Category Archives: Participants

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Gardening as if my life depended on it

There is a most overwhelming smell that fills the air when nasturtiums die. Last night the temperature got down to -2.5C and my beautiful nasturtiums all collapsed. I checked my post last year and the photo is almost identical – the only difference this year is that the frost came 10 days later than it did last year. Thank goodness I experimented with making nasturtium pesto last Sunday before I lost them all. It’s high in vitamin C so has hopefully bolstered my immune system to cope with this cold snap. Continue reading

Sequester Water AS WELL AS Carbon!

“What permaculturists are doing is the most important activity that any group is doing on the planet”
David Suzuki

The distribution of atmospheric water vapor, a significant greenhouse gas, varies across the globe. During the summer and fall of 2005, this visualization shows that most vapor collects at tropical latitudes, particularly over south Asia, where monsoon thunderstorms swept the gas some 2 miles above the land. (Credit: NASA)

If humanity is to survive it is imperative not just to reduce future CO2 emissions but also to find ways to take CO2 out of the atmosphere AND to sequester water in the natural systems which stored and cleaned it so well for so long.

“We now think the water vapor feedback is extraordinarily strong, capable of doubling the warming due to carbon dioxide alone.”

The rehabilitation of soil and aquifers with water sequestration programmes may help

us reduce climate extremes by helping us deal with one of the main consequences of global warming – desertification.

Click here to read the full article on the Blue Mountains Permaculture Institute Site.

Shop Damn It Shop & Mercurio's Menu

I’m intrigued by the serendipitous nature of how knowledge spreads and how this knowledge can then alter collective consciousness. Take this photo for example. I first saw it on Reuters then went looking for a bigger file that I could download. Found it on the Carfree Tokyo Blogspot where I also found a Warning to the World, and in particular Australia, to not follow Japan’s mistake of building useless infrastructure projects to “save the economy”.

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The Great Purge

Well, everyone might be talking about the Greater Depression but all I can think about is the Great Purge – from detoxing to decluttering. And oh how every part of me wants to resist it. To give you some idea …. for months I’ve been collecting toilet rolls to use as planting tubes. This is such a perfect obsessive compulsive thing to do. I’ve collected trays and trays of them, which has made me feel extremely virtuous for reducing so much waste. I finally planted my first seeds in one tray – eggplant seeds. Continue reading

Warrigal Greens and Rockpools

We’re at the beach – the same beach we were at 3 years ago when we all started reading Tim Flannery’s “The Weathermakers”. You certainly can’t help pondering on life and its vagaries as you watch the tide move inexorably in and out each day, and as you gaze across the surging waters that link all of us on this planet.

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2009 International Reconciliation Year

Goodbye International Year of the Potato, Hello Year of International Reconciliation …. not to mention International Year of Human Rights Learning, International Year of Natural Fibres, International Year of Astronomy and International Year of Planet Earth. What a tragedy that this Year of International Reconciliation is kicking off with Israel attacking Gaza and killing over 500 people (including 87 children) and wounding more than 2,500 in just over a week. Continue reading

OUR NRMA – and let's keep it that way!

(Double click to enlarge this image)

Boy have I got the shits! I can’t believe the power of the NRMA Board Directors. It turns out they’re the most powerful transport lobby group in NSW because of OUR money, and they’ve now come out against cyclewaysnot to mention cancelling the vehicle inspection service, cancelling free membership to those who’ve been loyal to the NRMA for 50 years, making over $300,000 of political donations and paying themselves around $60,000 each a year with a recent 60% pay rise to sit on the Board of an organisation which has just lost $13.5 million after tax. I’ve got steam coming out of my ears – how dare they do this with OUR money!!!! Continue reading

There have not "always been" this many starving people


VIENNA (Reuters) – Global food price rises are leading to “silent mass murder” and commodities markets have brought “horror” to the world, the United Nations’ food envoy told an Austrian newspaper on Sunday.

Jean Ziegler, UN special rapporteur on the right to food, told Kurier am Sonntag

that growth in biofuels, speculation on commodities markets and European Union export subsidies mean the West is responsible for mass starvation in poorer countries.

Ziegler said he was bound to highlight the “madness” of people who think that hunger is down to fate.

“Hunger has not been down to fate for a long time — just as (Karl) Marx thought. It is rather that a murder is behind every victim. This is silent mass murder,” he said in an interview.

Ziegler blamed globalization for “monopolizing the riches of the earth” and said multinationals were responsible for a type of “structural violence”.

“And we have a herd of market traders, speculators and financial bandits who have turned wild and constructed a world of inequality and horror. We have to put a stop to this,” he said.

Ziegler said he believed that one day starving people could rise up against their persecutors. “It’s just as possible as the French Revolution was,” he said.

(Reporting by Sylvia Westall; Editing by Giles Elgood)

For a range of articles about the dire situation that is escalating globally …. the horror of it ….. you can read a summary, with suggestions for action, by clicking here.

Meanwhile, I can’t get out of my head the opening lines of Carl Dennis’s poem, “Birthday”:

Now that the time remaining is insubstantial,
I need to review my history while asking
What exactly it suggests I’ve lived for

Systems collapse


Systems collapse – suddenly, and when you least expect them to! A month ago my computer died …. I now have my second new logic board after weeks without being able to travel in the ether … and in the month that I’ve been “off the air” the roses and the poppy seedlings Susan gave me have begun to blossom and I have a bowl full of peas and mint out of our garden. Continue reading