Jan 142014

A little over three years ago a group of us got together informally to discuss the Transition Town Movement and how it might apple to Lummi Island. More details of that session were posted here in December of 2010.

It was essentially a brainstorming session that resulted in the following categories. There was no formal organization to put these into place; only the suggestion that these were things the island might wish to do. It was up to individuals or organizations to pick up the ball.

I thought it would be interesting to recap these categories and see what has happened in three years. I’ve rearranged the categories a bit to avoid being redundant in recapping where we are.

START AN ELECTRONIC BULLETIN BOARD — “Use this for ride sharing, exchange of items, time sharing, etc.”

What happened was “Nextdoor” which came along in a timely fashion. Nextdoor, supplementing Brown Betty and The Tome has provided a real time vehicle for an exchange of information, goods, skills, recommendation, gossip, etc.

SKILLS INVENTORY — “Which could include an on-line data base and a hard copy Island Yellow Pages (such as has existed in the past). Find out who knows how to do what and the kinds of equipment they have.”

Nextdoor provides the format for a skills inventory and for current recommendations and testimonials.

MATERIALS EXCHANGE —“Location where surplus stuff can be dropped off and picked up.”

Again, as it worked out, Nextdoor provided the perfect vehicle for not only a materials exchange but notifications for stuff needed and free items as well.

RESKILLING — “Using the skills inventory come up with a series of (workshops, classes, tutoring programs, mentoring situation) to teach a variety of subjects: gardening, food preserving, food storage, composting, beekeeping, thermal syphoning, welding, coppicing, charcoaling, fuel production, foraging, water catchment, animal husbandry, seed saving, plant breeding, etc. etc.”

What happened was the Grange Country Living Series which has been able to provide workshops for a number of these topics and more.

RECRUIT YOUNG GROWERS TO THE ISLAND — “Provide assistance with land and housing. Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)”

We’ve fallen short here with the exception of the new Willows Garden and their full time gardener. But it would still be nice to bring some some farmers to the island.

PLANT FOOD PRODUCTION TREES —“in common areas. Trust land etc.”

What happened was two community orchards: one at the Curry Preserve near the Community Garden and one at the ferry parking lot. Both are maintained by volunteers and seem to be doing well.

COOPERATIVE BUYING GROUP — “To purchase food and supplies in bulk and get them to the island. Possibly to  be done in coordination with a store.”

Nothing specific done here that I’m aware of with the exception of the backyard chicken people who seem to bulk order on a regular basis.

EXPLORE HEALTH AND WELLNESS —“It was noted that there are groups on the island working on this.”

As noted this was in process three years ago. But with the loss of two or three key players I think this committee faded away.

The last three items on the list have been addressed by our revitalized Disaster Preparedness group.

COMMUNITY WATER SUPPLY — Solar powered well; hand pumps; desalination.

CENTRALIZED ISLAND PROPANE STORAGE —From an earlier suggestion in the comments.


All things considered, a pretty good report card for an informal get together. Maybe we should get together again some day and see what else we should focus our attention on.