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How the Transition Movement Differs from Conventional Environmentalism

The Transition Movement takes a different approach to creating a sustainable world than the methods of conventional environmentalism. It focuses on the positive progress we could make if we take collective action, instead of the destruction that would occur if we don’t. I would argue the Transition Movement is a more evolved form of environmentalism.

In his book, The Transition Handbook: From oil dependency to local resilience, author Rob Hopkins details what he sees to be the major differences:

Conventional Environmentalism The Transition Approach
Individual behaviour Group behaviour
Single issue Holistic
Tools: lobbying, campaigning and protesting Tools: public participation, eco-psychology, arts, culture and creative education
Sustainable development Resilience/relocalisation
Fear, guilt and shock as drivers for action Hope, optimism and proactivity as drivers for action
Changing National and International policy by lobbying Changing National and International policy by making them electable
The man in the street as the problem The man in the street as the solution
Blanket campaigning Targeted interventions
Single level engagement Engagement on a variety of levels
Prescriptive – advocates answers and responses Acts as a catalyst – no fixed answers
Carbon footprinting Carbon footprinting plus resilience indicators
Belief that economic growth is still possible, albeit greener growth Designing for economic renaissance, albeit a local one

If you want to begin shifting your town to a sustainable future, consider starting a local Transition initiative.


Happy Holidays from Chelsea Green Publishing!

Today we kick off our Holiday Sale — with 35% off every purchase at our online bookstore. Simply use the code CGS16 at checkout from now until the end of the year. Along with this great discount, we are offering free shipping on any order over $100*. Are there homesteaders or organic gardeners on your […] Read More

Chef Evan Mallett’s New England Thanksgiving Feast

 If you’re looking for something new and different to serve this Thanksgiving – Chef Evan Mallett has some ideas. Straight from his newly released cookbook Black Trumpet, Mallett has selected three dishes that will add some seasonal flavor to your holiday table, especially if you’re in New England. These recipes are just a small selection […] Read More

Sex, Violence, and Figs

They are trees of life and trees of knowledge. They are the fig trees. Fig trees fed our pre-human ancestors, influenced diverse cultures and played key roles in the dawn of civilization. They feature in every major religion, starring alongside Adam and Eve, Krishna and Buddha, Jesus and Muhammad. This is no coincidence – fig […] Read More

10 Fascinating Fig Facts

“As our planet’s climate changes and reminds us that nature really does matter, the story [of fig trees] has important lessons for us all.” –Mike Shanahan In short, fig trees are awesome. They have been around for 80 million years and during that time they have shaped our world and impacted humanity in profound but […] Read More

My Story: Cancer, Nutrition, and the Mind-Body Link

Emerging research suggests that a ketogenic diet, in conjunction with conventional treatments, offers new hope for those coping with cancer and other serious disease. Take it from Patricia Daly, who’s personal journey with cancer—detailed below, along with a short video—led her to follow a ketogenic diet and the impact it’s had on her health, in […] Read More
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