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Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Plan C: Consume Less, Conserve More, Create Community

Pat Murphy of Community Solutions has an important new book, Plan C. Pat was one of the people who studied Cuba's response to the abrupt collapse of its oil patron and provider, the late Soviet Union. Although people in Cuba definitely experienced hard times when oil imports dropped to about 5% of prior levels, nobody died. There were grave problems--Cubans lost an average of 20 lbs. in body weight, on a population that was already far less obese than North Americans--but starvation didn't happen. The populace rediscovered the power of petrochemical free agriculture, and so were able to survive the worse. (See "The Power of Community," a good DVD by Murphy and company for more info on this. It's an absorbing movie.)

Plan C, however, is for and about us, the North Americans who are used to seeing the world through a car windshield. It's about trying to help communities like Salem prepare for the new energy regime that is now clearly upon us. Buy it through Community Solutions or a local bookstore here in Salem.