Dec
30
2015
Andy Reynolds

Our experience of generating our own electricity for 25 years

5
Posted Dec 30 2015 by Andy Reynolds of the Ecolodge

We bought a house with a demolition order on it, not something that many people will do, then we rebuilt it, not something many people will do, and we always repair stuff, not something that many people will do – you get the idea. Read more …

Dec
29
2015
Dave Darby

Slavoj Žižek and why local democracy is not enough when there are big decisions to be made

0
Posted Dec 29 2015 by Dave Darby of Lowimpact.org
zizek

Ah, Žižek – he’s so weird, often quite inaccessible and yet so right about almost everything. Below is a video in which he is very accessible, and as usual, right. Read more …

Dec
28
2015
Richard MacKenzie

Getting into the allotment groove: reasons for getting an allotment

0

Recently I hosted a radio show where I asked the question What Does Your Allotment Mean to You?, what was interesting was just like the many approaches to growing your own, there were just as many reasons for doing so. Read more …

Dec
27
2015
Dave Darby

What will TTIP mean for small companies and local economies?

0
Posted Dec 27 2015 by Dave Darby of Lowimpact.org
stop-ttip

Promoters of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) claim it’s good for all business, but is this really true?  The European Commission (EC) and the USA say it will especially help SME businesses (small and medium-sized enterprises), not just multinationals. Read more …

Dec
26
2015
Dave Darby

How has the 2008 financial crash affected the wealth of the rich and the poor, and what can we do about it?

1
Posted Dec 26 2015 by Dave Darby of Lowimpact.org
richest1percent

Have we all suffered equally since the crash of 2008? Have we all shared in the austerity? Well, no – the gap between the rich and the poor is widening in the UK, the US and in fact, in the OECD. In the US, Robert Reich reports that 95% of economic gains since 2009 have gone to the top 1%. Read more …

Dec
25
2015
Dave Darby

It’s time to listen to the prophets

7
Posted Dec 25 2015 by Dave Darby of Lowimpact.org
symbols

Today, Christians all over the world celebrate the birth of their prophet. We’re not sure of the date of Jesus’s birth or even whether he definitely existed – but that’s not the important point. The important point is his message of anti-imperialism and love. Read more …

Dec
24
2015
James Dennis

Diggers and Dreamers Communities Directory is back with a 25th anniversary edition

4
Posted Dec 24 2015 by James Dennis of Diggers & Dreamers

This is the publication that inspired me to visit intentional communities, eventually join one – Redfield Community in Buckinghamshire, where Lowimpact.org was founded. It’s a handy directory of communities / communes / co-operative living in the UK and elsewhere Read more …

Dec
23
2015
Steve Byrne

Keeping the chickens out of the garden with a woven birch fence

2
Posted Dec 23 2015 by Steve Byrne of Lackan Cottage Farm
fence1

After a number of incidents where our hens ran riot through the vegetable garden, we realised that a permanent barrier was the only way to keep them at bay, and so looked around for a solution. Inspiration came when we visited the Ulster American Folk Park, and saw a woven birch fence. Read more …

Dec
22
2015
Dave Darby

3 shopping days to Christmas – a plea not to buy any more tat

2
Posted Dec 22 2015 by Dave Darby of Lowimpact.org
tat2

Last minute Christmas shopping? Well, this is our last-minute plea for you not to do it. I was recently invited to a party with a ‘secret Santa’ that invited people to buy presents for less than £5. It’s a nice thought, but it inevitably resulted in a barrage of plastic trinkets that won’t last until next Christmas. Read more …

Dec
21
2015
Dave Darby

Spain’s election means the ‘political landscape has changed forever’? No, not at all

1
Posted Dec 21 2015 by Dave Darby of Lowimpact.org
left-right

Yesterday’s general election in Spain ended the domination of Spanish politics by the Popular Party (PP) of the ‘right’ and the Socialist Party of the ‘left’, who between them have formed all the Spanish governments of the last 30 years. Read more …

