le « 31th » friday five de Geoff Lawton


Hi, this is Geoff.

I can’t believe this is the 31st Friday Five. Through rain, sleet, and snow (all properly captured and stored according to permaculture design principles, of course :) ), we’ll keep doing our part to bring you the latest permaculture news and time-honored insights. Thanks for being with us on this journey, it’s an honor to have you.

With no further ado, let’s jump right in…

A stitch in time… China has long had a « grow the economy first, clean up later, » approach to GDP growth and environmental concerns. And the results are in (and still, unfortunately, coming in): 50,000 rivers gone, and 70% of fresh water polluted. This article is from a couple years back, but the lessons never expire.

Voila Veolia! The environmental services company has won the Australian Business Awards for the 7th consecutive year. What does this company do so well that we can learn from? Certainly not what these plastic-producing companies are doing.

Thin blue line: Remember that « people care » is one of the core tenets of permaculture. Law enforcement should enforce laws that protect, not try and emulate the military in its mindset and tactics. Fighting violence with « superior violence » is not a sensible first option. An insightful look at Craig Atkinson’s timely documentary about what’s going on in the US police system. This is the example the rest of world needs to see and not follow.

And now for something lighter: A nice set of reflections here about…toilet paper. The author (Morag Gamble) does some quick estimates on consumption, number of trees used, and runs through options for making some more eco-friendly choices. Here’s another one (also mentioned by someone in the comments section): Washing with water; it is, in fact, what most of the world does.

In case you missed it: An interesting analysis of culture, translation, and permaculture, a series of reflections that would also apply to most nuanced subjects. A second piece features the story and work of Planting Justice, an organization doing incredible work in Oakland, California. A third piece is a bit more technical, but insightful for those to whom it speaks: An overview of soils cation exchange capacity and soil fertility. If you enjoy these posts from our sister site, the non-profit Permaculture Research Institute, be sure to bookmark the site as several new articles go up weekly, or check out thousands of other past articles, here.

That’s it for the Friday Five – short and sweet as promised.

Feel free to forward to a friend. Anyone can sign up for the next batch.

Cheers, and have a great weekend

Your friend,



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