Permaculture is about creating a permanent, sustainable social cultures and agricultural systems.
The ethics and design principles have been distilled through the work of Bill Mollison, David Holmgren and many other pioneers. Their work was based on extensive inquiry into existing sustainable communities and agricultural practices that have successfully functioned for thousands of years.
But Permaculture is not about returning to a dark age. It indicates we should not be wholly dependent on gigantic, global and unstable systems for food, energy and resources. Local resilience plays a large part in Permaculture. The ethics and principles are timeless in that they can be applied to, and work for, any community.
Probably the most detailed reference for permaculture ethics and principles is David Holmgren’s book: Permaculture – Principles and Pathways Beyond Sustainability
The Permaculture Ethics are:
- Care of the Earth
- Care of People
- Fair Share (Set limits to consumption & reproduction, and redistribute surplus)
The Permaculture Design Principles are:
- Observe and interact
- Catch and store energy
- Obtain a yield
- Apply self-regulation and accept feedback
- Use and value renewable resources and services
- Produce no waste
- Design from patterns to details
- Integrate rather than segregate
- Use small and slow solutions
- Use and value diversity
- Use edges and value the marginal
- Creatively use and respond to change