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Boulder Valley Relocalization


How many miles per hamburger' can a person go? ... Denial and lack of foresight constitute a recipe for unnecessary catastrophe. ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Boulder Valley Relocalization

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Boulder Valley Relocalization
The Energy Crisis
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World Discovery, Production
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  • 1 80,000 lb. truck 45,000 lbs. of freight
  • 1 truck x 1 gallon of fuel 5 miles average (up
    a shallow grade)
  • 1 person with 1 garden cart 250 lbs/load/trip
  • 1 person could manage 20 miles/day or two
    loads/day (5 miles there, 5 miles back and
  • Conclusion to move 45,000 lbs., 5 miles up a
    shallow grade, 250 lbs. at a time 90 days of
    work (3 full months, no days off)
  • (Note 5 months if you add the weight of the

The True Value of Oil?
  • One gallon of fuel today (Jan. 06)  2.50
  • How many miles per hamburger can a person
    go? 90 days of food to fuel one person _at_10/day
  • The energy density in one barrel of oil is the
    equivalent of eight people working full time for
    one year.
  • 8 x 16,000/yr. 128,000 or /42
    gal.per.barrel 3,050/gal.

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Ancient Sunlight
  • 100 tons of ancient plant life is required to
    create one gallon of gasoline.
  • Over each year of our industrial age, humans have
    required several centuries worth of ancient
    sunlight to keep the economy going.
  • The figure for 1997around 422 years of fossil
    sunlightwas typical.

Developing Nations?
  • China has 1.3 billion people, 20 percent of the
    worlds population.
  • India has 1.1 billion people, 17 percent of the
    worlds population.
  • What percentage of the worlds petroleum are they
    entitled to?
  • What percentage of the worlds petroleum do they
    think they are entitled to?

  • A third of humanity doesnt want to ride bikes
    anymore. That has profound geopolitical
  • Anne KorinInstitute for the Analysis of Global

  • Currently, the average American consumes 25
    barrels of oil a year.
  • In China, the average consumption is 1.3 barrels
    per year in India, less than one.
  • If we reduce our consumption by 80, we will
    still be using oil at nearly 5x the rate of the
    Chinese or Indians.

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  • Remember the end of cheap oil is not the sort of
    problem you can solve. Its like growing old. You
    cant solve that. However, you can choose to
    respond respectfully, wisely and imaginatively to
    it, so that even ageing can become a source of
    unexpected riches.
  • Richard Heinberg

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  • Budget deficits explode. Inflation rules. Stock
    markets plunge. Houses foreclose. Great powers
    clash. This may be our future if we do not take
    more serious steps on energy than those offered
    in the energy bill that President Bush recently
  • Peak oil is coming, but country is
  • Houston Chronicle, Aug. 22, 2005

  • The second half of the Age of Oil now dawns and
    will be marked by the decline of oil and all that
    depends on it, including financial capital. It
    heralds the collapse of the present financial
    system, and the related political structures I
    am speaking of a second Great Depression.
  • Colin Campbell, Ph.D.ASPO Conference 2003

  • The world oil production peak represents an
    unprecedented economic crisis that will wreak
    havoc on national economies, topple governments,
    alter national boundaries, provoke military
    strife, and challenge the continuation of
    civilized life.
  • James Howard Kunstler
  • The Long Emergency

  • Oil depletion will hit us soon and hard.
    Governments are ignoring the problem. Their lack
    of action will make the coming disruption of the
    worlds economy much worse than it needs to be.
    It is too late to avoid hardship, even in rich
    North America. The longer we avoid facing up to
    the approaching conditions, the greater the
    hardship will be.
  • David M. Delaney
  • What to Do in a Failing Civilization

  • The world has never faced a problem like this.
    Without massive mitigationthe problem will be
    pervasive and will not be temporary. Previous
    energy transitions were gradual and evolutionary.
    Oil peaking will be abrupt and revolutionary.
  • The Hirsch ReportU.S. Department of
    EnergyFebruary 2005

  • Its not just the availability of cheap fossil
    fuels that is peaking.
  • Our ability to use energy the way we have become
    accustomed to is also peaking.

  • Economic growth
  • Industrial civilization
  • Food production
  • Human consumption
  • Fossil-fuel-dependent way of life
  • Human population

  • Economic growth
  • Industrial civilization
  • Food production
  • Human consumption
  • Fossil-fuel-dependent way of life
  • Human population

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  • We have trouble visualizing decline as positive,
    but this simply reflects the dominance of our
    prior culture of growth The real issue of our
    age is how we make a graceful and ethical
  • David Holmgren

  • Peaking is only a crisis if
  • Weve ignored it
  • Weve failed to plan for it
  • Were not prepared for it at all

  • Our only reasonable choice is to prepare together
    for the long ride down the curve of an
    energy-constrained future.

