PDC Reading 3/6 – P6 – Waste not

Session 6 – Permaculture Design Principle “Produce No Waste”

Topics and key points included:

Class discussion about ideas for group project
Grazed -v- ungrazed land
Continuous inputs from outside the system are not required if using local materials & producing no waste, i.e. recycling
Creation of abundance from cyclical systems
Ecological principles can be applied to any system
Food webs and trophic cascades
Soil disturbance can lead to soil erosion and loss of biodiversity
Natural regeneration is a catalyst for sustainability
Coppicing/pruning can accelerate growth of trees/shrubs and restoration of soil fertility, as root material is shed after pruning
Eutrophication (nutrient pollution), e.g. due to fertiliser or silage run-off, can result in algal blooms which remove oxygen from water, creating anaerobic zones which cause fish, etc. to die
Eutrophication results from failure to hold onto or recycle nutrients
Manure & humanure
Bacterial treatment of sewage
Septic tanks
Composting toilets – wet and dry
Bio-filtration, e.g. with the use of fungal mycelia or oysters
Composting – hot and cold
Compost-based bioenergy systems, e.g. biogas from wood composting
Anaerobic fermentation/composting produces biogas
Local resources and local jobs, businesses and communities
Straw can be used in many ways, including composting, mulching, building, mushroom cultivation, prevention of riverbank erosion, prevention of nitrogen loss from urine in the form of ammonia
Mycofiltration & mycoremediation – the use of fungal mycelia for filtration and remediation
Fungi exude enzymes that break down cellulose in plant material


Permaculture Research Institute Of Uganda – http://priug.org/




FMNR (Farmer Managed Natural Regeneration) – “FMNR: Everything Is Connected” – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p-terQL6RO0
Michael Pollan, “Cooked” – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=InbylC_BSWI
Paul Stamets, “6 Ways Mushrooms Can Save The World” – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XI5frPV58tY
Toby Hemenway – “How Permaculture Can Save Humanity and the Earth, but Not Civilization” – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8nLKHYHmPbo
Jean Pain, “The Power Of Compost, Part 1” – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n6A3wMYddDY
Jean Pain “The Power of Compost, Part 2” – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2FIdMp3jO00

Suggested Reading:

Many free pdf books on the Sector39 website

Gaia’s Garden: A Guide to Home-Scale Permaculture


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