Renewables Pioneer Builds an Off-Grid Hot Tub



Renewable Energy Pioneer John Root, photo by John Root

Note from Mother Earth News blogger, Aur Beck: John Root is a longtime solar pioneer and mentor to me. I love to see the fun things he comes up with including his solar electric tricycle and riding mower. This guest post was written by John.

This is my journey to powering my off-grid hot tub at 6,000 feet in the Sierra Nevada mountains.

A Sustainable Life Leads to an Off-Grid Campground

I've been living on- and off-grid for 40 years. I started out building hot-air solar collectors and designing root cellars with sunspaces on top. For those designs, I fed air to the root cellar via a 50-foot ground tube. I then vented the root cellar into the sunspace or greenhouse. It worked great, preserving food for winter, helping heating the house, and cooling the sunspace in the summer. I was hooked.

Next came a Jacob's 10-kilowatt wind turbine. You have got to love 40-percent tax credits, which allowed for my business, The Rootcellar, to be born. For the next 40 years, I dedicated my efforts to promoting renewable energy and sustainable living. However, years of climbing towers, installing solar, and general hard work left me with one knee replacement with the other due to be replaced in the fall, and my hands full of arthritis. I'm not complaining here, just stating the facts. I'd do it all again in a heartbeat. I've been fortunate to live in a wonderful time and am watching my vision turn into reality.

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