Prepping is a lifestyle and a mindset. The possibility of population extinction, global economic collapse, potentially malevolent machine intelligence, and even a zombie apocalypse could make anyone anxious. As a result, the phenomenon of prepping is on the rise. Preppers have been storing food, water and weapons, and developing self-sufficiency skills for independently surviving disasters. But can we learn a thing or two about sustainable living from preppers? What practices for the environment can they teach us?
The Sustainable Prepper
A committed prepper chooses a self-sustainable, preparedness lifestyle by taking the best of homesteading, survivalist training and sustainable living and incorporates them into a well-organized preparedness plan. They do this because they know that the current economy and institutions that are providing us with stability and security may not be permanent and may collapse anytime. Even in small scale situations, this is their mindset. When you get lost in the woods, don’t just wait for rescuers to find you. Learn how to search for food, create your own shelter, have navigational skills, and more.
The trigger points that made us preppers, like seeing financial collapse firsthand and the house of cards it reveals, or the difficulties that come with illness or unemployment, are what helped us learn to live by ourselves, appreciate the environment that gives us food on the plate through hunting and foraging, and give importance to the trees and rocks that help us make our weapons for security.
For environmentalists, the goal is to make the least amount of environmental damage for future generations. But for the prepper, it is a necessary result of living off the grid or in a post-SHTF world. In short, when you’re a prepper, you’re automatically helping save the environment!
A prepper is a homesteader, but a little more prepared. As a homesteader, he wishes to live more holistically with the world around him. He might be having organic gardens, animal husbandry, or sewing his own clothes. But as a prepper, this desire to be self-sufficient isn’t just because of the desire to get back on land, but rather for preparation for whatever calamity might occur.
How Being a Prepper Saves the Environment
Preppers strive to go back to basics. The most important things for them include shelter, home, and personal security, and food. They offer a different take on what a “sustainable” world looks like, one grounded in ideologies of protectionism and self-preservation. Here’s how being a prepper saves the environment in terms of the three factors.
In terms of homes, environmentalists pursue sustainable living by making their homes as low energy as possible, typically by using materials produced in an environmentally friendly manner and focusing on energy savings. For the committed prepper, a sustainable home can be operated with little or no energy from the power grid, is protected from damaging natural disasters, and can be defended in a worst-case scenario.
Being a prepper means you should rely on off-grid energy sources like solar energy. The prepper reduces their carbon footprint and leaves as little impact on the environment as possible as they avoid cyber attacks, electromagnetic pulse, and other SHTF scenarios.
Preppers also grow their own food, and I couldn’t think of anything more sustainable than that. By growing your food organically, you will be protecting the environment. More importantly for preppers, you will be learning how to produce food without these man-made tools that will be unavailable to you after a collapse event. Get together with your neighbors and grow produce in your yards or a community garden. You don’t have to tell them that you are a prepper. But you will teach them to become self-reliant.
Preppers are often ridiculed and stigmatized for being too paranoid, but in the end, they make the biggest contributions to the environment while also being assured of survival no matter what the scenario is.