This is a proposal for us to build a user friendly web portal to weave together all ecovillage projects, retreats, organic farms, back-to-the-landers in Northern California.  Those cultural creatives interested in co-creating a highly functional network of people who are both already doing something and who would support a team of folks around the singular agenda of importing the
mechanisms and framework that Lammas pioneered to get new zoning
codes/laws passed on a local or State level.

Many of the spokes of the wheel (organic farms, retreats, ecovillage projects) are already in place.  What we propose is a hub to link them and support those building the missing spokes for this wheel to run well on a regional level and to address institutional change regarding larger ecovillage projects.

A map of these various places would be part of this project. 

Who would interested in being a part of this project?




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The part about web cams sharing community with community seemed on topic and very important for general info sharing on working practice for sustainable community building.  It's moved now, but I'll expand the relevant part and leave it here.


"How much energy is used staging burning man, rainbow family gatherings and other events which are forms of developing eco community, on the face, that could be conducted locally, conserving energy with web cams, preserving and sharing concepts for advanced, sustainable living?"

Hey Chris,

video link up is an intriguing idea.  A global live web cam ecovillage event/s sounds awesome.

 

After we build the network, ecovillagers can certainly co-create such events.

 

I'd caution reducing down such gatherings to only one purpose.  Many people go for many reasons.  I find it is actually being in that space together that is the main draw.  There is a synergy that takes place that isn't available in many of our local areas.  Techno-Tribal Art Freaks are pretty spread out.

 

I would also caution against judging events and their participants by the energy used.  Such gatherings use a minute fraction of say the US military budget.  The people at such gatherings tend to be counter-culture or what is now called cultural-creatives who get systemic abuse, alternative energy, etc.

 

I suggest addressing the "bad barrel makers", the architects of dysfunctional social environments.  We can talk about the bad apples (people), the bad barrels (environments) but we'll have more impact if we address the bad barrel makers.

 

I see this group as co-creating a network of the "good barrel makers" or makers of functional social environments.  I also encourage people here to review the Venus Project to consider greater use of technology and science in the creating of globally integrated eco-city and ecovillage networks.  There is actually no shortage of energy on this planet to do or travel anywhere.  The problem is the type of resources we use for energy, the scarcity producing monetary system coupled with divisive behaviors stemming from group psychology otherwise known as "us and them".

 

My effort here is to build the "us and us" or worldcentric network beginning with Northern California and linking with similar networks already in place.

 

If you are needing a forum to discuss energy usage, then I'm sure there are many to choose from.  We invite you and all others interested in doing the foot work to create this network to let us know what part/s you wish to contribute to.

 

Best,

 

Shane

 

Shane Keller: wrote
The problem is the type of resources we use for energy, the scarcity producing monetary system coupled with divisive behaviors stemming from group psychology otherwise known as "us and them".

Thanks for the highlight on the "us and them" aspect.  Ultimately all humanity has the same needs, those must be known and respected despite the fear level.

Shane Keller: wrote
There is actually no shortage of energy on this planet to do or travel anywhere.

I agree mostly, but sure how much individual travel can be afforded on a mass whimsy.

Shane Keller: wrote
My effort here is to build the "us and us" or worldcentric network beginning with Northern California and linking with similar networks already in place.

I can see that each region has its different dominant renewable energy source, which can serve to fill gaps in the random presence and use of an energy source not generally found in a given area.  Knowledge base that also can accommodate inspiration and sharing specific to energy solutions.

Inventing and innovating are fun to watch on video.  Full use of available stuff to fit a need providing renewables is an excellent way to entertain and educate.

Shane Keller: wrote
I'd caution reducing down such gatherings to only one purpose.

Not suggesting that at all, although once the development of technology for serving the ecovillage might benefit from a few of that type eventually.
Like an online trade fair that demonstrates specific technology applicable to ecovillage needs.

Shane Keller: wrote
I would also caution against judging events and their participants by the energy used.

Hmmm, that sound more like a proposal than a caution.  Trade fairs often had competition wherein lots of proficiency might develop.  However, I very much agree that such would be much, much later.  Not now.

