Aid Projects, Community Projects, Courses/Workshops, Demonstration Sites, Education Centres — by Tamlyn Magee March 5, 2010
Information is the critical potential resource. It becomes a resource only when obtained and acted upon. - Bill Mollison
There is a moment, according at least to Geoff Lawton, when a permaculture student becomes ‘terminal’; forever destined, perhaps, to spout interesting (to some, anyway) facts/theories about ducks and lofty (but totally do-able) plans for future garden designs and/or the ‘edible meadow’, all the while flicking off light-switches everywhere and drying seaweed on the clothesline in between those telltale permaculture dreams….
Well, I can’t say for sure at this stage that we have any new terminals among the 18 students who just completed the first ever Permaculture course in Samoa, (and I dare say the Samoan incarnation of a permaculture addict might differ on specifics) but I definitely saw familiar sparks in a few eyes over the last 2 weeks, which means at least – they are infected!Comments (3)
Commercial Farm Projects, Community Projects, Demonstration Sites, Education Centres, Society — by Benjamin Fahrer February 27, 2010
It is so important in these times to work in collaboration and inspire each other. I have been so blessed to work with many of you through the Permaculture, Bioneers and Slow Food networks.
Over the last few years I have been able to dive deeply into the relationship connection from the field to table and table to field by participating in some amazing gatherings and courses. Terra Madre in 2006 and 2008, presenting at conferences and institutes, travelling to Africa for the International Permaculture Convergence and teaching design courses and workshops in Permaculture and healthy food systems.
In 2009 as Farm Supervisor at The Esalen Institute in Big Sur, California, I was able to teach and farm in a way that was incredibly fun, demanding and rewarding. Throughout the year I took up a camera and tried to capture some of the magic. The result is this three part film that I recently uploaded to YouTube. If you get some moments and let it download in HD, it is fun to see what you have helped me accomplish, I really could not do all this without the invaluable support of my family, cohorts and friends like you. I truly am grateful and honoured to be supported and connected with so many revolutionaries.
Feel free to forward this film on to any you might think would enjoy.
Part IComments (3)
Community Projects, Demonstration Sites, Education Centres, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Plant Systems, Project Positions, Rehabilitation, Trees, Water Harvesting — by Kevin Mascarenhas February 7, 2010
The Ijatz cooperative is possibly the best demonstration of the transformative power of permaculture in Guatemala. The site, in San Lucas Toliman near Lake Atitlan, was purchased at low cost since the parish council considered the land to be of low value. Previously, it was a swampy bog inundated with refuse and flood water from the surrounding hills.
In classic permaculture style, within the problem lay the seeds of the solution. The deforestation due to conventional agriculture in these surrounding hills has caused soil erosion and during the rainy season much of this rich volcanic black top soil is washed downstream. This annual bounty has been redirected through the Ijatz site using a sequence of channels and sink holes, which in turn slows the water flow enabling the nutrient rich humus to be captured and stored on site. The earth has been moulded to create slopes, edges and contours essential for increased growing opportunity.Comments (15)
Aid Projects, Community Projects, Conservation, Courses/Workshops, Demonstration Sites, Developments, Eco-Villages, Education Centres, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Food Shortages, Irrigation, Land, Nurseries & Propogation, People Systems, Plant Systems, Rehabilitation, Trees, Urban Projects, Village Development, Water Harvesting — by Craig Mackintosh PRI Editor February 6, 2010
Just as I was leaving Jordan, after making the Greening the Desert II update video, another little project was just getting underway – the Jawaseri School Garden project. A few people have emailed pictures of progress over the last few months and I’ve combined these with Geoff’s narration from the PRI home base in Australia, to give you all a bit of an idea what’s happening there. May it inspire you to do similar where you are!
Permaculture education should be in every school, everywhere. If it was, I believe most of the world’s problems could be solved within a decade.Comments (6)
Aid Projects, Biological Cleaning, Building, Community Projects, Demonstration Sites, Eco-Villages, People Systems, Potable Water, Society, Village Development, Waste Systems & Recycling, Waste Water, Water Harvesting — by Craig Mackintosh PRI Editor February 4, 2010
Part VII of a series – If you haven’t already, please read Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V and Part VI before continuing. This series is part of my work for the Sustainable (R)evolution book project.
