13 Feb 2006
Kinsale Action Plan – sending up shoots around the world…
Since the Kinsale Energy Descent Action Plan was produced last June, it has been amazingly virulent, popping up all over the place, something akin to Japanese Knotweed, but hopefully more useful. I just Googled it to get a sense of where it is appearing and what it is leading to and was quite impressed with the results. A group in Edinburgh called Portobello Energy Descent and Land Reform (PEDAL) are attempting to build an urban eco-village on a site they saved, in an earlier incarnation, from being turned into a supermarket. They talk about developing an Energy Descent Action Plan for the area, and have drawn inspiration from the Kinsale model.
Pippa Johns in Brighton has begin to explore how the model might be used there, and recently ran a workshop on the subject. Richard Heinberg is using the Kinsale model as one of the inputs to his Powerdown project in California. The Oil Awareness Group in North Carolina in the US are using the plan as a template for their work. They write,
>The jump off point for (their work) will be the Kinsale Energy Descent Action Plan. This plan was created for a town in Ireland of only 7000 people. Obviously, there are a great many differences between our area and Kinsale. Nevertheless, the basis for the idea is a good one, and it’s always good to have an example.
>The plan is broken into different components of energy use, e.g. food, health, waste, transport, and most of these components (okay not tourism so much) apply to us here. Different topics can be assigned to folks who can then do more research and talk about it at following meetings. Having such a plan, no matter how simple, will help take some of the doom and gloom out of the subject of peak oil by showing a positive path towards powering down. It will also be a great document to share with local community leaders and politicians.
The Alliance for a Post Petroleum Local Economy (APPLE) in Nevada County list it as one of the key resources in their developing their own community plan. The Boulder Relocalisation Group write that it is “perhaps the most advanced relocalization plan to be developed anywhere on the planet to date. Long, but very worthwhile and informative…”.
Also, the Wood Connection site lists it as an inspiration. It is great to see it out there and influencing peoples’ activities. Do let us know if you spot any others, as you can see from the presentation Louise Rooney recently gave to the Town Council, it is great for people in the town to be able to see how influential it has been elsewhere. It also strikes me, with the work I am doing now trying to refine this process, that if something with such humble beginnings as a student project can ripple out and have such an effect, how powerful could a really well conceived approach be? It is all quite exciting really…