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 The Last Straw -
 The International  Journal of Straw  Bale and Natural  Building

- Promoting natural building, and sustainable design and development, through research, training, education and consulting services.
Strawbale Emergency Shelters
Inspired by the work of Matts Myhrman and Judy Knox, and recent efforts by Builders Without Borders, the Geiger Research Institute will incorporate the use of these shelters throughout its workshops and continue to refine the process. An emergency shelter made of straw bales can be built in as little as one or two hours. These shelters are very energy efficient, resistant to fire and insects once plastered with earth or lime plaster, can be improved over time to become permanent housing, and can be disassembled and moved if necessary. This shelter concept is ideal for refugee camps, disaster victims, urban slums and other areas with severe housing shortages.

Tsunami-resistant Housing Research
A safe, sustainable and affordable housing design is being developed in collaboration with building professionals and the US Military Academy at West Point. The houses will resist rot, mold, insects, earthquakes, wind and fire in an attempt to create shelter that will last 100 or more years if properly maintained. For more information see our What's New webpage. Click here to read the preliminary report.

Native American Housing Research
The Founder and Director of the Geiger Institute, Dr. Owen Geiger, has worked for years to develop affordable housing for Native Americans. The most recent workshops were in September 2005 in Crestone, Colorado and in May 2006 in Ship Rock, Arizona.

US/Mexico Border Housing Research
A low-cost house design is being developed that uses readily available materials along the border: old tires, straw bales, earth, stone, reeds, pallets, etc.

Zero Energy House Research
Ongoing research at the Geiger Institute is focusing on how to reduce, and hopefully eliminate, reliance on external energy resources. Click on Zero Energy Housing for more information.

Multi-unit Housing Demonstration Project
The Geiger Institute is developing plans for a low-cost, multi-unit housing structure made of natural building materials such as bamboo, stone and earth. This demonstration project is intended to serve as a model of sustainable housing for urban areas where single-family detached housing is not practical.

Crestone, Colorado 81131 Email: Contact Information