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Should You Relocate To A More Resilient Area?

Should You Relocate To A More Resilient Area?

 What factors to look for when considering relocating

Likely a symptom of growing social unease, we’re seeing a surge in interest amongst our readership in relocation.

Many are folks living in urban and suburban areas worried that local resources and/or rule of law will not hold up well during a serious economic crisis, civil disorder or natural disaster.

Others have watched Peak Prosperity readers successfully transition to more resilient destinations or even build their own self-sufficient homesteads.

Specifically, we’re seeing a hunger for guidance on the key factors to assess when asking:

  • How resilient is my current location?
  • Should I relocate?
  • If so, where to? And what criteria should I prioritize in making my decision?

Several years ago, we recorded an interview with SurvivalBlog founder and former US Army intelligence officer James Wesley Rawles addressing these exact questions.

It remains one of the best discussions we know of on the topic of relocation, and it’s this week’s recommended listening for anyone wondering if a fresh start in an area with better natural and community resources might be one of the single best ways to improve their future prospects:

(Full transcript available here)

For those motivated to action by this podcast, Peak Prosperity is now offering Consultations specifically-designed to help you think through & execute on the relocation process. 

Given your specific situation, does it make sense? Given your unique goals and needs, what requirements matter most when targeting communities and properties? How should you be structuring your search efforts?

As an output of the planned cohousing project he’s leading, Chris is now exceptionally knowledgeable on both the strategic and tactical realities of intentionally relocating to an area richer in resilience.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Record Low Temps Up To 50 Degrees Below Normal Threaten To Absolutely Wreck The Rest Of The Harvest Season

Record Low Temps Up To 50 Degrees Below Normal Threaten To Absolutely Wreck The Rest Of The Harvest Season

It isn’t supposed to be this cold in October.  The official start of winter is still almost two months away, and yet the weather in much of the western half of the country right now resembles what we might expect in mid-January.  All-time record lows for the month of October are being set in city after city, and this extremely cold air is going to push into the Midwest by the end of the week.  Temperatures in the heartland will be up to 50 degrees below normal, and unfortunately about half of all corn still has not been harvested.  Due to unprecedented rainfall and extreme flooding early in the year, many farmers faced extraordinary delays in getting their crops planted, and so they were hoping that good weather at the end of the season would provide time for the crops to fully mature and be harvested.  Unfortunately, a nightmare scenario has materialized instead.  A couple of monster snow storms have already roared through the Midwest, and now record low temperatures threaten to absolutely wreck the rest of the harvest season.

When temperatures get significantly below zero for more than a few hours, scientists tell us that it will kill standing corn

A significant freeze (28°F or colder for a few hours) will kill the whole plant, and any frost will act to defoliate plants, resulting in diminished grain filling for the seeds, especially on the upper half of the plants.

And right now we are facing a crisis because less than half of all U.S. corn has been harvested.

In fact, according to the latest USDA Crop Progress Report just 41 percent of all U.S. corn has been harvested so far…

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Global Authorities Brace For A Worldwide Protein Shortage As “One-Quarter Of Earth’s Pigs Have Been Wiped Out”

Global Authorities Brace For A Worldwide Protein Shortage As “One-Quarter Of Earth’s Pigs Have Been Wiped Out”

African Swine Fever is killing millions upon millions of pigs all over the world, and this threatens to create a crippling global shortage of protein as we head into 2020.  This epidemic began in China last year, and it is now also running wild in North Korea, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar and the Philippines.  But this crisis is certainly not limited to Asia.  According to the Washington Post, so far in 2019 there have also been outbreaks “in Belgium, Bulgaria, Hungary, Latvia, Poland, Romania, Russia and Ukraine.”  Overall, cases of African Swine Fever have been documented “in nearly 50 nations”, and U.S. pork producers are extremely concerned that it could start spreading here too.

African Swine Fever is extremely contagious, there is no vaccine, and there is no cure.  Once it starts spreading in a certain area, there isn’t much that can be done “other than culling herds and loading carcasses into hazardous waste sites”.  Literally, we are talking about an unstoppable global plague that is an existential threat to our food supply.  Of course many of us don’t eat pork, but there will also be an immense strain on supplies of beef and chicken as those that eat pork are forced to turn to other alternatives.  This is an exceedingly serious situation, and with each month it is just getting worse.

