Degrowth, Expensive Oil, and the New Economics of Energy

Posted by & filed under Consumerism, Economics, Peak Oil, Society.

by Dr Samuel Alexander, co-director of the Simplicity Institute and a lecturer with the Office for Environmental Programs, University of Melbourne. Our understandings and expectations of the world have been shaped by our experience of economic growth. The dynamic stability of that growth has habituated us to what is ‘normal.’ That normal must soon shatter…. Read more »

David Holmgren on Retrofitting the Suburbs for the Energy Descent Future

Posted by & filed under Building, Consumerism, Eco-Villages, Land, Peak Oil, Population, Retrofitting, Society, Village Development.

Introduction by Samuel Alexander of the Simplicity Institute: I’m pleased to announce that David Holmgren, co-originator of the permaculture concept, has just published a Simplicity Institute Report, entitled "Retrofitting the Suburbs for the Energy Descent Future." Sometimes well-meaning ‘green’ people like to imagine that the eco-cities of the future are going to look either like… Read more »

Permaculture, a Step by Step Change, Part II – Further Steps: Solar Heating, Easy and Cheap

Posted by & filed under Building, Consumerism, Energy Systems, Peak Oil, Urban Projects.

The most important step Maybe the most important step in the permaculture change is mindset. The day you get motivated to follow into a life of change towards freedom from the grid, the system and advertising; that day you will have taken the first and most important step in the permaculture change process. When your… Read more »

The Australian National Food Plan – Have Your Say!

Posted by & filed under Biodiversity, Consumerism, Deforestation, Economics, General, Global Warming/Climate Change, GMOs, Health & Disease, Peak Oil, Soil Erosion & Contamination, Water Contaminaton & Loss.

National Food Plan, Green Paper 3.75mb PDF The Australian federal government has issued a green paper on a National Food Plan for public consultation, which will include a series of public meetings in various places over the next several weeks, until September 30, 2012. This is an excellent opportunity for permaculturists, localvores, agro-ecologists, etc., to… Read more »

The Promised Land

Posted by & filed under Alternatives to Political Systems, Community Projects, Consumerism, Eco-Villages, Economics, Peak Oil, People Systems, Society, Village Development.

This is the fate of young people today: excluded, but forbidden to opt out. by George Monbiot: journalist, author, academic and environmental and political activist, United Kingdom. Hounded by police and bailiffs, evicted wherever they stopped, they did not mean to settle here. They had walked out of London to occupy disused farmland on the… Read more »

False Summit

Posted by & filed under Consumerism, Economics, Global Warming/Climate Change, Peak Oil, Society.

We were wrong about peak oil: there’s enough in the ground to deep-fry the planet. by George Monbiot: journalist, author, academic and environmental and political activist, United Kingdom. The facts have changed, now we must change too. For the past ten years an unlikely coalition of geologists, oil drillers, bankers, military strategists and environmentalists has… Read more »

Preparing Our Children For a Resilient Future, Part II: Food Security

Posted by & filed under Community Projects, Compost, Consumerism, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Food Shortages, Medicinal Plants, Nurseries & Propogation, Peak Oil, Plant Systems, Processing & Food Preservation, Recipes, Seeds, Soil Biology, Soil Rehabilitation, Trees, Urban Projects.

I doubt many would disagree that food is one of the most important things that we are going to need to become reconnected to, in times to come. Without a reliable food source, much hardship can be predicted and even potentially losses of life. In the future, food security will probably rely much more on… Read more »

Resilience Through Simplification: Revisiting Tainter’s Theory of Collapse

Posted by & filed under Consumerism, Economics, Peak Oil, People Systems, Society, Village Development.

Below, Samuel Alexander summarises his new Simplicity Institute Report, which discusses ‘voluntary simplification’ in the context of Joseph Tainter’s theory of collapse. The full report, ‘Resilience through Simplification,’ is available here (360kb PDF). A society or other institution can be destroyed by the cost of sustaining itself. — Joseph Tainter Joseph Tainter In 1988 Joseph… Read more »