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The Transition Movement

The Transition Movement is a network of imaginative and locally focused Initiatives that address current challenges of resource depletion, climate change and economic instability through community inspiration and engagement. This holistic form of engagement helps raise awareness and provide hands on solutions to these challenging issues, while affording support for the inner transition that is taking place within us simultaneously.  

Rob Hopkins, a permaculture teacher, created the beginnings of Transition, along with his adult education students, in Kinsale, Ireland in 2005. Knowing about the impending issues of: unstable economy, peak oil and climate change, they were seeking local level solutions. 

The students created a plan for the intentional weaning of Kinsale off its oil dependency entitled, "Kinsale 2021: an Energy Descent Plan". After educational and awareness raising films and events, the idea caught on in Kinsale and blossomed as Rob moved to Totnes, England and spread in towns throughout the country. Since then, communities around the globe have embraced the "ingredients" of Transition and its grassroots model. 

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Lorin Station(workparty2010)byPegSkorpin

About Transition Berkeley

Transition Berkeley is part of a growing international network of Transition initiatives. We're joining cities around the world to face the enormous challenges of economic instability, climate change and fossil fuel dependency. Transition Berkeley is the 110th Transition U.S. Initiative. The Transition approach will help Berkeley to envision and create a future with more locally produced food and other necessities, cleaner forms of energy and transportation. Along the way, we'll build a more equitable and vibrant local economy and re-learn practical skills our grandparents once had.

Transition Berkeley was inspired in 2010 by the 10/10/10 Day of Climate Action (a worldwide event) and officially launched at the Ecology Center in February 2011. A group of volunteers sprang up to form an Initiating Team, which meets regularly to do outreach and plan events and activities. 

Transition Berkeley has embarked on the journey of creating a more connected, sustainable community thus far by hosting awareness raising panels and films, holding regular Swaps to provide support for planting veggie gardens and to support more sharing of produce, clothing and books, providing hands-on volunteer opportunities to plant pollinating gardens and learn about repairing our broken items and DIY skills to get to zero waste. Projects and events emerge through volunteer interests and collaborations. 

Transition Berkeley seeks to engage and connect with people and groups throughout Berkeley to build connections and amplify and support existing efforts. We have formed partnerships with the City of Berkeley, the Ecology Center, 350 Bay Area, the Culture of Repair, a network of community gardens,  and other Transition efforts in the east bay. Here in Bereley, we have abundant resources and support that can help us in creating vibrant neighborhoods where we all can thrive. YOU can help make it happen!


Transition Berkeley Mission 

Transition Berkeley brings neighbors and community members together to build a more equitable, regenerative, self-reliant future for Berkeley. We envision a strong, diverse local economy, with greatly reduced dependence on fossil fuels, and a healthy, cooperative, rewarding community life.


The Transition Model

The Transition Model aims to build scalable microcosms of resilience (Transition Initiatives) able to withstand severe energy, climate or economic shocks while creating a better quality of life in the process. The Transition Model is based on four key assumptions.

  • Life with dramatically lower energy consumption is inevitable, and that it is better to plan for it than to be taken by surprise.

  • Our communities currently lack resilience.

  • We have to act collectively, and we have to act now.

  • By unleashing the collective genius of our communities it is possible to design new ways of living that are more nourishing, fulfilling and ecologically sustainable than the ways we are currently living. ​​


Transition Movement Cheerful disclaimer!

Just in case you were under the impression that Transition is a process defined by people who have all the answers, you need to be aware of a key fact. We truly don't know if this will work. Transition is a social experiment on a massive scale.

What we are convinced of is this:

  • If we wait for the governments, it'll be too little, too late

  • If we act as individuals, it'll be too little

  • But if we act as communities, it might just be enough, just in time.

Everything that you read on this site is the result of real work undertaken in the real world with community engagement at its heart. This site, just like the transition model, is brought to you by people who are actively engaged in transition in a community. People who are learning by doing - and learning all the time. People who understand that we can't sit back and wait for someone else to do the work. People like you.

Transition Berkeley in the Media

"Repair Cafes Touch a Diversity of People and Interests," Transition US, April 28, 2022  

Berkeley's Ohlone Park Crop Swap Builds Community Through Food,”  Berkeleyside, July 6, 2021


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