Time to Get Involved

By petrapie on Sun, Apr 27, 2014 - 2:35pm

Greetings from Rhinelander WI. I joined this group today because it's currently the one closest to me. I see there has been little activity in this group, but hopefully that will change soon. I'd like to connect with like-minded people in my area.

For the past several years, I have been following and trying to educate myself about this current era of unprecedented global change with regard to the 3 Es: energy, economy, and environment -- which is pretty much everything, is it not? Unlike many others, I need no convincing that, going forward, we are in for quite a ride.

It is only recently that I have been able to formulate any specific ideas about how I might be part of the solutions. This has been triggered largely by listening to Chris Martenson's excellent podcasts of interviews with experts in various areas, which focus on positive actions toward creating a sustainable world.

I retired about a year ago. After working non-stop for 46 years, I needed some time to relax and figure out what's next. Today's 3-E issues have weighed heavily on me. But recent Peak Prosperity podcasts have inspired and motivated me to take positive action, because they focus on real things we as individuals can do to transition to a more sustainable world.

For example, the recent podcast with Bruce Seifer describes impressive progress made to date in transforming the city of Burlington VT.  Listening to this podcast made me realize that my community will surely have its challenges (it already does). Surely there will be plenty to do, enough for all of us. I've decided to start learning all I can about my community (I've only lived here for 3 years), and go from there.

The Peak Prosperity website is a great resource.



MyBackAchers's picture
Status: Bronze Member (Offline)
Joined: May 27 2013
Posts: 26
Getting Involved...

Well said. Unlike many warmer parts of the country, and world for that matter, we have unique set of challenges.

And like many parts of the country, there are pockets of people who never bought into the "American Dream" of the big house, 2 car, yearly vacation to the Bahamas and such. As time goes on, I find more and more pockets of those people in the area I found my small farm.

I tried finding groups to share thought processes with, like Transitions Towns and such, but the "New Hippie" mindset has a lot of growing up yet to do. Having found the older hippie types who have been living out the details has probably been my biggest advantage. They are also well skilled at bartering for everything from seeds, plants, livestock and skills.

i also like this site because of the progressive thinking that goes on. Where else will you find discussions on energy, environment and economy, which are so interconnected that it seems like a no-brainer to understand the relationships.

Hoping too that this group grows!

Rodney7777's picture
Status: Member (Offline)
Joined: Jul 16 2012
Posts: 19
extended discussion


   I am all for a regional/local forum.  I see it as creating community.

   I was just commenting on the "Who Buys" article in this week's PP. 

   I said "hats off to the creators of the comment section here at PP.  

  I live in southern Mn.  I grew up in this area during a time when, on our farm, we still used horses, and had no electricity.  We did have, however, an outhouse and a wood stove for heating and cooking.

  Looking ahead I have high (possibly unfounded) hopes for solar energy helping me.  I own a 24 unit apartment building in a town of 5,000.   My natural gas heat bill is going to be over $8,000 this year.  If I had a roof top solar collection system ( better yet a solar set up that WAS the roof ) it seems to me I could pay for such a system by using solar to heat the building to at least offset part of that bill.  My water/sewer bill is around $1,300 per month.  I don't know if I could retrofit the building with gray water collection that could be filtered etc and then used to flush the stools.  In the past I would just raise rents to cover increased costs.  That prospect is frightening as I doubt that many residents are getting raises to cover added expenses such as a rent increase.  I am 71, so selling should be an option as well.

  I garden every year in a nearby 2 acres where I am trying to employ the permaculture ideas that I am following on GeoffLawton.com   


petrapie's picture
Status: Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 27 2014
Posts: 2
Wasted Energy

Now that I've decided to get active in working toward sustainability in my community, ideas are starting to pop into my head. Here is some low-hanging fruit.

I don't have to tell anyone in this group about the severe winter we just had. While driving around my area  (Rhinelander WI) this winter, I noticed so many homes that were not adequately insulated. In spite of record snowfall and low temperatures, many homes had little snow on the roof and huge icicles hanging from the edges, indicating significant heat loss from the interior.  Many people around here use propane for home heating, the prices for which skyrocketed in this area this past season due to many factors. What a waste, to have that precious, expensive heat just dissipate through the roof.

I believe our local/state governments addressed this by helping those in need pay their bills. This response does not address the root cause. If taxpayers are going to subsidize keeping people warm, let's focus on the solution, have some vision, and help folks get their homes adequately insulated ASAP.

Bioneer1's picture
Status: Member (Offline)
Joined: Nov 27 2015
Posts: 2
Energy/Agriculture & all those other Capitals.

It seems a good time to add some juice to the discussion.  I just purchased a "farmstead" (in the making) near Amery, WI.  I am down to fine-toothing The Book:  Prosper.  Can't say enough good about it; best being that I now own a copy and thank the KE Report for the intro to Chris Martenson et al.  Areas of interest:  energy (independence as much as possible), food growing/storage/sale (lucky to have the Hungry Turtle Organic Group out of Amery and the wonderful Organic Consumers Association "nearby" (Finland, MN).

I guess I fit the older hippie class and like Chris was trained in science but know that I might be an "oldie" in some senses but very much a newbie in this exciting new world of independence and resilience.  My new world training ground was the MN Dept of Ag where I watched Global Mania hit and the finessing of the GMO question' harmonization of regulations - down to the lowest common denominators) and much of the other attendant issues all greasing the skids of Big Ag, .  I think there might well be another category for the DSM - the affliction that leads to all of the above and terrible "leadership" in general.

Very interested in connecting and sharing with like-minded "neighbors"  At least we are in the same region.  There is certainly much to do.

Rodney7777's picture
Status: Member (Offline)
Joined: Jul 16 2012
Posts: 19
Congrats on your farmstead

Hey Bioneer1

  Since completing a Permaculture Design Course and getting certified, I have noticed that other permacultureists are Getting closer to me here in southern Minnesota.  First one was 600 miles then about 300 miles, now I know of one 60 miles.  My hope is that soon one will be 10 miles then one mile, and finally next door.  That would be so great.  

   My cousin in northern Mn is growing grapes for wine like crazy which I found surprising.    I have started hazelnut bushes and blueberry bushes.

   The problem with our climate is that there are not many production trees and bushes to choose from.  There are so few it should be no problem to plant them all, just more or them I suppose. 

   Anyway, I enjoyed your post.   Best of luck on your new farmstead. 


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