All the nine partners in this project had the unfortunate experience of living during zero economic activities between 1985-1989. During the economic barricade, there is no electriciy and a litre of gas was being sold for $500(!!! ). The food prices were very very high, eggs were being sold at 100 times the regular price, AA batteries were each sold at $10, a regular candle was being sold for $5 each, a litre milk was $10 and there was absolutely no wheat products available. Since most of us are from small Northern islands, there was always a firewood shortage as well.
But the communities still survived and all of us had 3 meals a day! We listend to BBC and motor vehicles were available for emergencies. How did we achieve it? Through innovative local economic models and by bringing back some of the ancient farming/living techniques.
Natural farming methods were introduced and many new sustainable farming techniques were developed to handle the issues. Local inventors developed ways to use the candles 3 times more efficiently, University students developed DC to AC adaptors using recycled electronics to turn the bicycle dynamos into generators, news papers were printed on file folders since it wasn’t a banned item, daily morning and evening farmers markets were running the local economy, family meals were being cooked using just couple of twigs and the high number of generous local volunteers were doing everything from community clean up, road maintenance to teaching at schools for free! And best of all, everything was recycled. There was nothing considered garbage during that time.
We are all adamant believers that being a Canadian is a blessing! Canada has given us home, education, jobs and a high quality life. We believe it is time that we give something back to this great society. We learned a lot of useful techniques during unfortunate economic times. We like to transfer many of those knowledges as well as use our Canadian Engineering/Computer Science school background to improve the local farming and living systems.
We have been learning about the Canadian ecological and sustainable farming methods through seminars, food related courses and farm tours. We had a great experience and learned a lot while visiting local innovative and sustainable farmers.
The unique thing about Farming is that there is always a different new challenge to be solved in real time. We find this challenge as a motivational factor and always try to come up with a low cost sustainable and natural solutions.
Maple Moodu(Cover) Experiment
Global seeds in Canadian backyard
Low Flow Barrel drip system
Sustainable Low tunnel greenhouse