By Anders Lorenzen
Again you have left it to the last minute. But do not panic. We’re on hand to help you with the final minute Christmas shopping with our guide to the top ten climate-change related books that should please your family, partner or friends if they care about the future of the world. And it might not all be pessimistic reading. In the list we have picked several titles that look at the challenge in an optimistic way – you may be surprised.
1: Why are We Waiting?: The Logic, Urgency, and Promise of Tackling Climate Change
In Why are We Waiting?: The Logic, Urgency, and Promise of Tackling Climate Change, the world’s leading climate economist, Nicholas Stern, tackles the economic case for acting on climate change now before it is too late. Mr Stern argues that a low-carbon transition could trigger a new wave of economic and technological transformation and investment, and a new era of global and sustainable prosperity.
2: Don’t Even Think About It: Why Our Brains Are Wired to Ignore Climate Change
This is a couple of years old, but still more relevant than ever. In Don’t Even Think About It: Why Our Brains Are Wired to Ignore Climate Change, environmental campaigner and communication specialist, George Marshall, asks why we are still struggling to engage people in understanding and accepting the climate change challenge, and says we need to rethink how we are communicating about it. If you want to understand why we have not yet made people understand the severity of the climate crisis, this is a must read.
3: Atmosphere of Hope: Solutions to the Climate Crisis
We already have the tools to fight climate change, and we can do it. This is the core message that Australian scientist, Professor Tim Flannery, presents in Atmosphere of Hope: Solutions to the Climate Crisis. Here he introduces us to the innovative solutions being developed around the world, which work with the Earth’s systems to combat climate change – and could safeguard our future.
4: The Burning Question: We can’t burn half the world’s oil, coal and gas. So how do we quit?
While slightly outdated, this is still very relevant and could be seen as the book that kickstarted the Carbon Bubble and divestment movements. In The Burning Question: We can’t burn half the world’s oil, coal and gas. So how do we quit? authors Duncan Clark and Mike Berners-Lee ask why is it that when we know much fossil fuel we can safely burn to stay within the 2 Degree C limit we are not even slowing down our fossil fuel consumption, and have hardly made a dent in our CO2 reductions?
5: A Farewell to Ice: A Report from the Arctic
Controversial and outspoken ice scientist, Peter Wadhams, thinks that no one quite understands how serious the situation is in the Arctic or how unprecedented the melting is. In A Farewell to Ice: A Report from the Arctic he makes some daunting predictions, including an ice-free Arctic in the summer which might be with us sooner that we think. For anyone who wants to understand what is happening in the Arctic, this is critically important reading. And at a time where the climate debate is preoccupied with the Paris Agreement and Donald Trump, a wake-up call to what happens in this climate change battleground might not be a bad idea.
6: What’s Really Happening to Our Planet?
In What’s Really Happening to Our Planet? campaigner, writer, sustainability adviser and consultant, Tony Juniper, takes a different approach to climate change and sustainability by presenting the facts in a more engaging way using charts and graphics. This book shows that documenting what happens to the planet need not be presented as a boring scientific text, and this book has the potential to reach the masses in the way it is illustrated. While it suitable for all audiences, it is particularly suitable for anyone who has recently been introduced to the issues and wants to learn more.
7: Cancel The Apocalypse: The New Path To Prosperity
Is it really that bad? In Cancel The Apocalypse: The New Path To Prosperity, campaigner, author and analyst, Andrew Simms, earmarks the solutions that we need in order to move to a more just and sustainable world are already there, and cites examples which have been implemented across the world. While global warming and financial meltdown might feel like two modern day horsemen of the apocalypse, Simms shows how such end of the world scenarios offer us the chance for a new beginning.
8: Climate Gamble: Is Anti-Nuclear Activism Endangering Our Future?
Nuclear energy is probably the subject that divides environmentalists more than anything else and it is highly controversial. In Climate Gamble: Is Anti-Nuclear Activism Endangering Our Future? Rauli Partanen and Janne M. Korhonen argue that opposition to nuclear energy is what is delaying climate action more than any other issue, and it could lead to climate disaster.
9: The End of Plenty: the race to feed a crowded world
As the world’s population continues to expand rapidly, and the severity of climate change kicks in how will we feed the world in the future? In The End of Plenty: the race to feed a crowded world, Joel K. Bourne Jr predicts that we’re coming to the end of being able to increase crop yield, and a new approach is needed. He argues that food insecurity also means political instability and an increase in conflicts. Action needs to be taken now to protect the planet and its inhabitants.
10: The Great Texas Wind Rush: How George Bush, Ann Richards, and a Bunch of Tinkerers Helped the Oil and Gas State Win the Race to Wind Power
If post the election of Donald Trump, you need some optimistic news then Kate Galbraith and Asher Price’s The Great Texas Wind Rush: How George Bush, Ann Richards, and a Bunch of Tinkerers Helped the Oil and Gas State Win the Race to Wind Power might just give you that. It sets out how Republicans propelled Texas to be US’s leading wind power state. Texans might not believe in climate change but they believe in wind power. The book documents how the Texas wind power story is an economic success story backed by environmentalists and oil executives alike.
Happy Christmas reading!