Dec
20
2015
Dave Darby

Unless your house is old, you probably don’t have rising damp, and if you do, modern damp-proofing methods probably won’t work

0
Posted Dec 20 2015 by Dave Darby of Lowimpact.org
rising-damp

Twentieth-century homes tend to contain a lot of non-breathable materials – cement, metal, plastics, impervious paints and renders. Damp-proof barriers prevent rising damp, but the sealed, waterproof, non-breathable approach of modern building brings its own problems Read more …

Dec
19
2015
Dave Darby

How superstores destroy jobs and local resilience

4
Posted Dec 19 2015 by Dave Darby of Lowimpact.org
supermarkets-unemployment

A report by the National Retail Planning Forum (partly financed by supermarkets) found that in a catchment of 15km around 93 new superstores, around 10,000 new retail jobs were created and 35,000 destroyed – a net loss of 25,000 retail jobs (full-time equivalent). Read more …

Dec
18
2015
Dave Darby

Build your own top bar beehive

0
Posted Dec 18 2015 by Dave Darby of Lowimpact.org
top-bar-beehive

Here’s a woodwork project for you. If you want to know what a top bar beehive is, see our beekeeping topic introduction – but basically, it’s a relatively new style of beehive that mimics a space that bees would seek out for themselves naturally Read more …

Dec
17
2015
Dave Darby

The ridiculous (and hilarious) philosophy of Karl Lagerfeld

3
Posted Dec 17 2015 by Dave Darby of Lowimpact.org
lagerfeld

You probably don’t know who he is and to be honest, neither did I – I just came across his ‘philosophy’ (he calls his quotes ‘Karlisms’) and found it hilarious. He’s the head designer of fashion house Chanel, and so I don’t suppose you’d expect anything particularly deep from him. Read more …

Dec
16
2015
Patrick Boylan

Can I have a compost loo instead of a chemical toilet in a camper van or a narrowboat?

0
Posted Dec 16 2015 by Patrick Boylan of Toilet Revolution
camper-van-compost-loo

First of all, why would you want to do that in the first place? Well, it’s because of the toxic nature of the chemicals used in chemical toilets – but we’ll blog about that later. For now, let’s talk about whether there’s an alternative. Read more …

Dec
15
2015
Dave Darby

How to prevent desertification and reduce atmospheric carbon by increasing livestock

7
Posted Dec 15 2015 by Dave Darby of Lowimpact.org
desertification

Desertification is the process whereby grasslands slowly turn into deserts, and suggesting that we can help reverse this process by increasing the numbers of livestock that we run on grasslands sounds counter-intuitive, Read more …

Dec
14
2015
Dave Darby

Take back the city – if you’re not “proud that London is the natural habitat of the billionaire”

0
Posted Dec 14 2015 by Dave Darby of Lowimpact.org
take-back-the-city

People of Britain, are you proud that your capital city is geared towards attracting billionaires (that’s a quote by Boris Johnson by the way)? Read more …

Dec
13
2015
Dave Darby

TTIP: investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) may be illegal under EU law

0
Posted Dec 13 2015 by Dave Darby of Lowimpact.org
stop-ttip

ISDS is a legal instrument within international trade treaties that allows corporations to sue elected governments if they introduce legislation that can be shown to be detrimental to the profits of corporations active in their country. Read more …

Dec
12
2015
John Harrison

How to buy, dismantle and re-build a second-hand greenhouse

5
Posted Dec 12 2015 by John Harrison of Allotment & Gardens
john-greenhouse

A large good quality greenhouse can cost anything from £500 to well over £1,000, which can make a substantial dent in anyone’s budget. So, having decided that I really wanted a greenhouse, I scoured the local papers “for sale” columns. Read more …

Dec
11
2015
Dave Darby

Corporate cruelty

3
Posted Dec 11 2015 by Dave Darby of Lowimpact.org
hormel-cruelty

This particular corporate cruelty is down to Hormel (industrial food corporation and makers of Spam) and highlighted in a secret video made by Compassion Over Killing. But Hormel are not the only corporation involved in these kinds of practices. Read more …

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