What does “cooperative” mean when you think of your rural electric provider? It’s probably not what you think. I’ve known through direct participation, observation, reading, and following the stories elsewhere, that rural EMC’s (electric co-ops) are, at best, nominally democratic despite perceptions or assumptions to the contrary. One of the people I’ve followed is Seth
AIRE’s mentor was among the founders of the first Earth Day in Berkeley . He argued that doing good work that benefits people and communities everyday would be more authentic and beneficial than a mere one day celebration. With his axiom in mind, let’s not be nihilistic about mental health in the title because, on
Community gardens are an asset to any city. If growing good food is a good thing, then using solar to power the coolers that store the bounty and heat the greenhouses makes a lot of sense too. That’s what Pearson Garden in Asheville is doing. The community gardeners will gather together to help erect the
These excerpts from Lee Camp, a comedian, writing on SheerPost are fitting thoughts for this holiday season for reflecting on a painful pandemic year still fraught with consumerism: …the problem is far larger than just advertising. Our modern culture, due in no small part to the market economy, values and favors and supports and highlights
It’s “…our garden. I’m just the maintenance man, I just keep it up,” insists DeWayne Barton, the humble visionary behind the Burton Street Community Peace Gardens in West Asheville. The first wave of solar at the peace gardens went up back in August. Two hundred donors came together to fund the project. AIRE developed, coordinated
The World Food Programme’s (WFP) 2020 Nobel Peace Prize and reading yesterday’s Washington Post story about mothers stealing baby food to survive gives me the sinking feeling that Christmas 2020 will not be “merry” for many. The global pandemic, wars, and climate change have 270 million people on the brink of starvation according to WFP.
Note: I heard Dahr Jamail on a podcast back in the summer saying he– a brilliant, award-winning journalist and author– can’t even write in the present moment. This is a guy who went independently to Iraq to cover war up close and in the streets. Now, instead of writing, he’s immersed in grassroots mutual support
Kitty Calhoun will be giving a Zoom presentation for POW (the advocacy organization “Protect our Winters“), and focusing on the state of North Carolina’s abundant and varied outdoor adventure settings, on Oct 29 at 5pm Eastern. This virtual meet-up on Zoom will last 15 minutes and then get to sharing stories, Q&A, and discussion about
NOTE: Kitty Calhoun, the author of this op-ed, is an old friend, rock climbing partner, and fellow Outward Bound rock climbing instructor who went on to become an acclaimed alpinist thanks to her drive, focus, ability to endure, and especially for her minimalist approach to big mountains. Now, decades later, she’s climbing a much bigger
This guiding question borrows from the title of a collection of essays, “WHAT ARE people FOR” by agrarian writer, Wendell Berry. It is provocative because it calls our values into question and challenges assumptions. Our conversations and activities at AIRE have recently asked a similar question out of the same vein– What is solar for?