Transition Whatcom

Hi Transitioneers-
This will be a weekly posting from members of the TWOG (Transition Whatcom Organizing Group). Our goal is to share some of our personal thoughts about Transition Whatcom; to bring up what we are concerned about, celebrate what we are energized by and in general talk about where we are currently in our own Transition. We promise to cover items we think are current and topical, to not repeat items already in emails and other postings, and to try and share some of our personal thoughts, not just messages from the TWOG as a group.

Our hope is that this will provide a forum for others to share their thoughts and experiences, give us feedback on any questions or concerns we post and in general start good conversations- the kind of thing we might (and hope to!) do around periodic potlucks and other events. We will cycle thru each of the eight TWOG members (and then recycle) to see if Transition Whatcom members find the Blog useful, informative and enlightening- so give us your feedback over the next couple of months and then we will revisit the Blog to see if we need to make changes or do something different. Personally, I’m looking forward to more potlucks and face-to-face conversations, but till then, the Blog seems like a good next step.

So- what has been on my mind? I have been thinking about the Transition Process and reading about some of the Permaculture Principles that are at the foundation. One principle that strikes me in particular I think of as the ‘Energy at the Edge’. The places where different crops, climates and people come together always seem to be the most energizing and productive. Who doesn’t feel energized at the beach or on a mountain top or in a river? Transition Whatcom is at an edge too, with the previous group, the Transition Whatcom Initiating Group (TWIG), moving aside for the new group, the Transition Whatcom Organizing Group (TWOG). We had a great meeting just over a week ago where the TWIG and TWOG got together to share ideas and experiences. It was an energizing and enlightening ‘Edge’ for many reasons. (You can read the notes from the meeting in the TWOG Schedule Discussion).

Take some time and look for the ‘Energy at the Edge’ as we make our way on our Transition journey. I think it will help give you the energy, perspective and resilience you need to help others find their way too.

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I got a job this week and really felt the brunt of what I already knew--that Transition is an over-time situation.  For many of us life was overwhelming already, before the "peak moment" came.  The psychological element of peak oil and the personal scale of Transition could be full-time jobs in themselves, but it's added to whatever else we had going on before.  Projects at the larger community and county scales seem monstrously huge and overwhelming.




I don't think we have the time to sort it out.  The recent EIA report that admitted the peak global oil production year was 2006 convinces me that my life will never be the same again.  I always knew the American lifestyle was unsustainable, but I guess I thought I had more time to figure it out.  Now it's a real timecrunch, and it puts pressure on me to PRIORITIZE.


To my mind, the most important aspects that need to be addressed in order to thrive in a post peak oil future are food, heating, and energy efficiency.  That will keep us fed and warm.  Right alongside those are a rational, flexible, tenacious psyche and a means of local trade.  The many various other topics TW has explored are important, but these are the top in my mind.


What I'm wanting for Transition Whatcom is a re-banding.  At the Great Unleashing we witnessed the energy of a large group and then we disbanded into small groups.  The impression I get is that there were many great ideas but not so much help to get them done.  (If everyone started their own group, they'd all be groups of one, right? Something like that.)  At this moment, I'm wondering, what if we came together again as a big group, and took on significant projects with a prioritized focus?


Probably not a well thought out idea, but it's on my mind today.  As I sit here rereading it, I think it would do just as well to band each theme group together.  Either way I think in order for us to be effective a sense of priority must be addressed.  Otherwise we're wasting precious time.

Correction:  It was the IEA, the international Energy Agency document, World Energy Outlook 2010 that I was quoting, not the EIA, which is the Energy Information Administration.  Got my acronyms mixed up.  The IEA is an international organization, the EIA is US Federal.



FYI, the TWOG Blog has moved.   The new "Blog from the TWOG" is actually in the Blog section rather than here in the Forums.


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