The fall has come here at our new forest/farm. The renovation on the bathrooms is almost finished and the months past have flown by. The question still remains: is self sufficiency a pipe dream, is it possible? This discussion, I’m sure, is common in households that have decided to turn their backs on the supermarkets, the food-consumer concentration of non-sustainability, and suburbs that offer comfort and the all-consuming security.
First, self-sufficiency. The problem, it seems, is energy. How to sufficiently produce and continue to produce the energy that it takes. There are two possibilities: add to the energy production or take away from the energy consumption. Alone, there is no option: we must take away our need for energy to be self sufficient. So, self-sufficiency becomes a community approach to living at some point, which (in order to be moral, to be healthy and to be virtuous) must be sustainable.
Second, sustainability. The problem is energy. How to continue to sufficiently produce the energy that it takes to be self sufficient. There are two possibilities…
So while self-sufficiency and sustainability are not the same they are reliant upon one another: to sustain self-sufficiency we must have sustainable energy sources. This is the catch and the secret. This is the unending education that I am reminded of as a look out over my new acreage and feel the damp coolness seep in, watching the golden leaves fall.
I throw another log on the fire and sip my hot coffee.