One of 55 eco-friendly homes nestled amongst newly established gardens
An hour or so south of the Sri Lankan capital of Colombo is the fishing district of Kalutara. Although only one of many regions hit by the 2004 Tsunami, post-disaster relief efforts here were unique in that Sarvodaya determined to use the situation to create Sri Lanka’s first eco-village.Comments (11)
Community Projects, Eco-Villages, Economics, Food Shortages, News, People Systems, Village Development — by Devinder Sharma January 31, 2010
Ten years from now, in 2020, when we try to look back, Indian agriculture can be transformed into a healthy and vibrant system where farmer suicides have been relegated to history, where distress and despondency has been replaced by the lost pride in farming, where agriculture becomes sustainable in the long run, and does not add on to global warming.
As we enter 2010, the script for a futuristic agriculture, which brings back the smile on the face of farmers, without leaving any scar on the environment, is being rewritten.
What began as a small initiative some six years back in a non-descript village in Khamam district, has now spread to over 2 million acres in 21 districts of Andhra Pradesh. I remember when I first talked about the miracle brought about in village Pannukula in Andhra Pradesh, many thought I was simply trying to romanticise agriculture. How farming can be done without the use of chemical pesticides, I was repeatedly asked.
Pannukula dug out a lonely furrow, but eventually blazed a trail. In the next four years, more than 318,000 farmers in 21 out of the 23 districts of Andhra Pradesh have discarded the intensive chemical farming systems, and shifted to a more sustainable, economically viable and ecologically friendly agriculture. A silent revolution is in the offing. In Kharif 2009 (the monsoon season), some 1.4 million acres was covered with what is now known as Community Managed Sustainable Agriculture (CMSA).Comments (3)
Community Projects, Demonstration Sites, Education Centres, Urban Projects — by Nichole Ross January 26, 2010
Mark Covington (left) & Killian Obrien
Whenever I mention I’m taking a trip back to Detroit, I always seem to get at least one “why would you go there?” To those unfamiliar with the City, the word “Detroit” often conjures up the negative image of a city gone wrong. Crime, poverty, blight, unemployment – all terms synonymous with Detroit’s reputation for so long. Fortunately, I’m here to inform you that Detroit’s image is undergoing a major makeover, thanks to people like Killian Obrien and Mark Covington. These are two amazing men who are working to bring positive change to one eastside neighborhood. Hope for Detroit also means hope for many other forgotten cities.
I was born into a Polish-Hungarian community on the South Side of Detroit, known as Delray. My great-grandparents made the area their home in the early 1900s. Most of my family continued to live and work in the close-knit community for many years. They were very self-sufficient. They planted food gardens, raised chickens and made their own beer to earn money. They had to be. They were poor.Comments Off
Aid Projects, Community Projects, Demonstration Sites, Education Centres, Urban Projects — by Sakina Grome
A spotlight on Marda Permaculture Farm, Palestine
Marda Permaculture Farm, Palestine
Olive trees, some over a thousand years old, grow in the shadows of the settlement on the hillside above, their gnarled old trunks spiraling towards the open sky. Tended through the generations by local farmers in a once verdant countryside, they stand as a testament to human and ecological resilience in an occupied land.
The village of Marda (pop. 2,600) is located about twenty kilometres south of Nablus in the Salfit District in the West Bank of Palestine, beneath one of the largest illegal Israeli settlements, Ariel.Comments (4)
Community Projects, Energy Systems, Urban Projects, Village Development, Water Harvesting — by Craig Mackintosh PRI Editor January 23, 2010
A turbine with a 21 kWh generating capacity is the centrepiece of
a little village in the mountainous north central region of Slovakia
The village of Necpaly sits at 510 metres above sea level, on the eastern edge of the Necpalská Valley, in the Turiec region in the mountainous north of landlocked Slovakia. The area is filled with rolling hills and cascading valleys framed by mountain ranges peppered with deer, wild pig and bear. And, noteworthy for this particular article, the area boasts abundant flows of crystal clear water.Comments (7)
Aid Projects, Community Projects, Demonstration Sites, Education Centres — by Craig Mackintosh PRI Editor January 21, 2010
In the following short podcast, PRI Managing Director Geoff Lawton talks to ABC radio about the challenges of Haiti and the opportunity to heal both the people and the landscape by giving local people meaningful work in implementing intelligent permaculture designs to rebuild on a sustainable basis.
