Permaculture starts from the characteristics of the natural ecosystem in order to establish a system of principles of agricultural, economic, political, and social design. Various branches of study and application emerge, making it a multidisciplinary field since it brings together architecture, social sciences, and solidarity economy, among other areas focused on the functioning of natural ecosystems.
Permaculture brings together the various skills and ways of life necessary to develop behaviors capable of transforming consumerist and wasteful communities into responsible and productive communities. The environmental crisis we are facing is the result of various factors. Especially the industrial and economic development that has put the protection of natural waste, flora and fauna in the background.
Permaculture as a science studies the relationships present in nature. According to its definition, it is a comprehensive design system that manages to implement productive human settlements in a sustainable way. Observing the interactions between water, wind, sun, energy, earth … To integrate them into the designs in which man and his activities are the center.
In the agricultural context, permaculture aims to establish self-sustaining agricultural systems capable of producing and using more energy than they consume. With this they are able to gradually increase the fertility of the soil. By making soils more fertile, it improves the cycle by making them closer to the places where they are to be consumed. This generates immense benefits for communities since it makes the production and consumption system a local circle.
Teaching us to use tools guided by our natural intelligence
Permaculture teaches us tools to work in favor of solutions, applying our natural intelligence. It seeks that we dedicate our time and money to things of vital value, mainly for the benefit of our nearby community, in order to create a better future.
Ethics of Permaculture
- Taking care of the earth:
Permaculture offers different ways to meet human needs without intervening in the cycle of other species. It also questions the appropriation of the land and natural resources by humans, they are even part of the legal system excluding other species.
- Taking care of people:
By reducing dependence on the globalized economy, it is possible that communities manage to direct themselves to domestic and local economies, reducing the factors that increase social gaps.
- Taking care of the future:
This is based on the idea of being aware that the world in which future generations will live depends intricately on the decisions we make here and now.
The 12 principles of Permaculture:
- Observe and interact:
It is necessary to give ourselves the time to observe and get involved with nature, from there we can be inspired by the creation of designs capable of solving a particular situation.
- Capture and store energy:
It is essential to create effective resource collection systems during times of abundance; the objective of this is to be able to use them in times of scarcity.
- Get a return:
The systems that we design must produce fruits that guarantee the survival of the community without jeopardizing the future. Productivity must be measured in terms of actual product based on the effort invested.
- Self-regulation and challenge-feeding:
We need to discourage inappropriate activities to ensure that systems continue to function well.
- Adequate use and value renewable resources and services:
Take advantage of the abundance of nature to reduce our consumer behavior and dependence on non-renewable resources. The excessive use of resources and high technology is not only expensive but can negatively affect the environment.
- Stop producing waste:
Valuing and making use of all the resources that are within our reach, nothing is wasted
- Design from patterns to details:
If we take a step back, we can observe patterns in nature and in society. These can form the basis of our designs, with the details filled in as we go.
- Integrate rather than segregate:
By putting the right things in the right places, relationships develop between those things and complement each other for support.
- Use slow and small solutions:
Small and slow systems are easier to maintain than larger ones, make better use of local resources and produce more sustainable results.
- Use and value diversity:
Diversity reduces vulnerability to a host of threats and takes advantage of the unique nature of the environment in which it resides.
- Look for the borders and value the marginal:
At the edges is where the greatest dynamism and richness is found within nature. The interfaces between land, water and air allow constant exchanges that facilitate the creation of suitable conditions for the development of life.
- Use and respond creatively to change:
We can have a positive impact on unavoidable change by observing it carefully and intervening at the right time.