Convergence of Issues Leads to Southern California Permaculture Convergence, August 29-31, 2008

Cooling off after the first day of the Southern California Permaculture Convergence, hosted by the Quail Springs Learning Oasis and Permaculture Farm Yesterday the Southern California Permaculture Convergence got underway. The word ‘convergence’ is the operative word here, and, ironically, to me at least, has a double meaning. Over the last couple of weeks, being here at Quail Springs just reminds me of the convergence of issues we face as […]

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Geoff Lawton – “All the World’s Problems Can Be Solved in a Garden”

Linda Buzzell, M.A., M. Journalism, M.F.T. is a member of the Santa Barbara Permaculture Guild. She took her Permaculture Design Course in 2006. She is the founder of the International Association for Ecotherapy Photo credit: Craig Mackintosh On Thursday August 28, 2008 one of the world’s top permaculture designers, Australian Geoff Lawton, spoke to a standing-room-only audience at Santa Barbara City College in Santa Barbara. The presentation was sponsored by […]

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The Santa Barbara City College Hears ‘The Plan’

The Quail Springs Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) course (for 2008) closed Wednesday – and with a bang. Six groups of students put forth impressive design proposals for the design brief they were given, resulting in 47 new PDC graduates joining the worldwide permaculture community – a community that we are inspired can become a powerful ‘peace army’ to bring hope and real solutions to a beleaguered world. We look forward […]

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Melting Borders, Melting Icecaps

Smith, in the computer world of The Matrix. In nature there is order, but not uniformity The president of Nabisco once defined the goal of economic globalization as “a world of homogeneous consumption”, in which people everywhere eat the same food, wear the same clothing and live in houses built from the same materials. It is a world in which every society employs the same technologies, depends on the same […]

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Peak Oil, Petrodollars and Climate Change Apathy

Peak Oil and a developing trend to switch international oil trading from the weakening U.S. dollar to the Euro (€) may fuel more oil grabs, economic collapse, and further disregard for climate change World governments, many of whom currently pay lip service to the present and future problems associated with a warming planet, are eager to add to these woes by arguing (and perhaps soon fighting?) over anticipated new oil […]

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New Permaculturists in Kamiah, Idaho

While on a consultancy at the future site of the Kamiah Permaculture Institute at Kim and Julie Pagliaro’s FNA Ranch, Geoff and Nadia visit the neighbor’s (Carol and David Johnson) permaculture garden in Kamiah, ID. Just a little exposure to permaculture by their neighbour’s students set them off on the high road to sustainability. You know how the advert goes – you tell two people, they tell two people, and […]

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Calling Five Percent of US Residents to Action on GMOs

Pinky, who is fast becoming my favourite cat, has conducted the following excellent interview with Jeffrey Smith, founder of the Institute for Responsible Technology and author of Seeds of Deception. The 43 minute interview covers a lot of ground, including the latest incarnation of life patenting — the patenting of human genes. Did you know that many of the genes in your body are owned by corporations? Absurd, but true. […]

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Last Days of Ancient Sunlight?

A very glum, serious looking energy advisor, Dr. Robert Hirsch, made some alarming statements on CNBC recently — statements you’d be unlikely to spot on Fox News. It is estimated that by 2025 worldwide demand for oil will increase 50% over 2005 levels — much of this increased demand coming from developing China and India. Dr. Hirsch now says it is “very likely we are at the maximum of world […]

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Pesticides, and You

I promised to follow up on our recent Which Came First – Pests, or Pesticides? story with some info on how these nasties can affect your environment, and you. We’ll do so, specifically, by looking at the meaning of the term bio-magnification. How many have heard the term? Hmm…, a few raised hands. How many of you can explain its meaning to others in the class? Okay, not so many. […]

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A Refrigerator that Runs Without Electricity

Sometimes there are simple solutions to universal needs that don’t require coal fired electricity, fossil fuels, or even solar panels or wind turbines. Around a third of the world’s population have no access to electricity. If you’re like me, you’ve spent your entire life being able to plug in. Do we ever give a thought to what life would be like if the various appliances we’ve come to rely on […]

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