China is the epicenter for this crisis, and CNN is reporting that the Chinese herd has “shrunk by around 130 million” since this epidemic first began last year…

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

25 Cozy Ways to Prep Your Home for Winter

25 Cozy Ways to Prep Your Home for Winter

As they say on Game of Thrones, “Brace yourselves. Winter is coming.”

One of the best ways to brace yourselves for the onset of cold weather, winter storms, and potential power outages is to prep your home for the season. And this is one of the nicest parts of prepping – quite a few of the cozy touches that you add to be more prepared are also delightful and decorative.

When summer begins to fade into fall, it’s the best time to begin preparing for the advent of winter weather. None of these tasks are particularly difficult, but they can be a little time-consuming. Waiting until the last minute usually means that you’ll end up fighting the crowds who have also rushed to the store or that you’ll be going without something that could have made your power outage a lot more comfortable.

25 Ways to Get Cozy

Here are a few ideas that will make you snug and safe during the cold months that lie ahead.

  1. Check your windows and doors. Make sure that they are in good condition and fit well. Drafts will not only make you uncomfortable but will let heat escape from the house. Now is the time to replace them if necessary.
  2. Reduce the draftiness of your windows. If you can’t afford to replace your windows (or if you are a renter) you can still do several things to reduce the drafts from older windows. Caulk gaps between frames and brickwork and replace any damaged panes. If you live in an older home with single pane windows, apply window insulation film to help make them more weather tight. Finally, purchase or make fabric draft stoppers to place at the bottoms of your windows.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

New Study Finds Media-Generated Fear is Driving ‘Doomsday Prepping’

New Study Finds Media-Generated Fear is Driving ‘Doomsday Prepping’

Not right wing conspiracy theories.

A new study has found that media-generated fear, not right-wing conspiracy theories, is the main driving force behind the rise of ‘doomsday prepping’.

The study, published in the Journal of American Studies, confirms that neither a backlash to the Obama presidency nor ‘extremist’ beliefs were responsible for the trend of Americans stockpiling food over the last 10 years.

Researchers interviewed preppers from 18 different U.S. states to ascertain the motivation behind their prepping.

“The results indicated that, although most did seem to be conservative and fear liberal policies, the main reason behind their motivations was the overall sense of fear currently dominating U.S. culture across a variety of media channels,” writes John Anderer. “Most Americans can’t seem to log online or turn on the television without being hit by a grim view of the future being reported or speculated on.”

The study also revealed that most ‘doomsday preppers’ don’t actually believe in imminent doomsday, but instead stockpile food because of worries over specific crises like an economic collapse, terror attack or a pandemic.

“Fear is now deeply entrenched in modern American culture and is the principal reason that so many citizens are engaging in ‘prepping’,” said lead author Dr. Michael Mills.

Here’s How Prepping Can SAVE You Money

Here’s How Prepping Can SAVE You Money

One of the most common reasons that people give for not prepping is the cost involved.  People seem to have this mental image of a  bedroom or basement dedicated to being filled to the rafters with cans of Chef-Boy-Ardee.  They imagine someone going out and spending $5000 at a time for a year’s worth of food.

The fact is, a pantry is a work in progress.

You can save a fortune on your food budget by shopping carefully and in quantity.

A well-stocked food pantry is not just there in case of an epic disaster or TEOTWAWKI.  It can provide a cushion in the event of a job loss or personal economic downturn.  Not only that but as an investment, purchasing food at today’s prices is a great hedge against tomorrow’s increases.  The cost of food will only be going up.

Take peanut butter, as an example: A few years ago, I purchased natural, no-stir peanut butter for $1.88 per jar when it was on sale.  A year later, that very same brand in the very same sized jar was $5.99 on sale due to a poor peanut harvest.  That means that each jar of peanut butter on the shelves represented a savings of $4.11  – there is no other investment that gives you that kind of return.

Before I even knew what prepping was, I had a well-stocked pantry.  When I was first married and had a newborn baby, I was struggling to put food on the table with our tiny grocery budget.  At the library, I stumbled upon a series of books by Amy Dacyczyn called “The Complete Tightwad Gazette“.  This fantastic series gave me a whole new perspective on grocery shopping, and is the shopping basic philosophy I adhere to still. (And I highly recommend the books – there are 3 or you can get one big compendium containing all 3 titles!)

