Monday, August 31, 2009

Global Climate Change, Evo Morales, and Local Renewables

Evo Morales, indigenous Bolivian leader, hits the nail on the head, in this letter released last year outlining perhaps the clearest and most equitable climate change policy plan we've seen. And, as one emerging way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, we have algae biofuel business interest on Native lands

We've clearly got the tools we need to address climate change, from the global to the local. Let's keep at it!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Developers Get the Message?

From Regenesis Group, a cutting-edge development project advisory firm, we have:

". . . the process of development and the role of developer is, at this point, the most appropriate vehicle for transforming the way we inhabit and think about ourselves and our planet,. . . The basis for this surprising assertion lies in the power of the vital, co-creative relationship between humans and the Places they inhabit—a power that has been diminished but never totally erased. 

""Regenerative Development is grounded in a deep understanding of the integral and interdependent nature of living systems—social and biotic, and the complex and emergent process by which they co-evolve. . . . Regenerative Development of Place can begin to act like global acupuncture points, regenerating the elemental basis of life and restoring the planet's capacity to regenerate itself and humans' capacity to live in harmony with our home."

May this find all developers -- and soon!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Legalization in California: Greywater

With thanks to Laura and the Greywater Guerrillas

Begin forwarded message:

On July 30,  the Building Standards Commission voted to pass the new
California greywater code (Chapter 16 in the CA Plumbing Code).

This was passed as an emergency measure due to the drought and water
shortages faced in the state.

The code will be going through a public review process for the next 45
days. The opposition (the plumbing union, and some building officials)
will be writing in negative comments about the code. People who support
having a simple, safe, and accessible code will also need to write in
comments to help ensure the code is not changed during the comment period.

Importantly, the CA department of Public Health spoke in full support of
the code, citing water shortages and degrading quality of fresh water
being a much greater health concern than any potential issue with

Lastly, local jurisdictions will be allowed to make greywater more
restrictive, which many will want to do. Now is a good time to start
conversations with your cities and counties about how they can help
support safe and accessible reuse of greywater.

Summary of the new code (as it's written now)
*no permit needed for a washing machine system if the system followed
health and safety guidelines outlined in the code

*no permit for a singe fixture (one shower) if guidelines are followed

*mulch basins allowed (instead of gravel)

*other systems are separated into "simple" and "complex" depending on the
quantity of water. There are less requirements for "simple" systems.
*depth of discharge is 2 inches under mulch (it used to be 9" under dirt)

Thoughts for End of the Week: Seminal Thinkers, Part II of . . .

Chief Oren Lyons
(from Learning to Listen, 1991)
"Define for yourselves your directions. Think about it. Today belongs to us, tomorrow we'll give it to the children, but today is ours. You have the mandate, you have the responsibility."
"In our perception all life is equal, and that includes the birds, animals, things that grow, things that swim. All life is equal in our perception. It is the Creator who presents the reality, and as you read this . . . you are a manifestation of the creation.", p. 203
"Will people of all races learn? . . . Will they reach beyond feelings of racism and antagonism to see what is good for the welfare of all people? And not only people, but of all things that live." p.205

"Natural Law is very simple. You cannot change it: it prevails over all. . . . The Indians understood the Natural Laws. They built their laws to coincide with the Natural Laws. And that's how we survived."

R. Buckminster Fuller
(from Synergetics, 1974)

"since we now know that there is a sustainable abundance of life support and accommodation for all, it follows that all politics and warring are obsolete and invalid. . . ."

"We no longer need to rationalize selfishness. No one need ever again "earn a living." Further living for all humanity is all cosmically prepaid."

Monday, August 10, 2009

Seminal Thinkers

 E. F. Schumacher

". . . we . . . must begin to see the possibility of evolving a new life-style . . . the perfection of [agriculture/horticulture] production methods which are biologically sound, build up soil fertility, and produce health beauty and permanence.  . . . In industry, we can interest ourselves in the evolution of small-scale technology, relatively non-violent technology .  . so that people have a chance to enjoy themselves while they are working . . . In industry, again . . . we can interest ourselves in new forms of partnership between management and men, even forms of common ownership."

"[Land and the creature upon it] are ends-in-themselves . . . and it is therefore rationally justifiable to say, as a statement of fact, that they are in a certain sense sacred.  Man has not made them, and it is irrational for him to treat things that he has not made and cannot make and cannot recreate. . . in the same manner and spirit as . .  . things of his own making." (Small is Beautiful)

Rudolf Steiner
where he describes how a student is to develop the ability to perceive intent, or emotion, behind forms and actions and processes like growth and decay.

To begin with, the student endeavors to regulate his sequence of thought (control of thought).
An equal consistency in his actions forms the second requirement (control of actions).
The third requirement is the cultivation of endurance (perseverance).
The fourth requirement is forbearance (tolerance) toward persons, creatures, and also circumstances.
The fifth requirement is impartiality toward everything that life brings.
The sixth requirement is the cultivation of a certain inner balance (equanimity).
(Philosophy of Freedom)

R. Buckminster Fuller
"There is an inherently minimum set of essential concepts and current information, cognizance of which could lead to our operating our planet Earth to the lasting satisfaction and health of all humanity." (Synergetics)
"Humans were included in the cosmic system's design to fulfill critical functions in respect to maintenance of the integrity of eternally regenerative Scenario Universe.  To arrive full-blown and functioning in its cosmic role, humanity has been given the capability to inventory its tactical resources progressively and to reorient its functioning from an omniautomated behavior to a progressively more conscious and responsible behavior pattern."

"". . . it is eminently feasible not only to provide full life support for all humans but also to permit all humans' individual enjoyment of all the Earth without anyone profiting at the expense of another and without any individuals interfering with others."