Exploring Hydrocarbon Depletion
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Page added on January 7, 2012
Her children. They’re the reason Karen Andreassen became involved in the Transition Town movement.
As the world faces diminishing oil reserves, an unstable climate and unpredictable food production, the Transition movement is a worldwide network of communities working to move away from dependency on oil and create a more sustainable future.
“I used to worry that my kids were going to come along one day and say, ‘Why didn’t you do anything? You knew about this, why didn’t you do anything?” Andreassen explains. “Now I’m doing something – small, but I think a lot of people doing small things can make a difference.”
Andreassen has been involved in similar ‘relocalization’ initiatives since 2006 and Shuswap in Transition since 2009.
“Our belief is that there could be a rough road ahead and as a community, that’s the only way it’s going to work, for people to work together.”
Laura Millar is also involved with Shuswap in Transition. She refers to a television show about ‘preppers,’ people who are preparing for the worst by becoming independent and self-reliant. She realized that the people portrayed have the same concerns as the Transition movement, such as peak oil, climate change and instability surrounding food – but are taking a different approach.
“These people don’t have a community to fall back on. They’re trying to hide from their neighbours, they’re hoarding food, they’re becoming militant. I thought, how sad is that,” she says, noting they could be pulling together and joining with their neighbours to create solutions.
“We’re trying to avoid the ‘us’ versus ‘them,” Millar says, adding, “Even if you don’t see any problems with the way the systems are right now, it doesn’t hurt to rebuild connections with the community and help those in need anyway… Even if you don’t believe in the climate change thing, you have to believe in the depletion (of resources.)”
The Transition Town movement looks at aspects of the existing system such as food security, transportation, energy, medicine, education, and arts and culture.
Andreassen explains that Shuswap in Transition’s goal is to have people who are interested in each of the sectors to form a focus group to look at how to build resilience for the community in that area, and to liaise with other groups already working towards similar goals.
Shuswap in Transition has already held a number of activities and events, including workshops on worm composting, making window coverings more energy efficient, bringing Mason bees to your garden, soap making, cheese making, and making ‘green’ cleaners and personal care products for the home.
“How we can disengage from buying the toxic stuff, and how cheap and easy it is to create – and keep the water supply clean while we do it,” says Andreassen.
She notes the idea is not to go back in time.
“It’s not like going backwards; people might think we’re trying to recreate a time going back. I don’t see it that way. We’re finding things that worked well and reclaiming them. Hopefully things that don’t have as much impact as the things we do today.”
The group has more plans for workshops, films and other activities, and would like to hear from people who might have skills they’d like to share. They would also like more people to become involved – in any capacity.
If you’d like to receive alerts about upcoming events, send an email to email@example.com. For more information, check Shuswap in Transition on Facebook or call 250-832-7264, ask for Karen or leave a message.
“Individually we’re not strong enough but as a community we might be able to win,” says Andreassen.