the kind that would be useful for milking the goat.
    Your sub divisions will prove to be an example of this, to the world who are also making the same mistake.
    Well done Michael Reynolds,I would love to do something like your doing except in away to please and serve Krishna and not just for gratification . .With out Krishna you will always be struggling and missing the ultimate goal of life .You say you are learning from your mistakes ,so please now learn from Srila Prabhupada .
    I have seen Park benches and posts for signs that look as if they are made of recycled or melted plastic .Plastic planks .Could these be made and use to build instead of the timber ?

    There are so many problems in the world and whilst we defy Krishna Our Karma will create more problems.
    Learn from Gods supreme personality ,Lord Sri Krishna .
    Meditate on that supreme person and chant ,

    Michael your are doing some good work .Krishna explains to Arjuna to fight and think of me .Do your duty and think of Krishna ,then your life will be perfect and not just " I'm free" as you put it . You are a great pioneering environmentalist how about sharing and teaching these better ways of doing things with as many people as possible .How did you get on with the wells and water butts ? Did you filter the water with home made carbon like charcoal and a cloth ?would that work?The whole world needs these answers .Even so called safe tap water has many unsafe ingredients ,I think commercial water filters do too and also the rain .
    WELL I hope you do WELL
    Hare Krsna.

  30. People talking about pop. control and how the global pop. should be kept under 500m... I have one question:

    What makes you think you will be one of 500m, and not one of the 6.5bn extinct ones, if the government is to decide who lives and who doesnt.

    Think about it.

  31. One of the best fu*king documentary on this site.

  32. hows does a person like me be able to contact micheal reynolds?
    very interestring and would consider a trial bases time.

    1. @rastapasta:

      No personal e-mails please, read "Comment Policy" above.

      You can take a class with him.

  33. This was perfect to lighten my mood and take in a little more hope for humanity. What great idea's and personal conviction shown.

  34. You can move in my country ... Due to bad(stupid, execrable) politics from 23mill people we are currently only 18mill(in ten years or so), and also scientists made a study and if this trend continues in 50 years there will be no more people here... except the politicians and ticoons that govern us and rip of all that they can. I think that overpopulation is a threat due to democracy( learn history the way i did and you can see it to, we had wars in the past because of overpopulation), also the control can be achieved in your country simply by medical sterilization after u reach 2-3 children, not like in mine where people are fleeing the country or reach the conclusion that they do not want to bring a child to life in THIS conditions. Here u can see 3D,HD, however you want to call it all the documentary`s shown on this site. Before we shot our "dictator" (engenired by foren country`s after what i learned) this contry was called the grainyard(I this is the term) of all Europe, we never imported food or prime materials, now I can`t find a veggie in the store made here, also the big producers of raw materials were sold or made unneficent by the state...Till this moment no countryman shot killed or bombed anyone or anything here, so I think that we didn`t shoot our dictator by our will because the conditions now are crappier that they were 20 years ago, the only thing that changed is freedom to travel and loooots and loooots of shit to buy with no f money . Sorry for my bad english, I learned from cartoons and movies. PEACE OUT

  35. i found this to me one of the most inspiring documentaries i have EVER seen. i laughed out loud (sometimes just at the audacity of politicians) and i cried just from feeling how right approaches such as this are. i have no idea how yet, but sustainable off-grid living is something i have been thinking about for a looong time and this at least inspires me to think of a practical way to do it. in my opinion, if we have a future at all, it is ideas like this that will lead it! this sort of living might not be for everyone and that's fine, but at the very least, society and government need to allow those who want to put themselves out there and work to DO it - no strings attached or red tape to cut.

  36. kevin yoder is obsessed by the wrong numbers. If the amount of nature ripped out, transported, processed and consumed/discarded in the west and increasingly in emerging "economies" (a misuse of a word if ever there was one) was reduced the population that is sustainable would increase by several multiples. Under the current "economies" no numbers are sustainable. We all know the result of the large numbers. Low numbers are unfeasible because they do not support economies of scale. The real solutions are inseparable from the real causes.

  37. its not how many people earth can manage by how much land mass there is,its pollution,consumer demand,etc that we should be worried about(which there will be more of the bigger the population of earth is)I think thats the bigger picture.

  38. I agree population is out of control and the more we have, the more they have etc. China has it right in regards to reproduction, I don't support China at all but population control, they got it right.
    People everywhere else seem to be exploding with kids, are we really going to wait for government to step in and limit the number of children a person can have, or are people going to wake up?

    70% of our big fish have been fished out in the past 50 years, animal suffering is worldwide (my thing is more to stop animal suffering) at the hands of humans.

    I just hope we leave some species alive when we wipe ourselves out, I don't see the kinds of change needed in order to save ourselves happening.

