Michael Brownlee TRANSITION COLORADO

PEAK OIL

THE LONG EMERGENCY

GLOBAL WARMING

ECONOMIC INSTABILITY

“The Long Emergency is an opportunity to pause, to think through our present course, and to adjust to a saner path for the future. We had best face facts: we really have no choice. The Long Emergency is a horrible predicament. It is also a wonderful opportunity to do a lot better. Let’s not squander this moment.”
—Albert Bates (paraphrased) The Post Petroleum Survival Guide and Cookbook

“Inherent within the challenges of peak oil and climate change is an extraordinary opportunity to reinvent, rethink and rebuild the world around us.”
—Rob Hopkins The Transition Handbook

“The real issue of our age is how we make a graceful and ethical descent.”
David Holmgren Permaculture: Principles and Pathways Beyond Sustainability

The challenge of global climate change makes a shift away from fossil fuels necessary for planetary survival.  The impending peak in oil and gas production means that the transition is inevitable.  Our only choice is whether to proactively undertake the transition now—or later.

“I believe that a lower-energy, more localized future, in which we move from being consumers to being producer/consumers, where food, energy and other essentials are locally produced, local economies are strengthened and we have learned to live more within our means is a step towards something extraordinary, not a step away from something inherently irreplaceable.”
—Rob Hopkins The Transition Handbook

Local production of food, energy and goods  Local development of currency, government and culture  Reducing consumption while improving environmental and social conditions  Developing exemplary communities that can be working models for other communities when the effects of energy decline become more intense

“The most radical thing you can do is stay home.”
—Gary Snyder

Percentage of food consumed locally that was produced within a given radius Ratio of car parking space to productive land use Degree of engagement in practical relocalization work by local community Amount of traffic on local roads Number of businesses owned by local people Percentage of local trade carried out in local currency

Proportion of the community employed locally Percentage of essential goods manufactured within a given radius Percentage of local building materials used in new housing developments Number of 16-year-olds able to grow 10 different varieties of vegetables to a given degree of basic competency Percentage of medicines prescribed locally that have been produced within a given radius

“…I have become fascinated by how we apply these principles to whole towns, whole settlements, and in particular, to how we design this transition in such a way that people will embrace it as a common journey, as a collective adventure, as something positive… How can we design descent pathways which make people feel alive, positive and included in this process of societal transformation?”
—Rob Hopkins

“The future with less oil could be preferable to the present, if we are able to engage with enough imagination and creativity sufficiently in advance of the peak…”
—Rob Hopkins

“It takes a lot of cheap energy to maintain the levels of social inequality we see today, the levels of obesity, the record levels of indebtedness, the high levels of car use and alienating urban landscapes. Only a culture awash with cheap oil could become de-skilled on the monumental scale we have.”
—Rob Hopkins

…A creative, engaging, playful process, wherein we support our communities through the loss of the familiar and inspire and create a new lower energy infrastructure which is ultimately an improvement on the present.

“Transition is a replicable strategy for harnessing the talent, vision, and goodwill of ordinary people.”
—Richard Heinberg

Life with less energy is inevitable, and it is better to plan for it than be taken by surprise. We have lost the resilience to be able to cope with energy shocks. We have to act for ourselves and we have to act now. By unleashing the collective genius of the community we can design ways of living that are more enriching, satisfying and connected.

For all those aspects of life that this community needs to sustain itself and thrive, how do we: dramatically reduce carbon emissions (in response to climate change); significantly increase resilience (in response to peak oil); greatly strengthen our local economy (in response to economic instability)?

Care of the Earth— rebuild natural capital Care of People—look after self, kin and community Fair Share—set limits to consumption and reproduction, and redistribute surplus

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Our vision is a future where life is more socially connected, more meaningful and satisfying, more sustainable, and more equitable in a greater community of relocalized communities… Where production and consumption occur closer to home… Where long and fragile supply chains—now vulnerable to surges in oil prices and economic volatility—have been replaced by interconnected local networks… Where the total amount of energy consumed by businesses and citizens is dramatically less than current unsustainable levels…

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Set up an initiating group Raise awareness Lay the foundations (partnering) Organize a Great Unleashing Form groups Use Open Space Technology Develop visible, practical projects

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Facilitate the Great Reskilling Build bridges to local government Honor and engage the elders Create an Energy Descent Action Plan (EDAP) Let it go where it wants to go

..and design its evolution from the outset!

Collaborate where possible Co-operation, not competition

“Maybe they will tell stories about what happened in Totnes. Maybe this evening will be something that is the beginning of one of those stories”.
Dr Chris Johnstone – TTT Unleashing Sept ’06.

Up and Running
Arts / Food / Energy / Economics / Liaison with Local Government / Heart and Soul – the psychology of change / Medicine and Health / Housing / Education / Transport

“Totnes, the Nut Tree Capital of Britain”. Tree Planting, January 2007

Skilling Up for Powerdown
Peak Oil / Climate Change, Permaculture Principles, Food, Energy, Building and Housing, Woodlands, Water, Waste, Economics, The Psychology of Change, Energy Descent Planning…

• Cultivate positive and productive relationships. • You may be pushing against an open door! • Government should support, not drive. • Collaborate on community plan.

