Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Mini-E, a valuable car in the drive for a more sustainable lifestyle

Julie and I took a 40 mile RT drive in Mini-E #183 today to visit with our friends Andy and Tess in Vista Ca.. They live in a beautiful 1400 sq ft. craftsman bungalow built in the 1940s, recently restored, on 1.5 acres of land. Julie and I are helping them establish a 800 plant vineyard that we will plant in February 2012. The vineyard will produce around 1600 bottles of premium Viognier, Brunello and Cabernet Sauvignon wine annually. A very nice story, what does this have to do with Mini-E?

The Mini-E is part of the drive for a more sustainable lifestyle, especially if you harvest your own sunshine to provide the energy to drive the Mini-E. Our gifts that we brought Tess and Andy were a Native Californian ‘Indian Mallow’ pupped and then own rooted from a mother plant in our native plant garden, several zucchini’s and yellow squash grown in our garden, ½ dozen eggs, laid by our vineyard fertilizer machines, and two bottle of our home estate wine. All delivered in the Mini-E using no gasoline and producing no pollution.

A peasant’s lifestyle in the old days was a requirement of economic life. I would suggest that neo-peasantry today is a requirement for an enjoyable life. Essentially, a life that is more in balance with nature is a life that is lived to a higher degree outdoors with hands on the earth, living, rather than looking at an LCD screen. A way of life where we are more self reliant, self generating, and giving to our communities and our friends, as we share and barter different goods between neighbors, a more localized and healthier supply chain of food and vegetables and beverages that taste amazing!

Our trip in the Mini-E was made with power harvested from the sun, bringing gifts harvested from the land, grown with rainwater harvested from our roof top, helping friends plant their land, while drinking incredible wine made from our grapes, contemplating a better future…

I’m not sure how all this squares with mega cities with a growing percentage of our population living in cities of 10 million or more. I would suggest to you that sustainability in such cities is a far wider conversation than just mobility and reduced emissions.

We need to keep our ag and food production localized and achieve a balance between the land, the buildings and the occupants. They all have wonderful gifts to share if we are wise enough to use them to their fullest, if we are wise enough to truly be sustainable.

The Mini-E, ActiveE, i3 and other electric cars are a giant leap forward towards that tapestry of a sustainable life. Now all we need is an app that points us to farmstands, farmers markets, local co-ops, and community gardens as well as to charging stations.  Perhaps a Vertical Earth Garden is the way we will grow our food in tight urban areas. They are popping up all over Encinitas Ca.

A raised wine glass to you, Skol!

Mini-E #183, 30,000 sunshine powered miles.


  1. Thanks Tom,

    The VEG systems are pretty cool. Might have to try one at the house to increase my food production. Looking forward to the ActiveE

  2. Wonderful writing once again Peder. You make me want to go on a picnic!
    I think your a conservative but you sound like an old hippie. What a great combination. Keep spreading the word!

    Drive electric - Live free

    Jeff U.

  3. Hi Jeff,
    "I think your a conservative but you sound like an old hippie. What a great combination."

    you've got me pegged. I suppose I like the root word conserve, individual liberties, self reliance, and old hippie stuff as well. That's the liberal Dane coming out in me :)
    Have a great week.