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- To: "permaculture" <email@example.com>
- Subject: Urban Permaculture...
- From: Marsha Hanzi <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- Date: Fri, 04 Jun 1999 09:22:35 -0300
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- Reply-to: "permaculture" <email@example.com>
> The fact in Australia, as elsewhere, is that more and more
> > people are living in cities and, if the cities canot be made sustainable, then it is
> > questionable that the rest of the country can be made sustainable.
> Where to begin? Wastewater?
The idea of zones is very useful in organizing physical space, putting that which demands
more energy closer to your house. It is not so useful as an idea unless you actually HAVE
physical space. Of course it can apply to the city as a whole: where would be the "zone 1"
of a city ( or neighborhood, etc.)? It may not necessarily be gardens. May be something
else, that which is most essential and time-consuming for the inhabitants.. Maybe zone 1
would include farmers markets?? We might get into some interesting analyses of city
functioning if we go deeper into this..
Two images I have found VERY useful when looking at urban Permaculture:
The city as a giant ecosystem, looking at all the various interlinked systems and how well
they function ( water, food, waste, but also traffic, information, etc.), and how we can
better close the loops. It is most useful for people to think of their city in this way,
eagle eye, so to speak...
Another image is the city as a being, which has to function well at all levels to be healthy:
physical ( infrastructure, roads, food production, water, etc.) social ( level of
interaction, opportunities for all, no marginalization of "special" people, etc.)
Intellectual: opportunities for learning, schools, libraries, access to information, etc.
Spiritual: sacred spaces, temples, celebrations, but also what I would call sacred qualities
( some call them "virtues") like respect, love, solidarity, etc.
> Working through these levels with a group is a very interesting exercise, because they make
> clear to themselves what a healthy community is, and immeditely perceive how theirs is not
> (yet!) healthy.
The next step would be to create a VISION ( thank you Michael Patterson!) , a positive view
of their city, rather than a negative one where one only focusses on what is wrong or
lacking. Better to focus on what is there in potential...
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