Are we running out of oil and out of time to correct a wasteful lifestyle that's ruining the planet?
Can we do much more in our daily lives to conserve resources?
Adrian Kuzminski of Fly Creek said he thinks so, and a group he helped found a few months ago, Sustainable Otsego, is co-sponsoring two events with writer Albert Bates, an expert on these topics.
At 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Bates will speak at the Otsego County Courthouse in Cooperstown. On Sunday, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Greater Milford Historic Society in Milford, Bates will present a workshop on permaculture _ a land-design system that encourages local food production and low energy usage.
Bates, author of 11 books, has written about law, energy, history and the environment, Kuzminski said. His works include ``The Post-Petroleum Survival Cook Book,'' ``Climate in Crisis,'' ``Voices from The Farm'' and ``Shutdown: Nuclear Power on Trial.'' He is a permaculture instructor at the Ecovillage Training Center at The Farm community in Summerton, Tenn.
``We're lucky to have him coming here,'' Kuzminski said Monday.
``We started Sustainable Otsego in the early summer, and we have about 80 people on the list-serve,'' he said.
The group has met periodically and has begun to focus on countywide issues.
``We're also concerned about MOSA and the ridiculous way our garbage is being trucked around the state,'' Kuzminski said. ``It makes no sense environmentally, and with the cost of fuel these days, it make no sense economically.''
The answer to waste problems in Otsego and other counties is to take care of it locally, he said.
Otsego County Board of Representatives Chairman Donald Lindberg, R-Worcester, said he agrees with the group's take on the Montgomery-Otsego-Schoharie Solid Waste Management Authority.
``I think the only way you're going to have much control over garbage is to take care of it locally,'' he said.
Wednesday's presentation is free. For Sunday's workshop, sponsors are asking for a $10 donation. For more information, call 547-8586 or 263-5425.
Lindberg said he would welcome input from Sustainable Otsego and other groups that want to help improve the county's environment.
Among the other sponsors of Bates' presentations is the Coalition For Democracy. Member Ed Lentz said Monday that he would like to see more locally produced food in area stores. Currently, most food in stores travels about 1,500 miles before it is stocked on shelves, which he said is a practice that burns fuel unnecessarily and may mean food is not as fresh as it might be, he noted.