Transylvanian Count to Chair Bloodbank

A new government appointment provides a chilling insight into its priorities. by George Monbiot (UK) You want to appoint a new chairman for Natural England, the government body responsible for protecting nature. Do you look for: a. someone with a background in ecology and a track record of interest in the natural world? Or b. someone with a background in accountancy, investment banking and house building? And a track record […]

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Interview with Richard Heinberg: Do We Really Need Economic Growth?

Marcin Gerwin (Poland): For most heads of states, the prime minister of Poland included, the central point of economic policy is maintaining or increasing economic growth. The aim is to encourage people to consume more goods and services every year so that the Gross Domestic Product continues to grow. Do you think it’s a realistic approach?

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How to Grow Chickens Without Buying Grain – by Only Feeding Them Compost

How-to-grow-chickens-without-grain

Whilst on a tour of the US, Permaculture teacher Geoff Lawton was giving a talk at Montpelier, Vermont, when a young man suggested we film his boss, compost maestro Karl Hammer and his amazing system of feeding compost to his flock of 100-plus chickens, and without feeding them any grain. Chickens live off the compost eating worms and biota and help in the composting process. Nobody thought it was possible, […]

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India’s Dangerous ‘Food Bubble’

Editor’s Note: As is often the case with the Earth Policy Institute (EPI), crucial solutions are largely missing from the article below. I personally believe India’s population is not the problem, but land mismanagement and the prioritising of extractive short-term economic policies. The author, Lester Brown, only touches on solutions (a surface-level mention of water harvesting), instead of bringing it, and a wholesale restoration of the hydrological cycle, to front […]

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A Simple Recipe for Fertiliser Tea

This is a very simple fertiliser tea recipe which all plants I have used it on have responded very well to. It uses wild plants which are generally abundant throughout Europe, although I am not sure about the rest of the world; you’ll have to look around for yourself. The ratio I used here is approximately 1kg of plants to 10 litres of water. Since you may not have scales […]

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Creating a Bamboo and Mud Yurt at the Art of Living Permaculture Centre, Bangalore, India

We wanted to create a natural building out of bamboo and mud on our site in Bangalore, India, as this project involved learning experiences too. However, our professional colleague who was to help us with building this structure couldn’t make it owing to personal preoccupations. Thus began our experimentation in coming up with a plan to build a bamboo and mud teaching centre. We came up with a simple Mongolian […]

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“Managing Transparency”

Editor’s Note: It’s hard to overstate the importance of fighting these behind-the-scenes actions by corporate lobbyists and lawyers. See Box 1 on this page to get a small idea of the big consequences of allowing the profit motive to be prioritised over the public good. Politicians and officials are desperately seeking to justify their transatlantic assault on democracy. by George Monbiot Panic spreads through the European Commission like ferrets in […]

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Retracting Séralini Study Violates Science and Ethics

Publishing giant of fake pharmaceutical journals fame now retracting damning research findings against GMOs and Roundup herbicide on behalf of the biotech industry. by Dr Mae-Wan Ho and Prof Peter Saunders Giles-Eric Séralini, a professor of molecular biology at Caen University, led a toxicological study on GM maize and Roundup herbicide involving 200 rats over a period of two years; it found an alarming increase in early death, large tumours […]

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Addressing the Causes of Land Degradation, Food/Nutritional Insecurity and Poverty: a New Approach to Agricultural Intensification in the Tropics and Subtropics

by Roger RB Leakey, Agroforestry and Novel Crops Unit, School of Marine and Tropical Biology, James Cook University, Cairns, Australia. Photo 1: A multifunctional agriculture landscape in Viet Nam with many income-generating tree-based production systems on hillsides surrounding an area of intensive food production on the most fertile soils. Abstract The shortage of new land for agriculture and the poverty of smallholder farmers in the tropics are serious constraints on […]

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Delicious and Nutritious – Moringa is a Miracle Tree!

The uses and health benefits of Moringa are amazing; some even call it miraculous! It is truly a ‘jack of all trades’ tree that can be a food, fuel, medicine, and tonic! Even if you are not a salad lover, by drying and grinding the leaves it can be added to a traditional food like soups, beans or maybe a fancy cream cheese and spinach dip! You can get all […]

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PRI Zaytuna Farm, Australia, Course Update

The Permaculture Research Institute Zaytuna Farm, Australia, is starting 2014 off with nothing less than a fully accredited Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) Course. Geoff Lawton will lead a line-up of Zaytuna Farm staff with a specialised 75-hour learning curriculum. It will run for two weeks from Monday the 6th to Friday the 17th of January. The course covers sustainable living systems for a wide variety of landscapes and climates. It […]

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Wadi Mukheris and the Wonder of Gabions (Jordan)

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The year 1999 was a busy one, with the potential of Y2K and “the end of world as we know it”, with the threat of computers failing as the clocks trip over the year 2000 at start of the new millennium. For part of the year I was working as the lead permaculture consultant with a team in Louisiana, USA, on an ex-army ammunition manufacturing plant re-design into an eco-industrial […]

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