December 10, 2022

Low Tech Solutions

"Interesting possibilities arise when you combine old technology with new knowledge and new materials, or when you apply old concepts and traditional knowledge to modern technology."

I love the simplicity of tried and true low tech solutions. 

One of my favourite places to visit on the internet these days is No Tech Magazine. It is ironic to be using a high tech device to access low tech information, but these are the transitional times we live in.

"We refuse to assume", the magazine says, "that every problem has a high-tech solution." I agree.

We should all be considering low tech solutions as we prepare for an uncertain future where we are certain to have less of the energy that drives complex high tech systems. 

I think about this a lot when the power goes out, or when I receive our ever-increasing electricity bill.

For example, since our property owners installed a heat pump in our rental home, we have a total of three different methods of heating. 

For high tech solutions, our home has a wood pellet stove, an electric tankless in-floor heating system, and now also a heat pump. 

None of them work in a power outage. And out here in rural Nova Scotia, winter power outages are common.

When the power goes out it would be real nice to have a basic wood stove. Then we could have heat and the ability to cook despite having no power. 

It is looking like low tech will be our "new normal", which will be a lot like the "old normal".

High Tech vs Low Tech

Snowblower - snow shovel

Power tools - hand tools

Vacuum cleaner - broom

Gas or electric lawn mower - reel mower

Electric blanket - wool blanket

Clothes dryer - clothes line

Car - walking, horse, bicycle

Dishwasher - hands, sink, and a dish cloth

Air conditioner - ceiling fan

Electric space heater - hot water bottle, warm sweater 

See more low tech solutions here.

What are your favourite low tech solutions that you use in your life?

"Most mainstream responses to climate chaos today rely heavily on high technology and big business. We rarely hear about solutions – often rooted in the past – that are localized, low-tech, and don’t advance the interests of large corporations." - Chris De Decker

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous12/13/2022

    You mentioned my absolute favorite low-tech -- the broom! Our house is hardwood floors or linoleum with area using a broom for most of the cleaning makes sense. And I always sweep off our decks versus using the leaf blower (which is electric). Sweeping is such a meditative thing, I will never give it up for some noisy vacuum or blower! BTW - this is a book recommendation as it talks about a time after the "factory age" as they call it, and how humans live more sustainably, and provide space for other species to live fully wild. All that said, the book is about more than that, but the post-oil world represented is very nice. Book is called A Psalm for the Wild-Built, by Becky Chambers. Some use of the F-word, but not much. Otherwise just a lovely read. I do not know the author nor have any connection to them, the publisher, etc. I just really liked the book.


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