The Global Potential of Permaculture

During this provocative talk, Geoff Lawton will describe how the applied design science of permaculture can and is being used to stabilise global challenges like climate change, biodiversity declines, water stress, soil depletion and poverty. He will argue that permaculture's widespread adoption could foster the positive solutions and practical creativity that could help to transform our current crises, and create an abundant world in which we are able to care for the earth, each other and leave a positive legacy for future generations.

Geoff's main point is simple - we need to transform humans from the most destructive species on earth, to global stewards that regenerate the earth and enhance its ecological functioning. Permaculture design, with its ethical framework, principles inspired by nature and emphasis on low-cost solutions that meet our everyday needs, offers a moral, conceptual and practical framework that can enable people to transform their thinking and action and move towards stewardship and responsibility. A global effort to redesign the systems that meet our basic needs along ecological principles can dramatically change our fortunes, and give us a realistic prospect of a positive future for all. After nearly 40 years of testing and experimentation, permaculture is ready to scale up.


Geoff Lawton is a worldrenowned Permaculture teacher, designer and consultant. He has educated over 13,000 students in Permaculture worldwide, and undertaken thousands of jobs teaching, consulting, designing, administering and implementing Permaculture. Geoff also runs an online training and education website,, where he regularly releases free training and films with the aim of educating as many people as possible in Permaculture.

Geoff is the Managing Director of the Permaculture Research Institute of Australia, which won the Humanitarian Water & Food Award for 2010 for their initiative “Greening the Desert”. In 1996 he was accredited with the Permaculture Community Services Award.

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