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Author Topic: Ecosystem Restoration Cooperative  (Read 772 times)

Martin Gisser

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Ecosystem Restoration Cooperative
« on: January 19, 2017, 05:24:44 AM »
Here's the entry link to The Plan: http://ecosystemrestorationcamps.org

The link came up while I was collecting and examining material for a longish post here. So I can keep myself short first and add some more material tomorrow...

..................
First a little personal history:

Me and my alter ego, Florifulgurator, have been trying to plug this self-evident plan to save the Planet since 2009... with not much response. (The by far best result was that I met Neven in person before he started his now famous blog and was still living in Bavaria.) The way I framed The Plan was not very promising, of course: As an "epireligious quasimonastic order", since the two biogeophysical categorical imperatives of our era parallel the two classical monastic principles of poverty and chastity: Live carbon negative and don't multiply. A not so chaste corollary would be the imperative of maximising fun, to attract as many people as possible...

It soon dawned on me that there's not enough conventional spiritual zeal combined with basic biogeophysical insight alive in this world. And not enough donors and land to work the plan on the necessary scale. The Archdruid said about my 2010 comment, "the time won't be for a couple of centuries". Nevertheless I've worked out The Plan in Buddhist terms, from robes to carbon negative funeral. I'm aware that this lets Dr. Frankenstein pale in comparative megalomania: Trying to fulgurate a million-limbed carbon sequestrating monster with a rebootet Buddha head by spreading a mind virus. Here's the virus: The Two Mutually Dependent Hindrances for Post-Holocene Buddhist Practise:
1) Not carbon negative, no bodhisattva
2) Not carbon negative, no sangha
But they seem too non-self centered to fully grasp the serious implications for everything. One of my vain attempts is here.
.................

Well, the times have changed meanwhile.

The time has come to get serious with The Plan in different, more realistic clothing: The permaculture movement has gained steam and there are many who would want to volunteer in ecosystem restoration. And farmers around the planet also quickly get it. This better plan was inspired by John Dennis Liu, and a framework, language and strategy to engage farmers, investors and government was worked out by the Dutch Commonland Foundation.

John's film "Lessons from the Loess Plateau" from 2007 was a major reassurance for me that The Plan is feasible. But only last month I learned he's done lots of more work since, and there were similar (if smaller) such successes in Rwanda and Ethiopia which he has inspired and documented.

And now he wants to start an Ecosystem Restoration Camp as part of a larger project to restore and rehydrate degraded highlands in Andalusia, Spain - before the Sahara comes too close and all would be too late.

Here is a presentation of the concept of "4 returns" by Willem Ferwerda, CEO of the Commonland Foundation.


« Last Edit: January 19, 2017, 06:17:21 AM by Martin Gisser »
Why is the earth silent at this destruction? (Martin Heidegger ca. 1937)

Neven

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Re: Ecosystem Restoration Cooperative
« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2017, 09:35:50 AM »
Cool stuff, Flori. I'll try and watch that documentary with my family over the weekend.

We could use some restoration here in southeast Styria as well, what with all those zombie fields (as I like to call modern agricultural land). We're surrounded by them, and our hope for the future is to buy some of those fields and restore them.

Actually, not too far from where we live, there is a project where they try to sequester CO2 in the soil of agricultural land by creating humus again: Humusaufbau-Projekt Ökoregion Kaindorf.
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Martin Gisser

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Re: Ecosystem Restoration Cooperative
« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2017, 03:54:28 PM »
Actually, not too far from where we live, there is a project where they try to sequester CO2 in the soil of agricultural land by creating humus again: Humusaufbau-Projekt Ökoregion Kaindorf.
Great! Didn't know they are close to your place. I was aware of some of their project: They are also working with biochar / terra preta. http://www.sonnenerde.at/pflanzenkohle.1208.html But it looked a bit suboptimal to me. (Will have a fresh look again.) The Pyreg reactor is nice. But it seems they are still not into small-scale carbon negative home heating. Still burning wood pellets whole.

------------
Here's something I said on Facebook, commenting on McPherson doomerism,
Here is a project that I will join this spring in Andalusia/Spain. It should grow into a mass movement: http://ecosystemrestorationcamps.org

I have advocated something like this for many many years, but in a different framework which nobody took seriously. Yet. While this saeculum is totally different to any other in the recent history of Life, there are eerie parallels to the end times of the Roman empire, when the desert fathers tried to undermine the empire and founded christian monasticism. What is called for today is something parallel to the classical monastic vows, poverty and chastity: Live carbon negative and don't multiply. (Corollary: maximise fun in this practise, to attract as many as possible.) Suddenly the Ought follows from the Is (and the axiom of preservation of Life - which is the ultimate meaning of Life).

Methinks McPherson's doomerism is hokum, a kind of pseudoscientific antithesis to climate denial and lukewarmerism. (My worst-case scenario would not be human extincton, but some cannibals surviving on Greenland.) He presents a parallel to the christian end-is-nigh belief at the dusk of the Roman empire. That's why I welcome McPherson's doomerism to some extent. Maybe he inspires some to not just sit and wait, but do something meaningful.

