Posted by & filed under Community Projects, Food Forests.

Community — Food Forest — Public Land — Cluster model , by Andy Cambeis and Alexa Forbes

Creating a Food Forest on public land in New Zealand (or probably anywhere) is quite possible and I have documented my experiences of creating a food forest at Hawea Flat in Otago to help anyone else who’d like to give it a go. The manual is now freely available and I hope people will add to it and build on the information that’s there so that we can see soon food forests on public land throughout New Zealand. The manual shows how to go about getting permission to use public land, figuring out funding and charitable models, communicating with the local community as well as the ‘gardening’ side of working out what to plant and how to overcome site issues.

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Posted by & filed under Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Trees, Urban Projects.

During the Christmas break VEG’s Dan & family paid a social call to customers-become-friends Julian & Linda in Eaglemont, Victoria, Australia. We documented the large-scale design and implementation project we completed for Julian & Linda last year (see the design and during photos here and some shots of where it was all at about 10 months ago here).

The place is maturing beautifully and we took a few happy snaps of the back and front yards.

The topshelf VEG bed with flowers and grapes growing up over
the trellised pergola is looking particularly lovely

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Posted by & filed under Global Warming/Climate Change, Potable Water, Regional Water Cycle, Soil Erosion & Contamination, Water Conservation, Water Contaminaton & Loss.

From pathogens, biological drugs, illicit drugs to arsenic, by Prof Joe Cummins

A fully referenced version of this article is posted on ISIS members website and is otherwise available for download here.

An intact forest ecosystem protects and supplies the watershed
Photo © Craig Mackintosh

Unpolluted healthy drinking water is a right not a privilege. That right must be protected and restored to those suffering from shortages of drinking water or forced to consume polluted water. Water suppliers must fully and truthfully report findings of water pollutants even at levels deemed to be safe for human consumption by regulatory bureaucracies.

An estimated one billion people lack access to safe, reliable water supplies, and two billion people lack adequate sanitation. In the face of growing populations, climate change, and increasing transboundary water issues, conflict and even warfare over water have been widely predicted [1]. Our goal must be to provide water security for all, especially for the poor everywhere.

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Posted by & filed under GMOs.

by Dr Brian John, Past Lecturer in Geography, University of Durham 6th January 2013

Mark Lynas

In a high-profile lecture to the recent Oxford Farming Conference, self-proclaimed neo-scientist Mark Lynas launched a vicious polemic, aimed at the organic farming movement and at those who oppose GM crops and foods and the activities of the GM multinationals. The speech was linked in to a highly orchestrated pro-GM publicity campaign. The press loved it — and Lynas was pretty pleased with it himself, pushing the text of his speech out in all directions and twittering happily about its impact on the global stage… which included 30,000 hits on his web site. The theme which the press picked up on was of course that of the ex-GM crop trasher who has now put emotion and prejudice to one side and who has become instead a science junkie. Others might see the conversion of a naive individual from one religion to another….

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Posted by & filed under GMOs.

Please read this important message from Oregonians for Farm & Food Rights regarding proposed canola production in the Willamette Valley, Oregon. Attend the hearing on Jan. 23 or submit your written comment to the Oregon Department of Agriculture by Jan. 25.

The Willamette Valley is one of the world’s last five great seed-growing regions. An unprecedented coalition of farmers — vegetable seed, wheat, clover, grass seed, organic farmers, fresh produce growers, and even sugar beet seed farmers — have banded together to stop the harmful introduction of this crop in their region. Our farmers truly need your help.

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Posted by & filed under Community Projects, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Medicinal Plants, Trees.

This is the third monthly post for the research project about perennial plants and perennialising annual plants providing food in temperate climate Australia — we have now completed the posts for Spring 2012. The original article introducing this project, stating its aims, and providing participant instructions, can be found here. Growers are sending me information on a month-by-month basis, then this information is collated and published the following month. The first monthly posts can be found by clicking on my author name (Susan Kwong), just under the post title above.

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Posted by & filed under Aid Projects, Community Projects, Demonstration Sites, Education Centres.

On my last visit to Zaytuna Farm, in May 2012, I had the great pleasure of meeting Joseph Lentenyoi, the lead person behind the establishment of PRI Kenya. We sponsored Joseph by covering his flights and putting him through our 10-week Internship, to help him get permaculture systems on the ground in Kenya and beyond. You’ll meet Joseph and hear this thoughts and learn a little about some of his work in the video above.

Joseph has a very interesting background, coming from a Maasai tribe. The Maasai are nomadic pastoralists that traditionally have no knowledge of agriculture. It’s ironic that, through learning about permaculture from a PDC that Geoff Lawton taught in Tanzania back in 2007, it’s a Maasai tribesman who is the leading force to bring permaculture demonstration sites and education to Kenya.

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Posted by & filed under Alternatives to Political Systems, Economics, Society.

Editor’s Note: For good measure, to go with the post below, I thought I’d throw in this little video:

How neoliberalism trashed your life, but made the super-rich even richer.

by George Monbiot

How they must bleed for us. In 2012, the world’s 100 richest people became $241 billion richer(1). They are now worth $1.9 trillion: just a little less than the GDP of the United Kingdom.

This is not the result of chance. The rise in the fortunes of the super-rich is the direct result of policies. Here are a few: the reduction of tax rates and tax enforcement; governments’ refusal to recoup a decent share of revenues from minerals and land; the privatisation of public assets and the creation of a toll-booth economy; wage liberalisation and the destruction of collective bargaining.

The policies which made the global monarchs so rich are the policies squeezing everyone else. This is not what the theory predicted. Friedrich Hayek, Milton Friedman and their disciples – in a thousand business schools, the IMF, the World Bank, the OECD and just about every modern government – have argued that the less governments tax the rich, defend workers and redistribute wealth, the more prosperous everyone will be. Any attempt to reduce inequality would damage the efficiency of the market, impeding the rising tide that lifts all boats(2). The apostles have conducted a 30-year global experiment and the results are now in. Total failure.

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