[permaculture] Design-Bioregional-Energy Policy-Supply vs. Demand and What the hell does this have to do with Permaculture?

Kenneth Benway ken at arcadiandesign.org
Mon Jun 18 04:09:59 EDT 2007

These energy consumption statistics are certainly mind boggling to say
the least. They are indicative of a thousand freight trains in the
process of going over a cliff.
One the biggest problems facing us as we attempt to move toward
renewable energy sources for power is that the playing field is not
even, or remotely resembling a free market system.

 Whether we are talking about the host of way's oil companies get
subsidies from the taxpayer both direct and indirect, and all of their
mostly covert permutations, such as the externalization of fossil fuel
costs born out of the Iraq War and others yet to come, we can see
clearly that a political (body politic) discussion of these issues has
no relevance to Permaculture.
What the hell was I thinking? Maybe I just need to get back into the
garden and pretend these issues don't exist. It sure would be less of a
hassle than attempting to wake up a subset of the Permaculture community
intent on not-so-whole-system design. It's sad really, just plane sad.
It is gradually becoming evident to me that the "largest permaculture
mailing list on the planet" as purported by the "Permaculture Activist"
website, may represent a definition of permaculture that seems to
reflect the manipulative views of a few "controllers" bent on limiting
and controlling free speech and diverse viewpoints on this forum.

 One of the most disturbing manifestations of this attempt to control
our thoughts and the free flow of ideas on this list, are the direct
threats to "remove" or "lock out" individuals whose views or topics
either we don't agree with, or see any value in. Why not let the readers
decide, individually (not group think) what is of value to them or not.
Don't you "controllers" trust in our ability to think for ourselves?
What exactly are you afraid of? 

Why have we become so threatened by others views or opinions, especially
when they DO relate to permaculture? Oh, but you don't understand. They
don't relate to permaculture according to my definition. Your definition
is flawed, only my definition is right, and to prove it I'm not going to
let you play in my sandbox anymore. Please leave Martin, we don't want
to play with you, you are sick, go away, we don't want to deal with your
pain. Just go away. We don't want to deal with our pain either. Just go
away. We don't want to look at ourselves. Just go away. 

I mean really people, let's wake up here and get a f****** (self
censorship is different) clue.

Who knows, if we left the "list" garden alone, if just for a little
while, so we could observe the patterns of ebb and flow in an unimpeded
way, we might be surprised how the natural laws of attraction and
equilibrium play out. Eventually we might see an increase in yield
(membership) rather than the current trend of individuals choosing to,
or considering, leaving this venue. Myself included. (That’s if the
thought police don't remove me first.)

My sense is that the garden would thrive, without the help of the
pesticides of repression, censoring or controlling behavior. This has
been my experience in the garden.

Sometimes I wonder, particularly with respect to this list, is it worth
the effort? Your choice.


-----Original Message-----
From: permaculture-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org
[mailto:permaculture-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org] On Behalf Of Krista
Sent: Monday, June 18, 2007 12:26 AM
To: permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org
Subject: Re: [permaculture] Design-Bioregional-Energy

Wow, I've missed a lot the past few days...
I haven't seen so much drama since high school :p

-------Michael Wrote:
>I'd still like to echo the original comment, 
>which was that someone should do the math
>to see how viable next-generation solar would
>be for providing power to the state of Florida.
>Here are the 2004 figures for energy consumption in
that state. 
>I see they used 755.2 trillion btus of natural gas-- 
>nearly all, I would suspect, in electrical
>plus 325.5 trillion btus from nuclear power, 699.1
trillion btus 
>from coal, 176.1 trillion btus from biomass and a
negligible amount 
>(2.7 trillion btus) from hydroelectric power. 
>Or, very roughly, 1,200,000,000,000 btus total for
the year.
>That's a lot of juice. Just so we can wrap our heads
>the concept, could someone with a grasp of the new
solar technology 
>size a system for us that could, say, provide just a
trillion btus per year? 
>I'd like to see what we're talking about.

You've got a point - Solar energy probably can't meet
the energy needs of Florida at it's current
consumption levels, even if we had more efficient

One of the huge problems with weaning the World off of
petroleum based energy is to teach people to limit
their consumption. Here in the USA, many people
believe it's their God-given right to drive an SUV,
live in a 7,000 square foot house with a huge green
lawn, and leave the water running while they brush
their teeth. Add to all of that, in Florida, it seems
that most of the population would be happier living in
Canada. I carry a sweater or jacket in my car
year-round, because most of the restaurants, movie
theaters and malls keep the thermostat at 62F(17C)
when it is 95F(35C) outside. I say, if you can't stand
the heat, get out of the sub-tropics, but nobody
listens :(

Really, to consider almost any alternative energy plan
starts with re-educating the vast majority of the
population, at least here in the US. I would love to
see us do what Europe did decades ago, and add an
exhorberant tax to petroleum fuels to hit people in
the pocketbook. It might be the only way to get them
to listen. Europeans have smaller cars, smaller homes,
smaller and more efficient appliances, and still seem
to have a fine lifestyle.

Clearwater, Florida

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