transition town

In recent years, Transition Towns have become a global phenomenon. They bring together individuals in a community who share the same desire to do the following:

  • tackle oil dependency,
  • address climate change,
  • and seize the opportunities offered by creating a more sustainable way of life.


No small task. So how are Transition Towns formed?

The principles of transition towns are based on several immediate needs or imperatives:

  • to reconnect with the environment, communities and landbase
  • to consume less energy
  • to act immediately, rather than waiting for government intervention
  • to work together to collectively create a more organic way of living

Each transition town begins by gathering a small group of people together, with the aim of engaging a larger community to tackle the following question:

“For all those aspects of life that this community needs in order to sustain itself and thrive, how do we significantly increase resilience (to mitigate the effects of Peak Oil) and drastically reduce carbon emissions (to mitigate the effects of Climate Change)?”


Tricky. So, what happens next?

The group work to raise awareness of climate change and sustainability in the local area, joining with other green groups, starting practical projects to build knowledge, and finally, launching an Energy Descent Action Plan.


What are the obstacles to creating transition towns?

The transition network sets out seven obstacles that might stand between you and your transition town, as well as advice for overcoming them. Some are hypothetical, so not every transition town creator will come up against these.

  1. Lack of funding The very first transition town, in Totnes, UK, started with no cash, and is now a huge success. Enthusiasm and resilience are far more important than hard currency.
  2. Those town hall types will just say no Overcome fear of the faceless bureaucrat, and actually engage with people in positions of power. Corporate awareness of climate change issues is growing.
  3. Green groups already exist in our community; there’ll be a turf war! Work with these groups, in all likelihood they‚Äôll appreciate the enthusiasm and motivation that new faces will bring.
  4. There‚Äôs too much apathy in this town Don’t hang around waiting for the community to come to you, engage directly. Most people in are already interested in locally sourced food, crafts and even local history, so just find your angle.
  5. Were all doomed; its too late to do anything! ahem, pessimism has no place around here.
  6. Do I have the right qualifications? I seem to have mislaid my PHD in environmental sciences The most vital qualities are those that can’t be tested in an exam: motivation, positivity, local knowledge, organisational skills.
  7. The task is too overwhelming, how can I do it myself? According to those who have already established their towns, the energy unleashed by the initiative develops its own momentum. In a nutshell, you’ll start something unstoppable. In a good way.
Looking for Local Green Activities? Check out GreenTowns & Take Action

So do you feel excited, motivated and ready to launch your Transition Town on the world? No? Then re-read this article until you are…


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here