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Environmental Values

Towards Sustainable Agricultural Stewardship: Evolution and Future Directions of the Permaculture Concept

Jungho Suh

Environmental Values 23 (2014): 75-98. doi: 10.3197/096327114X13851122269089


This paper traces the origins of the concept of permaculture and discusses the sustainability of permaculture itself as a form of alternative agriculture. The principles of permaculture are shown to have many views and perspectives in common with Taoism and with Buddhist ecology and economics. The amalgamation of these Oriental traditions can be translated into the Kaya equation and beyond. It is argued that future permaculture movements should focus on revitalising the communitarian spirit of traditional farming villages instead of building intentional communal communities. The paper also calls for more aggressive environmental-policy measures that support permaculture and internalise the non-market value of reduced fossil-fuel energy consumption and waste recycling.


Permaculture principles, Taoism, Buddhism, communitarianism, the Kaya equation, internalisation of externalities

REFERENCES to other articles in Environmental Values:

Ecologically Sustainable Rural Development and the Difficulty of Social Change. Brian Furze

CITATIONS in other Environmental Values articles

Editorial: Seeking Sustainability. Clive L. Spash

Texturing Waste: Attachment and Identity in Every-Day Consumption and Waste Practices. Gareth Thomas, Christopher Groves, Karen Henwood, Nick Pidgeon

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