10-steps to an Energy Descent Action Plan

10-steps to an Energy Descent Action Plan

-from Rob Hopkins, on TransitionUS.org

We have identified the following 10 steps in the process of creating an EDAP:

Step 1. Establish a baseline. This involves collecting some basic data on the current practices of your community, whether in terms of energy consumption, food miles or amount of food consumed. You could spend years collecting this information, but you aren’t trying to build a detailed picture, just getting a few key indicators around how your place functions in terms of arable land, transport, health provision etc. Your working groups may have identified some of this information.

Step 2: Get hold of any community strategy plans that are produced by your local government. Their plans are likely to have timescales and elements that you need to take into account, and they will also be a useful source of information and data. You will need to decide how to integrate your EDAP with their existing plans.

Step 3: The overall vision. What would your community look like in 15 or 20 years if we were emitting drastically less CO2, using drastically less non-renewable energy, and it was well on the way to rebuilding resilience in all critical aspects of life? This process will use information gathered in your Open Space Days, from Transition Tales and a range of other visioning days, to create an overall sense of what the town could be like. Allow yourselves to dream.

Step 4: Detailed visioning. For each of the working groups on food, health, energy etc.(although this is trickier for Heart and Soul groups for example), what would their area look like in detail within the context of the vision set out above.

Step 5: Backcast in detail. The working groups then list out a timeline of the milestones, prerequisites, activities and processes that need to be in place if the vision is to be achieved. This is also the point to define the resilience indicators that will tell you if your community is moving in the right direction.

Step 6: Transition Tales. Alongside the process above, the Transition Tales group produces articles, stories, pictures and representations of the visioned community, giving a tangible sense through a variety of creative media, of what this powered down world might look like. These will be woven into the EDAP.

Step 7: Pull together the backcasts into an overall plan. Next the different groups’ timelines are combined together to ensure their coherence. This might be done on a big wall with post-it notes to ensure that, for example, the Food Group haven’t planned to turn into a market garden the same car park that the Health & Medicine Group want to turn into a health center.

Step 8: Create a first draft. Merge the overall plan and the Transition Tales into one cohesive whole, with each area of the plan beginning with a short summary of the state of play in 2009, followed by a year-by-year program for action as identified in the backcasting process. Once complete, pass the document out for review and consultation.

Step 9: Finalize the EDAP. Integrate the feedback into the EDAP. Realistically, this document won’t ever be “final” – it will be continually updated and augmented as conditions change and ideas emerge.

Step 10: Celebrate! Always a good thing to do.

This is a living process and we won’t know how close it is to reality until a few groups have gone through it. The Transition Network is planning to support this process by providing elements such as a set of standard resilience indicators, and an overarching master timeline covering energy, climate, food etc.

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