Chelsea Green Publishing

When Technology Fails

Pages:493 pages
Book Art:Black and white illustrations throughout
Size: 8.5 x 11 inch
Publisher:Chelsea Green Publishing
Paperback: 9781933392455
Pub. Date August 18, 2008
eBook: 9781603580953
Pub. Date August 18, 2008

When Technology Fails

A Manual for Self-Reliance, Sustainability, and Surviving the Long Emergency, 2nd Edition

Availability: In Stock

Paperback

Available Date:
August 18, 2008

$35.00 $22.75

Availability: In Stock

eBook

Available Date:
August 18, 2008

$35.00 $22.75

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.

REVIEWS AND PRAISE

"If you've been wondering about how to respond to the twin dangers of peak oil and global warming, one of your best choices would be to read this book."--Greg Pahl, author of The Citizen-Powered Energy Handbook: Community Solutions to a Global Crisis

"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

"You don't need to be a survivalist to appreciate this book. If you are thoughtful. If you seek a simpler, more sustainable life or if you feel as though technology has already failed us in the ways that matter, this is a book you want in your personal library."--Kathy Harrison, author of Just In Case: How to Be Self-Sufficient When the Unexpected Happens


"When Technology Fails is the roadmap that you want and need to navigate whatever may lie ahead."--John L. Chunta, PeakOilResources.com

"The depth of this book, covering everything from building materials to spiritual healing, is astounding. It is a one-stop source... to create a self-sufficient, earth-friendly lifestyle. I highly recommend it for anyone interested in preserving the health of themselves and the planet--and moving toward a sustainable, sane way of living."--Robyn Griggs Lawrence, editor-in-chief, Natural Home magazine


"We imagine that we live in the age of information, but this engrossing book reminds us of how comparatively little we know. Most human communities used to know how to provide water and food and energy for themselves, but most of the tips in this comprehensive account will come as news to most Americans. You may never need to put them into practice (or you may need them this winter when home heating prices soar) but at the very least they illuminate the state of our comparative ignorance."--Bill McKibben, author of Deep Economy


"A fascinating collection of concepts and skills that will satisfy everyone from the casual do-it-yourself enthusiast to someone who wants to attempt self-reliance and the ultimate emergency preparedness."--Howard Backer, MD, author of Wilderness First Aid: Emergency Care for Wilderness Locations and past president of the Wilderness Medical Society


"I have no children because I read M. King Hubbert's analyses on the future of oil and other fossil fuels in 1969, and Limits to Growth shortly thereafter. It was clear to me then and in every year since that our whole economy, and all of our economic principles, were based on cheap oil that would not last. The reason that economists could get away with criticizing Hubbert and LTG as well promoting their basically absurd theories that often disregarded and even belittled natural resources was that, in fact, more oil could be pulled out of the ground to make ANY economic theory or policy work, no matter how stupid. Now that the oil spigot is sputtering the economists' theories and policies are increasingly shown to be failures. We need a whole new way to think about how we do our economies. In the spirit of the old Whole Earth Catalogues Matt Stein does a marvelous and diverse job of helping us to think about how we might go about generating an approach to our economies that can make sense. This is a great book to have on your bookshelf as we enter the post-peak second half of the age of oil."--Professor Charles A.S. Hall, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry


"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

"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


"I liked this book. It's carefully researched, comprehensive, well illustrated, and readable. It presents much needed alternate information, for, in my opinion, technology has already 'failed' ...So replacement of polluting 'high' technologies with non-polluting 'low' ones is urgent, and Matthew Stein's handbook systematically and accurately surveys a wide array of possible low-tech options. Much hard work, time, and talent went into the building of this basic reference survey of low-tech options."--Carla Emery, author, The Encyclopedia of Country Living: An Old-Fashioned Recipe Book


"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





"Matthew Stein has done us all a tremendous favor by searching far and wide for useful knowledge. In this era of specialization, personal and social viability depend on expansive thinking. When Technology Fails is itself a powerful expression of the technology of sustainable living. It teaches more skills than I thought possible in just one book and rightly combines the immediacy of an emergency escape plan with the urgency for long-term thinking."--Mathis Wackernagel, Executive Director of the Global Footprint Network

