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Transition Towns

By Lu Schilling

Transition Towns is the topic of the next Movies That Matter April 19 at 4:30 pm. Transition Towns is a term for environmental and social movements “founded, in part, upon the principles of permaculture”, originally described by Bill Mollison in Permaculture, a Designers Manual, 1988. The aim of this community project is to equip communities for the dual challenges of climate change and peak oil. The Transition Towns movement is an example of socioeconomic localization of goods, economy and community.
They call it Energy Descent Action Plans. A key concept within transition is the idea of a community designed, and implemented plan to proactively transition away from fossil fuels. The term “community” in this context includes all the key players – local people, institutions, agencies and government.
The number of communities involved in the project is increasing with many localities in the process of becoming “official” transition towns. Transition Towns has even featured in the plot line of the long-running BBC Radio 4 series The Archers, which illustrates the media attention and rapid growth the movement is generating.
As of 2010, transition initiatives are generally including the global financial crisis as a third aspect in addition to peak oil and climate change. As part of our “buy local” initiative, we are reminded that making purchases with a credit card incurs a cost to merchants.

The Permaculture 101 DVD is in our UU lending library for a short time before it will be donated to the community Library System. This idea of ‘permaculture’ is so elegant, a garden food-forest can care for itself while one travels for months, depending on the time of year.