The Power of Community, How Cuba survived their oil crisis.

(Charm City Farms)

When the Soviet Union collapsed, there was a great reorganization in the flow of resources amongst the Communist countries of the world. The odd man out in the flow of almost all of these resources was Cuba. This combined with the continued business embargo imposed by the USA to create an energy shortage on the island on a level that was absolutely devastating.

You see, Cuba much like the rest of the world based the vast majority of their agricultural production (and everything else) on petroleum products. When the oil dried up, the island nation was looking at the very real possibility of mass starvation, because they just didn’t have the infrastructure to produce food without oil.

Fortunately, between the fact that humans are very resilient to change and the fact that Cuba’s communist government was able to dictate a path to the people (which is one of the few advantages of less than “free” society); instead of perishing, they relied on the knowledge of the few traditional farmers left and worked cooperatively to rebuild small production farms and community and ended up with a much more resilient system than they previously had.

The benefit we get from this, is that whether it is sooner as some of us believe or later, the whole world will be dealing with this fuel shortage issue at some point in the future; and Cuba successfully navigating this situation has provided us with a successful template for not only surviving the pending crisis, but thriving in it.

In addition we have the option (that I doubt we will take) to avert the crisis entirely by adopting Permaculture practices now and never having the shortage to begin with.

So enjoy the video and decide if you think it is worth it.

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