Here are resources I learn from and return to about joy, discovery, meaning, purpose, community (not doom, gloom, new-age fluff, etc), in no particular order.
I’ll keep adding to it.
I recommend bingeing on all of it.
The Leadership and the Environment podcast
When people hear my podcast name, they focus on the environment part. I consider leadership incomparably more important. We know what to do. The question is changing our behavior, which is leadership.
I consider my book, Leadership Step by Step, the top resource on learning to lead.
The Story of Stuff
Their short movies (my favorite part of the main site and one of my top starting points)
The Story of Plastic (feature length)
Bea Johnson videos, a big role model since saying I pollute less than other Americans is about the lowest bar possible
Lauren Singer videos, another role model
Limits to Growth
Nature and Humans
Countdown: Our Last, Best Hope for a Future on Earth? by Alan Weisman
The World Without Us by Alan Weisman
The Once and Future World: Nature As It Was, As It Is, As It Could Be by J.B. Mackinnon
The Great Dance, a film of San Bushmen life, a possible view into how we lived for tens to hundreds of thousands of years by Craig and Damon Foster.
The myth of aging populations being a problem: Silver tsunami or silver lining? Why we should not fear an ageing population
Birth rates decrease faster from deliberate family planning than without Population Control Policies and Fertility Convergence
If Japan Can, Why Can’t We?, on W. Edwards Deming’s helping Japan take over industry globally with quality based on respecting and honoring people. My goal: to achieve what Deming did in industry and productivity with culture and stewardship.
My favorite book on the topic, Thinking in Systems by Donella Meadows
The book that introduced me to it: The Fifth Discipline by Peter Senge
The New Economics for Industry, Government, Education by W. Edwards Deming
Bury the Chains: Prophets and Rebels in the Fight to Free an Empire’s Slaves by Adam Hochschild
Voluntary, intentional national-level family planning yielding stability
Family planning success stories from The Overpopulation Project
What proposals will work (most won’t)
The Do The Math blog, by Tom Murphy, one of my favorite sites. It’s accessible. You don’t need to know math, science, or engineering. UPDATE: Tom compiled his blog into a textbook, Energy and Human Ambitions on a Finite Planet, by Tom Murphy, for his course for non-science undergraduates. Here’s my review of it. You can download it free here.
A reality check on renewables – David MacKay, a Caltech-trained Oxford physicist, simply and accessibly illustrates how much energy we use.
Sustainable Energy Without the Hot Air, MacKay’s incredible book (and free download) describing in more depth how much energy we use and what we can do about it.
Pulling Back The Curtain On The Energy Transition Tale, by Megan K. Seibert and William E. Rees of the Real Green New Deal Project, compiles what we would need to convert from fossil fuels. Devastating if you thought we could live as we do today, just without pollution. Liberating if you want to live in harmony with nature and other people. Here’s a peer-reviewed version of the paper: Through the Eye of a Needle: An Eco-Heterodox Perspective on the Renewable Energy Transition.
The Myth that Growth Helps
Why you should recycle less
National Geographic: 91% of plastic isn’t recycled
Canadian Broadcasting’s Marketplace:
- Tracking your plastic: Exposing recycling myths
- Coffee cups: Starbucks and Tim Hortons recycling ends up in garbage
- Exposing composting myths
PBS: The Plastic Problem
Human behavior promotes pandemics
Low Tech Solutions
Low Tech Magazine, one of my favorite sites. Exiting the current system doesn’t mean the stone age. Black and white thinking like that comes from inexperience
Examples where improving efficiency creates greater pollution and waste
Slow food, Slow life, Minimalism
The Day the World Stopped Shopping, by J. B. Mackinnon on consumerism and disconnecting from it
The More of Less: Finding the Life You Want Under Everything You Own, by Joshua Becker
Calculate Your Impact
A pollution calculator for flying and driving
The True Cost movie
A video showing the disaster of where our “donated” clothes go
Nutritionfacts.org, Dr. Gregor’s newsletter is one of the few I subscribe to and I watch many of his videos
Carbon offsets are scam
Why Carbon Credits and Offsets Will Not Work (Forest Ecology Network)
Our stance on carbon offsetting: A distracting justification (Responsible Travel)
Is a Popular Carbon-Offset Method Just a Lot of Hot Air? (Scientific American)
Fish and Water
- A couple, Robert and Robyn Guyton, who converted a polluted plot in a New Zealand suburb into a food forest, saying “My philosophy in life about what to do in the world isn’t to go to a pristine area and live there and enjoy your life; it’s to find a place that’s degraded and fix it up”
- How Western civilisation could collapse, BBC, April 18, 2017
- The Insect Apocalypse is Here, What does it mean for the rest of life on Earth? Brooke Jarvis, NY Times Magazine, November 27, 2018
- United States of Plastic: Where does your plastic go? Global investigation reveals America’s dirty secret, The Guardian, June 17, 2019
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