Mobbs sees writing on the wall….

29 09 2019

I met Michael Mobbs some 10 years ago, when I still believed all the happy fantasies of solar power and energy efficiency saving us from Armageddon, and even wrote an article a couple of years ago when he ran into difficulties with a Lithium battery packed off grid system he bought. No idea if it’s been fixed. The latest story about Mobbs is fascinating, however, because he’s finally seen the light, and he’s going prepping!

photo courtesy The Guardian

Mobbs, it turns out, is a couple of years older than me; in 1996, he converted his two-storey 19th century Sydney terrace into one of the world’s first inner-city “self-sufficient” homes. He is selling his famous passion project and moving to an as yet to be determined remote coastal location to prepare for what he predicts will be impending societal collapse induced by climate change.

I hope his batteries work properly now! His website shows no sign of this being fixed… Or that he hasn’t left his run too late; even I sometimes run out of puff and sure am glad I’m not starting all over now…..

According to The Guardian, “Selling his four-bedroom, off-grid Chippendale property that he purchased in 1978 for $23,500 and is now valued at $2.2m is proving more difficult than he thought. He’s had it on the market since March, but wants to sell it to someone who won’t convert the back yard into a car space, who wants to maintain the Saturday morning house tours that have attracted some 30,000 eco-curious visitors, and who will appreciate the home’s unique perks: two resident Australorp chooks named Pesky and Blanche d’Alpuget; less than $300 a year in water and energy bills for a family of four and a leafy street blooming with edible verge gardens.”

I can relate to some of that, selling Mon Abri four years ago to ‘someone suitable’ was not easy, and we may even have made a mistake, but I’m not going there, we have truly moved on as you will soon find out in another update soon…….

Initially, I thought good on him, but then I realised his asking price will probably never attract someone like me, say, because how many greenies have a spare 2.2 million? And if he’s not careful, the real estate market could realistically go pear shaped leaving him stranded in Sydney, one of the last places I’d pick to see out the apocalypse…!

No doubt he’s invested a lot of emotional capital into the place, but does he even need 2.2 mil? Is he being greedy? Just asking of course……. Trust me, it doesn’t cost 2.2 mil to start a sustainable lifestyle in the country. If I was him, I’d take whatever and run…….

Mobbs, states the article, “is in no massive hurry to sell – he’s yet to acquire that crucial plot of coastal land for his bolthole-to-be. However he does have a new abode in the works that is due for completion in December – a prefabricated, bushfire-proof, fully sustainable home constructed with recycled materials that he’s creating in partnership with Melbourne-based modular housing specialistsFairweather Homes and Lismore-based renewables company 24 Hour Solar Power. Mobbs’ new home will be the prototype the trio use to take on the mainstream building market, showing that sustainable can be both “beautiful and elegant” and “cheaper than business as usual”.

Prefabricated means no thermal mass. Don’t know how you make something like that bushfire proof… and if it’s cheaper, what’s he going to spend 2.2 mil on? I can never get over how money rules everyone’s lives. I’d be surprised if his house is cheaper than mine.

“My guess is water, energy, food, the seasons and economies will collapse in the next three to five years,” he says. “Am I certain of these things? No. But like someone diagnosed with a cancer expected to kill me in the next five years, I am now preparing for my personal circumstances over the next few years. The star I steer by is an article by Catherine Ingram, Facing Extinction.”

People seem to believe that if they have superannuation, climate change won’t apply to them The audience – who were hoping for a side of hope with their vegan meal – appear stunned. Mobbs, on the other hand, looks relieved.

Will anyone want to buy his house after hearing that? I think he’s just told his potential buyers to all get the hell out!