The Power of Neighbors (174)

pm174_605Jan Spencer didn’t stop with a permaculture makeover of his suburban home in Eugene, Oregon (“Suburban Renewal – One Backyard at a Time”, Episode 37).  Now he’s taking on the neighborhood! As a result, his neighborhood association is teaming up with city programs like Neighborhood Watch and Emergency Response to empower neighbors to work together. They’re transforming lawns and abandoned lots into edible gardens, and sharing knowledge about energy efficiency, permaculture, and preparedness. These grass roots endeavors help people feel more secure in their homes, because they’re connected with neighbors they can rely on. Episode 174. [].

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  1. Iselin Celestine says:

    Cannot but smile – Jan is most personable. Met him a couple of years ago at a small neighborhood festival where he was…community-building. I greatly appreciate his unceasing leadership in Eugene (and beyond) with regard to permaculture practices and many other endeavors. He has the ability to explain all of these, and the reasons as to why we would want to implement them, in a notably clear and understandable way. Forest gardening?? Wonderful! In complete accordance regarding “Peak road-building” as well as Jan’s observations and perceptions about the “market economy.” Such a substantive show – thank you all.

  2. Dave Champ says:

    Hello Janaia Donaldson ,
    I am writing from Australia, I think you shoulg look at the website of the
    ‘permaculture research institute’ of Australia they are currently developing a ‘worldwide permaculture network database’ ,
    their U.S. counterparts @ –

    both Bill Molison & Geoff Lawton will be Teaching a course in Turkey next month , perhaps you could interveiw them threw Skype like you did with the author from southern Scotland “uncivilized solutions” etc.

    thanks , & I Love your work , keep it up.

  3. Murray Carew says:

    Hi, great show. It was great to hear how Jan took his neighbourhood interactions so far into the gren zone.

    I watched this while printing and folding flyers to distribute in my immediate neighbourhood promoting my idea for a neighbourhood email forum. I got the idea from the “Front Porch Forum” website, which I read about in Bill McKibben’s book “Eaarth”. He wrote basically the same stuff in an article on Energy Bulletin

    While I can’t use FPF here in Australia, the site looks great and I hope it keeps expanding and innovating. I will be keeping up with the founder’s blog at:

    Thanks again,
    (Stafford Heights, Brisbane)


  1. […] Watch as the Key to Resilient Community? (Video) Tree Hugger News Add comments Image credit: Peak Moment TV When Jan Spencer destroyed his suburban driveway, turning it upside down to create a water feature, […]

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