Seven Best Environmental Books to read during Covid Confinement
In this post author, writer and teacher, Caro Feely, provides a list of must-read books for understanding our climate crisis and even how it could be linked to the corona virus.
As we face into an unknown length of confinement due to COVID-19 I’m turning to books, yoga, gardening, online projects and writing. The corona crisis is changing our way of looking at everything from what we focus on, how we live and how we treat our earth. This time we have at home offers us a moment to look at what is important and to think about the long-term wellbeing of our planet.
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I recommend these 7 excellent books to start or continue your journey:
In ‘This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate’ – Naomi Klein, a mighty journalist and writer, helps us see clearly the facts and the forces driving where we are with climate crisis and what we need to do. This is a real page turner and one I recommend you must read above all else.
She has since written another book which is on my wish list. On Fire: The (Burning) Case for a Green New Deal.
In The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History – Elizabeth Kolbert takes us on a journey to understand why there is a mass extinction on the go.
It’s not just about climate crisis, it is also about hyper global mobility – another reason Corona virus was able to go global as fast as it has.
In The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming David Wallace Wells tells us he never considered himself an environmentalist but then takes us through all the facts that convinced him he needed to be. He outlines the ways climate change is taking (and will take) its toll, a long list of devastating effects including plagues of warming, economic collapse, climate conflict and the multiplier effect of these acting together.
While it would be nice to put our heads in the sand and only read positive books, particularly as we suffer with the current corona crisis, we have to face up to the facts and make long term changes after this virus has passed or experience more disasters in our future. See more detail on Wallace Wells book in my article about 7 eco resolutions for 2020.
In We Are the Weather: Saving the Planet Begins at BreakfastJonathan Safran Foer, like Wallace Wells, fesses up to not being an environmentalist to start out. It is through his research that he discovers in just how much trouble we, the human race, have landed ourselves in.
Like Wallace Wells having a child made him more aware of his choices and what they meant for our future.
Maria Rodale undertook deep research to understand what was going on with farming and agriculture and sifted through the fine print of the US farm bill, then wrote this gem Organic Manifesto: How Organic Food Can Heal Our Planet, Feed the World, and Keep Us Safe .
While numbers and stats are based on her research for her home country USA, all of the messages are relevant to everywhere. This is an outstanding book that I wish everyone on the planet had to read.
Industrial food investigator and journalist Joanna Blythman’s message is ‘we need clean labels’, that tell the full story and we need to understand that story. The ‘Big Lie’ that processed food is as good as real food needs to be debunked. I loved her undercover visit to an industrial food fair described in Swallow This: Serving Up the Food Industry’s Darkest Secrets.
This is similar to Food, Inc.: A Participant Guide featured in my photo but more recent and relevant to citizens of Europe.
Wilding: Returning Nature to Our Farm by Isabella Tree has experienced massive success – it tells the story of her and her husband’s transformation of their massive farm from an intensively farmed estate that was losing money to a conservation haven. While the jury is still out on how this new model can be made to work economically without ongoing subsidies – its clear that the other model was failing and this one is far kinder to the land and the wider environment.
These seven books offer a great insight into what is going on and why we need to change our habits in the future.
Have you read these books or do you have others to recommend? Share your thoughts in the comments section. We would love to hear from you.
Read about the story of this organic farm – the series includes three books Grape Expectations, Saving our Skins and Glass Half Full . See this page to order your case of organic wine including shipping in the Uk, Ireland and EU mainland. Join the mailing list to receive a seasonal newsletter, events, wine pairing, recipes and more info on this topic at the bottom right of this page.
When Corona is over come and learn more about organic farming with a visit to Chateau Feely in South West France ; stay with us or do a yoga retreat, a multi day course or multi day wine tour or a multi day walking tour.