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Chelsea Green Blog

The Towns are Taking Over

In the battle to reverse our society’s effect on the planet’s climate, large governments and organizations are proving to be too slow to change course than most citizens would like. People looking for quick action are taking responsibility into their own hands and working within their own communities where red tape isn’t a barrier to change. Rob Hopkins, author of The Transition Handbook: From oil dependency to local resilience, is at the center of this new movement for organized, localized change. He was recently quoted in a story on CNN.com. From the article:
“Within the oil crisis and climate change there is the opportunity for an economic, social and cultural renaissance the likes of which we have never seen before,” says environmentalist and perma-culture designer Rob Hopkins. “If only we can just unleash all the creativity and genius around us, rather than just lurching from crisis to crisis.” […] The movement was founded in Totnes, Devon, and Kinsale, Ireland, in 2005 and 2006, with the aim of helping those communities prepare for the twin challenges of peak oil output and climate change. Since then it’s spread across the United Kingdom and to towns across the world. There are now 60 other projects already in action, and nearly 700 others considering getting involved. There is even a Transition storyline on the popular BBC radio soap opera, “The Archers.” Fundamentally, it’s a grassroots initiative, and Hopkins believes that the move to an oil-free society is about community and individuals more than industry and government.
While this has been a movement primarily located in the UK, it is spreading to the US. Boulder, Colorado and Sandpoint, Idaho are two of the first US towns to become indepedently-acting “transition towns.” These towns design and follow a plan for transitioning to a sustainable society. For the full CNN article, click here. And for more information about spearheading the Transistion Town movement in your town, visit the Transition Towns Wiki.


Three Principles to Survive the Future

What guiding principles will you need to not just survive the future, but imagine a better one? Surviving the Future is a story drawn from the fertile ground of the late David Fleming’s extraordinary Lean Logic: A Dictionary for the Future and How to Survive It. That hardback consists of four hundred and four interlinked dictionary entries, […] Read More

Sow Seeds: Stop Walking Around Doing Nothing

“In the last one hundred years, 94 percent of seed varieties available at the turn of the century in America and considered a part of the human commons have been lost.”That’s one of the key takeaways in award-winning author and activist Janisse Ray’s book, The Seed Underground: A Growing Revolution to Save Food. In her book, Ray […] Read More

True or false? Figs contain dead wasps

They are trees of life and trees of knowledge. They are wish-fulfillers … rainforest royalty … more precious than gold. They are the fig trees, and they have affected humanity in profound but little-known ways. Gods, Wasps and Stranglers tells their amazing story.Fig trees fed our pre-human ancestors, influenced diverse cultures and played key roles […] Read More

Eight Seed-Saving Myths

You don’t have to move to Svalbard, Norway in order to have access to a seed bank.Author and plant breeder Carol Deppe believes that every gardener should have her own seed bank. Even if you aren’t a seed saver, you should have your own seed bank. Even if you never experience any disaster beyond the […] Read More

Solar Dollars: Promote Renewable Energy & Support Local Economies

How can you use the sun as a way to not only generate renewable energy, but support the local economy and provide interest-free financing for utility companies?Author Thomas Greco (The End of Money and the Future of Civilization) has the answer: Solar Dollars!In a recent post on this blog (Beyond Money), Greco makes the case […] Read More
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