Transitioning to the Elm Street Economy (173)

pm173_640How can you contribute your skills towards meeting real needs now and in the future? Paul and Sarah Edwards, the authors of Home-Based Business for Dummies, focus on the “Elm Street Economy” of locally-owned businesses rather than “Main Street”, which we hear so much about, but is comprised mainly of franchises. In the Elm Street Economy, local businesses meet local needs — for food, shelter, clothing, heating, electricity, healthcare, and other products. Sarah and Paul suggest: Keep your job and pay off your debts, while gaining enduring skills for the future. A large number of today’s professions won’t be around in five years. [elmstreeteconomy.comletslivelocal.org]

Watch video | Audio | iTunes | Janaia’s journal Sarah and Paul Edwards: Careers for the Elm Street Economy

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Comments

  1. Iselin Celestine says:

    I did not realize that recent responses are prominently located on the “Conversations” page. Thank you for your own Sarah and Paul. I appreciate the thought that your community is putting into preparing for its most basic needs…should a crisis occur. And, your input is helpful in expanding my perspective as I have become aware of the issue of Peak Oil only vaguely in the last year – and more specifically within the last few months.

  2. Sarah Edwards says:

    I think it’s hard to say, Iselin, just how much non petroleum energy we’ll be able to produce locally in the future through alternative means. But here we’re planning on there being very little. Our water company believes we could produce enough energy via community solar to keep water going to most homes and enough electricity to supply a central eating facility for residents with two meals a day, a very basic health clinic and a central “table top manufacturing” site sort of along the lines of Tech Spot in Menlo Park CA, only on a much simpler basis – assuming we can obtain the material to produce needed items in this way. So I believe that whatever we will ultimately be producing locally will primarily need to be done centrally in our tiny town, unless folks have been able to install their own solar. A common installation for food production (which has to include solar green houses here due to our short mountain growing season), as well as for other activities could possibly co-exist along side home-produced produce and items that meet basic needs.

  3. Technology changes quickly and if localization of energy sources, which we are working to do with Let’s Live Local are successful, the web will be able to keep the pace of change moving ahead. We are focusing on basic needs here – just today someone volunteered to head the Senior Center Drive. We also have an Energy Fair coming up August 27. Our food group is active and with Sarah’s leadership, we are seeking alternatives to prescribed drugs.

    We agree the world will be different than one today – no matter what.

    Thank you for your thoughts.

  4. Iselin Celestine says:

    Most interesting – your historical mentions. I wonder how viable technology occupations will continue to be should significant concurrent crises occur? Even if we do not want to “think about” having to do without the technology that we have become accustomed to, would such products be worthy of our limited petroleum supplies? So many stages of manufacturing processes – nearly all dependent on oil. Just the packaging is astoundingly representative of this! As many of us may have considered, how can such processes be sustained even if the end product is to be a form of “green” technology? In my opinion, I think we may need to keep coming back to focus on what truly are our basic needs. Perhaps we will have the time to prepare and retain many of our current luxuries. Then again – maybe not. Thank you for encouraging ever more of us to consider how we can be a part of positive preparedness. The survey that you refer to? A friend of mine describes this as a perception that one has a “bright future” regardless of any changes that are transpiring or number of people who are struggling. And, as you allude to, we can have a bright future. Just a different nature of one than we have known.

  5. kenneth says:

    coherent,concise, and utterly logical……..transition has begun

  6. Great conversation, has reinvigorated my quest for new skills! Also highly recommend their class http://www.postpeakliving.com/sustainable-post-peak-livelihoods

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