News Magazine

Peak Moment- Bag It, Packaging Bulk Food With Nitrogen - Jim Wray and Lorraine Webb

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Nevada County locals Loraine Webb and Jim Wray demonstrate the how and why of packaging bulk foods with nitrogen. They're using equipment available for community members to use at minimal cost. Jim demonstrates packaging: make plastic bags using a heat sealer, fill with foodstuffs, suck out the oxygen with a small vacuum, then replace the air with nitrogen and seal.

Peak Moment - Heart of Permaculture

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Former truck driver Bill Wilson tells an insightful story about the energy packed in a gallon of gas — which we won't always have in cheap abundance. Now a permaculture educator, he sees permaculture as a viable, realistic way to use nature to provide the abundance we really need — harvesting sunlight, food, wind, water and more. Can you guess what the magic stuff is that we all can't live without?

Peak Moment - How Do I Invite You To Grow Food Jenny Pell

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Jenny Pell's infectious enthusiasm will sweep you up into creating a future that's beyond sustainable — to one that's "additive." This lively permaculturist suggests that you belong where you live and get (re)connected to your "chain of inputs and outputs". She invites us to to regain skills, especially in food production, and to participate in creating abundance, which is "the only way forward, the only way for the human family to survive."

Peak Moment - Geodesic Garden at 6000 Feet - Breigh Peterson

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In Colorado it's cold for much of the year, but inside this cozy dome greenhouse, the plants are growing happily. Take a grand tour with Buckhorn Gardens manager and permaculturist Breigh Peterson: the greenhouse structure with its interplay of light and water, warmth and air; curving raised beds of vegetables and flowers; fish tanks moderating the temperature; vertical trellises and shelves to use vertical space. Outdoors a huge garden of row crops and a young orchard are complemented by free-roaming chickens and ducks.

Peak Moment - Permaculture for Humanity - Larry Santoyo

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The future is abundant, asserts permaculture designer Larry Santoyo. His vision of living in the present provides a wonderful antidote to fear about uncertain futures. People need to rediscover that we're part of the ecosystem, and apply permaculture design principles to the many problems we face. Larry teaches sustainable permaculture design as a discovery of the world around us. He notes that trying to be self-sufficient is really anti-permaculture. Instead, we need to develop self-reliance skills. Then as we find others in our communities to interact with, everybody gets to play!

Peak Moment - Permaculture Activists - Joe and Pam Leitch

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Asking "wouldn't it be wonderful if our city could feed itself?" Joe Leitch ponders everybody in Portland planting a chestnut tree. Pam Leitch relates how they both left the corporate world after reading the book "Your Money or Your Life". As educators on sustainability and resource depletion, permaculture and social justice, they soon learned of Peak Oil.

Peak Moment - Creating a Home Graywater System - Trathen Heckman

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Trathen Heckman takes us on a step-by-step tour of how to make a safe, ecological and legal suburban home graywater system. Follow the water as it drains from the bathroom tub (and sink and laundry) through a unique valve leading into the backyard garden. It flows into an optional wetland and underground pond for filtering. The water is then piped below ground to several destinations in the yard, where it will supply water for plants growing above it.

Peak Moment - Community Gardens Grow Community Patrick Marcus

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Patrick Marcus and other motivated citizens sprouted a community garden on city land slated to be a park in Ashland, Oregon. When the garden was threatened by plans to develop the park, they got active. Their research and advocacy led to official policy supporting community gardens in city parks.

Peak Moment - For the Love of Trees Jerry Becker

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Though born and raised elsewhere, Jerry Becker is now a de facto indigenous member of Oregon's Elk River watershed. The credo he lives by is Respect. He and his family have lived lightly "long before it was cool." An ecoforester, Jerry manages the woods sensitively with an eye to its wholeness.

Peak Moment - Building Ecologically Sensible Home and and Gord Baird

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Wanting to live a "reasonable, comfortable life" in tune with nature, Ann and Gord Baird are building a "net zero energy" home on rural Vancouver Island. Their plans: a thick-walled cob house with passive solar heating. Wind and solar panels to provide electricity. Solar thermal hot water for domestic use and radiant heating. Composting toilets to enrich the earth for orchard, gardens and chickens. Rainwater catchment and a well for domestic and irrigation water. Follow their progress at www.eco-sense.ca.