Gathering Storms, Growing Crises
  • Resource depletion (esp. fossil fuels)
  • Climate change/global warming
  • Epidemic disease
  • Environment degradation/habitat destruction
  • Water scarcity
  • Monetary collapse ()
  • Terrorism/war

  • A State of Emergency
  • All hands on deck!

Lessons from Katrina
  • Optimism, hopefulness, faith in status quo are
    inadequate strategies in the face of real
    disasternatural or man-made.
  • Despite planning and preparation, those plans
  • There was no Plan B.

Lessons from Katrina
  • Denial and lack of foresight constitute a recipe
    for unnecessary catastrophe.
  • We cannot rely on government or industry to
    adequately deal with large-scale unpredictable
  • Plan B is left to the publicthe responsibility
    of we the people.

  • Despite assurances of government and industry,
    demand for petroleum is outstripping supply.
  • There is no Plan B for this.

  • With less than 5 of the worlds population, and
    with only 2 of the worlds oil reserves, the
    U.S. produces 8 of the worlds oil and consumes
    25 global oil production, of which nearly 60 is
    imported from foreign countries.
  • Peak Oil ResolutionU.S. House of
    RepresentativesOctober 24, 2005
  • There is no Plan B for this, either.

  • You know, what makes our economy grow is energy.
    And Americans are used to going to the gas tank,
    and when they put that hose in their tank, and
    when I do it, I wanna get gas out of it. And when
    I turn the light switch on, I want the lights to
    go on, and I dont want somebody to tell me I
    gotta change my way of living to satisfy them.
    Because this is America, and this is something
    weve worked our way into, and the American
    people are entitled to it, and if were going to
    improve our standard living you have to consume
    more energy.
  • Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa)

What We Know Now
  • We must plan for an energy-constrained future.
  • A culture of unbridled consumerism is
    unsustainable and unethical.
  • The age of cheap oil and cheap energy is ending,
    and with it will end our current economic system.

What Few Know
  • The oil production-refining-distribution
    infrastructure is already stretched to near the
    breaking point. There is no spare capacity any
    disruptions could have far-reaching effects.
  • Major shocks and disruptions are very likely to
    develop in the near-term, long before global oil
    supply has undeniably peaked.

What Few Know
  • Significant shortfalls and outages will almost
    certainly occur, and are likely to be painful,
    chaotic, perhaps even locally catastrophic.
  • Some analysts anticipate 5x-10x increases in oil
    prices in the short-term.

  • Whether peak oil arrives this year or next, or in
    five or ten years, there is a high likelihood we
    will experience serious regional emergencies
    along the way.
  • There is no Plan B.

Plan B
  • Plan B can only realistically be constructed on a
    community level.
  • Community self-sufficiency must be the organizing
    principlelocal energy, local food, local
  • The alternatives (e.g., Last Man Standing,
    Waiting for the Magic Elixir) are unsustainable.

The Emergency of a Lifetime
  • Will arise from industrial civilizations demand
    for oil outstripping supply
  • and the resulting relatively sudden collapse of
    institutions, infrastructures, economies, and
    the American way of life.

  • If human civilization is to survive at all in the
    context of freedom
  • we can only do so as a community of self-reliant
  • who have adopted relocalization strategies as
    ethical and evolutionary imperatives.

  • Peak Oil is a defining moment for our species,
    for our communities, and for each of us
  • Our legacyand the future of life on our
    planetwill be determined by how we respond to
    the challenges and opportunities of Peak Oil/Peak

  • Responding to the challenge of Peak Oil is not
    simply about changing lifestyles or becoming more
  • It is about accepting greater responsibility,
    moving from species adolescence to species

Childhoods End
  • Let us give thanks for this extraordinary period
    of human history we lived through. Let us
    recognize that we are moving into a new phase of
    history. Lets be brave and wise about it, and
    prepare to move on.
  • James Howard KunstlerThe Long Emergency

An appropriate response
  • Power-down \ \ n. 1. the energy famine that
    engulfed industrial nations in the early 21st
  • 2. the deliberate process of cooperation,
    contraction, and conversion that enabled humanity
    to survive
  • 3. a species-wide effort toward self-limitation

  • Ultimately, personal survival will depend on
    community survival.
  • Richard Heinberg
  • Powerdown

  • A globalized growth economy, based upon a
    culture of consumption, built on widespread
    availability of cheap fossil fuels, destroys

  • The strategy of individualist survivalism will
    offer only temporary and uncertain refuge during
    the energy downslope. True individual and family
    security will come only with community solidarity
    and interdependence. Living in a community that
    is weathering the downslope well will enhance
    personal chances of surviving and prospering far
    more than will individual efforts at stockpiling
    tools or growing food.
  • Richard Heinberg

  • Whats at stake is human freedom.
  • If we are dependent on distant sources/foreign
    powers for our essential needs, we will have no
    choice but to pay whatever price we must in order
    to survive. This is how freedom can be sacrificed
    for survival.
  • The only viable alternative is to learn how to
    meet our essential needs locally.

