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Credit: Julia Winter

More questions for Geoff Lawton, including good information about how you could help at the Jordan project (if you can get yourself there). Geoff says you could travel the world today going from project to project if you are a good worker and a good person. If you're going to be an intern at Geoff's farm in Australia (Zaytuna), you will pay for that "master class." He does have WOOFers, one month would be the minimum and the really good ones will stay for a pretty long time, 6-9 months. The successful collaborations are like family--Geoff feels like he has multiple "homes" all over the world.

We could feed everybody on the planet with less than 5% of the land used for commercial agriculture? Geoff specifies--what he said is that we can produce the same amount of nutrition on 2-4% of the equivalent area. This is because the smaller area you garden (intensively) the more production and diversity you get. If we relocalize food production, things get much more efficient. Well designed systems are surprisingly productive. Paul recounts the story of the couple in Portland who were unable to feed two people just from their lot, without external inputs. Geoff comes back to comparing yields on nutrition versus just weight or calories, and he counters: why not bring things into your urban garden? Why be an idealist about this? He also says that he sees permaculture designs of the 21st century being more complex than in days of yore.

Geoff helps people start up their own institutes within his organization, but this is informational support, not monetary support. He's got things going all over the planet.

Talking about the online PDC, there's just so much information that comes at you (and you can watch and rewatch sections of videos until it makes sense). There are active discussions on each and every presentation. You will end up with an actual Bill Mollison signed certificate (a very fancy piece of paper, it seems). This is the original official PDC certificate, only given when Geoff is the main teacher of a PDC. The cost for the online PDC should be just under $1K.

Bill and David worked together on the ideas of permaculture, but it's Bill that started the movement. Geoff says he still listens very very carefully to anything that Bill says. He still reads and reconsiders the Permaculture Design Manual (that we are reading and discussing on permies.com!). Paul wonders if Bill has heard of him, Geoff says yes, he's taken Bill through the forums to show him what's up on line.

Geoff's students will have access to buying Bill's book at maybe a 25% discount.

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Location: Western Washington
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I'd be really interested to hear some more 'aquaculture' talk out of Geoff - he seems to be pretty enthused about it. Or perhaps as the topic of a separate podcast?
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