Coming to a Center Near You: Sustainability Manuals
The Touching the Earth working group’s mission is that Shambhala become a powerful force for societal transformation in accordance with the principles and practices of both Shambhala warriorship and environmental sustainability. For more information, visit the group’s Shambhala webpage.
The Touching the Earth group is creating manuals to help city and land centers become environmentally sustainable. The manuals will provide basic information about how centers can be more environmentally sound. They also will offer guidelines for action that are spacious enough for each center to shape them in light of its needs, priorities and resources.
To inspire environmental thought and action across the sangha, the manuals will be organized around three types of activities. The first are no-cost to low-cost actions. Here, the emphasis is on changes in routine operations, maintenance and purchasing, such as replacing toxic cleaners with biodegradable products, purchasing foods locally and promoting resource conservation. Second are moderate-cost initiatives such as replacing inefficient toilets and installing double-paned windows. The third type of actions are capital-intensive improvements and initiatives. These efforts can range from creating gray-water systems designed to reuse and recycle water to replacing energy-consuming systems and structures with more efficient options.
The committee is reviewing a variety of materials and programs used by other organizations and tailoring them so that the guidelines are appropriate for Shambhala land and city centers. While the creation of the manuals is in progress, we will post ideas for action so that you can initiate or extend the environmental activities taking place in your center.