Some tips on green living

* A pamphlet I published several years to poke fun at all the insipid ‘how to live green’ type articles that are so popular in mainstream magazines and to point towards what a viable response to the ecocidal dominatorculture.

1a) Smash capitalism, the state and all other forms of hierarchy and domination opposed to the continuance of life. This is the single most vital task we need to accomplish. If we cannot transition to a sane society based on the principles of mutual aid, solidarity, liberty in equality, voluntary social relations and gift economics, we’re screwed. For much of human history most of us lived without these oppressive systems. Some of us still do. Let’s take our lives back from them.

1b) Prefigure these principles in your everyday life – in how you relate to other humans, other animals and the natural world.

2) Eat, to the best of your abilities, with LOVE (Local, Organic, Vegan, Ethical) firmly in mind. There is no ethical way – nor is there any ecologically friendly way – to produce animal-based food for the number of people now alive on the planet. We don’t need animal food: it’s one of the single largest causes of anthropogenic climate change and it’s not even healthy for us. Cut it out.

3) Say no to greenwashing. 98% of all products that claim to be ‘green’ or ‘sustainable’ or ‘eco-friendly’ are lying (see the 2009 Terrachoice report, ‘The Seven Sins of Greenwashing’). Green capitalism is an oxymoron: you can’t consume your way to sustainability.

4) Say no to techno-fixes, or at least say no to techno-fixes as the only useful solution. You can’t fix the ecological crisis by mining for more metals and rare earths and besides, the elitist technotopians confidently pushing solutions on all those TED talks sound very much like the people that helped get us into this mess in the first place. Cutting down massively on consumption levels is a far more effective approach.

5) Relocalize: learn how to live in dynamic harmony with your bio-region, how to create new forms of local community, how to grow plant-based foods using veganic permaculture and bio-intensive farming and how to radically re-purpose urban space.

6) Walk more, run more, cycle more. Explore the place you live. Get to know it better. Turn unexpectedly left down pathways you have never before traveled.

7) Inform yourself. Watch films, read books, go to workshops, find credible sources of news. Speak to people. If you don’t have time for this, ask yourself where your time is going and who it really benefits.

8) If you’re of reasonably sound mind and body, take an entheogen in nature and reconnect yourself. If that’s not your thing, go spend some time in nature anyway. Alone. In silence.

9) Really get to grips with both the stakes and the odds so that you don’t give up when the going gets hard. It is going to get hard: the stakes are very high and the odds are not in our favour.

10) Once you have made peace with the stakes and the odds, make a commitment: to yourself, your family, your friends and your community; to women; to folks of other genders and sexualities; to people of colour; to poor and indigenous and marginalised peoples nearby and in far off places who bear the brunt of our ecocide; to birds and bees and fish and pandas and sloths and elephants and rhinos and snails and chickens and frogs and trees and moss and jellyfish and chimpanzees and wild grass. Make the commitment a real one, one that goes beyond clicking Like.

11) Start now.