    1. knock it off lovinight, you are sick and anyone who thinks like you is also sick. so what you are saying if I had one child then my wife got pregnant again and we had another baby and I do not mean fetus. you would be ok with us killing him/her? because this is exactly what you are saying. and that is sick,

    2. I think the limit should be 2, one to replace each of you!
      If that is how you perceive my message, I assume you are not able to grasp the concept of birth colntrol (yes we have 100% effective options). These people I see with 5+ kids, come on, nothing personal but think about the impact this practice has on this planet and the people on it. Our veggies are DNA altered in attanpt to feed the whole planet and the soil they are grown in lacks rich nutrients. You want to create a life that will most likely suffer and die of cancer? How bout starve to death? You know how much waste through a lifetime (say human waste alone) each person creates? Where the hell does it all go, where do we put it when their is nowhere else, in the ocean because people would not stop making more people?
      You'd most likely opt for that rather than abotrion, what gives us the right to spill our species troubles on other species?

    3. you stupid selfish f*** yes you have a responsability to control how many kids you have. Are you too dumb to figure out how to put on a damn condom!!!!

    4. yes you stupid gredy f*** you have a responsibly just like everyone else on this planet.or dont you understand the word contraception. Wise up trevor

  39. "MAINTAIN humanity UNDER 500 million"
    We have that capability with the help of the Garbage Warrior. I believe we could start building Earth ships by the masses. I`ve worked in facilities that built single wides, double wides, etc. Not much different, other than build them indoors is all. Now the onsite preparation may take a bit more surveillance, but the results would be like building on site. We could mass produce them see? I`m betting several could be built every week to start setting up the American people to lead us into the next revolution.

  40. And you know Michael, all of those 9/11 videos were exactly the reason it was done to begin with. The purpose was to stimulate the economy with a bunch of controversy, with nobody really getting into trouble. Bush and Rumsfeldt sleep well every night. And the threat below has escalated since.How much longer must humanity suffer before we look in the mirror and awaken to the fact of our explosion in population?

  41. I`ve watched hours of your videos here and wow! I`ve just barely touched them! But I have to see one that addresses the greatest threat to humanity ever. And that`s "critical mass" as described below. Currently there are over 350,000 newborns born each DAY on the planet. And that number is increasing massively each day. Mother Earth is in the process of cleansing itself with all these natural disasters. That`s well over a million newborns every 3 days. The garbage warrior is being threatened by humanities ignorance. Education is what`s really needed, and that`s what I posted below, is the EDUCATION.

  42. OK now regardless of how inaccurate those dates may be below, we should all come together and follow Michaels lead. We should use his idea to bring down the population SAFELY. FREE adoption for a few generations should drastically reduce population enough to allow us to focus our efforts more towards science and technology.

  43. December 21, 2012
    TOO much o a "coincidence" sorry.

  44. I saw this on a recent blog elsewhere and mouth dropped. It shows that we`ve been set up people. But with the garbage warriors help, we can reverse the direction. Anyhow, we`ve all heard the date December 21, 2012 being the so called "end of days"? OK then try adding these two dates up, and see what you get. The first one being the infamous 9/11, and the next one being the recent earthquake in Egypt. 09-11-01+03-10-11

  45. Google yourself and see. 350,000 children are born each day, and only 150,000 people are dieing. That`s 200,000 net growth see? And the scary thing is the near future. Lets take it just one more step. If we double in half the time again, we`ld be at 13 billion by the year 2030. That`s simple math. But we have all these liars on tv saying we`ll reach 9 billion by 2050 as if to scare us. It`s WAY more than that!
    We`re being set up psychologically that`s why.

  46. DOUBLE 3300 is 6600 million, or 6.6 billion. And if it would have taken HALF the time, then 75/2=37.5 added to 1975 is 2012.5. In other words we shouldn`t have reached 6.6 billion till next year. We`re well past that already. That`s known as "critical mass" for those familiar with those terms.
    It`s like a snoball rolling down a snow covered mountain, as it rolls it grows bigger and rolls faster till it eventually becomes an avalanche. That avalanche is critical mass, and we`ve been in an avalanche since the seventies. Over 200,000 people NET growth per DAY is an AVALANCHE.

    1. have you done a scientific survey and concluded what the earths carrying capacity is? or are you projecting your own fear as facts and via fallacial logic coming to the conclusion that we are overpopulating? have you stopped to ponder that the earths carrying capacity might be 114 billion or maybe 1 trillion people? start studying and stop projecting. now im happy to have a population reduction discussion when we have a scientific global survey that states that earth cannot take more than what we have. until then, enough with the fear-mongering please.

