Off-grid isn’t a state of mind. It isn’t about someone being out of touch, about a place that is hard to get to, or about a weekend spent offline. Off-grid is the property of a building (generally a home but sometimes even a whole town) that is disconnected from the electricity and the natural gas grid . Off-grid buildings are therefore self-sufficient for light, power, and heat. But as it goes, people who live in off-grid homes also tend to be independent for procuring other vital resources, such as water and food.
To live off-grid means having to radically re-invent domestic life as we know it. This book is about the people who decide to do just that; the ‘off-gridders.’
Off-gridders’ homes are, in many cases, experimental labs for our collective future. The lessons they are learning today about living with renewable energy are the lessons we will all need to learn tomorrow in order to make our lives more sustainable, more respectful toward the environment, and less dependent on non-renewable resources.
By taking an intimate look into these families and their homes the authors call the rest of us to question our collective, modern, on-grid way of life.
To write this book the authors Phillip Vannini and Jonathan Taggart spent two years travelling across Canada to find off-gridders and visit off-gridders’ homes. Altogether they visited 100 homes and interviewed 200 off-grid Canadians, as well as many American and British expats living in Canada. This book is the story of their travels, and a narration of the experiences, challenges, solutions, aspirations, ways of life, and stories of the people they meet.