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Alan Sharp
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Kuroshio, Kochi, Japan
Climate Zone:
Warm Temperate

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(projects i'm involved in)

Dion Workman Hamish Murphy James R. Diegel Kevin Thien Nick Sikorski Nikita Vout Simon Carrier
Cecilia Macaulay Dion Workman Geoff Lawton Kevin Thien

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January Classes

Posted by Alan Sharp about 12 years ago

Update on events we have held or attended in January. February's plan is to start some more practical projects and our topic is water.

We held our January monthly lectures on patterns. A lot of patterns can be found in the local traditions here, and are still practised by natural farmers. Everyone has their unique patterns for farming but follow some general ones. More on some of these hopefully in the future.

But they don't call them patterns - for local farmers its instinctive. However, for those moving to sustainability, providing the theory helps give understanding as to why things are done in certain ways. And then each can develop their own unique style.

While researching for the lecture, I was shown a book which is called 'tenteki no hanashi' - roughly means story of pests. Its actually a children's book but the simple phrases and pictures makes the ideas easy to understand. Even for adults, I found it a great way to find out about different 'pests' found here and the beneficial species that control them.

Lastly, we were invited to give a presentation, recently, at a workshop for budding entrepreneurs in the Kochi region. This is a two year grant funded initiative, in this region, to train budding local young entrepreneurs. I focused on why sustainability and permaculture matters and is relevant to their business ideas and thinking as well as how its important to think sustainably not only ourselves but our societies. And for me, this presented a great opportunity to raise awareness to a wider audience, to show the appeal of permaculture for everyone and to encourage more thinking about sustainable business practices.

This was the last of their workshops and we received very positive feedback from both students and the organisers - who are all local business owners. The students will be presenting their final business plans at a public meeting in February. I looking forward now to see how they have considered and present permaculture in their plans.

The February monthly class is about water. Even here in Kochi, where water is perhaps not considered a scarce resource, people comment that mountain streams and waterfalls seem to have much less water nowadays than 30 or 40 years ago.

The topic of water will give more opportunity for those who prefer the more practical aspects. And for us to start working on some practical solutions.

As well as solar, microhydro is often considered a possible good energy source locally as well as used traditionally in rice growing. Picture is reconstruction of a traditional local waterwheel used to pump water into the rice fields. So looking at building a waterwheel.


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James R. Diegel
James R. Diegel : Brilliant... I'm curious to know if you are doing these courses in Japanese or English... I'm looking at doing some similar things here in Osaka... On a side note water is a great place to begin... for my PDC in NZ one of my instructors was a water engineer and one of the field trips we did looked at solar water heating on a self made system... very cool stuff indeed.
Posted almost 12 years ago

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My Permaculture Qualifications
Permaculture Design Certificate
Type: Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) course
Verifying teacher: Joanna Pearsall
Other Teachers: Bryan Innes
Location: Waiheke Island, NZ
Date: May 2010
Other course verified
PDC Teacher Training
Type: Teacher Training
Teacher: Geoff Lawton
Location: PRI, Zaytuna Farm, Australia
Date: May 2010

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