"Whether you are seeking self-reliance and a simpler life or fear the collapse of social services, this compendium of practical information for sustainable living belongs on your bookshelf..."--Fred C. Walters, editor, Acres U.S.A. magazine


"Matthew Stein gives us a readable, updated wake-up call for sustainability practices in the best tradition of Paul Ehrlich, Lester Brown, and Jared Diamond."--Stephen Schneider, Ph.D., Melvin and Joan Lane Professor for Interdisciplinary Environmental Studies at Stanford University and coordinating lead author in IPCC summary papers on climate change

"A marvelous guidebook for helping us through the worst of times, and even improving on the best of times."--Thom Hartmann, syndicated radio host and author of The Last Hours of Ancient Sunlight

"When the grid goes down, having this book with you could be the difference between life and death."--Matt Savinar, author of Life After the Oil Crash

"When Technology Fails is a comprehensive guide and compendium of the tools society will require as it reaches the convergence of hyper-inflation, oil depletion, and environmental limitations; in other words, at the point where technology fails."--William Kemp, author of The Renewable Energy Handbook

"When Technology Fails. . . Like that's some sort of unlikely future possibility! Technology is always failing while people stand around befuddled about what to do. With Mat Stein's book, when push comes to shove, you can be your own veritable MacGyver. Not only does it provide us with the information we need to plan for, and deal with, potential emergencies and disasters, it also shows us how we can live more sustainably and self-reliantly in today's world of climate change and gas prices that are going through the ceiling. This is the sort of ingenuity for which Americans have been famous. When Technology Fails is to the mechanical world what Joy of Cooking is to the world of cooking. In other words, the encyclopedia every home should have on hand. Keep it right next to the emergency flashlight and your Swiss Army knife."--David Blume, permaculturist and author of Alcohol Can Be A Gas!

"In this age of over-consumption, truth is lost in a myriad of commercialized details. Matthew Stein picks up and assembles these shattered shards, and by examining each in the meticulous manner of a crime scene investigator, offers valuable insight and practical tools to survive in a world at the brink of chaos. In doing so, he helps maintain sanity in a time of hardening denial about the state of the world--and helps throw open the door to Plato's Cave where so many of us remain uncomfortably shackled."--Peter Droege, author of The Renewable City and Urban Energy Transition

Review From John Egan, proprietor of the website SurvivalistBooks.com-
Matthew Stein has written a clear, concise book on the subject of survival that, while educating, also does what few others have managed to do - entertain and engage the reader. Throughout the book you'll find personal stories accompanying the text to further illustrate or drive home a point. The use of these asides brings you into Matthew Stein's life, as he recounts personal stories of survival and tells the stories of others who have managed to overcome the odds to survive. Not just a survival book, Matthew also covers topics like alternative therapies; how to create a survival mindset; survival strategies; renewable energy; companion gardening; prophecies etc. as well as all the regular topics found in such books - edible plants; first aid; making a survival kit; growing, hunting and foraging; making tools; creating shelters; spinning/weaving/tanning etc. The book has some great illustrations that make plant identification and first aid that much easier to understand and each chapter finishes with a reference section listing books (along with a short review) and resources (with web addresses where available).


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Matthew Stein

An engineer, author, and building contractor, Matthew Stein has built hurricane-resistant, energy-efficient, and environmentally friendly homes and designed consumer water-filtration devices, commercial water-filtration systems, and automated assembly machinery among other things. He currently resides with his wife, Josie, in the High Sierra Mountains near Lake Tahoe, California. His websites are at www.stein-design.com and www.whentechfails.com.

ALSO BY THIS AUTHOR

When Disaster Strikes

When Disaster Strikes

By Matthew Stein

Disasters often strike without warning and leave a trail of destruction in their wake. Yet armed with the right tools and information, survivors can fend for themselves and get through even the toughest circumstances. Matthew Stein's When Disaster Strikes provides a thorough, practical guide for how to prepare for and react in many of life's most unpredictable scenarios.

