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Permaculture as a Solution to Earth Destruction

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posted on Feb, 5 2008 @ 06:25 PM
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I have posted a few times about permaculture in other threads. I felt it was time for a thread devoted to the study of this new philosophy.

What is Permaculture may you ask?

I'll post a few definitions for my fellow ATSers as it can get pretty heady real quick.


Permaculture is the science and art of integrating and connecting indigenous resources with available appropriate technology to mimic natural processes. Doing so, we take care of the Earth and promote sustainable living.
- Camilo O'Kuinghttons



Permaculture design principles extend from the position that "The only ethical decision is to take responsibility for our own existence and that of our children" (Mollison, 1990).


en.wikipedia.org...



The intent was that, by rapidly training individuals in a core set of design principles, those individuals could become designers of their own environments and able to build increasingly self-sufficient human settlements — ones that reduce society's reliance on industrial systems of production and distribution that Mollison identified as fundamentally and systematically destroying the earth's ecosystems.




While originating as an agro-ecological design theory, permaculture has developed a large international following of individuals who have received training through intensive two week long 'permaculture design courses'. This 'permaculture community' continues to expand on the original teachings of Mollison and his associates, integrating a range of alternative cultural ideas, through a network of training, publications, permaculture gardens, and internet forums. In this way permaculture has become both a design system as well as a loosely defined philosophy or lifestyle ethic.



I hope this made sense, more to follow.




posted on Feb, 5 2008 @ 06:30 PM
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reply to post by biggie smalls
 


We use more and more of our resources every day.

Permaculture seeks to solve that.

Every input in a living system outputs back into that system in a permaculture design.

For instance, our food and excrement can be used right on site as compost. A "Humanure" compost toilet was developed by a classmate's father of mine.

The concept is simple: Use the compost toilet and recycle your waste back into the system as fertilizer.

We flush gallons of useful fertilizer down the toilet every week and we could be using it in our home gardens!

Same goes for chicken manure, cow manure, horse manure, and even pets!

This is one component of a permaculture system.

It is all about the design.

How do you make nature work with you and not against you?

We spend billions of dollars on nitrogen fertilizing chemicals derived from petroleum when we are literally sitting on a gold mine!

So instead of burning more fossil fuels and polluting rivers, lakes, and streams with petrochemical runoff, we should be reinvesting our time and energy into our local ecosystems.



posted on Feb, 5 2008 @ 06:35 PM
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reply to post by biggie smalls
 


Let me step back for a moment. I feel I jumped the gun on this one.

Here's a little history.


In the mid 1970s, two Australians, Dr. Bill Mollison and David Holmgren, started to develop ideas that they hoped could be used to create stable agricultural systems. This was a result of their perception of a rapidly growing use of destructive industrial-agricultural methods. They saw that these methods were poisoning the land and water, reducing biodiversity, and removing billions of tons of soil from previously fertile landscapes. A design approach called "permaculture" was their response and was first made public with the publication of Permaculture One in 1978.

The term permaculture initially meant "permanent agriculture" but this was quickly expanded to also stand for "permanent culture" as it was seen that social aspects were an integral part of a truly sustainable system. Mollison and Holmgren are widely considered to be the co-originators of the modern permaculture concept.


From the wikipedia source in the OP.

Permaculture was developed by observing natural systems.

Nothing in nature is wasted. Every element of the biosphere is used by another element.

That is the purpose of the design of permaculture. We take a waste product from one element and use it as a resource for another.

I'll give another example of how multiple elements work in tandem.

Chickens love Mulberry as a food source. They also need shade from the sun and depending on what breed they need more or less.

Mulberry acts as a shade and can also be grafted together to be used as a living fence.

We can take one element (Mulberry Tree) and use it for multiple reasons.

One input produces multiple outputs.

Not only are the chickens fed, they are also shaded and kept warmer at night as the tree creates a warmer ambient temperature than the surrounding area.

The tree also serves as a living fence to keep the chickens in one area.

I shall continue in the next post.



posted on Feb, 5 2008 @ 06:43 PM
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reply to post by biggie smalls
 


There are simple guidelines to follow when designing a permaculture site. Authors like to change around the logistics of these principles, but the idea is the same.

From the OP wikipedia source:


David Holmgren has developed 12 design principles for permaculture:
1).observe and interact
2). catch and store energy
3). obtain a yield
4). apply self-regulation and accept feedback
5). use and value renewable resources and services
6). produce no waste
7). design from patterns to details
8). integrate rather than segregate
9). use small and slow solutions
10). use and value diversity
11).use edges and value the marginal
12).creatively use and respond to change


Each of these criterion must be followed (depending on whose principles you are using, the logistics might be a little different) to call the design 'Permaculture.'

All across the world this philosophy is being implemented. From the deserts of the Sahara, American Southwest, and Australia to the Temperate forests of England, Germany, and Ireland to the seaside orchards of the Mediterranean, permaculture is taking hold.

New people are "converted" every day. This is a growing agricultural movement which gives the power back to the people. Large scale growing operations are no longer necessary. Small-scale farming is now becoming the way to go.

