How do we get to a culture and economy of sustainability?
I suggest it involves these design qualities:
1. DECONSTRUCTION AND REWILDING :
The earth has a layer of asphalt, concrete, and brick on it that reflects heat back into the atmosphere, causes desertification, and enables floods. It has inhabitants on it producing products that cannot biodegrade back into earths normal cycles, and becoming so attached to these products they have forgotten their true wild self that is deeply connected to the earth.
A deconstruction economy can begin by having its citizens start to have their concrete driveways and concrete backyards depaved and replaced with permaculture greenery. It will have schools, campuses (especially the environment/biology departments) , and businesses depaving the concrete around their buildings. It will lead to road segments in our neighborhoods being depaved and replaced with food forests.
A deconstruction economy will transition our commerce stores to being in nature – products displayed on rocks and branches, and their stock now second hand goods. It will transition our gyms to ecogyms – where different size rocks to lift, sticks to lever rocks, boulders to do dips on, trees to hang , dirt to dig, forms natural exercise equipment.
A deconstruction economy would involve less and less consumption. A network of coaches and workshops support people to consume less.
There will also be a network of coaches and workshops that help connect with nature.
Our neighborhoods can become the center of civic activity, activity happens in our yards, in our living rooms, and neighborhood commons spaces. It involves sharing clubs, gift circles, babysitting coops, tool libraries, supper clubs , open mic nights, homeproduced shows, mens circles, womens circles, massage jams, coworking spaces, free office hours. gardening groups etc.
How would this economy of deconstruction, rewilding, and neighborhood community work? It can happen with
commons based peer production and with new ways of economic signalling on the blockchain.
3. PEER PRODUCTION AND THE COMMONS
Peer production is (from Wikipedia), “a way of producing goods and services that relies on self-organizing communities of individuals. In such communities, the labor of a large number of people is coordinated towards a shared outcome…. Commons-based projects generally have less rigid hierarchical structures than those under more traditional business models. Often—but not always—commons-based projects are designed without a need for financial compensation for contributors.”
The Beekeeper model is one particular way of doing where in large part the community collectively works for free, with a smaller subset being paid to more fulltime faciltiators of the process. The product and services are free for the whole community. So for instance at Burning Man, the community produces entertainment, and shares foods to each other for free, while there a much smaller subset organizers, who work year round who are paid. Another example of this peer production model is Wikipedia there is a large community that writes the articles for free, and that also gets to read them for free. People are asked for donations, and these donations help support certain key Wikipedia personnel who help keep the whole operation running.
The way this would work is this sustainable, rewilding, community-based economy is that the community has free access to communal meals to the tool libraries, to babysitting help, to editing help, to massage, to food forest, to deconsumption workshops, to sharing circles, to nature connection events, to second hand clothes, to ecogyms, to music entertainment, to communal meals, to rooms in neighbors houses, and tent spaces in backyards. The community is providing these services to itself. Its a vibrant self-organizing system. Neighborhood lawns can also be converted to vegetable gardens, with the help of volunteers who are perhaps sleeping in these backyards (like WOOFers), These vegetables are then made into communal meals.
In addition the community is working to spreading the word,with pamphlets, by word of mouth, on social media, about why we need to eat hyperlocally from our backyards, to connect with nature, to depave, to consume less. That leads to more clients for depaving work, new people coming to the nature connnection and deconsumption workshops, more people eating hyperlocally. It leads to more people using the ecogyms. The community can exponentially grow into a movement.
Some of the services in this sustainable economy will involve donations. For instance clients can have an option to donate money or cryptocurrency for depaving work. In a normal capitalistic environment, each driveway might cost two thousand to depave. Five thousand driveways in a city would lead to ten million dollars. With donations, the amount fluctuates more, but it could lead to several million dollars being donated. If there are say 100 cities involved in this movement there can be hundred of millions of dollars donated.
(In coastal cities there are especially reasons to green the roads as they can then act as bioswales to stop floods from flowing. Also when coastal cities reflect less heat into atmosphere then inland area get more ocean humidity and are less vulnerable to fires. In hot desert cities depaving the roads and putting in trees provides shade. Replacing the road wth soil helps hold the infrequent rainwater.)
A subset of the ecogyms could also bring in money in a similar way that 24 hour fitness does, except it would be with donations
The money from the depaving jobs and networks of ecogyms could be collected by a nonprofit.
The money can then be used to buy up real estate that is turned into intentional communities that volunteers can live at for free. The money can also be used to communal meal food, communal cars, communal tools etc. And it can go to key community facilitators and workers as a stipend/salary, in similar way to how key Burning Man or Wikipedia editors get some money.
4. NEW ECONOMIC SIGNALS
Money is a way of signalling in our economy of what to product. But because we have society that is addicted to nonbio-degradable and extractive products, and because we have a moneyed class that often made their money from extractive industries, then the money will signal for us the economy to produce and consume more of these extractive products.
So we need a new signalling system. Time banks and local currencies are useful in this regards. And so is cryptocurrencies that are used mainly in the deconstruction, rewilding, and neighborhood=community economy because if the value of people using the currencies is more sustainable that it will signal to itself to do more of those activities that are complementary with the earth. Holochain is a cryptocurrency, one of a number, particularly suited for this endeavor.
As more people become involved in this movement, then the cryptocurrency will gain in value, and help the movement become richer.
The more purely gifting system described in section 3 maybe harder to get to at first so we may need the crytocurrenies to scaffold us there.
The time banks, and cryptocurrencies can work as complementary systems to gifting in this peer production economy. Some of the services could involve donations involving the cryptocurrency.