Earthship buildings : stakeholder opinions of their contribution towards sustainable alternative housing in the United Kingdom

Booth, CA, Horry, R, Isaac, C, Mahamadu, AM, Manu, P, Gyau, KAB ORCID:, Aboagye-Nimo, E, Georgakis, P and Prabhakaran, A 2022, 'Earthship buildings : stakeholder opinions of their contribution towards sustainable alternative housing in the United Kingdom' , Proceedings of the ICE - Management, Procurement and Law , pp. 1-8.

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Society requires additional affordable housing to meet its growing demands. Further, people expect their homes to meet sustainability targets and for the lifestyles they proffer to accord with low impact living. Earthship buildings are marketed as being an epitome of sustainable alternative housing. Built by reusing or repurposing mostly reclaimed urban waste products, their design includes the utilization of low embodied energy materials, passive solar heating and cooling, photovoltaic power systems, rainwater harvesting, solar hot water heating, along with black and grey water treatment systems. Thus, Earthship buildings are considered exemplars for contributions to both the sustainability and climate change agendas. This study explores stakeholder opinions of whether Earthship buildings can contribute towards the future of alternative housing in the United Kingdom (UK). Opinions were sought through questionnaire survey completed by UK members of online social media groups whose shared focus is related to sustainability (n=50). Results reveal that the public believe the main benefits are their minimal environmental impact and also their reliance on renewable energy resources; whilst the main barriers are identifying suitable building plots and obtaining the necessary planning permissions to build. Notwithstanding the participants included in this study already have an interest in sustainability issues, it is surmised that the general public deem the general principles of Earthships are an acceptable choice of alternative home/living. However, whilst the uptake of Earthship homes are proving increasing popular in some parts of the world, the upmost concern within the UK setting is the reality of finding somewhere suitable to build an Earthship and then being given the required authorisations to construct the building. Therefore, the study recommends a need for future Earthship investigations to review the bureaucratic obstacles encountered during land searches and acquisitions and, alongside this, appraise the challenges of gaining the necessary planning permissions.

Item Type: Article
Schools: Schools > School of Computing, Science and Engineering
Journal or Publication Title: Proceedings of the ICE - Management, Procurement and Law
Publisher: Institution of Civil Engineers
ISSN: 1751-4304
Related URLs:
SWORD Depositor: Publications Router
Depositing User: Publications Router
Date Deposited: 02 Dec 2022 15:06
Last Modified: 02 Dec 2022 15:06

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