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

A Look at Finland’s EXTENSIVE Disaster Preparedness Plans

A Look at Finland’s EXTENSIVE Disaster Preparedness Plans

During World War II, the city of Helsinki Finland was bombed relentlessly, leaving the tiny country with a death toll of more than 90,000 people. It is due to these devastating losses that the Nordic nation has one of the most comprehensive preparedness cultures on the planet. Although it’s ranked as the 14th safest country in the world, Finland prepares its people for everything from natural disasters to terror attacks to war.

For example, every building with a floor area of more than 12,916 square feet is required to house a shelter to protect citizens in the event of a crisis. I think it’s always interesting to see how other countries prepare for disaster.

This fascinating video offers a glimpse inside Finland’s civil defense plans.

Not only are first responders ready for a variety of disasters. Even local business owners are trained so they know what to do should a disaster occur. Imagine the difference it could make if more of our workplaces were thoroughly trained to be prepared for a wide variety of disasters.

Finland also encourages individual preparedness

But it isn’t just emergency responders that the Finnish government prepares. They also recommend individual measures. The Department of the Interior website says:

Emergency planning by individuals forms part of society’s resilience

Every person should be prepared for all types of emergencies, such as disruptions to the electricity supply or telecommunications connections. Emergency planning by individuals assists the authorities in times of crisis, since resources do not suffice to help all of those who need help, and must be allocated to the most urgent cases. (source)

Finland isn’t the only country in Europe to urge citizens to prepare.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

U.S. Farms Are Facing Their Worst Crisis In A Generation – And Now Here Comes Another Monster Storm

U.S. Farms Are Facing Their Worst Crisis In A Generation – And Now Here Comes Another Monster Storm

The combination of the wettest planting season in U.S. history, a catastrophic trade war with China and economic conditions that are brutal for small farms has produced a “perfect storm” for U.S. farmers.  Farm bankruptcies have already risen to the highest level in 7 years, but many expect that they will soon surge to all-time record highs.  Due to the incredibly wet weather, millions upon millions of acres of prime U.S. farmland will not be planted with crops at all this year.  And millions of acres that do get planted will yield a lot less than usual because of the wretched conditions.  Meanwhile, the U.S. will export far less corn and soybeans than usual this year due to our trade conflicts with China and Mexico.  With much less international demand, U.S. farmers are going to have an increasingly difficult time trying to make a profit on anything they are able to grow.  In the end, thousands of farmers will not be able to recover from this crisis and will be forced out of the industry for good.

According to USA Today, “a near biblical parade of misfortune” has created “the worst farm crisis since the 1980s”…

American farmers already plagued by a near biblical parade of misfortune that includes years of low prices and a trade war with China are now grappling with record Midwest rain that will likely prevent a large portion of this year’s crop from even getting planted.

The troubles have created the worst farm crisis since the 1980s, when oversupplies and a U.S. grain embargo against the Soviet Union forced thousands of farmers into bankruptcy, experts say.

So we can definitely say that this is the worst farm crisis in a generation, but the truth is that this crisis is far from over.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Due To Cataclysmic Flooding, Millions Upon Millions Of Acres Of U.S. Farmland Will Not Be Planted With Crops This Year

Due To Cataclysmic Flooding, Millions Upon Millions Of Acres Of U.S. Farmland Will Not Be Planted With Crops This Year

It looks like 2019 could be the worst year for U.S. agriculture in modern American history by a very wide margin.  As you will see below, millions upon millions of acres of U.S. farmland will go unused this year due to cataclysmic flooding.  And many of the farmers that did manage to plant crops are reporting extremely disappointing results.  The 12 month period that concluded at the end of April was the wettest 12 month period in U.S. history, and more storms just kept on coming throughout the month of May.  And now forecasters are warning of another series of storms this week, and following that it looks like a tropical storm will pummel the region.  As Bloomberg has pointed out, we have truly never seen a year like this ever before…

There has never been a spring planting season like this one. Rivers topped their banks. Levees were breached. Fields filled with water and mud. And it kept raining.

Many farmers just kept waiting for the flooding and the rain to end so that they could plant their crops, but that didn’t happen.

