Permaculture from GroenGemak
GroenGemak actively promotes Permaculture as a practical way of making our direct surroundings sustainable. By making it a sport to think out of the box we make designs that make sustainability pleasant. Who would not like to make their lifes more durable without sacrifice?
Permaculture is a collective term for sustainable design techniques. GroenGemak designs according to the principles of Permaculture in response to customer's wishes. Those customers may as well be individuals, companies or government bodies. We think we can add value to any size or level, in a way that will be refreshing to you and your visitors.
Two major forces make it necessary to go for sustainable techniques such as Permaculture.
Most of us will be aware of the effects of CO2-dissipation, en the Global Warming of planet Earth. Some of us already know that the locality of average temperature moves north with a speed that is 10x as high as trees could follow. Many have noticed that new animal and plant species find a place in their environment.
The major problems due to Global Warming come into effect when sensitive balances are tripped, causing nature to undergo vast changes. If the warm gulf stream stops for example, it will get rather chilly in large parts of the northern hemisphere; probably beyond what's bearable.
This is a lesser known problem that Global Warming, but it is at least as threatening.
Geologists have discovered that the production of minerals and fuels like oil follows a hill-shaped curve. It is generally believed that oil will reach the top of that hill around 2010. We have managed to climb the first half of the curve in only about 75 years!
The demand for oil follows a curve that rises ever faster; in the beginning this matched the hill-shaped curve of oil production, but it cannot continue at that pace because the production curve is already flattening. But our usage patterns will continue for some time because our children grow up and want to drive cars and heat homes, the number of industrialised countries increases and the world population as a whole is still growing.
A growing demand and a reduction in oil production must lead to sharp oil price rises. And as a result, worldwide economies will suffer dramatically. In the service-oriented western world, we will probably get in serious trouble unless we start focussing on more immediate means of survival.
Years back, Cuba was placed under a boycot and cut off from most fossile fuels, so they have already experienced a situation comparable to Peak Oil. This brought Cuba years of crisis, which were eventually solved by applying Permaculture on a country-wide scale. Cuba is now a healthier and greener nation than before the crisis, and its inhabitants prosper once more.
Instead of being caught by surprise when Peak Oil hits us, it is better to prepare ourselves. We currently have the means available to make a change, so it need not be as painful as the crisis that Cuba faced because they did not foresee the boycot and the resulting nationwide crisis.
Large amounts of fossil energe is expended on food. Every calory on our plates has taken ten calories of fossile fuel to produce. This is the result of dragging it around with tractors and lorries, and because there is a need to spray, fertilise, package and process waste. The easiest way to avoid these problems is to produce more food locally.
GroenGemak is an active proponent of edible gardening, both in personal gardens and in public green space. This need not imply ugly green -- few trees are as beautiful as the Walnut, and few flowers as attractive as Nasturtium. As these examples show, edible green does not immediately imply a lot of work, as long as you are willing to expand your mind set about food to reach beyond the annuals that fill our supermarkets. The design of such creative edible spaces is a major contribution that GroenGemak can make to your design.
Food is just one useful application of plants. In old times, plants were used to produce perfume, soap, paper, wind breaks, sun shading and so on. The trick is to find the optimal combination for a particular application or location. Finding such useful combinations is an important part of the design work by GroenGemak.
Besides this attention for plant-based solutions, GroenGemak can be of use for more technical mind set changes. Think of passive solar energie, general energy saving, and so on. We devote this website to information about such issues, but we also teach and consult. Or you can ask us to design a sustainable environment for your home, or your company. You are welcome to contact us for more information.
- GroenGemak offers Permaculture courses.
- Contact us if you have any questions.
- Permacultuur aan de Haarlebrink is an example project rolled out by GroenGemak and Rob's Tuinaanleg. Be sure to visit the photo diary of this community initiative.
- Peak Oil Organisation describes Peak Oil and posts developments.
- WikiPedia describes Peak Oil, also known as Hubbert's Peak.