Seeing the Forest through the Trees
This posting marks the beginning of an ongoing series concerning topics relevant to permaculture, food systems, ecology, natural history and regeneration.
(Author’s note: this was written before Irma materialized to ravage the Eastern Caribbean and South Eastern US.)
As we peer through the clutter of the daily news and the haze of politics, one can easily become distracted from the larger issues confronting humanity. It has been known for decades that the changing climate would bring crises: communities displaced by rising seas, record storms, heat waves and droughts. That these crises would lead to increasing regional conflicts, refugees and collapsing ecosystems was inevitable. We are beyond the point of warnings of impending consequences. We see the consequences in the daily news. And of course climate change is only the tip of the iceberg. The explosive growth of human population over the past century is straining our planet’s ability to carry us on many fronts.
While dire circumstances are mounting, these pages will be dedicated to solutions and celebrations. My own personal permaculture journey began three decades ago. My conviction then and now is that individuals and communities require examples and models of good design and positive solutions to inspire them. These examples are all around us.
When Bill Mollison began to spread his conception of design for permanent agriculture and permanent culture, he succinctly pointed out that the solutions for many social and environmental problems lay in the application of our understanding of environmental science with thoughtful observation and good design. While one must acknowledge that vested interests and costs to retro-fit existing structures and infrastructure are impediments, the fact remains that the way forward to a regenerative culture is a matter of good design.
This weblog is titled Seeing the Forest through the Trees because the forest offers many lessons in ecology and community. These lessons in turn offer insights into sustainable, regenerative design that have broad application to humanity. In the months ahead we will variously explore the natural world, past and present leaders in the ecological design movement and examples of good permaculture design everywhere.
Thanks for listening,