Monday, 21 April 2008

Permanence and Grace


PERMANENT PUBLICATIONS ( a UK publisher producing practical books, magazines and websites which enable people to reduce their carbon footprint and live more sustainable lifestyles, has just won a prestigious Queen's Award for Enterprise 2008, in the Sustainable Development category.

The new issue of their magazine just came out - you can subscribe online here. If you are trying to glimpse what the world could be like, beyond both the present mess and also the tyranny of the status quo I'd heartily recommend checking it out. Permaculture seems to be a uniquely generative point of view - not just in transforming the agriculture of whole countries like Cuba (back to a healthy, diverse, fertile & productive mode, working with nature rather than against it) - but also in providing the inspiration and intellectual underpinning for the Transition Towns movement & much besides. I met with Maddy (the editor/CEO) & Tony (ad manager) last week and I think there may be some very interesting lessons from permaculture for business too, particularly for entrepreneurial social ventures. It's something they are clearly interested in too with articles about the Totnes Pound, & the new community cooperatives. Watch this space. :J

MORE DETAILS (Why they won the Award):

The Queen's Award panel, endorsed by the Prime Minister's office, have honoured Permanent Publications because of its continuous achievement and unfettered commitment to progressing sustainability internationally. "All the staff at Permanent Publications are passionate about providing people with information and the means to live a greener, more creative future," says Permanent Publications' Chief Executive and co-founder Maddy Harland. "We are very pleased to receive this award as it is a clear indicator that the vital issues of climate change and peak oil are being taken seriously. We also welcome this opportunity to emphasise the strength of the grassroots permaculture network worldwide and its creative solutions to the problems facing our planet." Permanent Publications publishes practical books by critically acclaimed authors and the quarterly Permaculture Magazine Solutions for Sustainable Living, established in 1992 with a readership of 600 people. It is now read in 77 countries both in print and online, with over 100,000 readers. Permanent Publications' offices are based at a recycled naval base (formerly HMS Mercury) on the South Downs Way in Hampshire. The site is now The Sustainability Centre, an environmental educational charity which they helped found in 1995. The company is a low carbon operation and demonstrates a commitment to sustainable business at all levels. It does not have a rubbish collection but recycles, reuses or composts its waste. Its offices are heated by biomass sourced on site, water is heated by solar thermal panels and the toilets are flushed with rainwater. Company procurement policy is Fair Trade and ethical. Permanent Publications is active in supporting environmental projects in their local community, as well as nationally and globally. It has been at the cutting edge of sustainable solutions for almost two decades and winning the Queen's Award for Enterprise endorses the vital necessity of their work.

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