  47. We can estimate we reached that between 1950 and 1999, or 1975. Which was only 75 years from there, or half the time it took before. We DOUBLED in HALF the time it took to DOUBLE prior. That my friends is better known as "exponential growth". A term we`ve often heard the media say. BUT they don`t tell us what that leads to! That`s criminal negligence as far as I`m concerned.

  48. Starting in 1750, note the frequency the population DOUBLED. 1750 we had about 800 million people. Double that is 1600 million. We see we reached 1650 million people in 1900. So it only took us 150 years to DOUBLE from there. Now lets see how long it took to DOUBLE from there, 1650 x 2=3300

  49. According to the numbers below, it should be noted that before 1750 we stayed a bit below 500 million for MILLIONS of years. And then in 1750 is when we started increasing mortality rate along with advancing in medecine, prolonging health. More people lived longer thus the sudden increase in population.

  50. Lets look at those numbers carefully. It`s not the total amount now that`s the problem I agree. The planet can provide for what we have now with some better organization. It`s the RATE at which we`re increasing that nobody is accounting for. And I`ve been trying to show this to people for years. I don`t want to argue, cause once we see what`s really going on, we can resolve the matter better than we could possibly imagine. So all I`m asking is that you please just hear me out, and if I`m wrong, so be it, but I think it might come to a surprise.

  51. LOL! And I would have said the same thing back when I was healthy. But in `02 I nearly got killed by a speeding drunk driver which left me paralyzed with plenty of free time to look at the situation from a different point of view. I`ve always had strength in mathematics, and I simply looked at the following numbers.
    1750- 791 million
    1800- 978 million
    1850- 1,262 million
    1900- 1,650 million
    1950- 2,521 million
    1999- 5,978 million
    2008- 6,707 million

  52. I`ld like to share some numbers with you.
    This won`t ever happen of course, but lets just say we could control people like robots. With about 2 billion fertile people on the planet, we could give birth to just a single child the next 3 generations And say with twins and what not, that alone would reduce the world population to just 250 million. From there we have 4 more generations of a single child birth, followed by 4 generations of 4 children pr couple. 4 on, and 4 off see? A balancing schedule, with the results never exceeding 500 million people.

    1. World population is not the problem my friend. It is the allocation and subsequent waste of resources, the current paradigm actually encourages wastefulness. It helps the 'economy'. to live the kind of wasteful lives that the worlds 'richer' nations live we require other nations to be held in desperate poverty and to sell their resources at bargain basement prices. So instead of imagining a world of robots and depopulation what about a world where things find a natural balance, through careful and considered access to natural resources. A world where knowledge is king....and queen. where we are actually encouraged to find solutions at every level. Developing and protecting two of our most important resources, soil and water, would be paramount in such a world. before we say less people, lets say less waste. lets say less greed. I mean really come on.

    2. Oh you must be a Agenda 21 supporter, I agree future development should lean towards that goal, stripping us of our land, homes, vehicles w/o even attempting to compensate, F+*% that!

  53. Thank you Michael! You`re the BEST!!

  54. Congratulations Michael Reynolds and to your crew as well . Your are an inspriation for your dirve and passion to live along with the earth. After watching this, seems to me Mr. Reynolds should be working for the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of National Defence. If only the world would wake up to the reality of today abuseive living style. I live in Canada. Yes we have some of the same issues here, bureaucrats and politicians and hoops, but we do not have a Michael Reynolds. I have learned a great deal from this Garbage Warrior and I wish to thank all parties involved in the making of this..."Must See Top Documentary"

  55. it is absolutley ridiculous to not let people do what they want on their onw lnad if we want a house like that why shuldnt we be able to build on like it
    its all about money those greedy bastards one day soon this will stop 2012 is around the corner and WE THE PEOPLE won't stand for it anymore

  56. I disagree with some of this guy's underlying assumptions about environmental issues. That being said, I find it absolutely disgusting that he had all that trouble with the frakkin' bureaucrats and politicians. I find it infuriating that THEY wasted significant parts of his life, making him jump through hoops so he could do what he wanted to do on HIS land.

    I think he's doing some pretty nifty stuff, and I applaud him. And I hope when the Architectural Board invited him to reapply for his license, he told them to go piss up a rope. Frak those bastards!

    1. u are totally ignorant i know what hoops u got to jump thru to do what u want on ur own land

    2. u are totally ignorant i know what hoops u got to jump thru to do what u want on ur own land

  57. holy shit, i just had a epiphany, thanks john, pizza and coffee, pizza and beer, yes, me thinks it will work

  58. I went for a month long internship there and it rocked. The people are great and Taos is beautiful. You can learn so much in a solid month of hands on labor.

