FIGURE D.13 One Planet Communities areas of study. SOURCE: Petite Rivière Regenerative Plan, April 2009.
available to help you assess possibilities during the design-alternatives period of planning, and then, once the project is complete or begins implementation, the user can receive a regular, ongoing follow-up.
One Planet Communities was originally developed by BioRegional (a not-for-profit in the United Kingdom). It was trying to create a prototype community to reduce its environmental footprint in England. At the time BioRegional calculated that if everyone lived like an Englishman, it would require three planets to provide the resources. The goal of the first project, BedZED (Beddington Zero Energy Development), was to provide quality living but reduce consumption to the equivalent of one planet. After measuring the results at BedZED, BioRegional discovered that it had fallen short of its goal and was operating at the equivalent of one and one half planets. It also realized that if resource reduction was its goal, it should be working in North America, where resource consumption is closer to the equivalent of five to six planets. So, BNIM is working on a redevelopment project in Montreal, which is a golf course surrounded by existing development and next to the rail. Over time, it will be transformed into a community with more biodiversity than existed when it was a golf course and hopefully will serve as a model for living successfully in the 21st century.
One Planet Communities, like the Living Building Challenge, is simple. Both require a shift in thinking clarity and a willingness to embrace very high goals. As Kevin Kampschroer said earlier during this workshop, “It’s about claiming the future and then living into it.” Buckminster Fuller taught me that the best way to predict the future is to design it. He also believed that we are all born geniuses, and that we are gradually “de-geniused” by our parents and our teachers. I believe these initiatives come at the perfect time for us to reclaim our genius—by improving the quality of our dialogue with better tools, better information, and inspiring one another to create 21st-century regenerative solutions.