At this point it is too late for many farmers to plant crops at all, and it is now being projected that 6 million acres of farmland that is usually used for corn will go completely unsown this year

There has never been weather like this, either. The 12 months that ended with April were the wettest ever for the contiguous U.S. That spurred other firsts: Corn plantings are further behind schedule for this time of year than they have been in records dating to 1980 and analysts are predicting an unheard-of 6 million acres intended for the grain may simply go unsown this year.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

American Soil Is Being Globalized: Nearly 30 Million Acres Of U.S. Farmland Is Now Owned By Foreigners

American Soil Is Being Globalized: Nearly 30 Million Acres Of U.S. Farmland Is Now Owned By Foreigners

All across America, U.S. farmland is being gobbled up by foreign interests.  So when we refer to “the heartland of America”, the truth is that vast stretches of that “heartland” is now owned by foreigners, and most Americans have no idea that this is happening.  These days, a lot of people are warning about the “globalization” of the world economy, but in reality our own soil is rapidly being “globalized”.  When farms are locally owned, the revenue that those farms take in tends to stay in local communities.  But with foreign-owned farms there is no guarantee that will happen.  And while there is plenty of food to go around this is not a major concern, but what happens when a food crisis erupts and these foreign-owned farms just keep sending their produce out of the country?  There are some very serious national security concerns here, and they really aren’t being addressed.  Instead, the amount of farmland owned by foreigners just continues to increase with each passing year.

Prior to seeing the headline to this article, how much U.S. farmland would you have guessed that foreigners now own?

Personally, I had no idea that foreigners now own nearly 30 million acres.  The following comes from NPR

American soil.

Those are two words that are commonly used to stir up patriotic feelings. They are also words that can’t be be taken for granted, because today nearly 30 million acres of U.S. farmland are held by foreign investors. That number has doubled in the past two decades, which is raising alarm bells in farming communities.

How did we allow this to happen?

And actually laws regarding land ownership vary greatly from state to state.  Some states have placed strict restrictions on foreign land ownership, while in other states it is “a free-for-all”

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Crop Catastrophe In The Midwest – Latest USDA Crop Progress Report Indicates That A Nightmare Scenario Is Upon Us

Crop Catastrophe In The Midwest – Latest USDA Crop Progress Report Indicates That A Nightmare Scenario Is Upon Us

The last 12 months have been the wettest in all of U.S. history, and this has created absolutely horrific conditions for U.S. farmers.  Thanks to endless rain and historic flooding that has stretched on for months, many farmers have not been able to plant crops at all, and a lot of the crops that have actually been planted are deeply struggling.  What this means is that U.S. agricultural production is going to be way, way down this year.  The numbers that I am about to share with you are deeply alarming, and they should serve as a wake up call for all of us.  The food that each one of us eats every day is produced by our farmers, and right now our farmers are truly facing a nightmare scenario.

You can view the latest USDA crop progress report right here.  According to that report, corn and soybean production is way behind expectations.

Last year, 78 percent of all corn acreage had been planted by now.  This year, that number is sitting at just 49 percent.

And the percentage of corn that has emerged from the ground is at a paltry 19 percent compared to 47 percent at this time last year.

We see similar numbers when we look at soybeans.

Last year, 53 percent of all soybean acreage had been planted by now.  This year, that number has fallen to 19 percent.

And the percentage of soybeans that have emerged from the ground is just 5 percent compared to 24 percent at this time last year.

In other words, we are going to have a whole lot less corn and soybeans this year.

Farmers in the middle of the country desperately need conditions to dry out for an extended period of time, but so far that has not happened.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Floods And Drought Devastate Crops All Over The Planet – Could A Global Food Crisis Be Coming?

Floods And Drought Devastate Crops All Over The Planet – Could A Global Food Crisis Be Coming?

It looks like global food production could be well below expectations in 2019, and that could spell big trouble in the months ahead.  In recent weeks, I have written extensively about the problems that we have been experiencing here in the United States.  As many as a million calves were lost to the flooding that hit the state of Nebraska in March, farmers have planted less than half of the corn that is normally in the ground by this time of the year, and a lot of the crops that have been planted in the middle of the country are really struggling due to extremely wet soil.  But it isn’t just the United States that is facing a very troubling year.  Earlier today, one of my readers sent me an article entitled “Global food crisis ahead as extreme weather events devastate crops and fields around the world”which I would encourage everyone to read.  In that article, we are told that after the worst drought in 116 years Australia has actually been forced to import wheat.  And according to the Guardian, this is the first time in 12 years that this has happened…

Australia is planning to import wheat for the first time in 12 years after drought across the eastern states saw grain production fall 20% last year.

