In Permaculture, making a profit should not be against its ethics

The 3 basic ethics are Earth Care, People Care, and Fair share. How can you make a profit and still uphold the basic ethical principles?

Could this flawed thinking slow the spread of permaculture? Could this make it more difficult for people to practice permaculture and make a profit?

I have encountered this myself when I launched “Permaculture is not for profit”, I’m told.

Flawed Beliefs.

Earth Care:

Exploiting the earth’s resources and damaging the environment is not sustainable. Finding renewable resources is necessary. If there is a profit made from renewable resources, would this not be a good thing? If the renewable solution was more profitable, would the market choose that option?

People Care:

The exploitation of people is not acceptable. What about employment market arbitrage? Is that exploitation of market differences in salary or exploitation of people. An exchange of a valued skill for profit is a good thing. Demonstrating this will encourage more uptake of people learning that skill. It will create markets in teaching, learning, and business.

Fair Share:

The terms “business” and “profit” can be difficult in permaculture due to the excess of big business. A contractor is receiving their fair share if they exchange a skill or service for profit. Let the market dictate the price of that skill or service and the exchange be voluntary.

A Shift in Mindset

For permaculture to proliferate and expand further in the world, we need a shift in mindset. We need to embrace business models that uphold the 3 basic ethics. We need to deliver a profit and provide market value. We should be teaching this. We need to promote these ideas and share our successes and failures.

A changing world

Due to climate change and other global issues we are facing uncertain times. It is important we develop local, sustainable, competitive, and profitable business models. Permaculture needs to compete in a global market using local solutions. Conversations that are often unspeakable in permaculture, need to be had.

The big business tide may soon shift. We need educated in business and be ready to embrace new paradigms in the world. We need to offer Permaculture as a profitable solution to the world’s problems.

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