Adam D. Bearup, Earth-Shelter-Building Green Designer – Biographies – MOTHER EARTH NEWS

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Adam D. Bearup, Earth-Shelter-Building Green Designer

Name: Adam D. Bearup

Occupation: Green Builder, Designer and Farmer

Place of Residence: Grand Rapids, Michigan

Background and Personal History: Adam has been around Insulated Concrete Form (ICF) construction and design since 1990 and was raised to respect the earth, eat wisely, and to avoid processed foods. He has owned his own building business for over 15 years and has built a variety of projects above and below ground that have caught the eye of green building enthusiasts all over the world. Adam has led his building team to multiple national awards and has taken jobs that other builders would not take. He can build houses out of just about anything, from ICFs to structural insulated panels (SIPs) and everything in between!

Adam has lived on a 20-acre farm for the past 2 years and plans to live there the rest of his life. He fixed up the old farm house and enjoys the love/hate relationship that there seems to be when living in a 100+-year-old house. He learned about farming for the project he built in Northern Michigan, The Earth Shelter Project Michigan. More specifically, he learned about bio-dynamics, rotational grazing and everything it takes to raise livestock in a healthy environment.

The Earth Shelter Project Michigan is the largest underground and off-the-grid farm on the planet. He led the project team and during the three years living there (2009-2012) building the project, Adam learned more about living a healthy, natural lifestyle raising and growing his family’s food. He now incorporates that knowledge into the new homes that his team builds (in one way or another) and that knowledge compliments Adam’s wife, Stephanie’s, gift as a live food chef and naturopath.

Adam travels extensively for work, and when he’s home on the farm, he leaves the phone inside. In just over five years, Adam transitioned his farm from a hobby farm to a farm that produces the majority of his family’s food. He raises cattle, hogs, chickens, turkeys and other animals and has gardens that supply 90 percent of the produce his family consumes. They are fortunate to have homeowners that they work for that let them pick their fruit trees and to have access to fishing for Salmon on Lake Michigan.

Adam has degrees in marketing and management and recently completed his Masters of Science in Green Building. More than pieces of paper that hang on a wall, these degrees taught him how to fine tune the thinking it takes to exist “outside of the box.” Sustainable Building remains his passion and challenge and he feels fortunate to have clients that appreciate the unique work that he does — his heart is at the farm.

Current Projects: The Puddingstone Project, an earth-bermed, all-electric house!

Other Fun Facts: Adam has spent extensive time in the music industry, whether it be emceeing live music festivals or playing in a band. He’s spent most of his life working at wedding receptions (retired from that now, thankfully!!), which helped provide income while he was building his construction business.

His first love is entertainment, and he’s thankful that he can combine building with entertainment through online videos and the other shows that air on radio or television.