Entering a Pacific Northwest Winter

BC_peaksWhere in the world is the Peak Moment road trip now? After stops in the Vancouver area, we’re on Bowen Island, BC where we’re taking a much-needed pause to catch up with ourselves and get rested. And to forge a new production process, starting with—ta-dah! (drum roll)—

Episode 250, just out. It marks a new phase for Peak Moment TV. It’s higher quality video (high definition). We’re using new music in a shorter opening. A simpler production process enables us to upload shows in a more timely way.

Interestingly, this show’s title, “How Shall We Live, With the Earth in Crisis” mirrors the very first video we produced in the early 2000s. “How Shall We Live?” was a tour of our off-grid home. It planted the seeds for Peak Moment TV, which burst forth early in 2006 after our peak oil wakeup.

Conditions have changed considerably in the nearly eight years since we started. Our episode 250 guests Carolyn Baker and Dave Pollard reflect on these, and responses open to us. We hope you’ll find it valuable and affirming.

Thanks for your support in all ways~

Janaia & Robin

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Friends Old & New around Vancouver, BC

VancouverAutumnStreetWe spent ten gorgeous-colored autumn days parked in front of Varouj Gumuchian’s residence in Vancouver, BC. Inside and out, his home is a living gallery of found art and an invitation to community, complete with bench and bulletin board beside the sidewalk. (Enjoy pictures from Our Autumn Around Vancouver including Bowen Island).

Janaia attended a one-day pilot workshop on “An Inner Guide to Global Warming” with Philip Be’er, who offers coaching and workshops for personal development including our relationship with the environment.

We visited with longtime friends Shelby Tay and Sarah Smith, who we met in 2006. They coordinated the Relocalization Network for Post Carbon Institute, then located in Vancouver.

We brought DVDs to coordinator Rick Balfour of a workshop we videoed on Peak Oil Impact on Cities, Survival & Culture – Vancouver 2006. We think this video is even more relevant seven years on, especially as the climate changes forecast then are accelerating now. We met up with Rick during his move to the Gulf Islands (hmm interesting, here’s someone in the know moving out of the metropolis).

VandysGardenWe also visited Jon Cooksey, our guest in How to Boil A Frog – Meet the Filmmaker (episode 187). He’s introducing First Nations people and perspectives into Canadian mainstream television series. If you haven’t seen this award-winning comedic eco-documentary, visit How to Boil a Frog.

Frog’s energetic co-producer, Vandy Savage, welcomed us to park our home in her West Vancouver house with a fine view across the inlet to the western tip of Vancouver. Here’s Vandy’s front yard rock garden.

Widening Circles

Haultain Commons Garden Seeds Neighborliness shows the latest—a new community front yard sitting area in Rainey Hopewell and Margot Johnston’s home in Victoria, B.C. (Claiming the Commons – Food for All on Haultain Boulevard, episode 185).

Our 2007 guest Andy Frank (Plug-in Hybrids Power the Grid, episode 107) now has a YouTube channel. His playlist PHEV engineering by Andy Frank and Team FATE includes his episode, plus two with his students “Team Fate” – Designing the Next Generation Hybrid (episode 113) and “Team Fate” – Under the Hood of a Next-Gen Plug-in Hybrid (episode 114).

Videos to Look Forward to

McCaskill_MuralWhy’d the Chicken Cross the Road? – To Meet the Neighbors. Don’t you just love the big chicken mural all the neighbors painted?

A Pathfinder for the Future Primitive with Miles Olson, author of Unlearn, Rewild.

Climate Change and Fukushima: Radio EcoShock meets Peak Moment TV. Radio EcoShock host Alex Smith published our conversation in his podcast Is This Peak History?

Growing Veterans – From Battlefields to Organic Farm Fields. What a way to reintegrate veterans into society – healthy for them and for us.

An Urban Farmer’s Ultra-Local CSA – Just a Walk Away with Vancouverite Gabriel Pliska, who bicycles between gardens and nearly everywhere.

