Marble House Project will host an intensive six day Permaculture seminar and workshop with Rhamis Kent. The workshop will be staggered over two long weekends at The Marble House in Dorset, Vermont. The workshops span two weekends from May 9th-11th and May 16th-18th, 2014.
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The results of a crowd-sourcing appeal prove that Discovery Channel engaged in fakery.
The photo of a whale carcass which Discovery claims to have “found”.
The suspicion that the Discovery Channel had abandoned its professed editorial standards was a powerful one. Its documentary claiming that the giant shark Carchardon megalodon still exists contained images which gave a strong impression of being faked; reports of incidents which don’t appear to have happened; and interviews with “marine biologists” no one has been able to trace.
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Trailer only – watch full video here!
Geoff visits a number of different Permaculture gardens that are springing up and notices a common thread — a lot of people are growing food that should never be grown in that climate and zone and are doing it successfully. How do they do it?
Geoff even visits the University of Massachusetts and spots an unusual Permaculture garden that won The White House Challenge. Even the Chancellor wants a Permaculture garden!
A wild apple tree, on the side of the road
Not far from where I live, there is a wild apple tree. It is an old, well established tree that is in such an odd location that it can only have ended up there by pure chance alone. As you can see from the photos, it reliably produces plenty of apples, which are crisp and tasty. A few days ago I picked about 10kg of fruit and have since begun converting them into the very useful product apple cider vinegar. Even so, there are still more apples remaining unharvested on the tree.
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Cob is an earthen building material that is made of clay, sand, straw, and water. It has been used for thousands of years to construct homes and buildings. It has been used worldwide, but has only recently started to attract interest from Western countries. Cob has its origins in millennia of traditional building, in some of the oldest permanent human dwellings. Humans have made shelters this way for so long that we may carry a genetic memory of how to do it.
The word ‘cob’ comes from an old English word meaning ‘lump’ or ‘loaf’. The wet cob mixture is used to build thick earth walls; the building technique is very similar to sculpting with modelling clay. Because cob building requires no forms, we can build our walls into any shape we choose. Curves, niches, arched windows and built-in furniture are common features in cob buildings.
Cob building requires no cement, no expensive tools or materials and is a ‘people friendly’ way of building. Once the material is dry, cob is incredibly strong. The drying-out, setting process of clay products can be reversed if necessary, so even when the building material is hard and dry, you can usually alter it by wetting down whatever you want to change. This is different from lime and concrete products, which set and become hard through an irreversible chemical process.
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This summer we installed our last major rainwater harvesting feature on our property. This rain tank is unique because it is integrated into our hardscape (patio) so it’s completely invisible to the untrained eye. In this video I talk about how it was built, how it fills, what we use it for and details on the drains and overflows.
Take a look and let me know what you think!
Studies document substantial differences of GM maize and GM soybean from their conventional non-GM counterparts, exposing a permissive regulatory regime that has failed miserably in protecting public health and biodiversity.
by Dr Eva Sirinathsinghji
A fully referenced and illustrated version of this article is posted on ISIS members website and is otherwise available for download here.
Several new studies carried out by scientists independent of the biotech industry are showing up glaring differences between GMOs and their non-GMO counterparts. This makes a mockery of the regulatory principle of ‘Substantial Equivalence’ which has facilitated approvals of GMOs with practically no protection for public health and the environment  (see  The Principle of Substantial equivalence is Unscientific and Arbitrary, ISIS news).
The principle of ‘Substantial Equivalence’
The concept of ‘Substantial Equivalence’ was first introduced in 1993 by the Organisation for Economic Development (OECD), an international economic and trade organisation, not a public health body. The principle states that if a new food is found to be substantially equivalent to an already existing food product, it can be treated the same way as the existing product with respect to safety. This concept has greatly benefited the trade of GM produce, allowing it to effectively bypass regulatory requirements that would apply to novel food and other products including novel chemical compounds, pharmaceuticals, pesticides and food additives, all of which require a range of toxicological tests and can be subject to legal limitations on safe consumption/intake.
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Misleading claims by Discovery and other channels help to fuel wildlife massacres.
There are, I think, two factors at work. The first is the desire to eliminate all risk from our lives, to move through a world that is safe, predictable and tame, with “no alarms and no surprises”.
The second emerges paradoxically from the consequences of that desire. Having achieved, or almost achieved, the object of the great civilisational quest – To Know What Comes Next – we have been rewarded with a new set of unmet needs. Without natural hazards, without the thrills and spills we evolved to withstand, our lives sometimes feel exceedingly dull. We have gained much from the predictability we’ve manufactured, and lost something too.
Both impulses, I believe, inform the Western Australian shark cull. The cull appears to be unscientific and counter-productive, a grand act of vandalism that endangers the top predators – already greatly depleted – which sustain the ecosystem of the seas. But it is motivated by a desire with which many people can connect: to ensure that nothing untoward ever happens to anyone, even to those who venture into the wild waters of the Indian Ocean, which the premier of Western Australia now hopes to remodel as a giant hotel swimming pool.
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An excellent look at transforming one Perth property along permaculture lines.
When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe. — John Muir
The eradication of wolves from Yellowstone National Park is a classic example of the Us and Them approach to wildlife management — where a simplistic, selfish and reductionist mindset sees nature as something to battle and compete against, rather than recognising that each wildlife entity has an important role to play in helping the systems we depend on to flourish. While the important role each ‘character’ plays out in the grand ‘theatre’ of life is rarely fully understood, even by the more eco-literate amongst us, this is where we, the human actor, need to treat the world around us with humble respect. Whilst we may not completely understand the importance of specific elements in the eco-system around us, at the very least we can learn to submit to its greater wisdom — recognising that these systems functioned long before our machines, our economy, and our greed came along to destroy it.
The reintroduction of wolves to Yellowstone National Park is a classic example of the far reaching — and might I also say rapid — effects of putting things back the way they were….
Now, if only we, the human element, could come to understand the meaningful role we should be playing in this grand theatre….
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