Transition US Newsletter - July 2009


It looks like Transition is hitting the big stage.  Rob Hopkins has been invited to give a TED talk. Former invited speakers have included Al Gore!

Have you noticed how everything seems to be ramping up?  We need Transition Initiatives more than ever!  We encourage and support all of you “Mullers” and Initiatives out there to press on, take heart and thrive!

Also check out recent press:



Transition Initiatives

This month, we welcome two new Official Transition Initiatives in the US, bringing the total to thirty-five: Hardwick Area Transition Towns in Vermont and Transition Whidbey in Washington. Check out the initiatives map and learn more about becoming an Official Transition Initiative.

Throughout the month, we post stories from Transition Initiatives about some of the wonderful projects they are working on. Here are some highlights:

Transition OKC steering groupTransition in Oklahoma Gathering Steam
Ever since our training in Albuquerque, things seem to be gathering steam. Two weeks ago, several of our members met with a local former minister, Kyle Maxwell, now executive director of the statewide group Oklahoma Disciples Foundation, Inc., to brainstorm on the best ways to engage the faith-based community...(read more)

Transition Santa Cruz in the News
An article by Alastair Bland featuring Transition Santa Cruz, the 6th Official US Transition Inititiative, "Santa Cruz Group Gears Up for Life After Cheap Oil,". Excerpt -- Transition Santa Cruz and its several hundred members firmly believe that, although dramatic change may be in the works, we can prepare for it if we reorganize the way we live...(read more)

Read more stories online.


Transition Training

This month we also welcome Seanna Ashburn to our pool of twenty-two US Trainers who have been working in pairs visiting communities across the country helping to prepare participants with the skills to fully engage in Transition. Download our guidelines and find out what it takes to host a Training course.

Upcoming Training for Transition (T4T) courses are scheduled in:

July 25-26 - Montpelier, VT
August 15-16 - Ashland, OR

Our webinars are in the works and will be scheduled as soon as the technology is in place, that is to say, shortly. We're excited to explore a variety of topics and learn from different presenters including Richard Heinberg, Starhawk and Michael Brownlee. If you have any suggestions about webinars you'd like to host or participate in, contact us for more details!

News from the Transition Network

Transition Conference

Conference Circle

The UK Transition Conference recaps are now on-line. Check out writeups from the 21 workshops and photos from the 40 open space sessions that took place. There is also a short film about the conference made by Positive TV.  You can find podcasts from the conference on Traydio, Richard Heinberg's presentation on Community Resilience Planning - "The Economic Crisis Changes Everything" (recording), as well as the presentation by Mary-Jayne Rust: Resilience of the Heart: From Transition to Transformation (PDF).

New Model Report on Food Security 
From Rob Hopkin's blog, "Announcing the Release of ‘Can Totnes and District Feed Itself?’":

food footprints

We are delighted, after many months of work, to finally announce the release of a major piece of groundbreaking research developed byTransition Town Totnes, Transition Network and Geofutures, with support from Landshare, entitled >‘Can Totnes and District Feed Itself: exploring the practicalities of food relocalisation’.  You can download the paper here

We've had a good response to our call for bloggers to join our blogging team and we will be featuring some new blogs in the next few weeks. Stay tuned!

October 24 - Day of Climate Action. What is Your Transition Initiative doing?

350 logoLast month we passed on Bill McKibben's letter to the Transition Community.  Our friends over at are organizing an international Day of Climate Action on Saturday October 24.  So far, people in more than 100 nations are taking part -— it's shaping up to be to be the biggest day of grassroots action on global warming ever.  But they're hoping for it to be much larger.  Here at Transition US, we came up with an idea:  what if Transition Initiatives joined in?

We could hold "teach-ins" on October 24 -- introductions to Transition in each local community.  Teach about climate change, teach about the significance of the number 350, teach about peak oil and the combined effect with climate change, teach about the lifestyle changes necessary to achieve that 350 goal, teach what Transition means. 

We will be supplying the Transition Community with presentations of varying lengths as well as some videos and template posters for optional use as well. 

Read on about how you can kickstart your teach-in.

Transition Resources

Crash Course on the Economy

crash course videoFor those of you who have been wrestling the facts from the opinions about just what is going on with the economy, we encourage you to watch Chris Martenson’s Crash Course (available on-line or on DVD) at or take his 2-day seminar.  Chris’ analysis cuts through the spin and leaves one with an even stronger conviction to build thriving Transition Initiatives in our communities.  

Here are two suggestions:

  1. If you haven’t read the Economics Addendum to The Transition Handbook, read it here.
  2. Consider asking those who have a solid understanding of the Crash Course material to present a DVD viewing and discussion for your local Initiative.  Everyone will benefit and you will see further community involvement and development.

Transition Guide to Local Food - Coming soon! 

localfoodcoverOur friends in the UK are working on a series of guides for communities on practical steps to Transition. The keenly awaited ‘Local Food: how to make it happen in your community’, the first in a series of Transition Guides exploring different aspects of Transition at a community level, will soon be published September 19th, 2009.  You can download the sample document here.  Lead author, Tamzin Pinkerton, answers a few of Rob Hopkin's questions about the book…Read more

Post Peak Living: Video, Courses and Guide

The folks at Post Peak Living have put their heads together to produce an introductory video, a preparation course and a The Guide to Post Peak Living to help people transition away from dependency on fossil fuels, quickly. For starters, you can learn how to reuse your greywater and grow your own food. Courses are based online and are led by an experienced instructor. 

Prosperity Without Growth?

Prosperity Without Growth report coverAlong with Peak Oil and Climate Change, the Economic Crisis forms the backdrop and context of these times.  Speaking at the launch of a ground-breaking report by the UK Government's Sustainable Development Commission, Prosperity Without Growth?, Professor Tim Jackson said “The myth of growth has failed us. It has failed, spectacularly, in its own terms, to provide economic stability and secure people’s livelihoods”.

If you come across any news or resources that you would like to see featured in the monthly Transition US Newsletter, please send it in!

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