Ethics and Principles

Permaculture is a design system that follows a set of Ethics and Principles. Designs are based in reflecting patterns in nature. It assists us to develop holistic and sustainable design systems within community. By integrating our designs as nature, we become beneficial facilitators within a holistic, sustainable system.

The Ethics of Permaculture

Earth Care

Caring for all living and non-living elements of the earth; (for example) animals, plants, water, air, forest, oceans, rocks, micro-organisms, and ecosystems.

People Care

Care for ourselves within our environments and care for others as we are all connected. Care for community, collaboration, and cooperation.

Future Care (Fair Share)

This encompasses the first two ethics, earth care & people care, as we are to care for the future and ensure there are enough resources for all and beyond our immediate consumption. This should return the surplus and protect resources for the future people, earth, and all sentient beings.

The 12 Principles of Permaculture

1. Observe and interact

By taking time to engage with nature we can design solutions that suit our particular situation.

2. Catch and store energy

By developing systems that collect resources at peak abundance, we can use them in times of need.

3. Obtain a yield

Ensure that you are getting truly useful rewards as part of the work that you are doing.

4. Apply self-regulation and accept feedback

We need to discourage inappropriate activity to ensure that systems can continue to function well.

5. Use and value renewable resources and services

Make the best use of nature’s abundance to reduce our consumptive behavior and dependence on non-renewable resources.

6. Produce no waste

By valuing and making use of all the resources that are available to us, nothing goes to waste.

7. Design from patterns to details

By stepping back, we can observe patterns in nature and society. These can form the backbone of our designs, with the details filled in as we go.

8. Integrate rather than segregate

By putting the right things in the right place, relationships develop between those things and they work together to support each other.

9. Use small and slow solutions

Small and slow systems are easier to maintain than big ones, making better use of local resources and producing more sustainable outcomes.

10. Use and value diversity

Diversity reduces vulnerability to a variety of threats and takes advantage of the unique nature of the environment in which it resides.

11. Use edges and value the marginal

The interface between things is where the most interesting events take place. These are often the most valuable, diverse and productive elements in the system.

12. Creatively use and respond to change

We can have a positive impact on inevitable change by carefully observing, and then intervening at the right time.