Climate change makes normal winter seem cold

person covering face in cold

Damn this horrible weather! What a nasty winter we're having, eh? There has been a lot of complaining about the cold and the snow this winter. You can’t open your Facebook feed without hearing about the “unusual winter” and people’s personal gripes with the weather in their area. The polar vortex that dunked much of the country into unusually cold weather for a few weeks was, admittedly, … [Read more...]

Why the world needs Transition

new economy infographic

There are many approaches to the three main crises threatening civilization today, namely, climate change, peak oil and economic crisis. The problem is that most of them won't work. Weak and cowardly Most responses to these huge problems are too little, too late. For example, even though stimulus (spend more) and austerity (make big cuts) take opposite approaches to fixing the economy, wherever … [Read more...]

Staying on the train

time flies sign

The traveler has to knock at every alien door to come to his own, and one has to wander through all the outer worlds to reach the innermost shrine at the end. -- Rabindranath Tagore Nearly every day I speak with people who are confused, bewildered, disoriented, or conversely, extraordinarily clear about what is happening to them. A few years, months, or weeks earlier, they began waking up to the … [Read more...]

Confessions of an edge-dweller

skyscraper edge

The first in a series about inhabiting and acting in the edge-places of our civilization as crucial for humanity’s passage through these challenging times – and inviting you to share your personal edge-dwelling experiences. -- Ed. I’m an Edge-dweller. It’s not something I signed up for, or studied. It’s simply what I am. Over the past several years, I’ve begun to understand this as a … [Read more...]

The curse of slavery, the curse of oil

Still from "12 Years A Slave"

Against all odds, a film based on a 150-year-old, almost forgotten book has generated international acclaim and is positioned to sweep multiple Oscars categories. The recently-released film 12 Years A Slave is based on the autobiography of the same name by Solomon Northrup, a free black man who lived in New York state with his wife and two children before the Civil War. (Download the text of … [Read more...]

6 ways to become more miserable about climate change and peak oil

man in bathtub

It's bad enough that most middle-class people still have to struggle to keep their jobs and homes in today's Second Great Depression. But if you're even a little bit awake, then you also have to worry about longer-term threats: climate change, Fukushima, peak oil and the impending collapse of industrial civilization. There's plenty of reason for anyone to be depressed these days. Yet, … [Read more...]

Faith communities, foodsheds and the future

Holy Nativity Garden

You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, and praise the name of the Lord your God, who has dealt wondrously with you. -- Joel 2:26 We are the transformers of Earth. Our whole being, and the flights and falls of our love, enable us to undertake this task. -- Rainer Maria Rilke For the past six years I have been writing profusely about the challenges the earth community is encountering in the … [Read more...]

Fear for free!

Protester with sign against NSA

The big brouhaha over former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden's whistle-blowing revelation that the government is tuning in to every last thing We The People are doing has resulted in exactly the effect that an authoritarian government would most want to achieve: leaving us all quaking in fear and paranoia. For my part, I'm neither ready to declare Snowden a hero nor to … [Read more...]

Reassessing Arctic oil

shell-arctic-drilling-ad

Shell Oil will discontinue drilling for oil off the coast of Alaska during the summer of 2013.  According to Marilyn Heiman, Director of the U.S. Arctic Program of Pew Trusts, “[Shell] had some safety and management challenges that I don’t think they had fully thought through.” Shell, along with every other oil company out there, has a lot to learn about drilling in the Arctic Ocean. I'm no … [Read more...]

The happy ending

Sandy Stops Our Shopping

Below we present the first chapter of The End of the World by Reverend Billy, leader of the Church of Stop Shopping. Sparing neither fire nor brimstone, the good Reverend preaches sinners in the hands of an angry Earth. He calls on humanity to change its evil ways before the final judgment, inspiring the congregation to a faith that, after Hurricane Sandy, will not allow any of us to sit on … [Read more...]