So, in my view these are also times to rejoice. Our life has never been that straightforwardly meaningful. Now we "just" need to organize that...
« Last Edit: January 31, 2017, 04:13:28 PM by Martin Gisser »
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Neven

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Re: Ecosystem Restoration Cooperative
« Reply #3 on: January 31, 2017, 05:12:45 PM »
Great! Didn't know they are close to your place. I was aware of some of their project: They are also working with biochar / terra preta. http://www.sonnenerde.at/pflanzenkohle.1208.html But it looked a bit suboptimal to me. (Will have a fresh look again.) The Pyreg reactor is nice. But it seems they are still not into small-scale carbon negative home heating. Still burning wood pellets whole.


As for Sonnenerde, that's the company that delivered the Gründacherde for our house and carport. I actually thought of you when I saw that they had a machine to turn agricultural waste into 'vegetable charcoal'.

The company isn't super far from here, but not around the corner either (40-50 km), so I never went there on a tour or to get a couple of bags of Pflanzenkohle. They said they could deliver some if ever they have some other delivery nearby (otherwise it would be too expensive).

So, in my view these are also times to rejoice. Our life has never been that straightforwardly meaningful. Now we "just" need to organize that...


Very nice, I always like ideas/philosophies that turn things around. This is indeed a wonderful opportunity to give true meaning to life (that consumerism can't offer).  :)

Haven't had time to look at the Ecosystem Restoration Cooperative yet, but I will probably become a member soon.
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magnamentis

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Re: Ecosystem Restoration Cooperative
« Reply #4 on: January 31, 2017, 07:01:57 PM »
And now he wants to start an Ecosystem Restoration Camp as part of a larger project to restore and rehydrate degraded highlands in Andalusia, Spain - before the Sahara comes too close and all would be too late.

interesting project, send me a pm once you make it to southern spain, i'll come up from MA and buy you a beer.
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Martin Gisser

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Re: Ecosystem Restoration Cooperative
« Reply #5 on: January 31, 2017, 07:39:35 PM »
Haven't had time to look at the Ecosystem Restoration Cooperative yet, but I will probably become a member soon.

Since you know Dutch, it might be helpful to have a closer look at Willem Ferwerda and the Commonland Foundation. This is kind of the capitalist connection. (One thing I dread somewhat is Nestle or Coca Cola sponsoring a project, for the water. But then I half don't care if it profits the carbon cycle.) -- Anyhow, the Commonland Foundation is just a part of those helping to kickstart the Ecosystem Restoration Cooperative, and they are involved in a larger project with farmers in the area: The Asociación AlVelAl (Spanish link). Other players in the ERC are some high profile permaculturalists like http://world-permaculture.org

Here's a 11min video where John Liu lays out the ERC vision: https://youtu.be/5mAxgCXNmCU (in the garden of his house in Beijing).

P.S./Edit: Here's a link from another NGO supporting the ERC. It shows a bit of the recent history, how/where The Plan gained steam: https://soilsolution.org/2016/12/short-report-from-cop22/
« Last Edit: January 31, 2017, 08:23:10 PM by Martin Gisser »
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Martin Gisser

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Re: Ecosystem Restoration Cooperative
« Reply #6 on: January 31, 2017, 08:16:50 PM »
interesting project, send me a pm once you make it to southern spain, i'll come up from MA and buy you a beer.
Excellent idea! I love beer. Where/what is MA?
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magnamentis

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Re: Ecosystem Restoration Cooperative
« Reply #7 on: January 31, 2017, 09:33:07 PM »
interesting project, send me a pm once you make it to southern spain, i'll come up from MA and buy you a beer.
Excellent idea! I love beer. Where/what is MA?

MA = Malaga _ SE = Sevilla _ GR = Granada

old car plate shortcuts and still used for provincial road numbering :-)
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Neven

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Re: Ecosystem Restoration Cooperative
« Reply #8 on: February 01, 2017, 11:18:23 PM »
I've watched and enjoyed the Loess Plateau documentary, and I've signed up as a founding member to this initiative.
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Martin Gisser

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Re: Ecosystem Restoration Cooperative
« Reply #9 on: February 02, 2017, 01:07:02 AM »
Keynote Speaker John D. Liu at the Dutch Postcode Lottery https://www.postcodeloterij.nl/npl_en
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Martin Gisser

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Re: Ecosystem Restoration Cooperative
« Reply #10 on: February 08, 2017, 04:39:06 PM »
Short video report from "Redock Amsterdam":
http://www.redock.org/2017/02/01/february-meaningfulness/

Camp design in Andalusia seems well on its way. Location hint is here: https://m.facebook.com/groups/1206960359323785?view=permalink&id=1398226856863800
Altitude ca. 1100m. They even got snow in winter. Not the Spanish vacation dream. :-)
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Martin Gisser

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Re: Ecosystem Restoration Cooperative
« Reply #11 on: February 20, 2017, 05:08:22 AM »
Keynote Speaker John D. Liu at the Dutch Postcode Lottery https://www.postcodeloterij.nl/npl_en
Here is the video: https://youtu.be/8D2h7DOBwe8
It's about his life story, general global ecology and Willem Ferwerda's socio-eco-economic principles of four returns. No explicit mention of the Ecosystem Restoration Cooperative, but impressive images of the Chinese Loess Plateau. And he stresses a basic principle well-known in Buddhism: Right Intention.

Looks like John D Liu is the head I've been waiting for.
Why is the earth silent at this destruction? (Martin Heidegger ca. 1937)