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  • Posted June 9th, 2017

    Seeking a venue: course on how to create a One Planet Development

    Seeking a venue: course on how to create a One Planet Development

    I am seeking venues around the country to run an exciting course that will help participants prepare for starting and living on a One Planet Development.

    A One Planet Development is a way of living sustainably on the land, making a living, and demonstrating how this is possible not only without harming the planet – but actually healing it!


    One Planet Developments (OPDs) are supported in Wales’ planning legislation under Technical Advice Note 6. To apply for planning permission you have to produce a management plan. In other parts of the UK different rules apply but the principles are very similar.

    Here are some website links to give you more flavour in case you haven’t heard of it:

    http://theoneplanetlife.com/ – I run this website.

    http://revive-heart-of.wales/ – I also run this one – a practical project.

    http://www.oneplanetcouncil.org.uk/ – I am a patron of this, the One Planet Council.

    David Thorpe

    What distinguishes this ‘one planet’ approach from others that are similar is that by modelling and measuring the effectiveness of what you do, you can really know and prove that it works – or where it doesn’t.

    The idea is that groups of individuals or families can set up zero-carbon homes and land-based businesses such as horticulture and agro-forestry where they otherwise wouldn’t be allowed.

    OPDs typically add value to their produce to bring in an income using a ‘one planet’ label, and provide valuable services to the local community. At the same time they will reduce their ecological footprints, diversify what the land can produce with regenerative agriculture and help the land adapt to climate change.

    The practices and skills required for ‘one planet’ development are becoming an increasingly vital part of the transition towards more sustainable agriculture and a more sustainable economy.

    A One Planet Development in Wales

    So horticultural, agricultural and forestry workers can also profit from being aware of the co-benefits of these practices and being trained in the necessary skills.

    The course will cover how to find and evaluate suitable land, secure finance, and put together a management plan covering such topics as: crops and animals, regenerative land management, zero carbon building, renewable energy, water provision, ecological sanitation, low carbon transport and generating a viable livelihood by adding value.

    We will look at some existing examples and there will be workshops on ecological footprinting, biodiversity surveying, carbon accounting, visual impact, marketing, the cultural and community dimensions and how to navigate the planning system.

    You will turn your vision into reality by making a draft of your own management plan and by the end of the course have a thorough overview of what is involved.


    A key course book will be my book The One Planet Life: A Blueprint for Low Impact Development (Routledge 2015).

    The course could run anything from a weekend to a week. A day is possible but as there is so much to cover it would do little more than be a taster.

    If anybody wants to host this course the only facilities that I would need are a projector and screen to show presentations. Participants would need to bring a laptop and drawing materials.

    Please contact me on [email protected] or call 01550 721476.


    The views expressed in our blog are those of the author and not necessarily lowimpact.org's


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