Shane Keller: wrote
If you are needing a forum to discuss energy usage, then I'm sure there are many to choose from.  We invite you and all others interested in doing the foot work to create this network to let us know what part/s you wish to contribute to.

Truthfully the "bad barrel makers" you write of below, or their methods are of such concern that I'm up not up for doing much footwork or discuss energy usage/production (am working on developing low tech solutions to be shared later).   However, I will endeavor to get local environmental non profits to institute optional online, neighborhood web cam events recorded that have ecovillage practices demonstrated, timed with major gatherings to show celebration without mass consumption.  I also underline "methods" because a certain behavior is involved that we need to take notice of and  I very much appreciate that analogous refinement in strategy benefitting people with perspective that is appropriate and useful.

Now, allow me to add some thoughts to addressing the "bad barrel makers" issue I've become aware of, particularly their methods.

What if this become a opposing "Fire with fire" situation, BUT our hands were pre burned to make us afraid of picking up what we needed to address the "bad barrel makers"?

Ah ha!  Now if that could be talked about, or how those dysfunctional social environments (you write below) have been so promoted, then we could promote the very best, instead.

Shane Keller: wrote
I suggest addressing the "bad barrel makers", the architects of dysfunctional social environments.  We can talk about the bad apples (people), the bad barrels (environments) but we'll have more impact if we address the bad barrel makers.

Shane Keller: wrote
After we build the network, ecovillagers can certainly co-create such events.

There is a eco video hosting site I know of I'll contact to inquire if they have interest in piloting an ecovillage video center that might eventually go web cam live.

Substantial post.   Thanks!

My company simpLEARN solutions produces on-demand learning e.g. interactive flash modules, podcasts, etc. Will keep an eye out for future posts where I can be of assistance.

Thanks for being proactive!

Tim

Hey Tim,

 

I hadn't thought of a video or podcast component until now.  Perhaps a brief intro video on the home page guiding people to the features and opportunities such a site will offer.  I'll save this idea for future possibilities.

 

Thanks,

Shane

Not to be a wet blanket but is there a way to link it with existing networks or use what is already there?

Do we need a separate directory?

http://directory.ic.org/records/ecovillages.php

 

http://gen.ecovillage.org/

Hi Zoe

Your not a wet blanket!  Your question is logical so allow us to explain.  IC is merely a listing and directory.  This page that you linked is not separated by state or even country, and just gives links to websites for each EcoVillage all over the world.  It is not managed in ways that allow easy contact with communities that are listed (post and come approach to how they set it up) and we don't know if you have ever tried to use their directory for making contacts but we and many whom we have known over the years have a shared experience of zero response from the communities that are listed - or at best hearing back from them a long time later. 

 

As far as GEN - this page here takes you to there search box- very lame set up and once again it just takes you to a directory with links to profiles of these organizations.  Some have websites, some don't, there is no 'interactive' element to either of these directories and there is no solid resource/education component.  What IC and GEN do have in terms of info/resources is also very 'dated' (keep in mind the boards of both orgs are elderly now)  

 

What is being proposed here is creating a 'network' like this platform.  It would also serve as a gathering place to not only share resources but to create core teams of people who are actively engaged in working to legitimize the EcoVillage model as a viable alternative for both urban and rural areas. 

 

Hope this clarifies the intent of this proposed endeavor :-)

Cheers

D&D

 

 

I have recently gone through this database (http://directory.ic.org/records/cohousing.php) as it is the only one out there that lists many of the Northern California ones... From about 15 emails I sent , I received responses from 3... hey-better than nothing!   It was very time consuming to weed out many listings - some had their last entry/update over 4 years ago! 

So the current update and maintenance will be the big challenge.  i wonder if there's anyone out there who took part in putting together the FIC or GEN databases so that we can learn from them?

 

Also - I am on the road to visit as many ecovillages and eco/co-housing communities on the West Coast as I can in the next few months... so if anyone knows of some, I sure would appreciate an introduction.  Thanks!

