Story by Russ Grayson reporting from Penguin, Tasmania
To get to this place we found the narrow lane we had been told to look out for and carefully descended the steep, winding, gravel road that took us through the tall timber into the gully below. There, we encountered the Penguin Community Garden and the organising meeting of the APC12 (the twelfth Australasian Permaculture Convergence) crew.
Meeting the crew gave us confidence that they will pull off a great convergence here on Tasmania's Bass Strait coast, in this small town that hugs the shoreline and where in the morning you hear birds call, goats bleat and chooks cluck.
A big picture focus
APC12 focuses on, to quote from the website, "…honouring the past achievements of permaculture and challenging us to find ever more creative ways to transform the future to a sustainable world."
APC12 will ask where are we now in permaculture and what futures could open for us. These are big-picture things that permaculture practitioners would probably do well to think about so as to define an effective role for the design system as we enter the Anthropocene epoch — the Age of Humankind — a time when humanity has a dominatng influence on the earth.
Applications close — soon
The convergence is scheduled for March 10-12, 2015, with the following two days set aside for self-guided tours.
The preceding three days — March 7-9 — are for the Organic and Sustainable Living Festival, the Permaculture Expo (a day open to the public) and the Introduction to Permaculture Part 1. Then, on the 9th, Introduction to permaculture Part 2 and the Australasian Permaculture Convergence welcome dinner.
March is the month when the island state's weather is at its calmest and mildest (I'm not trying to alarm you, but bring a warm pullover and a waterproof jacket — just in case).
Applications from presenters and workshop leaders are already coming in, said Caroline Smith, one of the organisers looking after the program (with Kerry Dawborn, Caroline was an editor of the book, Permaculture Pioneers). So, too, are registrations, said the person looking after that — and, no, you won't get in by turning up on opening day, cash in hand.
Here are the important dates:
Applications to hold a workshop, presentation or other activity close: January 12
Registrations to attend APC12 close: January 31 — this is a prepaid event, tickets not available at the door
APC11 took place in the town of Turangi, on New Zealand's North Island. APC10 was on Far North Queensland's Atherton Tableland.
APC12 is a homecoming for the permaculture design system. Holding it here in Tasmania is significant because it was almost 40 years ago that the design system was born on this island (I still recall then, when living in Hobart, being handed a copy of the book, Permaculture One).
I think it comes from Carl Jung's idea of the hero's journey, the saying that you go away, and when you return to where you started you really see the place for the first time. So it will be for the permaculture design system this March in Penguin, when, after its long and continuing journey across our land and that of Aotearoa (New Zealand), the APC returns to this green island, where, all that time ago, permaculture made its modest start.Visit APC 12 website for more information
Visit APC 12 website to register to run an activity by 12 January
Visit APC 12 eventbrite site to register by 31 January
this is a prepaid event, no tickets are available at the door