LIVE image
Even though there are extant and occupied earthen homes scattered throughout the northern states and Canada from the mid-19th century, raw earth as a building material is overlooked in most of the USA. See Richard Pieper's article, "Earthen Architecture in the Northern United States" and these photos of earthen houses in upstate New York that I took in 2004, following Pieper's trail. Those are the tip of the iceberg, of course. The Earth Architecture website notes, "Currently it is estimated that one half of the world's population — approximately three billion people on six continents — lives or works in buildings constructed of earth." The Adobe Association of the Southwest hosts a biannual conference, which is now just a week away.
The 5th Adobe Conference of the Adobe Association of the Southwest, AdobeUSA 2009, will take place May 15 and 16, 2009 in El Rito, New Mexico on the campus of co-sponsor Northern New Mexico College in Cutting Hall Auditorium. Engineering and Architect Professionals will be eligible to obtain Continuing Education Units (PDH) during the conference.
Check out the abstracts, including great-sounding titles like:
   · Adobe 2030
   · ASTM earthen building standards
   · Mechanical performance of nonindustrial building materials manufactured with clay as a natural binder
   · The Effect Interior Earthen plasters and Exterior Lime plasters have on Controlling Temperature and Humidity in Building Envelope

What other natural materials can we use?

If you enjoyed this article, sign up for BuildingGreen email updates

*

Comments

1 Using local products for buil posted by Lee Beckman LEED AP on 06/19/2009 at 11:27 am

Using local products for building materials are very innovative. And by using dirt from the site itself really personalizes those projects that choose to do so. Proving that the material is as durable than modern methods is the next big step.


— Share This Posting!

Recent Discussions

AdvanTech OSB
posted by notes2jill
on Sep 24, 2014

Brent thank you!

AdvanTech OSB
posted by behrlich
on Sep 24, 2014

Hi Jill,

You raise a good question, but rest assured that Huber is not adding free...

AdvanTech OSB
posted by notes2jill
on Sep 23, 2014

According to the MSDS (...

Recent Comments


A View from Inside the Climate March

Mary Ann Lazarus says, "Nadav: thanks so much for the first person narrative from Sunday's march. I love the FOMO expression - we definitely felt it. The event reminded me..." More...


Picking a Water Heater: Solar vs. Electric or Gas Is Just the Beginning

Paul Jensen says, "You simplified PV to much. Inverters and panels can stop working so there is maintenance. Also you lose a lot of those electrons moving though..." More...


7 Tips to Get More from Mini-Split Heat Pumps in Colder Climates

bob coleman says, "If looking to do a home HVAC system upgrade/replacement etc, one of the best steps is to get an whole house energy audit performed by a company THAT..." More...

Donna Pirnie says, "Hi. I have 4500sq ft 100year old home with new blown insulation. Also having roof replaced soon. Currently have a ETS Steffes boiler that heats our..." More...

Nan Kul says, "I am on my third through the wall Frigidair heat pump in my sunroom in the last 25 years. It is so Noisy. I am planning to switch to a 12000 btu..." More...