Being personally sustainable is the next step in our survival and that of the planet.

If we don't curb our use of fossil fuel and food, we will soon become extinct.

What would you do to ensure the survival of our race and the existence of the "7th generation" from now?

Do you love your family and planet? Then join countless others in this Permaculture Revolution!



posted on Feb, 5 2008 @ 06:46 PM
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reply to post by biggie smalls
 


I would like to now give several video examples. These speak miles of the success of permaculture around the globe.

Where my words may not be convincing, these powerful videos will do the trick
.

I apologize if I jump around a lot, I can't follow my own thoughts usually
.

















If you are interested in further videos, here's where I'd start:

Youtube permaculture videos



posted on Feb, 5 2008 @ 06:48 PM
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It sounds incredibly boring. Taken to its extreme, everything is recycled, everything is planned, one person has to die before another is born, etc. I don't think many people will dig it. We like progress and improvement, not stagnation.

And how, exactly are we to determine the point of equilibrium? Do we push for the maximum population we can support, or do we give ourselves a little more elbow room? Who decides that?



posted on Feb, 5 2008 @ 06:54 PM
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reply to post by biggie smalls
 


Here are some links I found useful in my research:

Urban Permaculture

Did I forget to mention that permaculture is not exclusive to farms and suburban backyards?

This is something you can do on your rooftop, on the sidewalk, anywhere!

Permaculture activist

International Institute for Ecological Agriculture

Introduction to Permaculture

Google search: Permaculture

Resource list


If you are interested, this should get you started.

If you want suggestions on reading material, pick up Bill Mollison's Permaculture Design Manual and David Holmgren's books.

They are the founders and probably the best two guys to start with.

I've met Brad Lancaster in Tucson and he's the forerunner of Rainwater Harvesting here in the West.

I've also met Lisa Rayner, author of Growing Food in the Southwest Mountains .

These people are visionaries. They saw a problem of food being produced miles away from where it was being shipped to and decided to do something about it!

Do you know where your food comes from? I generally do not. Food travels on average of over a thousand miles from farm to plate...That's pretty bad and completely unsustainable.

We need to be growing food locally and organically if we are to continue living.

Check some of the links out, you'll be impressed guaranteed.



posted on Feb, 5 2008 @ 06:58 PM
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I think you missed the entire point of permaculture.

Simplicity is key.

We need to go back to nature. Otherwise we are going to die.

Technology has regressed us into a state of chaos where we use an unseen amount of resources to produce very little.

Has history taught you nothing?

Where did I say one person has to die before another is born?

And how is this boring?

Do you not care about saving yourself? Or would you like to die with the rest of the peons.

This is progress and improvement beyond your wildest dreams.

I haven't even gotten to the basics yet.

The "point of equilibrium" has passed. We have surpassed the Earth's carrying capacity and cannot continue to populate the planet without serious consideration with how we do it.

This is conscious living. If you're not into it, so be it. There are many others who are.



posted on Feb, 5 2008 @ 08:37 PM
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I think this is very important stuff and I would like to learn more about it. It does me little good living in the city. But if I do get property here, I plan on making a greenhouse on roof and using what free energy I can.

I don't want to dump my problems on the next generation if theres a way around it. An EASY way at that. Everyone would love a utopia, but we're not talking about that, we're talking about reducing damage and slowing down the death of this planet. These concepts have never been so important as now and I think its important that they be shared, and no better a place then ATS in my oppinion.

A flag and a star for you biggie



posted on Feb, 5 2008 @ 09:12 PM
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reply to post by CavemanDD
 


Thanks Steve for the response. I thought you'd like this stuff
.

The more I researched permaculture, the more I liked it. Its pretty cool that you can take back your own power.

This is a new philosophy that is rising out of the youth, middle aged, and old. Its great to see like-minded individuals in all walks of life.

I think I mentioned you don't need to be in the countryside to enjoy this land ethic.

Any place will do and cities are actually quite adapted for permaculture.

Here's some youtube videos for you Steve:













I suggest watching the "Global Gardener" series. That's Bill Mollison the co-founder of permaculture!

[edit on 2/5/2008 by biggie smalls]



posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 12:25 PM
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Permaculture is an excellent system of design, especially for those who are interested not only in living lightly and harmoniously with the Earth but also those who are interested in being self-sustaining.

It was the Permaculture course I took that motivated me to go back to school and study design as I feel that the ideals proposed in Permacultural theory are wonderful assets for rethinking and redesigning how we live.

Thanks to Biggie for bringing this topic to the attention of the ATS crowd. And let me say to all of you who are interested, try it out. Sign up for a course I would be surprised if you were not excited by the process and happy with the time spent.



posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 12:40 PM
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It doesn't hurt to be idealistic but come on now...

Unless you go the way of Pol Pot, whith his holistic approach of conditioning humans to refrain from "excessive" consumption and his dislike for cities in favor of primitive farms, there is no way to instill such mentality in a civilization that is very essentially a manifestation of growth in numbers and expansion.



posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 12:46 PM
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I don't expect everyone to follow this philosophy. There needs to be consumers in a capitalistic society right ?