    1. how do i contact them? i would like to join them for a trial bases.

  59. To all the less intelligent who feel obligated to post some negative comment about this man or his work, I tell you now,
    people like YOU will hopefully be the only ones left behind when massive earth changes occur. Call it natural selection.....

  60. amazing, thanks for posting it.

  61. @ Gitz

    Sorry! I gave you the wrong addy for the legal stuff I found. It was the Link Mary gave us in comment #33

    Thanks to Mary I found the stuff I have been seeking.

  62. @ Gitz
    My thoughts from what you said lend me to share with you that I too have been held up from actually trying out one of these homes on my existing property was due to the Building codes. I have been reading about Micheal Reynolds earthsips for about 3 yrs now. He has stuff all over the net. I just wanted more info on how it would do in winter climates. And how do you get passed the building and permits.

    I have not seen this Doc before and it shows the darker sides that Micheal has had to face. For me the film was all about How to get passed beuracracy and that more people need to start staking their claim for their own liberal rights for pursuit of happiness and fight back the control the towns have had on code enforcements. The way we have built our homes for so long have made it near impossible to just build with our own means.

    I am wondering as we speak if their isnt an old existing law that allowed the settlers to build their log cabins and their little stone and morterless shelters our Settler Ancesters first lived in, that might exempt newer codes?

    I suppose with the going green all over the world one might get such projects passed as Micheal showed us he did under project of green as a market sample.

    I don't know , I am still looking at such things myself. A helpful site for insight and info is the link I posted above in comment 34 thanks to Micheal in comment 31 . It shows the beauracracy Micheal has dealt with. In the meantime while he is still fighting he shows us a map with places here in the states that have no codes or that allow such things.

    You talked about moving, perhaps you too might find those places where it is allowed.

    But the whole "War" the GArbage Warrior is fighting seems not to be the building but the allowance of building.

    It might take alot of people to continue a battle one battle at a time against the system before we have our rights to freedom of building restored.

    I think it is worth the battle! Ck out that link i gave. It is filled with ideas and understanding of what we are against.

  63. Brilliant, Simply Brilliant.
    I have had this mans ideas swirling around my head for weeks now since watching this.
    The UKs Grand Design had an earth-ship home being built in that as well. Very inspiring.
    My wife and I have been discussing moving/building as we are tired of our home.
    This may be an option. One of my best mates is an architect so I think i'll have to collar him and ask him what he thinks about the stability and longevity of a home made from Tyres.
    (Thats if the council would even approve it.)

  64. The system could work on a small/medium basis at first. We would still need farming, but would have to change our entitlement mentality the USA has. Cities are already adopting thermal/solar energy for buildings. The scales are tipped and the fossil fuel supplies are diminishing. Along with water. It is a matter of time. I do recommend this video though to prove we don't all have to be sheeple as a taxpaying entity the gov't wants us to be. I do have to ask where this guy gets his money from though.

  65. Thanks for putting this out so that we all can see that someone that has the means well as the concern for actually doing something for the good of us all...
    whether we like the ideas or not.....
    this doc gets us all thinking about sustainability also got me thinking that we humans get a lot more out of living if we work together.....
    so it makes sense to find ways to get along..
    One person can do just so much but can get much more ideas and help when that person works with others....

    thanks again:)

  66. :) i want one.. really really want one.. gonna build one sometime in the future!

  67. Well James and Jay, at least this guy is trying something new and actually quite realistic. Since when did we need big McMansions with a freezer stocked full of pizza pockets anyways? Where do you think we as a species came from? Walmart, already packaged up with every little vain amenity we would ever want? Just because our culture has evolved to the point that people find coffee and pizza and three and a half baths a necessity doesn't mean it was evolution in the right direction. People around the world in even mostly developed countries live much more modestly than we, and they're doing just fine. Even if the buildings in the documentary aren't perfect, at least they are something new and innovative, something sustainable and changeable. Despite the global warming argument, we are in a fuel crisis, as well as an economic crisis, and that requires us to change the way we live our lives day to day. We need to become more sustainable, more self-reliant. Here is an idea, which has worked for many people in the documentary, and even people outside of it (Read up on cob housing! Its becoming more and more popular) for years, and why the hell not try it? The real problem with North America is its so static, resistant to change and new creative ideas, as soon as you try to warm people up to something new and earth-friendly you get slapped with the hippie stick, which is apparently a bad thing in the USA. God forbid anybody try to save a little money, a little earth, and get a little dirty in the process. It sickens me how negative you two are, especially when you both refuse to watch the damned documentary. You're just as ignorant as the rest of them. I bet you'll waste even more money and time in 35 years on this earth on things that mean even less to humanity anyways. Placidity will be the bane of our existence.