The Department of Agriculture and Water Resources confirmed this week it had issued a bulk import permit to allow wheat to be brought in from Canada to be processed for the domestic market.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

What Do You Do When Your Supplies Run Out?

What Do You Do When Your Supplies Run Out?

The small percentage of the population that keeps extra supplies on hand in the event of a disaster have taken the necessary steps to insure their family will not suffer as most others will following an event. This is the act of intelligent people that realize we live in a dangerous world with many unknowns. 

It does not matter if you are prepared for two weeks, two months or two years of societal disruptions. At some point, if the event goes on long enough, you will eventually come to the end of your supplies. When that happens, what will you do? 

Having a two year store of supplies is exceptional but as we have seen, some disasters can last far beyond that. The food scarcity we see in places like Venezuela have taken years to unfold and some past wars have raged on for more than a few years. When that happens even your best efforts may fall short and leave you in want. 

Those that store a certain amount of supplies for a set period of time need to think beyond that period of time and imagine what they will do when the disaster lasts longer than they had planned on. 

When you plan for an event, you need to think of the worst possible scenario and have a plan to handle it. A worst possible case may entail more supplies than you have the ability to buy or store but you should consider what your actions will be if you find yourself in that situation. Thinking about it now while you have the time to find solutions and determine a course of action will help you to stay calm and prevent you from making mistakes that might harm you later.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Total Catastrophe For U.S. Corn Production: Only 30% Of U.S. Corn Fields Have Been Planted – 5 Year Average Is 66%

Total Catastrophe For U.S. Corn Production: Only 30% Of U.S. Corn Fields Have Been Planted – 5 Year Average Is 66%

2019 is turning out to be a nightmare that never ends for the agriculture industry.  Thanks to endless rain and unprecedented flooding, fields all over the middle part of the country are absolutely soaked right now, and this has prevented many farmers from getting their crops in the ground.  I knew that this was a problem, but when I heard that only 30 percent of U.S. corn fields had been planted as of Sunday, I had a really hard time believing it.  But it turns out that number is 100 percent accurate.  And at this point corn farmers are up against a wall because crop insurance final planting dates have either already passed or are coming up very quickly.  In addition, for every day after May 15th that corn is not in the ground, farmers lose approximately 2 percent of their yield.  Unfortunately, more rain is on the way, and it looks like thousands of corn farmers will not be able to plant corn at all this year.  It is no exaggeration to say that what we are facing is a true national catastrophe.

According to the Department of Agriculture, over the past five years an average of 66 percent of all corn fields were already planted by now…

U.S. farmers seeded 30% of the U.S. 2019 corn crop by Sunday, the government said, lagging the five-year average of 66%. The soybean crop was 9% planted, behind the five-year average of 29%.

Soybean farmers have more time to recover, but they are facing a unique problem of their own which we will talk about later in the article.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Self-Reliance Strategies: Resources for Setting Up a Prepper’s Homestead Quickly and Inexpensively

Self-Reliance Strategies: Resources for Setting Up a Prepper’s Homestead Quickly and Inexpensively

This week, the self-reliance report is about the resources and strategies I’ve used for setting up a prepper’s homestead quickly and inexpensively. A lot of research went into swapping environments – I moved from a low country rather dry farm to a cabin in the mountains to set up a homestead in the forest. As always, I followed a thrifty budget to get things done.

The Self-Reliance Weekly Report is a collection of strategies, made up of the articles, books, DIYs, and products that I found useful on my own little prepper’s homestead.

Prepping

I recently spent a great deal of time searching for the perfect prepper’s retreat. This article discusses my search and offers some tips for finding your own perfect retreat. If your plan is to rely on your homesteading ability to survive when the S hits the Fan, it’s essential to get started now. There’s a steep learning curve and many will fail.

Following, find a collection of some of the most interesting prepper resources around right now.

Homesteading

When my focus was on getting my new homestead set up as quickly as possible, here are the resources that I found pertinent.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Olduvai IV: Courage
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Olduvai II: Exodus
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