TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 7, 2017
Eric Lee, A-SOCIATED PRESS
TOPICS: COOPERATIVE, FROM THE WIRES, SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY
TUCSON (A-P) — Following the general principles of watershed management design allows for variation within the limits of what works. Designs not specific to geographical watersheds are necessarily general, lacking in details, and therefore of general interest, useful for considering options.
When approximately 100,000 refugee applications have been accepted representing perhaps 20,000 non-divisible households averaging five humans each, all households will liquidate their industrial society assets to fund the purchase of WS0000 land within a region selected that allows for other near-future watershed management units. For self-defense, all watersheds in a region will come to the aid of any other watershed that is attacked. The guardians will provide for interwatershed transport of trade items and people during times of peace, and be able to mobilize all guardians to counter invasion from outside the Federation of Watersheds.
Land use management will involve selecting 20% of the watershed for support of humans and their mutualist plants and animals. Areas for development: agriculture, industrial and residential areas, with prescribed buffer areas, will be determined by best-guess methods, together with interconnecting transportation corridors within each watershed and between watersheds as trade routes. Developed areas will include one or more refugee centers to provide short-term housing for up to five years, work and construction areas, storage area, and supporting infrastructure:
WS0000 will not be rich in environmental resources. Refugees will have moderate financial resources and will pool resources to buy the watershed area. Private property will be personal possessions. The land will be relatively sparely populated and within the watershed area selected, existing property owners who refuse to agree to WS0000 policies will be given enough money to agree to move and live in luxury elsewhere. For a price, most consumers will sell their property and move to live in luxury elsewhere. Those who inherit property from those who refuse to sell will likely sell for a price. Thus, within a few generations, all private real estate will be acquired without conquest by force of arms (as usual).
If the long-term carrying capacity of a watershed requires 3 hectares per person and 30,000 hectares are available to be managed sustainably as an agro-ecosystem, then the carrying capacity is 10,000 humans. The initial population may be 100,000 people. By becoming early refugees, a lifetime food supply of dry goods could be acquired while the acquiring is good and stored in anoxic containers, e.g. rice, wheat, corn, beans, other grains and dry foods. The dry food would be processed as needed to support the surplus population. The watershed's ability to grow fresh foods would supplement the stored food until death by natural attrition lowered the population as it transitioned to self-sufficiency in food production. Given that the watershed area is poor, little trade would be supported requiring the watershed inhabitants to be largely self-sufficient. If the watershed economy was largely by hunting and gathering, then the sustainable population might be 1,000. If there was enough rainfall to support dryland agriculture (traditional Hopi farmers sustainably grew corn/squash/beans in an area averaging 10 inches of precipitation per year), then a population of perhaps 10,000 could be supported.
If current ability to produce food via industrial agriculture were used to divert production from feeding animals to produce meat/milk/eggs, to long-term grain storage to support one generation and their elders as excess human population, then corrective negative feedback loops involving Malthusian deaths and Calhoun type loss of social functionality could be avoided. Animal agriculture involving grain or feed grown on land that could produce grain could be downsized to only maintain breeding stock. The stockpiling of grain and dry foods could precede the widespread realization that such food storage (sans overconsumption of meat) is adaptive. When the need to transition to managed watersheds based on biophysical economies of enough become more evident, the stockpiled food could be distributed to new watersheds as they form provided refugees agree to United Federation of Watersheds policies (e.g. land use management, adjusting human/animal populations to carrying capacity).
Global Malthusian deaths secondary to overshoot could be avoided within all watershed management units provided universal birth control was implemented with provision to support populations in excess of carrying capacity until reduced by natural death.
All refugees would agree to universal birth control with abortion as backup in case of failure, and to no permitted births during a refugee's first five years during which time refugees could vote with their feet and leave. Thereafter, permitted births would be by a birthpon rationing system distributed by lottery until wanted births equals needed births, which would occur within 30 to 50 years of initial flux of refugees. If carrying capacity of watershed is 10,032 and life expectancy is 76 years, then the monthly allowable replacement births is 11. Period. No humans get a vote in matters of simple math. If the population was supported largely by a hunter-gatherer eco-nomy, then the monthly allowable birth rate might be about one. Assuming a managed agro-ecosystem supports ten times the population, then eleven birthpons per month would be rationed out. Over the centuries, as carrying capacity or life expectancy change, the birthpon ration would change. In temperate areas, birthpons would be distributed annually so births would tend to coincide with the most prosperous time of year. Humans and all other organisms can live within the carrying capacity of their environment or overshoot with emergent corrective negative feedback loops even though no one voted for them. Only humans, exercising foresight intelligence, have the potential to manage human demands on Nature's resources to avoid overshooting environmental production.
