Category: Why Permaculture?

Challenges of Choice

Even before permaculture vernacular had become commonplace to us, my wife Emma and I were active in our pursuit of living more in keeping with how we wanted to treat the planet, its animals, and our fellow humans. We were already ardent boycotters, believers in fair wages, in animal rights, in corporate responsibility. We signed petitions. We were vegans who mostly cooked from scratch. We even shopped locally, utilizing farmers’ […]

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Perennial Polycultures and the Richness of Diversity

The Way Nature Provides Imagine walking down a country road. On one side of the road, you see acres and acres of corn grown in neat rows. On the other side of the road stands an old-growth forest filled with towering trees and a thick underbrush. If you were to ask anyone which side of the road produced the most food, almost everyone would say that the cornfield is a […]

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33 Books That Have Enriched My Permaculture Life

There was a time, some years ago, in which I aspired to be a fiction writer, and in those years, I found inspiration in the words of authors who wrote fiction (Kurt Vonnegut and Tom Robbins are two that feel prominent). From there, I entered the world of travel writing, and I studied the works of people (Pico Iyer, Paul Theroux, Tim Cahill, Bill Bryson) prominent in that field. I […]

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Another Way of Learning

After thirty years of engagement with Permaculture, it never ceases to amaze me how the Permaculture Design Course (PDC) changes peoples’ lives. This brilliant understanding of how to meet peoples’ needs, without working so hard, and at the same time learning to minimise waste was crafted by Bill Mollison and David Holmgren before I came along to connect with it.  I’m also hugely aware that it has always been a […]

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Clarifying the Components of Permaculture

As a permaculture teacher one of the very first things I want to offer my students is a conceptual way to understand what permaculture is made up of. I want to answer the question, likely not yet asked, of ‘how do we make organisational sense of all this content that is being or about to be taught in a Permaculture Design Certificate?’. Permaculture is a vast field of knowledge, there […]

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Permaculture Design in 5 Steps

Permaculture Design in 5 Steps

Introduction Permaculture design is essentially a multi-faceted, integrated and ecologically harmonious method of designing human-centred landscapes. By human-centred what is meant is that an ideal permaculture design is able to supply many of the needs of a human family or community within it’s localised environment in as efficient and sustainable a manner as possible. Integrated design refers to the inter-connectivity of elements within a system. Basically we work to align […]

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A Push Against Power: Swale

In 2016, artist Mary Mattingly was working on a permaculture project called Concrete Plant Park, intended to re-establish salt marshes along the South Bronx riverbanks in order to revitalize the abandoned site. However, the project hit a road block when it came to the development of a community garden. The laws and policies established by the City of New York, to be enforced on public properties, demand that no citizens […]

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Continued Climate Change May Disrupt Ocean Currents

Climate change is giving us more to worry about than just rising seas, scientists claim. Greenland’s glaciers are melting fast, pouring ice into the Arctic Ocean – and according to a new study, this influx of freshwater from the melting ice could lead to a disruption of a major ocean current system. The consequence of this disruption could be devastating, drying out the narrow section of land from Mauritania to […]

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Some Recent Advances in Biofuel Research

Even though use of fossil fuel leads to emission of harmful gases, which cause such negative environmental effects as receding of glaciers, loss of biodiversity, climate change, rise in sea level, etc., fossil fuel still remains a primary energy source with a contribution of around 80%, in which transport sector takes share of 58%. Many alternative fuel sources, however, exist including biofuel. Biofuels are liquid or gaseous fuels produced from […]

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Charcoal: The New Health Hype

When you think of charcoal, you might think of a barbecue or the stigma of air pollution associated with industrial fuel. Both of these assumptions are fair. Charcoal does come with a history of air pollution and long-term health problems for people who come in close contact with the substance too often. What most people don’t know is that there are many types of charcoal and not all are bad. […]

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Silvopasture: A Sustainable Way to Raise Large Livestock

Every year millions of acres of forest are cut down to make room for ever-growing herds of livestock. Our industrial diet is centered on the consumption of meat. The combination of these two issues brings us face to face with a serious problem. We are destroying our forests and some of the most pristine ecosystems on earth just so that we can enjoy a nightly steak. What if we could […]

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How Seaweed can Help Save the World

Every year it becomes more and more apparent how much influence humanity has on the climate. While there are a few holdouts, most people are in agreement that we are the direct cause of the increase in global temperature. Everyone knows the cause, right? It’s all the CO2 we are putting into the air, from the cars on the road to the factories spewing out greenhouse gases. However, there is […]

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