In this disaster-preparedness manual, he outlines the materials you'll need-from food and water, to shelter and energy, to first-aid and survival skills-to help you safely live through the worst. When Disaster Strikes covers how to find and store food, water, and clothing, as well as the basics of installing back-up power and lights. You'll learn how to gather and sterilize water, build a fire, treat injuries in an emergency, and use alternative medical sources when conventional ones are unavailable.

Stein instructs you on the smartest responses to natural disasters-such as fires, earthquakes, hurricanes and floods-how to keep warm during winter storms, even how to protect yourself from attack or other dangerous situations. With this comprehensive guide in hand, you can be sure to respond quickly, correctly, and confidently when a crisis threatens.

Available in: Paperback, eBook

Read More

When Disaster Strikes

Matthew Stein, James Wesley Rawles

Paperback $24.95

AUTHOR VIDEOS

Mat Stein on CBS San Francisco: Bay Area Focus 10 16 12

An Inside Look at an Emergency Survival Kit

An Inside Look at an Emergency Survival Kit

Matthew Stein (full) KXTV-ABC10 9am sac, CA 11-01-2011

Matthew Stein (full) KXTV-ABC10 9am sac, CA 11-01-2011

Mat Stein on CBS San Francisco: Bay Area Focus 10 16 11

Mat Stein on CBS San Francisco: Bay Area Focus 10 16 11

Mat Stein - Mad River 6-1-09

Mat Stein - Mad River 6-1-09

Grab-and-Run Kit for Survival and Emergency - P1/2

Grab-and-Run Kit for Survival and Emergency - P1/2

Survival Emergency Preparedness Expert Matthew Stein - P2/2

Survival Emergency Preparedness Expert Matthew Stein - P2/2

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE

The Lost Language of Plants

The Lost Language of Plants

By Stephen Harrod Buhner

This could be the most important book you will read this year. Around the office at Chelsea Green it is referred to as the "pharmaceutical Silent Spring." Well-known author, teacher, lecturer, and herbalist Stephen Harrod Buhner has produced a book that is certain to generate controversy. It consists of three parts:

  1. A critique of technological medicine, and especially the dangers to the environment posed by pharmaceuticals and other synthetic substances that people use in connection with health care and personal body care.
  2. A new look at Gaia Theory, including an explanation that plants are the original chemistries of Gaia and those phytochemistries are the fundamental communications network for the Earth's ecosystems.
  3. Extensive documentation of how plants communicate their healing qualities to humans and other animals. Western culture has obliterated most people's capacity to perceive these messages, but this book also contains valuable information on how we can restore our faculties of perception.

The book will affect readers on rational and emotional planes. It is grounded in both a New Age spiritual sensibility and hard science. While some of the author's claims may strike traditional thinkers as outlandish, Buhner presents his arguments with such authority and documentation that the scientific underpinnings, however unconventional, are completely credible.

The overall impact is a powerful, eye-opening expos' of the threat that our allopathic Western medical system, in combination with our unquestioning faith in science and technology, poses to the primary life-support systems of the planet. At a time when we are preoccupied with the terrorist attacks and the possibility of biological warfare, perhaps it is time to listen to the planet. This book is essential reading for anyone concerned about the state of the environment, the state of health care, and our cultural sanity.

Available in: Paperback, eBook

Read More

The Lost Language of Plants

Stephen Harrod Buhner

Paperback $19.95

The Revolution Will Not Be Microwaved

The Revolution Will Not Be Microwaved

By Sandor Ellix Katz

An instant classic for a new generation of monkey-wrenching food activists. Food in America is cheap and abundant, yet the vast majority of it is diminished in terms of flavor and nutrition, anonymous and mysterious after being shipped thousands of miles and passing through inscrutable supply chains, and controlled by multinational corporations. In our system of globalized food commodities, convenience replaces quality and a connection to the source of our food. Most of us know almost nothing about how our food is grown or produced, where it comes from, and what health value it really has. It is food as pure corporate commodity. We all deserve much better than that.