  68. @ Equidae

    You have a point as far as toxicity of plastics is concerned. You are wrong on energy expenditure though. Apart from trash for which it is always better to reuse than recycle concerning energy he mostly uses local building material. A trait utilized by Romans but hardly ever practiced today.
    Around 40-50 % of energy is used in buildings. If a building utilizes passive systems for maintaining indoor climate as much as it can it can dramatically reduce energy needed to operate the building.
    His biggest achievement is going against bureaucracy that I can tell you from first hand experience is Don Kihotes fight with windmills.

  69. If you watched the doco JAMES, you'd hopefully understand that its about developing better ways to live with the environment. Developments have to start from the ground up and that is what the documentary is all about. Its a step by step process that can acheive great things only if "powers that be" allow greatness to develop.... All the points you mentioned can be acheived if ideas are allowed to be tested and researched and then implemented in a modern way. Why couldn't you build a self sustaining city that you can buy a pizza and coffe in? If anything the documentary just illustrates the how america and indeed many western countries have taken away your freedom of invention and problem solving to develop solutions to foreseeable problems.

  70. @ James.. you're suck a d.ickhead!

    Why are you even commenting on a documentary that you didn't watch? Just because hearing your own opinion sounds cool?

    People don't need meat or coffee to survive. And pizza.. you know, it's just a piece of bread with stuff on it. I'm sorry to burst your bubble that made you think it was some sort of magical food, bro.

  71. I truly believe this kind of thinking will help save more than just the planet ,i love the bones of all the people in this world who have even,had the eyes and mind opened,(Me and an internet connection) who even try in the smallest way to rid us all off a system not by killing it,but making it better,..It still is a beautiful place ,here in NZ i will put up my dukes to protect land ,nature and the way to work with it,By showing younger people some how to grow food,its bloody easy and they love the taste,Here some people grow grass to mow ,others dig the land and make food,I cant wait till the whole world figures this ,watches and learns without greed, I will be sharing this doco with friends im lethal at spreading a good word,or idea

  72. How can we beat down a person so giving, so resiliant,so true to a cause,being our world ,and us in it ,in fifty years he will be a model for a midset narrow minded fifty years ago,The documetary featuring Jaques Fresco ,another documentary that made me so sad ,for the system we live in ,each to their own if it does not hurt or adversely affect people,good positive attitude ,intelligence,fit muscles,and mind,not lazy at all,Like Mike i do not think raging at the system is a good use of energy,,? wonder what jobs some of our free love elder hippie Parents are doing now,,Hurting or healing..etc(ramble)My point I need to add 1 for the positives here

  73. To make comments and not watch is=asinine. And secondly, I want one! makes me look at tires,cans,and plastic bottles in a whole new light! Thank God for Mike and his HOPEFUL vision. Incredible!

  74. @Bastone How many guys do you know who drive a diesel that runs on waste oil? His does.

  75. this guy lives in tires yet.. he drives a car

  76. Ya hit a home run here Vlatko. This guy deserves a medal. You don't have all the crap you don't need at this kind of place, but that's the point. Ya don't need it! I'm so sick and tired of spending about a third of what I have for heat and lights. I'm enthused. I may try something here and maybe one in Belize. We just don't need 5,000 square feet to live in for starters. The best time of my life, was living in a 200 square ft. cabin, with a loft.
    Very good example of the US political constipation.

  77. @Equidae; You have a point, however that is through the use of both hydroponics and geneticly altered seeds. Both of which the same individuals who embrace this ideal are against. Typically they want organic farming methods much like what was used in the 17-1800s, and that requires a ton of land. Also hydroponics at that level of that quality is expensive and as a solution entirely leaves out the issue of livestock and stock feed.

  78. algalculture RV so successful every aquarium could provide breakfast for a texan, accidentally.

  79. Side side note. The average modern person has turned to the Ficus as the only house-plant they don't kill within a month. But the solution is for us all to become farmers?

  80. I am all for the environment and looking into alternative ways of life. However the "grow your own food" idea is not new. Long long ago (100-150 years) The entire state of New York was a clear cut sprawl of homesteads. The issue is this; for a person to have adequate soil and other materials to be self sustaining they require between 5-15 acres of land, depending on local soil fertility. If we are also talking some livestock bump that to 15-30 acres per person. I am going to go out on a limb and say that the eco friendly people are not for a regression of slash and burn homesteading on a global scale. Side note; I have a friend who designs and installs geothermal units. average cost to consumer.....150-200k. nice cheap solutions indeed

