Proposal: Sustainable Living

Is there a standard way determined for handling sites that have an intersection (but not total overlap) with existing sites or proposals? For example, see this question on composting in sustainable living. This is perfectly relevant to Sustainable Living, but it also fits perfectly -- and perhaps better -- on Gardening and Landscaping. But not all G&L questions fit on SL and not vice versa. It's a case of intersection, not total overlap. How should we handle this?

  • I think this is a huge question, concerning interdisciplinary questions and encompassing virtually all of the stack exchange forums. Maybe a question should be opened up in some sort of centralised meta? Maybe such one exists? – Vorac Jun 26 '12 at 11:35
  • Sustainable Living has now reached 45% commitment: Yay us! And that turns out to be a critical point in the site-creation process: as Robert Cartaino, the Director of Community Development for the Stack Exchange Network, explains in this answer on a question about merging proposals ... (quote in following comment) – 410 gone Aug 30 '12 at 3:53
  • "Shortly after a proposal reaches 45% commitment, that is our cue to consider the specific details of the proposal before moving on towards launch ... [on merging:] We found it better to pick the best proposal with the strongest chance of adoption, and encourage others to support the one proposal to get it launched. That sometimes means closing other proposals if they are blocking… and possibly expanding or altering the scope of the leading proposal to accommodate the key discussions and ideas raised by the group." END QUOTE – 410 gone Aug 30 '12 at 3:54

The policy we seem to be developing over on Raspberry Pi stack exchange is one of relative permissiveness with regards to strict cross-site division.

Thus we have had a number of questions which should strictly have been moved to Electronics or Unix & Linux but have stayed on Raspberry Pi because while they could be answered on those other sites, they are still directly relevant to Raspberry Pi users and answers on raspberrypi will be more appropriate to Raspberry Pi users than an answer on a sister site might end up.

In many ways, it's a shame that questions can't be shared between sites, as there is often genuine and unavoidable overlap between the scope of some sites.

Unfortunately the logistics of shared questions would be horrendous (since the moderation would have to be shared as well as the questions and answers) and these shared questions would almost certainly be abused, so I can understand why they have never been (and probably never will be) implemented. It is the Tragedy of the Commons sadly, so we all just have to route around the problem instead, hence discussions like this.

Anyway, what I would suggest is that you migrate questions which aren't actually about Sustainable Living but be relatively tolerant of questions which are, even if they would be on-topic on another site.

As a final point, I would strongly recommend that people read Shog9's blog post Respect the community – your own, and others’.


Homesteading (2 followers) is a very new proposal for anyone interested in the practical logistics of self-reliant and rural living. Sustainable Living could be expanded to include self-sufficiency, which would include Homesteading

Proposed expansion: Sustainability and self-sufficiency

  • 1
    I for one would commit if self-sufficiency were in scope. – Chad Sep 17 '12 at 20:35
  • @Chad I think, to a large degree, sustainability and self-sufficiency are linked already and thus, self-sufficiency is already more or less in scope. The way we become more sustainable is through the construction of various distributed food, energy and water systems and thus through a greater level of self-sufficiency on the individual level as well as the local government level. – Daniel Bingham Oct 4 '12 at 14:23
  • @DanielBingham - But you can live sustainably without being self-sufficient. If on topic is defined by purely sustainable living then many self sufficiency questions will be off topic. Especially those that would interest me. – Chad Oct 4 '12 at 14:49
  • 1
    @Chad - and one can live self-sufficiently without living sustainably. I'd anticipate that any self-sufficiency questions would only be on-topic if they were about sustainable self-sufficiency. So not "how can I refine the crude oil I'm extracting from under my homestead, for use in my hummer?". – 410 gone Oct 4 '12 at 15:08
  • @EnergyNumbers - That would be my thought in current format... I would like to see it expanded while your question is kind of out at the extreme anti sustainablity, questions that are not about sustainability at all but just about self sufficiency would be off topic too. That is what i would like to see changed. – Chad Oct 4 '12 at 15:15
  • @chad I don't think we should expand it to include self-sufficiency when said self-sufficiency does not fall under sustainable self-sufficiency. That beats the point. At that point self-sufficiency should be its own SE. – Daniel Bingham Oct 4 '12 at 19:52
  • @DanielBingham - I do not think that either proposal will do well alone. But I think together they could both flourish. But if the decision is no then I will wish you all luck. – Chad Oct 4 '12 at 20:09

To extend the logic of @MarkBooth.
a) If a question can be better answered on a more specific site it should live there.
b) If however it has a large intersect with interests of users of the general site it should be allowed to live on.


Singularity, (59 followers) defined in Wikipedia as "some essential singularity in the history of the race beyond which human affairs, as we know them, could not continue." - i.e. a specific threat to sustainable living, could conceivably be incorporated into Sustainable Living, if we were to expand the scope to include handling major threats to sustainability

Proposed expansion: Sustainability


As an example: I'd like to see the intersecting Renewable Energy topic focus on the technical, engineering and practical aspects of Solar, Wind, Hydro generation etc...

Sustainable living might answer questions such as 'Should I go off grid or buy an electric car if I want to do my bit for the environment?'

Whereas Renewable Energy would answer questions such as: 'How do I calculate the optimal mounting angle for my solar array?'


Climate Change (49 followers) could overlap, as this is one of the biggest, if not the biggest, challenge to Sustainable Living that we've ever faced. So if the scope were expanded to handle the science of threats to sustainability; and mitigation of and adaptation to, those threats, Climate Change could be a popular and busy tag within an expanded Sustainability scope.

Proposed expansion: Sustainability


Home Schooling (94 followers) is a potential candidate with overlap or which may be blocking, as Sustainable Living could easily include Self-sufficiency, which would include Home Schooling

Proposed expansion: Sustainability and self-sufficiency

  • I think that the Home School SE would be more about teaching and educating rather than being self-sufficient, and definitely out of scope with the sustainability. – Chad Sep 17 '12 at 20:36

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