Dan Chiras, Dan Chiras, Ph.D. is a man of many interests, talents, and pursuits. He is an avid
reader, photographer, singer/songwriter, nonfiction and fiction writer, textbook
author, an authority on and practitioner of self-sufficiency and sustainability, an
accomplished teacher and public speaker, river runner, hiker, mountain biker, cross country skier, and a passionate nature lover.

Over the past 45 years, Dan has published several hundred articles on green building,
solar energy, wind energy and other aspects of self-sufficient and sustainable living in
numerous magazines including Mother Earth News, Home Power, and Solar Today.
Dan has also published 40 books on a wide range of topics focused principally on
various aspects of self-sufficiency and sustainability. He is also author of five college
textbooks. For a complete list of the books that Dan has published, click here.

Since the mid1970s, Dan has taught numerous workshops and given hundreds of
lectures and webinars on a wide variety of topics, including residential solar electricity,
passive solar heating and cooling, green building, and self-sufficiency through The
Evergreen Institute, the American Solar Energy Society, the Colorado Renewable
Energy Society, the Missouri Solar Energy Industries Association, Heartland
Renewable Energy Society, the University of Colorado (Denver), Colorado College,
and the University of Denver.

Dan has installed numerous solar electric and wind systems in Colorado and Missouri,
consulted on dozens of passive solar, energy-efficient homes throughout the United
States and Canada.

Dan has lived on solar electricity since 1996. He lived off-grid in Evergreen, Colorado
for many years in a rammed-earth tire/strawbale passive solar home, then built a self sufficient homestead Gerald, MO, but in 2021 moved back to Colorado. He currently
lives on a solar homestead with his wife in southwestern Colorado near the town of

In all his homes, he practices and relies on:

  • Super energy efficiency
  • Renewable energy (including solar electricity, solar hot water, and passive solar heating and cooling)
  • Rainwater catchment
  • Gray water recycling
  • Food self-sufficiency (including organic gardening, aquaponics, indoor LED
    gardening, permaculture, raising chickens, and food preservation)
  • Composting (including human excretions)
  • Recycling
  • Transportation self-sufficiency (renewable energy powering electric cars)
  • Health self-sufficiency (healthy eating, exercise, and natural cures)