  81. So he's made a cement house using trash instead of bricks. Color me unimpressed. 1 the concept of using a hollow brick substitute is nothing new, been done, romans were substituting hollow clay pots for aggregate in the pantheon to render their concrete dome lighter 2000 or so years ago. In other places bamboo or other forms would also be found, corn cobs, cord wood, all been, and done successfully, using far less energy in their manufacture as well. Power tools left and right crew o dudes, so his house have only a slightly lower expenditure of energy used in their construction. And garbage for a house really, plastic bottles are and this is where it gets funny, photo-degrading, meaning they break more quickly in sunlight, and hey everyone remember bisphenol A, that plastic they use in water bottles that breaks down and disrupts the endocrine , heat and sunlight both prime factors in degradation, and sum o u foos wanna live in house made out of em. But y'know not me gonna stop u from it, after all more room, food, and females for me. Or tires that just loverly, everyone remember that old bit on simpsons the springfield tire fire. Know that was funny cuz flaming tires and toxic jez a tad though. And some u and this fool again wanna live and cook and breath in a house made o concrete n tires. This darwin award winning town u fantasize about were the firemen all u know not existin, cuz it'd be suicide to try put out a fire in a town made out of tires n rocks,n solar panels in the dessert. Man why you even gotta do a thing.

  82. The whole point is to change the way we think about how we live. CHANGE! Are we so stuck in our ways that we cannot adapt and grow as a society instead of just thinking about our individual desires? Think about past cilivilizations that just disappeared. That could be us.

  83. I like it.
    Not everyone will live in a garbage house, but that's not the point. The concepts and design principals can be carried over and multiplied in efficiency into modern materials and architecture.
    For instance, the house he built in India could simply be prefabbed in pieces on a controlled site from foam and plastics or other light weight materials, a foundation dug and the whole thing flown and dropped on site in mere hours. It not only provides shelter but clean water for drinking. Its not that its built from recycled materials, but that it IS a fast and cheap solution.

    I don't want an 'earth ship' for a house, but I do love the concept of off grid sustainability, thermal masses, solar energy in both heat and electricity, wind power, cistern well, garden and small livestock.

  84. really amazing.

    only one thing disturbed me. the little houses that they were building should withstand a tsunami. at least that is what they said... even if so, it would feel like being in a washing machine, i guess...

    oh yeah and the bureocracy

  85. correction to my post
    smaller openings toward north

  86. Hat off to Mike for his unselfish act for showing and helping people to attain a sustainable life style.

    He is implementing a passive system in to the buildings for regulating indoor climate. Basic principles are orientaiting large glass surfaces to the south where in colder part of the year you have solar gain and only small openings towards the south to minimize energy loss- light passes through windows, gets absorbed by internal surfaces and gets radiated from these surfaces in infrared spectrum which does not pass through glass and is trapped inside (greenhouse effect). Of course when there is too much sun you have a problem of access heat. This can be solved by shading windows on the outside.
    He also uses a massive wall to accumulate heat. It stores solar energy during the day and emits it during the night resulting in a much more stable temperature. If you live in a hot climate but is cold during night time it makes sense to have an accumulative wall in the south instead of large glass surfaces. In any case a well insulated building is a must if you wish to have small or no energy consumption. Water can be heated by a solar heater which is very basic technology - water passes through black tubes covered by glass orientated towards the sun and gets heated. You also need a storage tank to have hot water on demand. It is also possible to use this system for low temperature heating most commonly utilized as floor heating. Electricity from solar and wind stored in batteries though if it is possible I would choose to put power provided by panels in to the grid as it minimizes the investment cost + when there is access energy you earn money and when there is not enough sunlight you can take energy from the grid.
    Waste water can be treated by plants and microorganisms. Water can be discharged whihout harm in to environment.
    Collecting rain water makes sense as it can be used for toilets, watering the garden ect. Filtered is drinkable.
    I would choose a wooden construction with insulation like cellulose or hemp myself.

  87. Excellent video. This video says it all when it comes to how those in charge of any situation deal with new ideas, whether from Einstein or Reynolds, it is always the semantics that are important to the out of touch elitists. I can understand the importance of language and the possible abuse of interpretations from vaguely written laws; but how is this any different than every other law; they are all strewn with loopholes and vague interpretation. The more I see things like this the more I believe our elected officials have their own agendas ahead of bettering the lives of their constituents.

  88. This is a great example of what an individual can do with a good idea and the courage to see it through.

  89. I haven't heard one positive thing out of that women...

  90. Lives on*

  91. @Ruckusronn

    You claim James has a small mind and lives and beer and! are you are new here?. This should be funny to see you try match wits with him if he replies. I can tell by that comment of yours that your on some superiority trip and as long as were making assumptions here I'm sure all if any of your friends think your a stick up, selfish arrogant prick.

