Apr 022012
 

“Sustainability isn’t based merely on practical initiatives. It begins with community, in other words social capital and relationships of trust.” Nicole Fosse

There are lots of strategies for building a sustainable future, a future that may have to rely on less of everything. As the Federal Reserve continues to print money for the purpose of buying our own debt (since no one else will) and as the can gets kicked down the road because our leaders don’t have the guts to tell the public what the real problem is. (Read Kunstler today for another dose of reality), people like Nicole Fosse continually point out that organized communities and strong local economies are the key to a sustainable and successful future.

This reminds me to comment on our recent Island Cleanup, an annual event sponsored by the Lummi Island Community Association. Cleaning up after oneself and others is a small but important thing. It demonstrates care and pride in our locality and the way LICA organizes the event, Island Cleanup is a lot of fun. When else do Lummi Islanders of all ages and backgrounds scramble through the bushes and verges alongside the roads to grab cans, bottles, filter tips and other weirder items? Lummi is pretty clean to start with being home to a minority of pumans (stinky humans) but, still, a remarkable amount of crud is collected to be hauled off to the dump.

Small things are what makes a community strong and they don’t all have to be about gardens, water catchment, food storage and food supplies.
Nicole Fosse, in her most recent blog post on Automatic Earth offers this short video about a neighborhood in Australia which is making slow, steady progress.

If we look at our own progress on the island toward sustainability I think we would give ourselves good marks with several strong, close civic organizations, neighborhoods beginning to organize via the Disaster Preparedness program, active church and social groups and a number of initiatives like the community orchards that bring islanders with common interests together.

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