Understanding nature and working with the flow rather than against it is what permaculture means. Have you noticed many countries incorporating clean technology, vehicles transitioning to electric-powered, and more importance is given to sustainable living? There is a long list of how the whole transformation is held for a sustainable future.
Permaculture offers one such technical approach for sustainable decisions. This blog provides information about permaculture, its origin, its ethics, and how it positively impacts nature.
What is the concept of permaculture?
The term “Permaculture” was coined in the 1970s by two Australians named Bill Mollison and David Holmren. Originally, the term used was permanent agriculture and culture, which blended into permanent agriculture with time. These two dedicated their lives to the sustainable use of land and wanted to create a society that works with nature rather than against it.
So the essence of permaculture is to design an ecological way of living in our households, gardens, communities, and even businesses.
Permaculture combines land, resources, environment, and people together via mutually beneficial synergies and creates a framework for sustainable ways of living.
Why was permaculture invented? Is it a new invention or collection of things?
The permaculture concept was brought into existence in opposition to modern industrialized methods and to make people adopt a natural approach to agriculture. In fact, permaculture isn’t a very new way of farming. Rather, it melds traditional, commonsense agricultural methods with modern ones.
In fact, permaculture incorporates other concepts more holistically to create an integrated system. Though growing food is an integral part of what permaculturalists do, it is not the only thing permaculture encapsulates. Rather permaculture is a lifestyle that consists of careful consideration and design to coexist happily with our earth and other living beings.
3 Ethics of Permaculture
Permaculture is not a mere green way of living based on some stern rules; rather, it uses nature’s core principles as the base model and strives to create fertile, self-reliant, productive landscapes and communities more sustainably.
So the main ethics of permaculture are:
1. Earth Care
2. People Care
3. Fair share or Future care
What makes permaculture unique, effective, and powerful is the design system that integrates intellect with ethics.
Only when earth lives we, human beings can exist. If we fail to keep the water clean and drinkable, the air clean and breathable, maintain the soils in rich and healthy condition, and safeguard the forests and their biodiversity, then we can’t expect appropriate living conditions for ourselves. Simply put, working with nature rather than against it, is what earth care is about.
People care is about the core of permaculture design. Because permaculture is designed with the health and well-being of people in mind, when people have a stable and secure life, they will start caring for the lands they live in. Also, to build and grow as a strong community.
We have only one earth; we must share it with all living things and our upcoming generations. So we must acknowledge our imbalance and allow surplus to support Earth care and People care. Technically, conserving resources and putting back abundance into the first two ethics, such as Earth Care and People Care, is called Fair share.
The three ethics collaborate and work together for more sustainable growth.
12 design principles of permaculture
- Observe and interact
- Catch and store energy
- Obtain a yield
- Apply self-regulation & accept feedback
- Use & value renewable resources & services
- Produce no waste
- Design from patterns to details
- Integrate rather than segregate
- Use small and slow solutions
- Use and value diversity
- Use edges & value the marginal
- Creatively use and respond to change
How did the movement spread from Australia?
In the late 1970s, the permaculture concept expanded out of Australia, and today many enthusiasts work hard to establish permaculture values worldwide.
You will easily find a huge number of permaculture programs and institutes actively creating more awareness about the core concept by literally living the way.
When did India’s permaculture movement occur?
Dr. Venkat was a guru and a mentor to many people who took up agriculture on ecological principles based in India.
The permaculture concept was introduced in India in 1987 by Dr. Venkat, Bill Mollison, and Robyn Francis via India’s first Permaculture design course.
Dr. Ventak introduced Bill Mollison to Narsanna Kopulla, and they worked a lot together in India during Bill’s tour and developed the Aranya farm and other social work.
2016 was a special year in India’s permaculture history because the first-ever National Permaculture Convergence was organized by Narsanna Koppula, the founder of Aranya Agricultural Alternatives, Hyderabad, Telangana. This year was the turning point because it witnessed many Indian youth belonging to the 16 – 35 age group.
Today around 60% of participants at Arangya’s monthly Permaculture Design Course(PDC) belong to this age group. And the Permaculture India Network has an active social media group with 7,100 members.
Benefits of permaculture
The main benefits of permaculture include improved human health, enhanced resilience to climate change, food security and other environmental changes, improved human and animal well-being, and reduced input costs. However, the practice of permaculture has its challenges, such as an infestation of pests and diseases, high labor input, and a lack of proper knowledge of how permaculture works.
Permaculture infuses the mindset to conserve, preserve and nourish nature. You can simply start from the small things. You can aim for a carbon-negative footprint and make it a goal in your lifetime.
I believe that now you have a better idea of what permaculture is about. Simply put, permaculture is not “Rocket Science”; rather, it applies common sense with a few basic design tools for a more sustainable future.
I hope humanity goes towards regenerative ways of living and more people get introduced to permaculture. I have mentioned the word sustainability throughout the blog. What is that word exactly mean to you? Or how you have infused in your life? Do share it in the comments.
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