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Dan Phillips has become a celebrity in his home town of Huntsville, Texas, for building 14 fully functional recycled houses out of construction waste and scraps. The 64-year-old constructor has lived a varied life, working as an intelligence officer in the army, a college dance instructor, antique dealer and even as a puzzle maker. He has spent the last 12 years building affordable houses for the poor, using discarded materials. Anything durable people throw away is a potentially useful building material for Dan Phillips. He runs down to construction sites and landfills and takes away almost everything they throw away. His houses are not all the same, he builds each one with the materials at hand, but he views that as a good thing. Dan Phillips recycling philosophy has changed the way the entire community sees the recycling process and he has even been contacted by companies who wanted advice on how to build recycled warehouses. Dan has been profiled by The New York Times and has given an interesting Ted Talk that you can watch below.

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