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2.3.3 What About Something a Bit More Radical?

Two of the Discourses Dryzek (2005) identifies as radical and imaginative: green politics and green consciousness. These two come closest to embodying the NEP. Green politics includes green parties, social ecology, environmental justice, environmentalism and the global poor, and anti-globalization and global justice. Green consciousness includes deep ecology, ecofeminism, bioregionalism, ecological citizenship, lifestyle greens, and eco-theology. Bioregionalism is a political, cultural, and ecological system or set of views based on naturally defined areas called bioregions, defined through physical and environmental features (e.g., watershed boundaries). The determination of a bioregion is also a cultural phenomenon influenced by local populations, knowledge, and solutions.

Ecotrust and Bioregionalism Ecotrust, based in Portland, OR, is an economic development and conservation incubator for social enterprise. The organization seeks to identify and test innovations between public, private, for-profit, and nonprofit organizations around issues related to fisheries, food and farms, forests and ecosystem services, knowledge systems, marine consulting initiatives, indigenous affairs, natural capital, and watershed restoration. On their website ( ecotrust.org), it reads:

The challenges of the twenty-first century are immense, but at Ecotrust we believe that true wellbeing is possible. To get there, we need radical transformation of current institutions— those ways of living from banking to building, from transportation to tree harvesting, that dominate our lives. We see urgency in building up an economy that restores nature and invests in people. And we believe the way to build that economy is through bold experimentation in the bioregion we call home—the Pacific Northwest. We are continually creating and supporting new businesses, nonprofits, alliances, networks and programs that build wellbeing in nature and community and deliver economic prosperity. The industrial economic model that's reigned for the last 300 years simply can't last. It's time for a more natural model of development. At Ecotrust, we believe the new economy starts here—in our backyards, communities, cities and regions.

I interviewed Oakley Brooks, their senior media manager, who described how their digital magazine Commonplace takes a place-based look at sustainabilityrelated issues. Their first issue focused on the Skeena River Basin in British Columbia. Residents there wanted to think of new ways to grow and live in the twenty-first century while still protecting one of the best salmon rivers in North America. They were receiving external pressures to develop. “It is part of that ongoing question of how do you grow and continue to be part of the global economy in the twenty-first century but also keep your self-determination and desire for a viable place and an intact ecosystem relevant,” Oakley said.

 
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