Envisioning Oklahoma City in 2020

A new blog, Envision 2020 “” Postcards from the future of Oklahoma City “” is a project of the Transition Town OKC group. It is a collaborative effort to “vision” our way forward through the coming challenges, which I often define as the “triple threats” of climate instability, peak energy, and economic irrationality. I was pretty surprised this morning when I checked the Fresh Greens blog (I am one of a panel of contributors there, mostly recently discussing the importance of soil) and saw a headline, Bob Waldrop Elected Mayor of OKC. I thought, “Dad gummit, I forgot to vote.” And, “How come I missed the entire campaign?” Then I saw that the dateline was March 7, 2014, so I was somewhat relieved that I had time to prepare for this eventuality. That Fresh Greens post, as it turns out, was also the first post of the Envision 2020 blog, posted on February 9, 2008.

Time travel is a wonderful thing. It would be nice to fast forward through the next decade, I suspect I would be able to get out of a WHOLE LOT OF WORK, but actually, the next decade has quite a bit of promise, so it would be shame to miss even a minute of it.

There are a lot of scary stories going around, and many of them are true, and bode ill for the future. But there is also a lot of wisdom and beauty and smart thinking and collaborating going on too. Sales of home garden supplies are going through the roof. The Oklahoma Food Cooperative continues to grow. People in other states are organizing similar cooperatives. Folks are putting down roots. The Legislature may be on the verge of opening all of Oklahoma’s urban areas to poultry and livestock production. (Bwahahahahaha.) Sales of new cars are down, people are spending less “” which means they are consuming less “stuff” “” and they are saving more. Gasoline consumption is down. People are interested in insulation and passive solar. There’s a lot of hardship and fear, but there are also signs of hope.

Yes, the government still doesn’t have a clue, but is that really a surprise? Is there anything in the history of the United States over the last 50 years that suggests that the government is capable of meeting the present crisis? As I have long predicted, events are moving people in our direction. While we aren’t quite as far as long as say Iceland, where protestors banging pots in the streets forced the resignation of their government, that is only because things aren’t as bad here as they are there.

I’ve also said that as the situation deteriorates, it will be important for the good guys to “get there the firstest with the mostest”, and that looks to me like its on track too. The present leadership of this country hasn’t a clue what to do, and this is increasingly evident to anyone who is paying a bit of attention to what is going on.

The only practical and useful alternatives are found in the peak oil/permaculture/frugalista/sustainability movements. We knew this crisis was coming and we know the way out of it into something better.

As the situation continues to go from bad to worse, we need to continue doing what we are doing now “” creating practical, effective, and useful alternative structures in the midst of the collapsing ruins of the old. Kudos to Transition Town OKC for taking this to a new level, right here in Okie City.

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