While the average American home continues to get better and use more resources, one Austin, TX college professor is taking part in an experiment to cut way back — to just one percent. Jeffrey Wilson, affectionately known as Professor Dumpster, moved into a dumpster on Huston-Tillotson University campus back in March to prove to his students and the community that you can have a good life while using only 1% of the water and energy used by the average American household. (His dumpster is also 1% the size of the average home at six by six feet.)

At first, Wilson was essentially camping in this dumpster, getting water from the town lake, using candlelight, and storing his very few belongings in a false plywood floor. In August, he entered Phase II of the project. They were able to equip the dumpster with air conditioning just in time for Texas heat of August. In this phase, the dumpster will be hooked up to the electrical grid and afforded many amenities of the modern home such as bedding, cooking supplies, solar lighting, and an improved roof.

Phase III, called The Über Dumpster, will kick off in Spring 2015. In this phase, the team plans to combine the best of the first two phases — using modern amenities while creating the smallest ecological footprint possible. Design ideas for Phase III include a composting toilet, solar-heated shower, and a flat screen television.

To keep up to date with Professor Dumpster and the HT Green is the New BlackTM student organization, check out the website.

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