Start with a vision and then backcast  Incorporate Transition Tales  Base it on current planning documents

“Your EDAP should feel like a holiday brochure, presenting a localized, low-energy world in such an enticing way that anyone reading it will feel their life utterly bereft if they don’t dedicate the rest of their lives towards its realization.”
—Rob Hopkins

Focus on the questions  Unleash the collective genius of the community  Any sense of control is illusory

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Deeply rooted in Permaculture principles and ethics Cultivates positive visioning as a core practice Provides training in the practical skills needed for a post-oil society Recognizes Inner Transition, the psychological side of the process of change Encourages inclusiveness, openness to peer-to-peer feedback Promotes non-hierarchical, distributed decision-making Enables sharing and networking Balances inner/outer, left/right brain, masculine/feminine, young/old Provides a replicable model, a clear pathway Engages whole communities in the process Scalable and adaptable to particular communities Spreads like wildfire!

“The Transition process is one of acting as a catalyst, unlocking the collective genius and enthusiasm of the community, and harnessing the untapped power of engaged optimism.”
—Transition Town Totnes

“The Transition movement is the most exciting, most hopeful, most inspirational movement happening in Britain today.”
—Caroline Lucas European Parliament

“The Transition movement has harnessed the collective call to action and is a glue that is mending the torn fabric of our communities.”
—Cliona O’Conaill Carbon Descent

“I think the thing about the Transition movement is that it is a movement from the bottom, a movement of people relating to each other. It creates a pressure, it creates a momentum, and it is this momentum that hopefully becomes unstoppable and then carries the other parties along with it who may technically have more decision-making power, but because they are being forced from below will have no choice but to act.”
—Chris Skrebowski Petroleum Review

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CU Going Local (student group) Transition Boulder Transition Boulder Mountains Transition Capitol Hill Transition Denver* Transition Evergreen Transition Ft. Collins Transition Gunnison Transition Longmont Transition Louisville*

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Transition Loveland Transition Lyons* Transition Manitou Springs Transition Naropa University (student group) Transition Niwot/Gunbarrel Transition Orchard Grove Transition Salida Transition Westminster Transition West Front Range

1. Boulder County CO 2. Sandpoint ID 3. Ketchum ID 4. Cotati CA 5. Lyons CO 6. Santa Cruz CA 7. Montpelier VT 8. Portland ME 9. Sebastopol CA 10. Laguna Beach CA 11. Pine Mountain CA 12. Ashland OR 13. Berea KY 14. Pima AZ 15. Los Angeles CA 16. Denver CO 17. Whatcom WA 18. Mount Shasta CA 19. NE Seattle WA 20.Louisville CO 21.Newburyport MA

22. Paso Robles CA 23. Portland OR 24. San Luis Obispo CA 25. Hohenwald TN 26. Ann Arbor MI 27. Oklahoma City OK 28. West Marin CA 29. Tucson AZ 30. Greater New Haven CT 31. Santa Barbara CA 32. Stelle IL 33. Hancock County ME 34. Hardwick Area VT 35. Southern Whidbey Island WA 36. Culver City CA 37. Sunnyside, Portland OR •Media PA •Transition Carrboro/Chapel Hill NC •Transition Houston TX •Transition Olympia WA

www.TransitionUS.org  www.TransitionUS.ning.com  www.TransitionColorado.ning.com  www.TransitionColorado.org

Transition is a social experiment on a massive scale; we don’t know if this will work.  If we wait for the governments, it’ll be too little, too late.  If we act as individuals, it’ll be too little.  But if we act as communities, it might be just enough, just in time.

This work, just like the Transition model, is brought to you by people who are actively engaged in Transition in a community— people who are learning by doing and learning all the time, people who understand that we can’t sit back and wait for someone else to do the work. People like you, perhaps…

“Those who are involved in Transition Initiatives are part of one of the biggest and most important research projects underway anywhere in the world. You are catalyzing those around you to ask the questions that government still finds it very hard to ask, but that are essential to our collective survival. You are acknowledging that it is with us that real change begins, and that it is up to us whether we accept this responsibility or shy away from it.”
—Rob Hopkins

“In the face of almost certain uncertainty, our job is to rise to the occasion, to evolve—in our thinking, our perspectives, and in our commitment to make this transition as positive as possible. We will probably become some new kind of human at the end of it all—it is that big and that important.”
—John L. Petersen A Vision for 2012: Planning for Extraordinary Change

“Forget that this task of planet-saving is not possible in the time required. Don’t be put off by people who know what is not possible. Do what needs to be done, and check to see if it was impossible only after you are done.”
—Paul Hawken

“All things are possible once enough human beings realize that everything is at stake.”
—Norman Cousins