In The Revolution Will Not Be Microwaved, author Sandor Ellix Katz (Wild Fermentation, Chelsea Green 2003) profiles grassroots activists who are taking on Big Food, creating meaningful alternatives, and challenging the way many Americans think about food. From community-supported local farmers, community gardeners, and seed saving activists, to underground distribution networks of contraband foods and food resources rescued from the waste stream, this book shows how ordinary people can resist the dominant system, revive community-based food production, and take direct responsibility for their own health and nutrition.

Available in: Paperback, eBook

Read More

The Revolution Will Not Be Microwaved

Sandor Ellix Katz

Paperback $20.00

Gut and Psychology Syndrome

Gut and Psychology Syndrome

By Natasha Campbell-McBride, M.D.

Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride set up The Cambridge Nutrition Clinic in 1998. As a parent of a child diagnosed with learning disabilities, she is acutely aware of the difficulties facing other parents like her, and she has devoted much of her time to helping these families. She realized that nutrition played a critical role in helping children and adults to overcome their disabilities, and has pioneered the use of probiotics in this field. Her willingness to share her knowledge has resulted in her contributing to many publications, as well as presenting at numerous seminars and conferences on the subjects of learning disabilities and digestive disorders. Her book Gut and Psychology Syndrome captures her experience and knowledge, incorporating her most recent work. She believes that the link between learning disabilities, the food and drink that we take, and the condition of our digestive system is absolute, and the results of her work have supported her position on this subject. In her clinic, parents discuss all aspects of their child's condition, confident in the knowledge that they are not only talking to a professional but to a parent who has lived their experience. Her deep understanding of the challenges they face puts her advice in a class of its own.

Available in: Paperback

Read More

Gut and Psychology Syndrome

Natasha Campbell-McBride

Paperback $32.95

Seeds of Deception & The Hidden Dangers in Kids Meals (Book & DVD Bundle)

Seeds of Deception & The Hidden Dangers in Kids Meals (Book & DVD Bundle)

By Jeffrey M. Smith

Without knowing it, Americans eat genetically modified (GM) food every day. While the food and chemical industries claim that GMO food is safe, a considerable amount of evidence shows otherwise. In Seeds of Deception, Jeffrey Smith, a former executive with the leading independent laboratory testing for GM presence in foods, documents these serious health dangers and explains how corporate influence and government collusion have been used to cover them up.

The stories Smith presents read like a mystery novel. Scientists are offered bribes or threatened; evidence is stolen; data withheld or distorted. Government scientists who complain are stripped of responsibilities or fired. The FDA even withheld information from congress after a GM food supplement killed nearly a hundred people and permanently disabled thousands. While Smith was employed by the laboratory he was not allowed to speak on the health dangers or the cover-up. No longer bound by this agreement, Smith now reveals what he knows in this groundbreaking exposé.

Today, food companies sell GM foods that have not undergone safety studies. FDA scientists opposed this, but White House and industry pressure prevailed and the agency's final policy--co-authored by a former Monsanto attorney--denied the risks. The scientists' concerns were made public only after a lawsuit forced the agency to turn over internal documents.

Dan Glickman, former Secretary of Agriculture, describes the government's pro-biotech mindset: "You felt like you were almost an alien, disloyal, by trying to present an open-minded view. . . . So I pretty much spouted the rhetoric. . . . It was written into my speeches."

In Seeds of Deception Smith offers easy-to-understand descriptions of genetic engineering and explains why it can result in serious health problems. This well-documented, pivotal work will show you how to protect yourself and your family.

DVD Overview

Three videos in one: includes an interview with Jeffrey M. Smith, footage of scientists, and a look at the miraculous improvement in student behavior that accompanied a change in diet at a Wisconsin school. Also included is a lecture by Smith on "The Health Dangers of Genetically Engineered Foods and Their Cover-up."

Available in: Mixed media product

Read More

Seeds of Deception & The Hidden Dangers in Kids Meals (Book & DVD Bundle)

Jeffrey M. Smith

Mixed media product $34.95