This is for people interested in "Leaving No Trace" and sustainable living.

I know this is still on the up and up. But soon you will realize this is one of the only solutions to what we've done to this planet.

Do I expect you to change your 'ways' immediately? Hell no.

I'm still living in society. I've done very little to 'change' in the ecological aspect.

Every little bit counts though. Small steps...One at a time.

I don't plan on forcing this on anyone buddhasystem. Those that wish to actually DO something instead of watch while we as a race destroy this beautiful planet will like permaculture.

Make sense? I am no fascist/communist. I am for freedom not oppression and I don't want anyone to do anything they don't like and/or want to do.



posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 12:51 PM
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Originally posted by biggie smalls
reply to post by biggie smalls
 


Let me step back for a moment. I feel I jumped the gun on this one.

Here's a little history.


In the mid 1970s, two Australians, Dr. Bill Mollison and David Holmgren, started to develop ideas that they hoped could be used to create stable agricultural systems. This was a result of their perception of a rapidly growing use of destructive industrial-agricultural methods. They saw that these methods were poisoning the land and water, reducing biodiversity, and removing billions of tons of soil from previously fertile landscapes. A design approach called "permaculture" was their response and was first made public with the publication of Permaculture One in 1978.

The term permaculture initially meant "permanent agriculture" but this was quickly expanded to also stand for "permanent culture" as it was seen that social aspects were an integral part of a truly sustainable system. Mollison and Holmgren are widely considered to be the co-originators of the modern permaculture concept.


From the wikipedia source in the OP.

Permaculture was developed by observing natural systems.

Nothing in nature is wasted. Every element of the biosphere is used by another element.

That is the purpose of the design of permaculture. We take a waste product from one element and use it as a resource for another.

I'll give another example of how multiple elements work in tandem.

Chickens love Mulberry as a food source. They also need shade from the sun and depending on what breed they need more or less.

Mulberry acts as a shade and can also be grafted together to be used as a living fence.

We can take one element (Mulberry Tree) and use it for multiple reasons.

One input produces multiple outputs.

Not only are the chickens fed, they are also shaded and kept warmer at night as the tree creates a warmer ambient temperature than the surrounding area.

The tree also serves as a living fence to keep the chickens in one area.

I shall continue in the next post.


Thats right if our governments aren't going to step up to the plate then perhaps it is those individual people, that know how to. Biggie that's real cool you have a buddy that knows this information.



posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 12:56 PM
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And what we do as consumers is back their play to make a strong foundation to grow from.



posted on Feb, 9 2008 @ 04:45 PM
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I don't know if this helps biggie but, every time in meditation i always give my love to mother gaia. I try to heal as best i can, trying to get this done before they come. The more we heal now the less rapid the earth changes will be. Am i right or am I right.



posted on Feb, 9 2008 @ 04:58 PM
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I recall reading a couple years back (and couldn't possibly find it now to link to it). An economist was conjecturing about life in the next ten years, and said that more and more life would be lived in outlying areas rather than in big cities (such as we see with urban sprawl), and that because gasoline would be so expensive and noone would be able to afford to drive, walking or riding a bicycle to work would again become the norm (or working from home too I imagine). More people would be growing their own food etc.

I'm up for it. Put me in the mountains with my rocking chair on the porch and let me grow my own food and go to bed listening to the crickets at night.



posted on Feb, 9 2008 @ 05:02 PM
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Originally posted by idle_rocker
I recall reading a couple years back (and couldn't possibly find it now to link to it). An economist was conjecturing about life in the next ten years, and said that more and more life would be lived in outlying areas rather than in big cities (such as we see with urban sprawl), and that because gasoline would be so expensive and noone would be able to afford to drive, walking or riding a bicycle to work would again become the norm (or working from home too I imagine). More people would be growing their own food etc.

I'm up for it. Put me in the mountains with my rocking chair on the porch and let me grow my own food and go to bed listening to the crickets at night.


Exactly right man, That is the way to live, just think of it, no more traffic



posted on Feb, 9 2008 @ 05:52 PM
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Very good thread!

I feel much more comfortabel now, knowing so many people are actually trying to live in harmony with nature. And doing something about it!

Sustainability, no polution, no artificial poisen, back to our roots so to speak. I love this.

This is the way of Viktor Schauberger and other amazing people, who have learned to understand and copy nature, to the benifit of earth and man. Not just a benefit for the ones doing it, but for all live on this earth.

I would love to get more envolved in projekts like this... had I only obtained some of this knowledge as a child, I would have choosen many things differently in my life upto now. My children will learn to respect and love nature, live in harmony with it, and live of it, thats for sure.

I'm not sure if this link has been posted, but it is about using straw to build houses, very informative and inspirational.

Strawbale building

Enjoy



posted on Feb, 9 2008 @ 06:08 PM
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The thing I would NOT want to see this turn into is a communal type society. As an American, I still want to be free to own and till my own land.



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