    Let that comment eat away at bruise your over inflated ego, You know it will so don't fight it.

  92. Mike Reynolds is awesome. Thanks for posting!

  93. Nice Docu!

  94. @ James & Jay: Mike Reynolds talks about experimenting with materials recycled from the dump and finding ways of building with them, as well as experimenting with new ideas in architecture. He also succeeds eventually in being able to do it legally. I'm sure we have bigger enemies out there to worry about.

  95. Very inspiring. Thanks for posting.

  96. The reason James did't "get it" was because his mind was too small to grasp such a large idea.Sorry James,but not all of us live on beer and pizza.Very good doc.I admire a man with true vision.One that's not afraid to make mistakes and work qithin the "system".Thanks again v for a great doc.

  97. Awesome Film. We need more thinker's like Michael Reynolds

  98. Read mother earth news for futher info on this topic.

  99. I probably should of mentioned for the sake of those who are not so familiar with Achictectual and Engineering structures and building sites that : There is more than Just the actual construction of a building. There are things that are dealt with as professionals such as Grading and water supply and waste, Lighting and maximum usage of location , direction. sloping, natural elements harnessed for maximum efficiency before the details of Solor, wind, sun, and calculated year round position globally etc.... So many details are calculated into these plans before construction begins.

    Someone asked if using tires are safe? I wonder if that person knows how dangerous the building supplies used in their home right now is ?

    paneling, carpeting,polyerthane, insulation , tar, plywood, etc..... all dangerous toxic stuff.Even paints.... they do not have to be of lead to be toxic. Even the electricity that flows thru your walls. etc....If I thought about it I could rave on.

  100. this guy is obviously an artist ..his houses, installations..
    Not really a 'direction' for humanity because it does not address the needs of the indifferent and incompetent masses living in multi-millions of people by the square mile.

    It's silly that he does all those endless ours of work to build his house this way and adds, "I dont have to do anything to be alive."
    Define "anything."

  101. OOPS ! I meant we have your Back (LOL)

  102. This guy is for real. Gary is a Civil Engineer from Ca.over 33 yrs and one of the best in Southern Ca. and him and I have been following everything this guy can put on the web and it is real sound construction.

    However We are still studying to see how well these homes would withstand A NY winter and solor is not such a great thing in Upstate Ny due to cloudy days interrferring with enough sunlight, We are testing out wind power though and other forms.From an Engineers point of view these have no reason not to do well in warm dry sunny climates. Exceeedingly well.

    I believe the Homes are called earthships and lots more info is all over the web. He even has classes where you go and work onsite to learn.

    I am so much hoping we can find enough data to support actually build one here in Ny on my property I live on now.

    If you have any serious questions or doubts just google him and you will see tons of exciting detatiled info. He does not hide secrets or care to be in the lime light just for the sake of it. Micheal is truly a sincere dedicated man, set to help make the world a better place for all of us. And help each of us live more independantly.

    What any critic should do is read up on what this guy has to offer and then support him in anyway you can. Do you think your politicians care more than this Guy? Then you havent checked out his work and his gift to all of us.

    Way to go Micheal ! You have our back !

  103. i have seen this man on the invention nation years ago.i love the idea of his earth ships ,iwould not use plastic , alu, or rubber because they are petroleum products and alu.i would use glass,rough cut lumber and insulation with no vehicals would run on water with plasma ignition and carberators.i love solar panels but volcanos,nite,clouds would stop them.i would probably have a cavitation heating system and hot water.I study

  104. The world needs more visionaries like this guy.The local governments are so resistant to his ideas because it shows people that you do not need the governments infrastructor in order to live.Also the greed of big oil and power will do everything to not let this happen.The government see's this as a threat... people not needing them...

  105. what these guys are doing is awesome. if you have a closed mind it will stay closed, and you will perish, but if you keep it open, who knows what will happen. awesome doc!

  106. Old tyres and plastics are dangerous as they are decomposing, i wouldnt advise anyone to use them in construction projects.

  107. I can't wait to have a house like this; grow my own food-solar or wind powered; going off the grid - true freedom

  108. It's funny how things that save the planet get so much resistance and then things like Genetic Engineering get the green light.

  109. this guy is a legend, the pure determination of someone who knows what hes doing is the way foward.
    i have lived in converted lorries for years but if i could get a plot of land this is without doubt the way i would build.
    oh yeah i'm a builder by trade and there aint no way i'd ever waste my hard earn't pennies on one of those horrid square boxes that we throw up on every inch of land.
    more people need to open their eyes to what we're doing to the planet and think about the future not just lining their own pockets.
    cheerz Vlatko for putting another great docu on here.