Click play to listen.
Further Reading:Comments (5)
Aid Projects, Bio-regional Organisations, Commercial Farm Projects, Community Projects, Courses/Workshops, Demonstration Sites, Development & Property Trusts, Eco-Villages, Economics, Education Centres, Ethical Investment, Networking Sites, People Systems, Project Positions, Society, Urban Projects, Village Development — by Andy Homer January 20, 2010
You’re trying to say that you can live in the modern way and continue to think in the traditional way. That’s not true. The way you live affects the way you think. – Danny Billie, Traditional Seminole
I’d like to recount here my impressions of the PRI, and how different it is from many other organizations. We (Tribal Networks) first came across them when looking for solutions to problems we found in the Atlas Mountains of Morocco, where we were starting a project to bring in a school and an internet / community centre. Searching for "dry land permaculture" soon found Geoff’s "Greening the Desert" clip, and things progressed from there.
Aid Projects, Community Projects, Conservation, Demonstration Sites, Eco-Villages, Education Centres, Energy Systems, People Systems, Village Development, Waste Systems & Recycling, Water Harvesting — by Craig Mackintosh PRI Editor January 16, 2010
Part VI of a series – If you haven’t already, please read Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV and Part V before continuing. This series is part of my work for the Sustainable (R)evolution book project.
A coconut shell is an excellent, biodegradable planter.
The coir (husk fibre) is extracted and mixed with soil to become a potting mix
with particularly good water retention capacity (the fibre reduces evaporation).
All photographs © Craig Mackintosh
The world’s largest water harvesting earthworks has transformed Sri Lanka, or at least large parts of it, from aridity to lushness. This mainframe design provides biological resources that villagers can use to maximise biodiversity for personal and environmental health. In similar fashion the ‘mainframe design’ of the ‘invisible structures’ of Sarvodaya’s community network provide avenues for the free flow of permaculture information to help achieve this goal. The good news is that many villagers are making use of these resources and this potential, despite constant attempts by Big Agri to lure them, through offers of free product samples and demonstrations, into chemical dependency.Comments (12)
Aid Projects, Community Projects — by Evan Schoepke January 14, 2010
The remarkable history (and possible future) of permaculture disaster relief, by Evan Schoepke of punk rock permaculture
Devastation in Port Au Prince. Photo: Carel Pedre, via twitter
Two days ago the island of Hispanola was hit with a devastating 7.3 magnitude earthquake near Port-Au-Prince, the capital of Haiti. Many multiple story buildings have completely collapsed, including the major hospital in the region. Thousands may be killed or trapped in the rubble and aid is being mobilized from around the world. With little to no backup power, sewerage, water, housing, or food aid systems in place, Haiti, which is currently the poorest nation in the western hemisphere, is in a VERY DIRE SITUATION. Without a doubt, resources and expertise are moving en mass to Haiti, but beyond this temporary relief, what will sustain this nation of ten million people when it’s left in an even poorer position than ever before? This is where permaculture design comes in, with an adaptable and ever-evolving tool kit that can be of vital assistance in disaster relief and the long recovery period to follow.Comments (62)
Community Projects, Courses/Workshops, Demonstration Sites, Education Centres, Land, Swales — by Jill Ross
A follow-up to PRI’s Planning & Implementing a Permaculture Project course
On November 15th, a group of relative strangers gathered on the dry, red dirt of Moloka’i with the same question firing in their minds. How will we create permanent agriculture on this parched, eroded acre of red dust?Comments (2)
Aid Projects, Alternatives to Political Systems, Community Projects, People Systems, Society, Village Development — by Craig Mackintosh PRI Editor December 31, 2009
Post-civil war security in Sri Lanka
All photographs © Craig Mackintosh
Standing, jostling in a small space with 15,000 people of mixed ethnicity and religion, just after a deadly civil war had been quashed by Sri Lanka’s government forces, could make a person feel a tad jittery – particularly when the event that attracted the aforesaid 15,000 people was in respect to Lord Kathirgaman, a six-headed Hindu god of war.
But here I was.Comments (2)