  • Relocalization is the process of developing
    community self-sufficiency in energy, food and
  • With the energy crisis, relocalization has now
    become not only necessary but our first and
    foremost priority.

  • There is a great need for a culture of guerilla
    relocalizationa movement that would have as its
    goal to partially prepare communities so that
    they may coalesce more readily into autonomous
    regions when the need becomes apparent.
  • David M. DelaneyWhat to Do in a Failing

PCI Relocalization Network
PCI Relocalization Network
  • Relocalization will herald the creation (and in
    some cases, re-creation) of locally self-reliant
    communities that produce and consume largely
    within the confines of their bioregion, but on a
    far grander scale than examples from the
    historical record.
  • In the community-based model, stability will
    only be achieved if neighboring communities are
    also locally self-reliant.

  • Strategic Planning
  • like our lives depend on it!

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Strategic Relocalization Planning
  • Food Security
  • Energy Security
  • Economic Security
  • Social Security
  • Government/infrastructure/policy

Food Security
  • Gardening (household, neighborhood, community)
  • Permaculture training, planning, implementation
  • Co-ops
  • Farming/CSA

Energy Security
  • Renewable energy resources
  • Alternative fuels
  • Alternative transportation
  • Energy efficiency/design (homes and buildings)
  • Emergency back-up systems

Economic Security
  • Creating local businesses/jobs
  • Complimentary currency
  • Local manufacturing
  • Relocalization Business Network
  • Housing
  • Raw Materials

Social Security
  • Education/awareness
  • Neighborhood/community organization
  • Sharing resources
  • Health care/medicine/psychospiritual
  • Emergency planning
  • Elderly population
  • Clothing
  • Recreation

  • Community energy systems
  • Water supply
  • Waste management
  • Land use
  • Transportation
  • Emergency management
  • Building codes
  • Zoning
  • Growth management
  • Law enforcement

Learning from other Communities
Willits Economic LocaLization (WELL)
  • Energy Independence Project
  • Willits Area Energy Inventory
  • Willits Area Energy Independence Plan
  • 100 energy independence by 2010
  • 50 reduction of energy consumption
  • 80 local employment by 2012

Willits Economic LocaLization (WELL)
  • TAKING INVENTORY where we get to be detectives
    and researchers, discovering what we already have
    here and what resources we are starting with
  • ENVISIONING THE FUTURE where we get to be
    dreamers visionaries
  • PLANNING THE TRANSITION where we get to be
    artists architects of our future
  • IMPLEMENTING THE PLAN where we get to be the
    builders of our community

Willits Economic LocaLization (WELL)
  • In a nutshell, we are using a community research
    model. This works by grounding people in the
    reality of the current system i.e., taking the
    Inventory, as a first step towards building
    relationships among themselves and the broader
    community. Tackling questions about the present
    should be easier and much less controversial than
    questions about the future. We build confidence
    and trust before doing the hard parts. By the
    time we get to the Visioning, Planning and Action
    stages we have developed skills, information and
    relationships that will empower us to do
    something as bold as changing the local culture.
    This doesn't mean we don't have an initial, broad
    vision established early on, such as creating a
    sustainable, local economy and a life promoting
    culture. It just means that we pause before
    leaping to action to sort out what we have to
    work with, and make ourselves stronger in the

Tompkins County Relocalization
  • Peak oil as a county disaster management

Tompkins County Relocalization
  • Transportation
  • Emergency services
  • Local food production
  • Local food distribution
  • Winter food supply
  • Hunting
  • Health care
  • Education
  • Employment and training
  • Agriculture as a local industry
  • Manufacturing as a local industry
  • Heating
  • Alternative sources of energy
  • Water
  • Waste disposal
  • Social and psychological adjustment

Tompkins County Questions
  • Knowing Our Limits
  • What is the carrying capacity of Tompkins
    Countys current agricultural base?
  • What would the carrying capacity be if that base
    included all the farmland not currently in
    production and all the former farmland that has
    been taken out of production?
  • What would the steady-state carrying capacity of
    the Countys existing and potential farmland be
    if the County were closed to outside inputs of
    cheap fertilizer and fuel?

