Transition Towns is a movement that began in Totnes, England in late 2005, and since then has been spreading across Britain at a startling rate, and even to other countries including parts of the US. There are already 126 officially recognised Transition Towns, and a great many more which haven't yet gained official status! That's unbelievable for a movement less than 3 years old.
We were inspired by other transition towns in England, and in turn we inspire more towns. The more the movement grows, the more it grows in publicity and respect. It has already spread to other countries including the US. The Scottish authorities have made £250,000 available in funding for transition towns in Scotland.
That's why I believe it's the answer, because it has the power to inspire more people to action than any other environmental initiative before it. A common approach is to scare people with horror stories about how terrible the future will look if we -don't- take drastic action to prevent global warming, prepare for peak oil etc, which causes a lot of people to despair, switch off or go into denial. What's special about the Transition Towns movement is that it motivates people to get involved by showing them how great the future can be if we -do- take action.
The solutions not only help us to reduce our impact on the planet, but also prepare us on a local level to be reliliant against the effects of climate change, peak oil (global oil supplies are officially predicted to plateu in 2020 and subsequently decline, see this video for details www.guardian.co.uk/business/2008/dec/15/oil-peak-energy-iea) and economic recession. They also bring communities together and are a lot of fun! In other words, people are also motivated by feeling that they have much to gain on a personal and community level, even if they doubt that the rest of the world can change. The solutions even make sense if you don't believe in climate change or peak oil.
A couple of examples are: community gardens/orchards to produce our own food so we needn't rely on imports, and community renewable energy projects.
Transition Towns is so easy to get involved in. People can contribute as much or as little as they feel ready to if there's a transition group in their area. If there isn't a transition group in your area, all it takes is a small group of committed people to start one. To do so, just visit www.transitiontowns.org for all the necessary info to get started, together with the contact details of people who can help you.
Please reply with any comments or questions you may have. Together we can make this happen!
Edit 3/6/09: Now there are over 170 officially recognised transition towns! In Britain we are getting a lot of good publicity, Ed Milliband is paying a lot attention to us (he visited the national transition towns conference recently) and the Transition Handbook is the fifth most popular book for MPs summer reading!
Edited by Syrocko - 6/3/2009 at 02:12 pm GMT
Edited by Syrocko - 8/31/12 at 1:43am