There's never been a better time to “be prepared.” Matthew Stein’s comprehensive primer on sustainable living skills—from food and water to shelter and energy to first-aid and crisis-management skills—prepares you to embark on the path toward sustainability. But unlike any other book, Stein not only shows you how to live “green” in seemingly stable times, but to live in the face of potential disasters, lasting days or years, coming in the form of social upheaval, economic meltdown, or environmental catastrophe.
When Technology Fails covers the gamut. You'll learn how to start a fire and keep warm if you’ve been left temporarily homeless, as well as the basics of installing a renewable energy system for your home or business. You'll learn how to find and sterilize water in the face of utility failure, as well as practical information for dealing with water-quality issues even when the public tap water is still flowing. You'll learn alternative techniques for healing equally suited to an era of profit-driven malpractice as to situations of social calamity. Each chapter (a survey of the risks to the status quo; supplies and preparation for short- and long-term emergencies; emergency measures for survival; water; food; shelter; clothing; first aid, low-tech medicine, and healing; energy, heat, and power; metalworking; utensils and storage; low-tech chemistry; and engineering, machines, and materials) offers the same approach, describing skills for self-reliance in good times and bad.
Fully revised and expanded—the first edition was written pre-9/11 and pre-Katrina, when few Americans took the risk of social disruption seriously—When Technology Fails ends on a positive, proactive note with a new chapter on "Making the Shift to Sustainability," which offers practical suggestions for changing our world on personal, community and global levels.
About the author
Matthew Stein holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from MIT. He is an engineer, author and building contractor. He has also worked as a schoolteacher, carpenter, and rock climbing and ski instructor. As the owner of Aloha Aina Builders, Stein has built hurricane resistant, energy efficient and environmentally friendly homes. As a mechanical engineer and president of Stein Design, he has designed consumer water filtration devices, commercial water filtration systems, photovoltaic roofing panels, medical bacteriological filters, drinking fountains, emergency chemical drench systems, computer disk drives, portable fiberglass buildings and automated assembly machinery for Open Energy, Hewlett Packard, Seagate and more.
"This book is an indispensable basic manual for the real-life issues that await us in the decades to come. Those who read it, and pay attention to its treasure trove of practical wisdom, will enjoy a huge advantage as the cheap oil fiesta winds down and circumstances compel us to live differently." —James Howard Kunstler, author of The Long Emergency
"Stein's excellent guide to simplifying your life, reducing your environmental impact, and pulling yourself out of a jam is sure to gather no dust on your bookshelf... This book is a personal and planetary empowerment tool." -Richard Heede, Ph.D., author, Homemade Money: How to Save Energy and Dollars in Your Home
"A marvelous guidebook for helping us through the worst of times, and even improving on the best of times" -Thom Hartmann, author, The Last Hours of Ancient Sunlight
"When Technology Fails is a massive project done well. First the book gives a superb presentation of WHY one should be more aware and prepared—and then HOW one should go about this. The scope of this book... is thorough. Not only is the information presented well, but a solid bibliography can carry the student as far as he desires in any particular area of interest."—John McPherson, author, Primitive Wilderness Living and Survival Skills
"We may all need a survival reference when technology fails. Matthew provides one — fact-filled, with useful tips on all aspects of survival, clothing, food, shelter, water, etc., including such vital subjects as grazing and the green pharmacy."—James A. Duke, economic botanist, USDA (ret.) and author of The Green Pharmacy