Tompkins County Questions
  • Urban Farming
  • How can families living on the small, shaded lots
    typical of houses in Ithaca create productive
  • What would be the optimum way to raise chickens
    on those plots if the present ordinance
    prohibiting the keeping of chickens were changed?
  • Would it make sense for the city to plant fruit
    trees? How could we ensure that those trees were
    provided with specialized pruning, knowledge of
    the diseases that afflict particular species, and
    water at critical times?
  • At what point will the need of city dwellers for
    locally produced food overcome their aversion to
    the mess made by the fruit and flowers dropped by
    productive trees and the wildlife and bees they
  • How do zoning laws need to change in order to
    maximize the agricultural use of land in the
    County that is now considered to be residential?

Tompkins County Questions
  • Sustainability
  • How much organic fertilizer (manure, compost)
    will be needed to keep gardens productive if the
    farms that can no longer afford synthetic
    fertilizer use up all of the organic sources for
    their own needs?
  • How do we enable and encourage households to
    compost all their garbage and grass clippings,
    not as a trash abatement measure but rather as an
    essential component of a sustainable food system?
  • At what point do we start encouraging the use of
    composting toilets?

Kinsale Energy Descent Action Plan
Kinsale Energy Descent Action Plan
  • Food
  • Youth and Community
  • Education
  • Housing
  • Economy and Livelihoods
  • Health
  • Tourism
  • Transport
  • Waste
  • Energy

Kinsale Energy Descent Action Plan
City of Oakland
  • Randy Hayes (founder of Rainforest Action
    Network) was appointed Sustainability Director by
    mayor Jerry Brown.
  • Hayes is developing plans to make Oakland a
    national leader in solar energy with the goal of
    achieving 100 renewable generated electricity
    within 25 years.
  • Currently, Oakland California is debating a food
    policy initiative that would mandate by 2015 the
    growing within a fifty-mile radius of city center
    of 40 percent of the vegetables consumed in the

How Cuba Survived Peak Oil
  • Cuba has disproved the myth that organic
    agriculture cannot support a modern nation.
  • Cubans converted the nation's agriculture from
    high input, fossil fuel-dependent farming, to low
    input, self-reliant, organic farming.
    Permaculture is widely practiced.
  • Urban gardens now produce 60 of the vegetables
    consumed in all of Cuba.
  • As declining fossil fuel production impacts
    civilization, Cuba may find itself in a position
    to help lead the world into sustainable
  • Cuban agriculture experts are currently teaching
    agro-ecological farming methods to visiting
    farmers and agricultural technicians from
    throughout the Americas (excluding the U.S.), and

Boulder Valley Relocalization
  • Local energy
  • Local food
  • Local economy

Relocalization Resource Groups
  • The energy crisis
  • Relocalizing energy/renewables
  • Relocalizing food production/distribution
  • Relocalizing manufacturing/employment
  • Parallel economic infrastructure
  • Transportation
  • Health care
  • Crisis preparedness
  • Preparing our community, ourselves

Strategic Planning Process
  • Understanding current reality
  • Considering the options
  • Creating an achievable vision, setting
    inspirational goals
  • Outlining principles and pathways making
  • Building a master plan
  • Engaging the community

1. Understanding Current Reality
  • Resource usage, patterns of consumption
  • Resource potentials/inventory
  • Local expertise
  • Risks and vulnerabilities
  • Evaluation and report

2. Considering the Options
  • Creative brainstorming
  • Scenario planning

3. Vision/Goals
  • Creating an achievable vision
  • Setting inspirational goals

Potential Goals?
  • 50 reduction in energy usage
  • 100 energy self-reliance
  • 75 of food consumption from within 100 miles
  • 80 local employment
  • 75 of homes become net energy producers
  • A response model for other communities

4. Principles and Pathways
  • Formulating specific recommendations
  • Developing concrete proposals

5. Master Plan
  • Open source development
  • Peer review
  • The process demands that the contributions we
    make be nothing less than our very best!

6. Engaging the Community
  • Planning
  • Implementation
  • Building a sustainable relocalization movement
  • Engaging other communities

  • We are not doing this only for Boulder Valley.
  • Everything we learn, develop and decide will be
    open, accessible, and shared.
  • Relocalization has never been achieved.
  • This may be the most important endeavor of our
  • What would be the cost of failure?

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Upcoming Events
  • BVR Working Group meeting, March 6
  • The Power of Community How Cuba Survived Peak
    Oil, May 12/13 (Present Tense Films, Boulder
  • Documentary film and Salsa Dance!
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