 

Hi Fred

Your experience with the FIC and GEN data bases were the same for us years ago and that is why there needs to be a new platform built.  What the EcoVillage movement needs goes beyond just a directory.  Each EcoVillage in the network that we envision needs to be connected through the network in the exact way you are pursuing - by going there, meeting the people, learning about what they are up to, what their needs are, and having them participate within a context that goes beyond just a 'listing'.  The EcoVillage Network that we can build can have primary missions - like importing and establishing legal mechanisms and protocols that allow for local government zoning and permits to be issued for 'pilot project' development.  Also the network would serve as an education hub.  FIC and GEN's boards are governed by elderly folks and volunteers that have been a part of the Intentional Community movement for over 30 years and although their experiences and wisdom are gold neither of the organizations can make the leap necessary to transport the EcoVillage model into a mainstream audience as a viable alternative because of a certain kind of counter-culture entrenchment that saturates the presentations.   We need to be able to showcase the EcoVillage model in ways that would allow a city planner to visit the website/network and find basic information that is not preaching some utopian ideology so that bridges can be built between worlds.   

 

The FIC data base was built from the Communities directory that the organization has published over the years.  All the listings were sent by the communities and there was never any kind of quality or even authenticity check into the submissions.  Those who are listed as 'EcoVillages' may or may not have sustainable technology or infrastructure built into the design (they may have just liked the term better than 'intentional community') and many of them are - like you found out - expired with no one at the helm.    The GEN data base was built off of the FIC one (all the board members have had involvement with FIC - same family) and from what we learned from NextGEN's founder, Elliott Saxby from Findhorn, they are in the same pickle every other organization with an elderly board is in - they are stuck between the worlds of snail mail and email.   Elliott had to walk away from NextGEN because of lack of support from GEN - we were involved in those communications because NextGEN was in 'Interdependent Fellowship' with our other network - the Interdependent Project.   We had offered to both FIC and GEN help to get them upgraded and evolved but they, in our opinion, are too entrenched in their sandboxes and the delusional social status ideas.  This may sound harsh but we speak from direct experience from hundreds of hours of effort to work with them since the year 2003.    We know a new network needs to emerge and we are committed to doing our part to making that happen.  We like the idea of starting with Northern California to set the tone of what the network and website will be for. 

 

We want to support you on your journey - as an ambassador of Transition California.  Let's talk on the phone before you leave so that we can provide you with what you need for a successful journey and outcome.  Please email us in a private message your number. 

 

Cheers and thank you!

 

From Slow Food South Bay Newsletter for March/April 2011 (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/SlowFood-SouthBay/)

 

Save the date - full details coming soon

May 14 - Spring Potluck and San Mateo EcoVillage Tour
11:30 AM to mid-afternoon
3329 Los Prados St, San Mateo, CA
 
Free.  Reservations will be required.  Look for details soon.
 
San Mateo Ecovillage is located at 3329 Los Prados St. in two four unit apartment buildings

The labyrinth at San Mateo EcoVillage (July 2007)
on the waterfront between San Mateo and Foster City.  We have extensive organic gardens and have planted about three dozen fruit trees and have grafted most of them with three to six varieties, and raise chickens and honey bees.....and sell honey and eggs. We will have a tour about 11:30 and set-up for a potluck about 12:30.
 
We have some extra dishes and tableware, but it would be useful if you brought your own place settings.  We have quite a few chairs, but if you have one that is convenient to carry, bring it along.  Depending on the size of the group and the weather, we will eat either on the dock or up in our "community" room.  We have a community agreement to not have shared meals with anything higher on the food chain than fish, so please try to keep to vegetarian dishes, or fish. Bring jackets to sit out on the dock in case it remains cool. 

If you would like to stay later and help in a garden project that would be great, starting at about 2:00.  You might want to bring your garden gloves and your favorite hand tool.

Note that we are also looking for people to live here who want to share in creating a more sustainable lifestyle.  You can read more about us on our website: http://www.greensolutions.org/smcc.htm

Hi! I'm working on putting up a list of ecovillages on the web magazine http://realitysandwich.com - as an interim resource for a functional and up-to-date listing of ecovillages. You can email me at imaginationhealer@gmail.com with any functioning ecovillages you'd like listed. I'd like to stay up to date with the idea on this discussion to create a resource specifically for northern california - there's a lot going on here, and as the Evolver SF organizer, people frequently ask me where they can find an ecovillage to visit or live at.

Blessings,

Magenta

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