Diversity is what makes ecosystems, editorial and Transition resilient. Allowing diversity in a highly-defensive monoculture is a challenge. We are trained to follow the party line and want everyone to agree with My Right Opinion. Or else! Flexibility and allowance are not high on our agenda. Communications however can bring insight into others' lives and broaden world-views, without our going into attack. And thanks to DIY culture and Internet technology millions of people now have voices and faces in the world where once we were silent and invisible.
The beauty of blogging is that it allows "non-professional" writers to explore and express their everyday encounters in innovative, creative ways. One of its downsides is that it fosters silo mentality and self-obsession. So how do you marry the unique creativity of social media and the group focus of Transition?
We created a community blog.
How Transition Changed my Life (led by Mark Watson) to Sustainable Livelihoods (led by Simeon Jackson).
One of our most popular topics has been our tracking of the changing planet in our seasonal photoblogs; Last Autumn we focused on stocking our store cupboards, at midwinter we went into the frosty lanes, this spring we looked at Trees, and at midsummer celebrated the Festival of Transition.
Energy Week, led by Chris Hull.
Images: cycling on the beach (from Sustainable Relationships Week, led by helenofnorwich; under the Oak by Mark Watson (from Trees in Transition, led by John Heaser); the blogosphere (from A Week on Blogs, led by Jon Curran)
Creature Comforts by John Heaser
20 January 2012
A lot of the book is about how the exploitation of energy sources have made our lives comfortable – a concept that we now take for granted but the word ‘comfort’ only assumed its current meaning in 1770 (when it was used in a letter by Horace Walpole). Until then most people had no expectation of being comfortable and in medieval houses people literally huddled together around a single open hearth with no chimney. The exploitation of coal led to heat, steam for engines to power the industrial revolution, gas for lighting and ultimately to electricity and all the labour saving devices that we now depend on.
|A biomass boiler|
An unplanned consequence of the discovery of oil, was that cheap paraffin destroyed the market for whale oil and saved sperm whales from extinction. Predicting the future supply and demand for energy is never straightforward but we have to try harder to be less dependent on finite resources!