“There will be many who refuse to believe this will work. What no concrete? Will be their never-ending refrain.
Concrete foundations have been around for less than a hundred years. Buildings have been built for millennia. In the eastern Mediterranean it’s common to see structures still standing over 2000 years after they were built, without a drop of concrete.
Concrete is not just un-eco (the carbon footprint for producing the stuff is massive). It also has a habit of wicking up water. This is bad news for an earthbag house.
I spent a few sleepless nights over this gravel foundation. Now I’m as pleased as punch with it. If you live in an area that experiences a lot of rainfall nothing beats it. For the doubters, my house has withstood a 6.1 earthquake, and is bone dry.
Here’s how to do it.
1. Dig a trench half a metre deep. Make sure the trench is wider than the earthbags.
2. Fill the trench with rocks from the surrounding area up to about 20 cm below grade.”