It seems to me that PEP1/PEX1 is a useful Paul-ism that is shorthand for a curriculum/syllabus that helps to progressively build the skillsets necessary to work your land and provide for yourself in a low energy environment and with a low-to-no input ethos. Why would anyone want a curriculum or syllabus centered around building such skills? It's not like universities around the world use such tools as the syllabus to help organize the knowledge they're passing on, right?
In all seriousness though, I think the usefulness of PEP1/PEX1 is not just in the building of skills for someone who maybe ends up going to a PEP1 training on Paul's land and then tries to convince Mike Oehler to will them his land. I think it's usefulness lies most heavily in it's ability to organize the things which permies might not know they don't know into an easy to follow skill building agenda. I think such a curriculum is just what permaculture needs. And not just one curriculum, but many, because what I need for PEK1 here in western WA is going to be somewhat different than what Paul needs in PEP1, or what anyone needs in PEX1. And it's not just regional, but personal as well. I might spin up a PEK1: Cooking, because I love to cook, while someone else might not if they don't do the majority of cooking for their family/friends/community. Permaculture is not lacking for people who're willing to teach skillsets, but it's my opinion that a lot of the teaching in permaculture is lacking an organized progression of skillsets, ie a curriculum. PEX1 seems to offer that, with the quirky Paul twist that we all have come to love. Structurally, there's no difference in calling it a white-, green-, brown-, or blackbelt in gardening, etc., than there is in calling college courses 100, 200, 300, and 400 level courses. However, I think it's much more exciting to think about earning my blackbelt in gardening than to think of myself as having 400-level knowledge in gardening.
So, to really answer your question Paul, I think there is tremendous value in creating an organized structure for learning skills necessary to living a low energy, low impact lifestyle. More serious students of permaculture can use it as a credential on their "permaculture resume" when offering consulting or WWOOFer/GAPer services, and less serious students can have a reference that helps them build the skills necessary to implement projects on their own land in a low-energy/input/consumption/impact type of way. And of course, if Paul's PEP1 lists are TOO low energy for some people, Paul has graciously invited everyone to build their own PEX1 that is tailored to the way they want to implement their designs. A win/win for everyone!
My one criticism (constructive I assure you) is that it should not just be a list of progressively more difficult goals. Once the goals are decided upon, I think at least each belt level within a subject, and possibly every goal within a belt level, should eventually be accompanied by references that can help teach the student how to be able to achieve that goal. In a PEK1: Gardening white belt, I might recommend to people that they read "Gardening When it Counts" by Steve Solomon, "Growing Vegetables West of the Cascades" by Steve Solomon, and "The Vegetable Gardener's Guide to Permaculture" by Christopher Shein. Additionally, I'd probably recommend they watch "World Domination Gardening" from Paul, other gardening videos on YouTube, etc., or if I was really taking PEK1 seriously, I'd start making my own PEK1: Gardening training videos on YouTube, and perhaps be able to develop that into an income stream. I haven't started working on PEK1, so please don't take my recommendations too seriously if you live in western WA, but I think my point comes across. The value of thinking about permaculture skillsets in an organized, curriculum like fashion, with goals necessary to achieve a certain level of competency, as well as references that can help you achieve those goals, seems to me to have tremendous benefit no matter what you're doing with the skillset once you have it.
And now, I guess it's time for me to get started on developing PEK1.