Review: "The Witch of Hebron" by James Kunstler

Amanda Kovattana, Energy Bulletin

Having grown tired of the competitiveness of peak oil writers pushing their various grim visions as the most likely to unfold, I am happy to go with this New Age takeover of the geeks' techno collapsing world simply because it is the more empowering vision.

archived November 6, 2010

From slash and burn to sustainable development from the grassroots in northeast India

Matt Styslinger, Nourishing the Planet

“I know all about food security,” says Mitharam Maslai, a farmer from India’s Northeast highlands. “We ate only pumpkin and bamboo shoots every year for two to three weeks because we had run out of rice.”

archived November 3, 2010

Slow time, fast time

Sharon Astyk, Casaubon's Book

"Fast Time" is the world I live in, the one with a two hour meeting scheduled at 7pm, my husband's classes at 12:35, Eli's bus at 8:15 and 3:30... payments due by the first of the month, etc... It is the world run on clocks and calendars, where expectations can be fixed and formalized. All of us live in fast time in some measure, some of us almost completely, others only barely. There is, however, no good way of escaping it entirely.

I also live in slow time. Slow time is the world of things that cannot be subject to fast time - things that take their own time, that you cannot schedule, that get done when they are ready. This is the time in which the wheat is ready to harvest, in which babies are birthed, in which winter sets in for real, in which children learn to walk or read or ride a bicycle, in which the plums ripen, in the ill recover strength, in which bread rises, in which change happens.

archived October 26, 2010

From condoms to biochar, let's get moving - Oct 26

Staff, Energy Bulletin

- How Mr. Condom made Thailand a better place
- After 2 years of eco-living, what works and what doesn't
- New book on biochar by Albert Bates
- Growing ‘lots of delicious food for the least possible work’
- Eco villages are your best investment

archived October 26, 2010

Agriculture, green policy and social justice - Oct 24

Staff, Energy Bulletin

- Paraguayan Mennonites hit back at criticism of environmental record
- Food Security as If Women Mattered: A Story from Kerala
- Venezuela: From Agribusiness to Agroecology?
- Britain is growing greener at the expense of the rest of the world

archived October 24, 2010

The food crisis is not about a shortage of food

Jim Goodman, Common Dreams

The food crisis of 2008 never really ended, it was ignored and forgotten. The rich and powerful are well fed; they had no food crisis, no shortage, so in the West, it was little more than a short lived sound bite, tragic but forgettable. To the poor in the developing world, whose ability to afford food is no better now than in 2008, the hunger continues.

archived September 28, 2010

South-South technology transfer in Bolivia: A solution for local health, forests, and our global climate

Kelly Blynn, Solutions

These cooking devices rely only on power from the sun and are built entirely with materials indigenous to Bolivia. It is the kind of solution that embodies many of the elements necessary to really get to work solving climate change—local, small-scale, incorporating indigenous knowledge and materials, and with simple, easy-to-use technology.

archived September 23, 2010

Large scale land investments do not benefit local communities

Ronit Ridberg, Nourishing the Planet

In April 2010, more than 120 farmers’ groups and non-governmental organizations all across the world signed a statement declaring their opposition to the guiding principles endorsed by the World Bank, the FAO, IFAD and UNCTAD on “responsible” land investments.

archived September 8, 2010

La Via Campesina: Fighting for food sovereignty, social justice, land rights and gender equity

Ronit Ridberg, Nourishing the Planet

Dena Hoff talks about La Via Campesina’s vision of social change, and how the agricultural challenges faced around the world are not always so different from those faced in the U.S.

archived August 19, 2010

Less work life, more home life, the new normal? - Aug 12

Staff, Energy Bulletin

-Shorter, cheaper vacations the new normal
-The Work-Sharing Boom: Exit Ramp to a New Economy?
-Work-Life Balance Reconsidered
-It's official: We're all burnt out

archived August 12, 2010

How we learn what matters

Sharon Astyk, Casaubon's Book

When Aaron Newton and I conceived _A Nation of Farmers_ we began each chapter with a framing image from World War political posters about food, energy and gardening. We wanted to bring home the point I make in writing in _Depletion and Abundance_ - that at critical moments in our history, including times of war or great economic strain - ordinary daily acts are transferred from the private sphere into the public one.

archived August 3, 2010

Putting Me in My Place

Sharon Astyk, Casaubon's Book

The first thing you need to know about my farm is that it is huge. I mean enormous - by world standards. The vast majority of the world's farms - more than 80%, are very small farms, of less than 2 hectares (about 5 acres), and they produce the majority of the world's staple crops and calories.

archived July 20, 2010

Solutions & sustainability - July 11

Staff, Energy Bulletin

- Sustainability: From Excess to Aesthetics
- Bamboo Houses to the Rescue
- How to Share Time
- Six ways to teach kids to value community life

archived July 11, 2010

Women's role in a warming world

Kari Manlove, Climate Progress

In June climate negotiators will reconvene in Bonn, Germany for an interim meeting to discuss the working text of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, or UNFCCC, the international treaty that aims to stabilize greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent climate change’s worst effects. A relatively new aspect of this conversation is how women can help adapt to climate change and their unique circumstances when it comes to the issue. They are severely affected by climate change yet underrepresented and not engaged in solutions.

archived May 27, 2010

Eating poor

Sharon Astyk, Casaubon's Book

I was out of town when Zuska posted this piece about trying to feed a family on a food stamp budget, and I've been meaning to respond to her suggestion that I might have something to add for a while. The article she builds on is one in which chefs try and come up with food stamp budget menus that are also healthy and appealing.

archived May 13, 2010