Each refugee center will include an area with resources for construction of huts using local building materials, e.g. waffle and dob, thatch, plam leaves, adobe, stone, tile, wood, brick.
Primary mobility will be by walking. Wheeled trovis pulled by humans or draft animals, from dogs to horses, may be used when needed.
Children will have access to Rosetta Bliss and Encyclopedia Bliss as required by the Constitution of the United Federation of Watersheds, but all will be encouraged to listen to and learn from Nature. What those who listen to Nature have to say will also be considered. Those who excel at reading Bliss to partake of the world of ideas may apply to the Federation Academy, and those who are accepted will be encouraged to return to WS0000. What they have to say will be listened to. Those who do not listen to Nature will be pitied.
Information is of the highest transformity and information not orally transmitted will be recorded on paper or other material. Due to limited trade items, no solar PV, wind, water or steam powered generators can be imported for personal use. No one will be depended on electrical technology. Metal, in the form of pots, knifes, and farming tools such as shovels and hoes may be traded for but will not depended on. Information will be contained within minds and transmitted mind to mind via lifelong listening. To think is to listen. Residents will listen. Copies of Rosetta Bliss and Encyclopedia Bliss will be considered and some information may be recorded, but will not be depended on. Citizens will be free to visit the Federation Embassy's library for information.
The ability to cook food is a practical necessity unless a watershed's population is less than would support a population of hunter-gathers who cook. Small cooking fires will use locally available biofuels.
Cooked or fresh foods will be eaten before they spoil and stored to avoid loss to rodents or insects.
If inhabitants live a hunter-gather nomadic lifestyle within their 20 percent, then high value services would only be available at the Federation supported embassy. The embassy would provide information in the form of Rosetta Bliss, which could be borrowed by nomads, and Encyclopedia Bliss, which could be borrowed one volume at a time, as well as library services including access to the info-ether. A nomad child who had an aptitude and interest in learning could become an autodidact, apply to the Federation Academy, contribute to the advance of information as a scientist, scholar, or artist, and endup an Academy professor or author educating posterity in the coming millennia.
The Federation embassy within poor watersheds would support a baseline medical clinic, nursing and hospice care, and dental clinic. The people will benefit most from a health care system, instead of a sickness care system, that starts with preventative care, provides basic medical care and ends with palliative care. Birth control would be part of a health care system.
Repair facilities are needed to maintain such technology as a watershed can support. High value services cannot be depended on, especially by poor watersheds with few exports and expectations can always exceed sustainable ability to deliver.
Those who think drugs are for recreational use will be provided therapy.
Needed consumption will be rationed according to need and surpluses by barter.
Following Federation determined policies is required to be a member watershed entitled to the benefits of trade, information, and protection. That residents can claim 20% of a watershed for use by humans, their domestic plants and animals—is a given. Residents can only choose to secede from the Federation. Population management, of humans and their livestock and pets, is a local issue. Exporting surplus population or exploiting the resources of Nature's 80%, is not an option. The carrying capacity of a watershed is determined by best-guess of those who listen to Nature. No one gets a vote other than in matters of preference.
Naturocracy involves listening to Nature. WS0000 will be a managed hunter-gatherer or agro-ecosystem 'ruled' by the best guess of those who listen to Nature, who could be wrong. WS0000 will have a special interest in what is needed vs. what is wanted. Mobility is a need, but walking works. Shoes may or may not be needed. Pulling a travois, with or without wheels, woks to move materials that cannot be carried The question of whether wheels are 'needed' will be considered. If wheels are considered a 'need', and can be make locally, then WS0000 will be more likely to adopt the use of wheels. If they must be imported, they will likely make do without them or with few because they actually can so as to not be dependent on such technology. A watershed that depended on bicycle technology, perhaps even with electric assist for the elderly or handicapped, would be far more dependent on trade. For most consumer technology, "nah, no need" is a viable response. The real wealth of a watershed might be better spent on higher value technology such as machetes or metal cooking pots than bicycles.
When what Nature is saying, metaphorically speaking, is not clear enough, yet action is required, a meritocratic vote will determine the best guess that could still be wrong, so consequences will be especially closely assessed and revoted on as indicated.