Tag-Archive for ◊ Sharing ◊

• Tuesday, February 19th, 2013

Adam Werbach has been at the vanguard of the sustainability movement since high school when he founded a national organization of over 30,000 student volunteers who mobilized around environmental projects. A few years later, at the age of 23, he was elected the national President of the Sierra Club – the youngest in its 100+ year history.

In 2004, Adam turned the environmentalism movement on its head by publicly decrying its outdated thinking and lack of progress, given the scope of its mission. He challenged its followers to link their goals to other broad social and economic ones in order to have more impact.

Source: Peak Prosperity

It just does not make sense to constantly make new things from the things we have that are good. It doesn’t make us happy. It is expensive. The formal economy, in durable goods from toasters to bicycles to camping equipment to kids clothing to clothing, is about a trillion dollars a year in the United States  a trillion dollars a year. The informal market for that is much bigger. That means every time you borrow something from your dad, or you give maternity clothes to your sister, or you give a hand-me-down to someone else, or a neighbor borrows a shovel, that happens many, many more times than if you go to a store. It is decreasing, actually, because of the separation that we feel in the communities we live in. What ends up happening is, it is easier to order something on Amazon.com than to ask a neighbor and see if they have it.

What we haven’t seen is the same type of software technology and care and marketing, frankly, to the informal economy as we have in the formal economy. So when we start having the same things, you would expect to see when you go to Amazon.com to know when it is available, to see a picture of it, to be able to get it delivered. The things that you have in your friends’ closets, I think the world is going to start choosing that just because it is easier, it makes sense, it saves money. Actually, in the end, it is more fun to see your friends than to click around online. I actually think it is inevitable. The challenge is, we don’t yet have enough people throwing themselves into it. I think that is why the dialog we are having today is so important and what you are trying to bring about.

Things are the way they are because we made rules to make them like this. We have to change that. We change that with recycling. That has to be a step. Recycling didn’t exist 30 years ago in America. Now most people understand that you don’t throw away valuable resources. Reuse will similarly be a norm. In the same way, we spend lots of care buying things and bringing them into our home. We will understand that maintaining those things and putting them into other people’s hands will be similarly an important and well-respected pathway.

Category: Economics | Tags: , , ,  | 3 Comments
• Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

Source: BioEverything

We could have a heaven on Earth, but what have we got? You’ve got to lock all your doors, all the time. Build something and you don’t know if somebody’s going to tear it down. Go to sleep thinking you’ve done everything you can for your loved ones, and you wake up realizing life’s thrown you another curve ball in the form of unexpected problems. Work your fingers to the bone, and what do you get? Boney fingers.

Why is this all happening to us – the economy tanking, the crops dying in the fields, extreme weather events? Could it have something to do with the fact that humanity, and we as a country, have gotten a little lazy about helping our neighbors? Or gotten a little greedy about the world’s resources? You have to at least admit we each ourselves haven’t always been completely loving. So why would we be surprised when other people and even nature smacks US around?

The fact is the Earth as a whole is profoundly disturbed, and we’re going to have to make peace if we hope to survive. We have to quit making money doing destructive things, such as war over resources rather than self-defense. We need to quit trying to beat nature into submission by e.g. mowing lawns, and nurture ALL plants to grow to soak up the carbon dioxide. We have to quit making and selling poison processed “food” to each other, and quit telling poisonous half-truths to each other to justify the destructive things we are doing.

So you have to say to yourself: What is really important? That reminds me of another thing my mother used to say – “Share and share alike.”

For the most part our community gardening experiences have been a joy. We worked hard to build things, sweated working together, slept well knowing we did our best, and enjoyed that legal high you get when you do something out of love. But we have much more to do. For myself, neighbors are welcome to any food I grow, as long as somebody eats it. Unfortunately, some harvesters don’t know when to harvest, and so have picked cantaloupe, peaches, and pumpkins before they were ready. And children have been having food fights with tomatoes. It feels overwhelming sometimes to me that we as a society have become so disconnected with our own world that we don’t get it, for instance, that tomato plants growing in the dirt (fed by manures, composts, rotting dead plants and animals) are what goes into making pizza, spaghetti, tomato sauce, catsup, chili, etc.

Our roots are in the Earth. Every one of us. We need to eat. And we won’t eat if we don’t work together to grow food, which is not a given in this time of great change.

I recommend a book called City Farmer: Adventures in Urban Food Growing, by Lorraine Johnson. The hunger drama being played out here in Hazelwood, in which people of all income levels suffer for lack of healthy food (not knowing about nutrition and food growing), is being played out all over North America, and all over the world for that matter. This book chronicles radical efforts – from guerrilla gardeners planting places they don’t own to edible weed activists opening peoples’ eyes about unrecognized healthy food growing all around us – to regenerate our tattered web of life.

Rather than reacting to higher food prices in fear by being ever more cutthroat in dealing with our neighbors and environment, the only successful way to make healthy food accessible for all is for all the different kinds of people to try to be good neighbors to all the other living things – plants and animals and microbes – which are the source of our food.

The attitude of taking from other people and nature without giving has got to stop – or else.

• Friday, April 27th, 2012

Taxi sharing mobile appSource: Digital Journal

The taxi-sharing service will be known as Tous les Jours (tjrs.org) in French and Every Day (everyd.org) in English and will be accessible from a web platform and on smartphones. Essentially, depending on the specific departure and arrival points, users will be able to travel with one, two or even three other taxi service users.

