I'm trying to make up my mind about going to Burning Man this year. I've been going on and off for about 10 years. There's some quite nice ecological stuff about Burning Man - the sheer harsheness makes all resource use visible, and camps like Alternative Energy Zone are very nice playgrounds and testbeds for green technologies.
Are any other WorldChanging readers thinking of going this year? Are there fun activities planned for Burning Man you want to tell other readers about? Use the comments and network.
If I'm going, I'll be taking some of my refugee shelters with me. I lived in one in 2003 and 2005 and it was really a good experience.
Just look for the weird silver thing and feel free to come over and say Hi!
Ha! Not a hippie, eh? :)
I kid, I kid...
I very much like the hexayurt - I see it was designed with SketchUp which Google has recently taken-over. There's a free version available.
Burner from Spain.
I'm going, and I have plans to distribute a newsletter with worldchanging-type ideas in order to spread good memes. If anyone is interested in helping/contributing, feel free to contact me at raspberrydreamer at gmail.
I will be camping with Entheon Village (http://entheonvillage.com/), home to Alex Grey's Chapel of Sacred Mirrors art installation and the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies.
Mixed feelings about going.... all of my oldest friends are on the west coast - and it's the only time I get to see them. I suppose I'll go if I can afford the carbon credits... which I hear are very cheap lately!
We're taking out a few new toys and installations this year and heading out early to build the pavilion under the man. The Toyshoppe has some fun new inventions and tools for worldchangers.
Where's Worldchanging Hub? Pick a spot and we'll meet you there.
I know there's a group of people at MIT undertaking to do some green things for the event, largely focused on biodiesel. I'll point this article their way to try and connect everyone.
I think that it's extremely worthwhile to go, if nothing else than as a great way to see what a potentially worldchanging community might be like! It's hard to describe, but people come together in a way that they really aren't able/allowed to in normal society. The attitudes and connections and barrier-battering assumption questioning creates (IMHO) a community that is an extremely interesting platform for worldchanging.
This year's theme might be very interesting to you as well: Hope and Fear. And if nothing else, you should know that it's the world's largest Leave No Trace event. :-)
Disclaimer: I've been going for 8 years. Clearly, it has changed my life, and I'm hoping to help Burningman change my world too! So I am biased. But in a good way, I hope. :-) Have fun!
On Biodiesel @ BM:
I had a talk with the BM staff this week about biodiesel use on the playa after a generous sustainability engineer offered to truck a tank of biofuels out to replace much of our diesel dependence. Unfortunately the staff said that they cannot use biodiesel in almost all of their vehicles because they are rental vehicles -- there are strict guidelines for them on this.
For BRC to be sustainable it will need to purchase its own trucks, carts, cranes and potable water systems....for now we are still quite reliant on outside businesses, many of whom are not ready to make the leap with us.
I have a little camp that certainly shares values and intent with those in this conversation. Sustainabilaville is a 15-25 member camp out of Seattle with members from Portland, SF, LA and NYC. This year will be our second year under the Sustainabilaville banner and we are quite fond of locating inside the Alternative Energy Zone. They are our peeps.
While we like to hang with the alt-tech folks in AEZ, our focus is on the social side of sustainability, or thrivability as we prefer to say. In that sense, we are attempting to apply a philosophy that hybridizes Maslow's hierarchy of needs with Manfred Max-Neef's theories of human-scale development. Basically, we are attempting to create a safe and comfortable environment that allows people to show up with the environment and with each other in deeper ways.
Burning Man will never be sustainable. It is a big party and parties are not meant to be efficient or sustained. They are meant to be a release, an explosion of energy. We go learn how to live more sustainably in community with fellow humans while also partying our butts off. Yee haw!