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Colin Fontaine

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since Sep 27, 2011
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Recent posts by Colin Fontaine

Cj Verde wrote:

Colin Fontaine wrote:"Too many people" isn't an opinion, it's a fact of growth, don't you think there was a reason that up until 1800 the human population remained below 1 billion? Or that any other species on the planet does not overrun the place?



Colin, perhaps your mean it's a function of growth?
Also, most species do overrun their environment until they pollute it so badly the population collapses, like yeast.
Also, the population explosion coincides nicely with the availability if cheap, easily accessible fuel.



Yes, using the word 'fact' seems to have been quite the mistake. I'm not sure how many species overrun their environment, or if it's important enough for study, but I'm sure there's some literature out there if anyone is feeling ambitious.

I'm reformulating my original points here because they have been taken the wrong way in previous posts. Now on the Myth of Sustainable Meat:

1. There is a finite amount of resources here on the planet.
2. We are using up the fossil fuel resources that enable us to grow large amounts of food (or calories).
3. The more the population increases, the faster resources deplete.
4. "Too many people" in this case now means too many people using more energy (petroleum/fuel>plants>meat) than they need to live.
5. Once the fossil fuels run out, production of calories will drop, and hopefully permaculture will rise as the new agricultural philosophy.

These are the thoughts that are bouncing around in my head. Yet say hypothetically we decrease the energy usage, and everyone on the planet now has enough food. I have to pose some questions now:

Is there really enough space to have residence, farms, pasture's, forests, habitat for wildlife and water sources for an ever growing population? And to increase the size of residence, farms, pasture and water sources as population demands it as well?

How will we be able to feed metropolitan cities good meat? We're talking millions of people in a condensed area. Can surrounding permaculture farms rise to the task of supplying them all?

In my mind, sustainable means permanent, thus I tend to take this issue as if it is happening now and forever in the future. Though we might have the ability now and the land to supply a many people with meat, can it continue to be this way if we remain on our current trend of consumption, or will certain things have to change?




7 years ago

Tyler Ludens wrote:

John Seay wrote:He's saying that we eat too much meat and have too many people. There simply isn't enough space to raise enough sustainable meat for everyone in the country to continue to eat so much of it. I think that is a fair statement and that there is plenty of evidence to show this to be correct. Permaculture is more productive than industrial agriculture as a whole, which includes produce. There is no way to say a permaculture farm can produce more meat than that of a feed lot.



I don't think there is "plenty of evidence." Feedlot cattle spend most of their lives on grass, they are not born and raised in a feedlot. Food for feedlot animals comes from the land. The land does not magically produce more food simply because it does not have animals on it, quite the contrary, such land used to produce grains requires many more inputs than grassfed. There is plenty of space to raise grassfed because it is a more efficient use of the land. We may eat too much BAD meat, but there's no reason we can't eat an appropriate quantity of good meat, in my opinion. "Too many people" is an esthetic judgment often made by people who don't like other people. There is strong evidence for too many people living and eating the way we do now*, but we do not know the carrying capacity of the land for people living a different way, including permacultural and other natural meat-raising practices.

* http://www.footprintnetwork.org/en/index.php/GFN/page/world_footprint/



As an anthropology student, I am quite fond of people. "Too many people" isn't an opinion, it's a fact of growth, don't you think there was a reason that up until 1800 the human population remained below 1 billion? Or that any other species on the planet does not overrun the place? Regardless of the population limit, 7 billion people is pushing what our habits can sustain as you have mentioned. But i have to disagree, we eat too much meat, it's cultural not necessary. We have managed fine for thousands of years with meat every few weeks, yet today claim meat to be the staple in a dinner meal. Permaculturalists and those who live off the land understand the availability of vegetables and seasonality, why should meat be any different.

I'm just saying that rather than trying to put permaculture into the cookie cutter shape that is 'sustainable meat' or competing with industrial meat yeilds (my vote goes for impossible). Altering habits of how much and how frequently meat is eaten and furthermore how much meat is really needed in the diet to remain healthy might be other important routes to venture into.
7 years ago
I find the real problem here is trying to supply billions of people with sufficient meat for their diet.

Meat was originally hunted and that was the only source, population is limited by food. With the advent of industrial farming there came industrial meat. There is no sustainable meat because not everyone can eat grass fed pasture meat or poultry, we have passed that point. We must either lower our consumption of meat or lower the population or both.

7 years ago
I searched the tinkering forum here and found only a few slight mentions of stickies, however I would like to see stickies utilized on this forum as it is on most forums. For those who don't know stickies are threads that have achieved importance or are fountains of information that can readily be accessed from it's specific forum.

Why stickies would help...

1. This forum has many pages of threads, the majority are helpful to individuals and others are great for many people, these group help threads would be a great asset on hand.
2. Threads that benefit from more ideas and innovations from other people will continue to morph and become more useful as ideas are integrated.
3. Otherwise inactive threads may see new light and be available for those in the site who may not have the time to thumb through all the threads.
As someone who stumbled upon this amazing spring of knowledge I am now left without, is there an updated link? The soultutor website is no longer what it originally was.
7 years ago
Thanks for the step by step brenda, I'll hold onto that while working out a good spot.

Karl, that's awesome! My sister in law actually works up at middleboro high school. Are your relatives in the agricultural business? I was hoping to find some good places to get some unwanted straw or manure that is burdening any farmers around here.

And yes the soil is quite sandy in some areas campy, we had just raked up the leaves in the front yard.. perhaps I should throw down a layer in the backyard where i plan to grow before the snow falls?
7 years ago
Hello everyone, I am excited to say that I have gotten the OK from my family to do what I please with their back yard near bridgewater, massachusetts. I just wanted to get my feet wet this upcoming spring and attempt a few projects to carry out and expand on as the year goes on. The three or four projects I would like to complete is planting and creating a thriving Cortland apple tree guild, a plot for vegetables, some plot for herbs/spices and possibly a hugelkulture bed (there are many dead trees around the property just waiting to be pushed down and used for this). Zone 5b.

Being my first time I have a few questions for anyone who can help me out.

1. What is the most practical way of converting the grass in the back to a soil plot for vegetables? Should I use a raised plot? What are some good starting veggies? Pioneering plants?

2. The soil is sandy, what kind of perennial plant ideas do you guys have to incorporate around the property? Hastas, bushes and trees grow well, other things need a little more help.

3. What are some things that you would experiment with if you were in this position? (Albeit animals...for now.)

4. There is risk for coyotes in the area, what kind of precautions should I take if rabbits and other small animals become more attracted to the property?

5. The yard is two tiered with a higher level where a forest is and then a hill moving down from the forest to a lower level area where the house sits, moss grows on parts of it, what would grow well in areas with hills like this?

Thank you
7 years ago
There seems to be some discrepancies here...

There are 3 ways to take DMT... Orally by Ayahuasca, Smoked by crystal formations and intramuscularly as demonstrated in the book "DMT: The Spirit Molecule". 

All three provide varying potency and length.  But DMT is what causes the experience, nothing else.

Smoking provides direct extremely intense experiences for short amount of time.
Ayahuasca will provide a milder experience for longer duration depending on dosage.
8 years ago