  110. waldo look into design e2 and here comes the sun for your green tech : )

  111. These allow for people to live off the land and off the grid, literally. I have been aware about these for 12 years... and even took part in the building of one of them.

  112. this guy was very inspiring to me, with all his effort in helping others and breaking through the system, great work

  113. This doc. does more to expose the broken joke of system we call politics in this country than anything else. They fail to truly explain any of their renewable and green technology. Don't get me wrong this guy is my hero in many ways, but I wanted to hear more about the heating and cooling systems, water collection systems, sewage treatment systems, and especially the self sustaining green power they said they were able to build directly into the house cheaply.

    I am not looking to revolutionize architecture or save the planet, I don't have the patience for people like James or the government flunkies this guy had to try and forcefully enlighten. I own my own farm and the home my parents built here is falling down, my dad knew how to build a home but knew nothing about foundations. We live on a huge red clay hill and the entire house is sliding down the side. I will need to build something to live in soon and would love to utilize some of these techniques.

    I don't want my place looking like a garbage dump with windows though, not making fun but you have to admit some of those houses looked horrible. Still I could utilize alot of the heating and cooling and power saving techniques. I dont even mind building with tires, bottles , whatever- I can always plaster over it with stucko and no one would know the difference. If any one knows how I could contact these people or get some more indepth info on these ideas let me know please.

  114. @ Jay

    If you watched this, you'd know he helped many people in India after the Tsunami. Thanks for your useless comment!

    @ James

    Prove you wrong? Watch the damn documentary before you make uninformed comments on it!

    Firstly, yes, food. To make pizza you need yeast, flour, water, olive oil, and cheese, all items he can grow, or in the case of water, collect. He can get the milk/cheese from the many animals he will have (you'd know that if you watched the first 10 minutes), that's also where he'll get his meat. As for coffee, coffee beans generally grow in volcanic soil, he has an extensive greenhouse to house his plants, once you have the beans, making coffee from them isn't that hard, even if he grinds them by hand. Watch the documentary, it's about being more self sufficient. We obviously can't transform entire cities, but that doesn't mean we can't take steps and utilize certain techniques to help make the world a bit better.

    He never suggests this is how the entire world should live, just that we need to study and develop more sustainable ways of living for a better future for everyone.

  115. I wont watch it either. He should watch some of the docs on this site and see what the world "owners" would think of him and his pursuit. I'm sure they would get a good laugh at the fact he spent 35 years of his life and thousands of dollars of his money on this useless quest only for him to die and no one give a f--k about his work or make any progress with it.

  116. this guy is a f@#$%^& hero for mankind

  117. i saw a background landscape seen in terminator salvation

  118. @James If you're not gonna watch, then you really don't know what you're against, right? Just sayin'. You can keep yourself unaware if you want; it's a free world.

  119. Just to note, tigerpred must have done as some of those New Mexico politicians were doing in session [sleeping]. Short term memory loss, much? lol

  120. While I enjoyed the video as a whole, I do not concur with Mr. Reynolds rhetoric of "Global Warming." That's not to say however, that I personally don't think we've had no effect on the planet, whatsoever.

    As for building a zero carbon home, or pretty daurn close to it, I'm all for that. For far to long we have raped, robbed and pillaged mother nature for far to long.

    Hopefully, Sustainability will be the mantra of the 21st century!

  121. Trying to build garbage houses in the US is the wrong place to start it was nice to see India was much more receptive to his wonderful homes

  122. @Karen Yes! It is. The pounding gives them structural integrity, and only new tires off-gas. Old tires do not. They have done tests.

  123. Is living in tires safe??

  124. i've seen this docco before and i have to say that this is quite inspiring.
    to live this way is not for the 'gucci' set but infinitely more satisfying for those who have no need to have the best of everything that somebody else has made.
    this docco shows the epitome of self sufficient housing.
    a great docco!!
    thanks Vlatko

  125. I want one of these so bad! They look and ARE cool!

  126. Revolutionary...not.
    I'll be honest, I'm not gonna watch this, way too stupid.

    1. How would this work in a big City? (as the majority of the population lives in cities these days)

    2. "grows it's own food"...meat?Pizza? Coffee? it grows it's own food...only if you don't need/want the majority of food...right.

    3. If this House had everything a normal human would have in a normal way it's build only from things society throws away, or is cheap/has no expensive technology.

    4. "has it's own power source" right, because there are so many systems that provide power to a house but cost near nothing/don't use expensive technology....I smell bullshit.

    The whole thing looks very much like the typical "green"-back-to-the-roots-of-mother-nature ranting.
    But hey, prove me wrong. ^^'

    1. yeh and another thing the next wave will wipe that thing out like a sandcastle

    2. Watch the film. You'd find all of the things you mentioned off target.