Get on Board the Transition Bus with Camille and Charlotte, who visited social justice enterprises and worker cooperatives around North America.

New Videos from Peak Moment TV

ssp2_560Peak Oil Impact on Cities, Survival & Culture – Vancouver 2006. After learning about various powerdown and climate change scenarios, participants met in workgroups to brainstorm solutions and mitigations for various geographical areas around the greater Vancouver metro area.


pm246_550Natural Buildings for Urban Living (part 1). Wanting to demonstrate that “cities can be less impactful on the planet,” natural builder Lydia Doleman bought and remodeled a Portland house to demonstrate her values. Composting toilets reduce water usage while feeding the soil. Growing food shortens dependencies. Building materials were recycled and/or less toxic. She revised the floor plan to create spaces which encourage shared living rather than separate spaces. She also built Portland’s first permitted straw bale residence a cob studio and. Take a tour with Lydia in part 2. Episode 246. [theflyinghammer.com]

pm247_320Natural Buildings for Urban Living The Tour (part 2). The Craftsman-style bungalow looks normal on the outside, but the surprise is on the inside: straw bales inside the framing provide super insulation. Natural builder Lydia Doleman designed this 800-square-foot small-footprint house to last centuries, with its metal roof and strong foundation. She used reclaimed lumber and recycled materials extensively. Hot water pipes warm the earthen floors and replace energy-intensive concrete. Day-to-day usage is low impact: composting toilet, vegetative roof and rainwater catchment, LED lighting, and solar hot water. Episode 247.

pm248_550The Bean and Grain Project Outperforming Chemical AgricultureThe Bean and Grain Project is exploring bean, grain, and edible seed varieties which can be added to those already grown in Oregon’s Willamette Valley. Oregon Tilth co-founder and farmer Harry MacCormack shares wisdom and stories about farms transitioning from chemical to organic farming. His book The Transition Document: Toward a Biologically Resilient Agriculture is a compendium of organic practices, like using compost tea to feed soil micro-organisms. Dan Armstrong, the author of Prairie Fire, notes that the project aims to increase the diversity of staple crops and add resilience to the regional food system. Episode 248.

pm249_560Green Burial and Land Conservation“I want to die and be returned to the earth so that I have the least harmful impact… Not just to live that way but to die that way. I’d like to become the compost for a beautiful tree that bears fruit to feed the next generation.” Brandy Gallagher of O.U.R. Ecovillage relates how land trusts are protecting land for future generations by providing spaces for green burials. Green burials are an environmentally-conscious alternative to costly and toxic funeral products and processes. For our final act, we can “use our dying for the living.” (O.U.R. Ecovillage’s Commemorative Legacy Project and Green Burial Scattering Grounds, the first of its kind in Canada, opened early in 2011). Episode 249.

PM250_560How Shall We Live, With the Earth in CrisisWhen we actually face what’s happening on the planet, the picture isn’t pretty. Author Carolyn Baker (Speaking Truth To Power) is concerned by rapidly-unfolding climate change, and the fragile Fukushima reactor situation. Systems thinker Dave Pollard (How To Save the World) sees endgames for three inter-related systems—economic, energy and ecology—any one of which could lead to civilizational collapse.

We’re in a predicament we can’t fix, but we can choose how we respond. Carolyn suggests thinking of the Earth community, of which we are a part, as being terminally ill. Take time to reflect on our lives, make amends, and value the time we have. Both guests suggest learning how to live in community, being present for one another. Dave is intrigued to create stories envisioning life in a century or so, stories that can inspire the resolve to directly face these turbulent times. Episode 250.

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Produced by Janaia Donaldson and Robin Mallgren, Yuba Gals Independent Media
15504 Lone Bobcat Way, Nevada City, CA 95959     530-265-4244     info@peakmoment.tv 

 photos by Robin Mallgren. Watercolor by Janaia Donaldson.

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