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Perfect Storms Affecting Business and Life

We can learn a lot by looking to the basics. Survival strategies. How would you survive if you got dumped on an undeveloped island without tools, without community?

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I watched a documentary last night on honey bees. How their populations are dwindling. How science and agriculture have cooperated in finding what is causing a 30% decrease in bees... and how important bees are to pollination...and pollination is to our food supply and the entire sector of flowering plants. And how bees are facing a "perfect storm" of pressures on their survival.

“There is now a vulnerability to perfect storms, not just in a metaphorical sense, but increasingly in a literal sense,” said Daniel Yergin, the chairman of Cambridge Energy Research Associates, a consulting firm. “In addition to geopolitical risks, you must now add weather risks.” By JAD MOUAWAD, NY Times

And this morning I read an article about energy's perfect storm...both literally and figuratively.

Which leads to musings about "perfect storms" as a trend. As part of global climate change. It does seem that we live in an increasingly complex world that no longer can rely on natural "redundancies" for safety nets. In past eras we relied on community, family, nature's bounty, fresh water and air, a little house that provided a roof over our heads when all else failed.

But today, in this urbanized world in which families migrate great distances, and travel to exotic locations for vacations instead of strengthening family's thread in the safety net has frayed.

Jobs are no longer stable. We have a "freelance", "outsourced" business climate.

Communities are heavily mortgaged with complex technologies, sports arenas and other massive projects.

And now, nature is also over-leveraged with pesticides, particulate-filled air, contaminated water supplies, and with climate change -- more severe weather patterns.

The age of "perfect storms" has crept upon us while we were spending, growing, playing and living life to the fullest.

What's the solution?

Some might say to party hearty -- till the Titanic goes down. Others are truly concerned about their children and their friends and communities. If you have hope, you will look for strategies to bolster our chances of surviving these "perfect storms".

We can learn a lot by looking to the basics. Survival strategies. How would you survive if you got dumped on an undeveloped island without tools, without community? You would use your human ingenuity, your hands, your feet and you would use your brain to create a safety net first -- some stable shelter, locate local food sources, make friends with wildlife, work with plants and rocks and water as raw materials and sources of energy and leverage.

Those same strategies will help us crawl out of this "perfect storm" dilemma.

We need to secure our shelter, smaller, more realistic. We need to secure our food supply by fostering local agriculture (both with a "victory garden" and by fostering local farmers. We need to work with our hands. And walk with our feet. We need to understand local nature so we can work with it instead of polluting it and decimating it with over-development.

By deeply understanding that we are part of a living ecosystem, we can live as "native species" interacting with other species and natural forces. "Invasive species" live outside local natural laws and violate the basic rule of balancing relationships. By isolating ourselves from nature we fail to recognize that the earth is a fragile, balanced system -- a volatile, ever-changing system remaking it's fractured skin with shifts and strains around the surface of a massive internal body made of fire and brimstone. Gosh, that sounds biblical -- and I didn't mean it that way...but maybe that's the part of our deep human wisdom left to us by past survivors.

Earth's volatility is our destiny and our job is to dance lightly and consciously on her surface...caring for one another in this beautiful yet danger-filled reality. A measure of safety and survival is found in constructing strong safety nets.


Edited by Carolyn Allen, owner/editor of California Green Solutions
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