The goal of this matching system is therefore to compete with solo car commuting. The ultimate goal of the project is to reduce the environmental impact of the trips people take, improve public health and help users cut down on their travel costs.

• Monday, June 06th, 2011

sharing agreementsSharing is an easy way to improve one’s feelings of well-being without needing a lot of money. However, most people have resistance to sharing due to basic trust issues.  Will the person return my item? Will they take care of it? Enter this very practical book from NOLO press in Berkeley to help facilitate sharing and live a better life by pooling community resources.

Source: Amazon

And as the yellow sun faded from the sky, someone would get the extension cords, others would bring out the chairs from their homes as a couple men would bring out a television and fifteen or twenty people would sit outside in the evening’s heat and watch. These people were poor. Sharing was a way of life for them. And you know, they seemed happy.

In the Sharing Solution, you’ll learn that sharing is work. There is a certain amount of trust required and sometimes agreements need to be drawn up. But you will save money, however even if saving money isn’t your goal, you’ll make friends and we can never have enough of those.

There are four hundred or so pages on sharing in The Sharing Solution and they cover just about every aspect of just about anything you’d care to share, from ride sharing etiquette to running a co-op. The book is full of practical advice and though not everything here will apply to everyone, I think there is plenty here that anyone can use. If you want to save some money, make some friends and go a little green, give this book a look. You won’t be disappointed.

• Friday, February 18th, 2011

You can be pleasantly surprised how much knowledge and expertise lives in your neighborhood.

Source: COCo

NDG Skill Share Gathering – Saturday February 26th, from 12 – 4pm at the NDG Food Depot, 2121 Oxford Ave (corner de Maisonneuve)

Éco-quartier NDG and the NDG Food Depot are teaming up to offer a sharing of practical skills to live more happy, creative, and sustainable lives. Learning is plentiful, everywhere, and need not come with price tags or expert degrees. We are all teachers. We are all students. We want to live with enthusiasm, so let us learn with vigor! Coming together as a community, we discover there is a wealth of knowledge and talent waiting to be shared.

The theme for this skill share is ‘Lets Do It Ourselves’ – as a community creating a sustainable environment, learning to reduce our expenses, and having fun together! Come one, come all, the curious, the enthusiasts, the students and the teachers!

Some examples of workshops being offered: fun with wild fermentation, sprouting, vermicomposting, make your own herbal salve, learn a natural beauty care from your grocery bag and much much more! Please register at ecoquartier@gmail.com or call 514 486-2727.

• Thursday, October 07th, 2010

The hand-writing is on the wall: sharing is a growing trend that will only accelerate with further economic contractions, resource scarcity and climate change.

We will have to figure out a new way to co-exist and this is the answer. Meet the economic revolution…

According to the survey below of 500 respondents, 60% made the connection between sharing and sustainability, citing “better for the environment” as one benefit of sharing.

Sharing Economies

The rise of sharing requires us to use a new language where “access” trumps “purchases”, and people are no longer consumers but instead users, borrows, lenders and contributors. All of this means businesses must redefine their role from providers of stuff to become purveyors of services and experiences.

Sources:  Latitude Research and Shareable Magazine

• Monday, January 26th, 2009

A discussion about free online music with the band Prussia who just released a free online album.

Via: Deep Cutz

“I think about a time when entertainment, storytelling, and music was shared freely, often ceremonial, with the whole community benefiting from the shared experience. Our reality is evolving at an increasingly rapid pace. I think that as some of us begin to move into a free society we project some of those attributes in our actions. I think it’s safe to say that other artists who share their work freely have similar intentions. We aren’t interested in a 20th century capitalist model. I think that the music business, as with most of what we think of as “business”, (i.e. corporate/sweatshop models) is naturally going to struggle as people in the society demand accountability and the right to live with the principals of mutual aid. Sure, there’s no short term profit, which is why the business isn’t giving anything away, but healthy communities that freely share information and resources are the only way we can have sustainable “profits”.

If there’s a line that is being crossed here, its the line separating old and new, slavery and freedom, extinction model vs. evolution model. That’s what is happening with wikipedia, online social networks, urban gardening, free art, and the reemergence of psychedelics. We are creating the world that we’d rather live in. Whether or not we can hold it together long enough to get to the promised land depends on how quickly we decide to move away from old belief systems and into a more holistic consciousness.”

• Saturday, October 25th, 2008

Toronto is looking into bringing Montreal’s Bike sharing service into town. Bixi officially launches in Montreal in the Spring of 2009 and promises to offer 2,400 bikes to share at 300 different stations located throughout Montreal.

Around 10am Oct. 24, a large flatbed truck pulled up to the southeast corner of Bloor and Spadina. As it unloaded seven sleek black-and-silver bikes, matching modular locking racks and a solar-power automated kiosk onto the street, a trio of workers dressed in matching red rain-jackets began demonstrating Montreal’s popular bike sharing system to onlookers. Bixi — a combination of bicycle and taxi — had peddled its way into town to show off its fancy new hardware to an envious cycling community.

“[This demonstration] is to give Torontonians a chance to see what a made in Canada bike share program looks like,” says Yvonne Bambrick, spokesperson for the Toronto Cyclists Union, who along with the Community Bicycle Network and Toronto Coalition for Active Transportation co-sponsored the event. “It’s pretty wild that it’s not just in Paris.”

Via Eye Weekly