[permaculture] Global Food Supply Near the Breaking Point

Lawrence F. London, Jr. lfl at intrex.net
Sat May 20 15:01:14 EDT 2006


Thomas Gorman wrote:
> It focuses specifically on the New  
> England area, and the ecological changes wrought on the landscape by  
> the arriving colonists (and the attitudes toward property, wealth,  
> land, etc.), but he also talks a lot about the way the Native  
> Americans of the region lived on the land prior to the arrival of  
> Europeans.  My understanding of his analysis of Native American  
> practices puts them somewhere between a hunter/gatherer culture and  
> an agrarian culture.  By all accounts the Native Americans did 'tread  
> lightly' on the landscape as compared to Europeans, but they did in  
> fact have profound effects on it too, implementing practices that  
> maximized 'edges' etc., planting guilds, etc. 

Unmanaged wild spaces and food sources derived from them would hypothetically be at the mercy
of unpredictable predation, climatic factors, plant destruction wrought by insect or disease infestations,
natural succession, survival of the fittest, stable plant/animal communities interrupted by random intrusion
from plants of animals from outside the area (ex. by wind, flood and birds, host-parasite).

If the native americans were able to successfully ensure a reliable food by treading lightly in the wild areas where 
they foraged and practised minimal, rudimentary forms of agriculture they had a management plan passed on through the 
generations and because their populations were low and the ration of available food to sunsumer was always high.
They were cooperative with Gaia and their religion probably reflected that respect.

Nowadays that ratio is low (Nature-supplied wild area food from forest, range, desert and plains vs. population).
Correcting the problem is a simple matter of universally reinstituting natural agricultural practices that are, once 
again, in harmony with Gaia.

This is why Permaculture is so important and is the umbrella technology under which agriculture falls (most participants 
in this thread seem to be saying exactly this). Instead of agriculture we could call it "ensuring our food supply
through Man becoming harmonious with Nature".




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