Earthship Brighton – Plugged into Nature
Earthship Brighton: Plugged into Nature
Earthship Brighton is an award-winning community centre. We’ve hosted environmental education events, practical green building courses, and community activities, for almost a decade – but now we urgently need your help to keep it running.
We’re fundraising £20,000 for the vital upgrade of the building’s renewable energy and water systems.
Earthship Brighton, located in the South Downs National Park, is an off-grid eco-building designed to get all the electricity and drinking water it needs from the sun and the rain. When the Earthship was built, lead-acid batteries were the only game in town – that’s how we stored electricity from our solar panels. But after a decade of delighting and educating thousands of visitors, the batteries are spent, and better eco-technology is available. New regulations also mean that we need better ways to purify the rainwater the building collects, to convert it to drinking water.
We’re ready to bring the amazing Earthship back to life, and make it better than ever, so we can:
• Empower community projects to use the building for their own events
• Run more eco-education events and natural building courses
• Inspire all our visitors by showing low-carbon living in practice
Without your help the Earthship – made out of recycled materials – is literally going to waste!
Please help us plug back into Nature for our water and energy so we can keep on powering communities, eco-education and events.
We’re offering some great eco-rewards to thank people who donate. Find out more by clicking on the ‘Support us’ section, and donate now.
What will we do with the money?
• Ultraviolet, chemical-free filtration system to purify rainwater – £3000
• Two new sets of cutting-edge batteries to store renewable electricity from our solar panels – £9000
• A straw-bale battery house to store our new batteries – £5000
• A veg oil powered back-up generator – £3000
Want to know more, before you donate?
Earthships are off-grid eco-buildings made using waste car tyres and other recycled materials. Not relying on mains water or electricity from big companies, Earthships are designed to use natural systems to provide everything they need… now, all Earthship Brighton needs is some funding with people power!
What is the social/environmental problem/issue that this project will address?
So much of our lives are locked into using fossil fuels – especially with the powering of our homes.
We want to be part of the solution that changes our current system which relies on the use of finite resources and shows people the future of renewable energy.
As part of the energy revolution we inspire and promote the use of renewable energies.
Connecting the dots between our buildings, energy use and carbon emissions Earthship Brighton is an architectural response to climate change and works to promote low carbon alternatives.
Can you give us some statistics on this problem?
Tackling climate change begins at home.
We believe that changing behaviours play a large role in transitioning to low carbon lifestyles. We also believe that changing the way the built environment looks and feels like is equally as important.
Half of the UK’s carbon emissions come from the built environment. Our homes are responsible for 27% of the UK’s carbon dioxide (CO2). 60% of energy at home is used for heating.
In short, a large proportion of the UK carbon footprint comes from people heating their homes.
Earthships are designed to produce energy from on-site renewables, such as solar panels and wood stoves.
As well as energy inside the home, the construction of them is carbon intensive too. The cement industry is among the largest sources of carbon dioxide emission. Around 7% of global CO2 emissions are caused by the production of cement.
The Earthship demonstrates how we can do things differently with a little imagination and well thought out design. Like any building it too needs to be cared for and loved. But in the case of the Earthship it loves you back! New energy systems will smarten us up and enable us to reach many.
What is your solution?
Earthship Brighton demonstrates, with a real life example, that we can design the spaces we occupy with both beauty and ecology in mind. It is an education centre where people can learn about easy viable alternatives to mainstream energy provision and construction techniques. Through the natural building and renewable energy courses that the Low Carbon Trust runs we inspire and support others in transitioning into a lower carbon future.
The aims of Earthship Brighton are:
• to provide a sustainable education centre for people to learn about the environment in a beautiful natural setting
• to change values in the construction industry so that new and existing buildings use less energy and resources
• to spread a positive empowering message of climate change education
• to help people make positive changes to their behaviour to live with a lighter carbon footprint
How will you deliver this?
A model low carbon education hub Earthship Brighton is a community asset that we want to ensure reaches further and wider than ever before.
By scaling up the number of courses and visits, and opening up the building for hire to local communities, the new energy systems will enable us to hold a greater demand.
Low Carbon Trust currently runs and delivers the following courses and events at the Brighton Earthship:
– Seven unique green building courses each delivered several times a year
– Monthly tours of the building
– Eco education days for schools
– A number of events e.g. Eco Open Houses