Monday, July 4, 2011

Review: The New Normal: An Agenda for Responsible Living

I became engrossed in David Wann's The New Normal: An Agenda for Responsible Living after discovering it in the library's new display.

In The New Normal, Wann debunks our current, unsustainable way of life and proposes a new way of living, a way that involves saving the planetary resources that sustain us and a way that just might make her happier.

Wann discusses how we got ourselves in this mess and highlights how unsustainable our current way of living is. He's realistic about the scope of the needed solutions, and points out that unfortunately, saving ourselves isn't going to be a simple matter of changing a few lightbulbs and using reusable bags. Not that those things aren't important, but it's going to take more than that. A lot more.

Perhaps what most impressed me about this book is how Wann manages to set an optimistic tone about the necessary changes. This new way of life will look much different, yes, but those differences may also make it what we've been searching for all along.

Environmentalists and wannabe environmentalists who have done more reading of our current climate crisis and how to solve it may not find Wann's book as enlightening as I did. For readers at the beginning of their self-education in green living, like me, or someone who wants to review these issues, I highly recommend The New Normal. Reading this book helped renew my resolve to complete even minor actions, such as recycling, changing lightbulbs, carrying reusuable bags at all times, etc. Even better, I now feel inspired to take further steps toward a greener way of life.

Rating: 4.5/5.0

Additional steps I want to take since reading The New Normal
  1. Support local farmer's by shopping at the Farmer's Market often. I struggle with this. First, I hate going places before noon on Saturday (yes, I realize that's sad). Second, I'm cheap and often prices at the farmer's market are much higher than at the grocery store. I'm not saying it's not worth it, it's just something I struggle with. Also, our local markets have limited variety of fruits and veggies.

  2. Spend a portion of our weekly food budget on organic food in addition to growing more food.

  3. Buy local beer and wine whenever possible.

  4. Get involved in local government, attend meetings, keep informed and express my opinions. I haven't made time for this, and I should.

  5. Eat meatless one day a week

  6. Install a clothesline outside

1 comment:

  1. Sounds like a great read... I'll have to add it to my list. I fear the list is growing much faster than I am reading these days though!

    I'm totally with you on the farmer's market. Why do the damned things have to happen so early in the morning (she says at 2:35AM as she making such a good use of time cruising the blogosphere instead of going to bed like any normal human would.)


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