Why a local blog on sustainability? Plenty of blogs and other websites are dealing with sustainability issues at a national or international level, as well as plenty of bloggers here in OKC who write on trying to live sustainably. I suppose the real impetus behind this collaborative blogging effort, is a desire to employ the Web 2.0 phenomenon in creating a center of discussion specific to the Oklahoma City sustainable community and its geographical neighbors. In the spirit of Wendell Berry we recognize the essential value of grounding our efforts in the community instead of attempting to swim against the current of our culture alone.
We’re not pretending any special authority, though some of our contributors have vast experience and stunning accomplishments behind them. Instead, we offer our collective experience in a desire to spread what knowledge we have acquired and hopefully see the nucleus of our local sustainable movement grow. We read and write, just as civilized humanity has always done, in search of a better world for the people we love. We’ve recruited a slate of contributors who represent a broad spectrum of interests, ages, experience and industries. As this blog-journey progresses, we’ll discuss a myriad of ideas both familiar and novel, but the theme I’d like to establish here at our embarkation is local economy in an intentional community.
One of the forces that have pushed our species and our biosphere into dire circumstances is the specialization and segmentation of our society. While allowing for greater efficiency in production (and thereby consumption), this trend has also encouraged us to remove our livelihoods from our lives and the local community that once sheltered and sustained them. While consuming for the benefit of distant multi-national corporations has well documented deleterious effects on the health of our planet, working and buying in the local economy not only improves the quality of the community where we all live together, it shrinks the distance our various endeavors need to travel before they reach resolution. That means more time (both personal and professional) spent at home and less energy wasted on travel and transport. This simple arithmetic is more profound, though, than a method of reducing our commute times and carbon footprints. By living our lives primarily in the local economy, we take a step toward a safer, healthier, and more intentional community.
In the future I’ll look at specific ways I’ve found to “localize” my own life, but for now, I just want to step up to the microphone and shout what I’ve seen written under the gathering clouds of our many ecological crises. The changes we need for the future have to happen somewhere; in fact they need to happen in a great many somewheres. This one is ours.