Let’s never stop thinking about the future: The connections between permaculture, Japanese design and homesteading in a frugal future.
The world has changed immeasurably over the last thirty years, with ‘more, bigger, better’ being the common mantra. But in the midst of this constantly evolving world, there is a growing community of people who are looking at our history, searching for answers to issues that are faced everywhere, such as energy, water, materials, food and population crisis.
In “Just Enough, ” author Azby Brown turned to the history of Japan, where he finds several lessons on living in a sustainable society that translate beyond place and time. This book presents a compelling argument around how to forge a society that is conservation-minded, waste-free, well-housed, well-fed and economically robust, including what Edo Period life has to offer us in the global battle to reverse environmental degradation.
In contrast, RetroSuburbia, by David Holmgren shows how the Australian suburbs can be transformed to become productive and resilience in an energy descent future. It focuses on what can be done by an individual at the household level with examples from ‘Aussie Street’ story and real life case studies to support and enhance the main content.
Su Dennett and Virginia Solomon have been living and promoting a sustainable households at their respective Melliodora and Eco resilience households and wider community activities including the Hepburn Relocalisation Network, Permaculture Australia, Holmgren Design & permaculture education to name a few. Virginia has also travelled multiple times to Japan, including meeting Azby and connecting all of the interview members here today on behalf of Permaculture Australia.
Without further ado, here is the interview:
You can read more here.
A huge thank you to Permaculture Australia for enabling this rich conversation to happen.
If you’re interested in more crossovers between Japanese culture and permaculture, you might be interested to read David’s journal from 2004, when he and Su spent 4 weeks travelling around Japan: