Water Worries

Water, water, every where, And all the boards did shrink; Water, water, every where, Nor any drop to drink. – Samuel Coleridge (1772-1834). The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, II If you look down on our earth from space, the predominant colour is blue. The surface of our earth is approximately 70% water. In that respect, perhaps our planet would have been better called the Ocean, than the Earth. Yet, […]

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Making Contour Maps on the Cheap

by Darren Doherty of Permaculture.biz An example of the results Click for larger view I developed a technique in 2007 during a Keyline Design Course at Tuscon, Arizona for making a contour map using cheap available materials. One of our students didn’t have the cash to get a surveyor to do the job on his 40 acres, so I came up with this solution on the whiteboard and have since […]

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Get Behind the Raw Milk Campaign

by Cathé Fish of Practical Permaculture Help Raw Milk Diary Producers in Australia! As you probably know, many small dairy farmers have been forced out of business by big corporate Ag laws, especially those laws that outlaw sales of health-giving raw milk, raw butter, raw cream and other raw milk products. My grandparents had this happen to them. These pasteurization laws take what should be a healthy value added cottage […]

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Demystifying Economics

Tigger Economics For many people economics appears complex and incomprehensible. As soon as the debate turns to economics, and jargon such as ‘productivity’ or ‘microeconomic reform’ start to be used, people can feel alienated and mystified and unable to respond appropriately. It seems that many policy makers rely on this economic illiteracy of the general population to make sure that policies are not opposed or that serious debate is averted. […]

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Strange Fruit

A hard commercial logic dictates that the only way to get good fruit today is to grow your own. by George Monbiot – journalist, author, academic and environmental and political activist I feel almost shy about writing this column. It contains no revelations, no call to arms. No one gets savaged: well, only mildly. The subject is almost inconsequential. Yet it has become an obsession which, at this time of […]

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Look Mom, There’s a Farmer in Our Back Yard

Normally the words ‘business’ and ‘environmentally friendly’ do not fit harmoniously together in one sentence, but here’s a money-making venture with real merit: Donna Smith and Robyn Streeter, of Portland, Oregon, have started a business called YourBackyardFarmer. It’s about growing food in urban areas – i.e. close to where it’s consumed. This is urban farming with a twist! Instead of broken New Year’s resolutions from your derailed intentions of developing […]

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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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