5 Comments to “Permits for our Earthship”

  1. Sandra

    Apr 15th, 2011

  2. Anne Yanciw

    Apr 20th, 2012

    Hi Sandra,
    I have recently found your website and are interested in your lifestyle and choices. I have a keen interest in lessening my impact on the earth as well. I recently moved from Calgary to Valemount, and am hoping to build a straw bale house this summer. I have not yet purchased property for this as I would like a community of like minded people. Dunster, on the road to McBride, is an agricultural community that seems to have a strong sense of community. It was described to me by one resident as “we are mostly old hippies” which tells me it may have less capitalist focus. It is, however, a bit farther north than I was hoping to be. Clearwater or Little Fort was more my ideal as far as climate. Can you tell me whether you find your community to agree with your philosophy in general? Thank you very much for any help you can provide.

  3. Sandra

    Apr 23rd, 2012

    I think our geographic community is very interested in what we are doing in building an earthship. Despite what people may think I don’t think we are very different from other people here. I’m guessing we are just more prepared to leap into things. I find lots of people with a similiar concern for food safety…there is actually a food network on this issue in the Clearwater/Barriere areas. And lots of folks are experimenting with things like alternative energy. I just wouldn’t categorize them as being a “sustainable” community per se. Interestingly, we find the older generation (born before 1940) have been living the “sustainable” lifestyle all along!

    I grew up in this area and moved away for 13 years before returning to raise a family, so I’ve always felt a part of the community. I went to school with many of the teachers, school bus drivers and in the 14 years since I returned I’ve come to know many people a lot better than I did when I left at 18. My parents ran one of the largest businesses here in the 80’s so my family has very good roots here and to me it has always been “home”. I’ve always felt I shared many ideals with many people here.

    I think what you may be asking, though, is if there is strong, practical support for the kind of philosophy and lifestyle we have chosen. No, there have been no discussions or movements to form a “community” like that, that I know of. It would be interesting if there was, but I also find it interesting to be just one more different person among many. Some areas, like you mentioned, have become known for their sense of community in one philosophy or undertaking. The city of Nelson, BC is like this. In fact in 1998 we went to a straw bale workshop there because it was where the “action” was.

    I think if you are considering Clearwater or Little Fort you will find the folks very accommodating of you and friendly (we have good friends in both communitites), but I’m guessing you may not find it like Dunster, or even, Nelson.

    There is talk all the time of starting earthship communities in BC, much like the one in Taos New Mexico. Having stayed in an earthship in Taos for a night, I can tell you it is certainly an awesome thing to see 60+ earthships in a subdivision-like setting. I think there are plans that are further along in Ontario, to be honest, for earthship communities.

  4. Daniel

    Mar 26th, 2014

    Do you think there would be significant differences with regards to permits in Toronto?

  5. Sandra

    Apr 21st, 2014

    Not sure what the Toronto bylaws would permit, but I’m assuming aesthetics would play a role. Toronto’s code is part of the Ontario building code, which in turn is adapted from The National Building Code…however a region or municipality has great leeway in adapting even the provincial adaptation to its own needs/requirements/desires. I have yet to hear of an earthship being approved in a major Canadian city…but if you know of any we would love to hear about it!

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