46 books like The Carbon Footprint of Everything

By Mike Berners-Lee,

Here are 46 books that The Carbon Footprint of Everything fans have personally recommended if you like The Carbon Footprint of Everything. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of How to Avoid a Climate Disaster: The Solutions We Have and the Breakthroughs We Need

Christopher Gould Author Of Carbon-Free Power: The Role of Small Modular (Nuclear) Reactors

From my list on climate change powering the planet in 21st century.

Why am I passionate about this?

Many believe the planet's energy needs can be provided carbon-free, with solar, wind, and water carrying the load. Coal, oil, and natural gas use will fade away. It’s an appealing vision. But the numbers don’t back it up for seven billion people, many looking in on the comfortable lifestyles of the wealthy countries and thinking: “What about us?”. Humanity needs a mix of energy sources, and nuclear energy is a carbon-free power source that can deliver at scale. I’m a nuclear physicist by training, recently retired from North Carolina State University, with interests in cosmology, energy research and policy, science education, and neutron and neutrino physics. 

Christopher's book list on climate change powering the planet in 21st century

Christopher Gould Why did Christopher love this book?

Putting in the numbers is what Gates does in his book. Climate change is real, no question. How to address it is where the controversy comes in. I really like that from the outset, Gates proposes five questions to consider whenever climate change is discussed: what fraction of the annual carbon dioxide emission are you removing? What’s your plan for cement? How much electrical power will be needed, what’s the cost, and how much space will it take up? 

But he’s optimistic that zero emissions can be reached. He argues there are many options to explore, including nuclear, and says, contrary to much of the news reporting, don’t focus on 2030; focus instead on 2050 to give the best solutions time to emerge.

By Bill Gates,

Why should I read it?

8 authors picked How to Avoid a Climate Disaster as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this urgent, authoritative book, Bill Gates sets out a wide-ranging, practical - and accessible - plan for how the world can get to zero greenhouse gas emissions in time to avoid a climate catastrophe.

Bill Gates has spent a decade investigating the causes and effects of climate change. With the help of experts in the fields of physics, chemistry, biology, engineering, political science, and finance, he has focused on what must be done in order to stop the planet's slide toward certain environmental disaster. In this book, he not only explains why we need to work toward net-zero emissions…


Book cover of Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming

Hans Ohanian Author Of Einstein's Mistakes: The Human Failings of Genius

From my list on the climate-change disaster and how to avoid it.

Why am I passionate about this?

Hans Ohanian is a physicist who has taught at several universities before retiring to engage in full-time research, writing, and acting as reviewer for several scientific journals. In one of his first books he included two chapters on “Energy, entropy, and environment” and “Nuclear energy.” This gave him valuable expertise for reviewing the five great books he recommends here.

Hans' book list on the climate-change disaster and how to avoid it

Hans Ohanian Why did Hans love this book?

This is a pie-in-the-sky 30-year plan for reducing CO2 in the atmosphere by joint worldwide implementation of 80 “solutions.” For each of these, the book proposes a number of giga-tons of CO2 to be removed from the atmosphere and the resulting dollar cost and savings.

I admire Hawken for his quantitative approach and his imaginative list of “solutions.” The numbers reveal the enormity of the drawdown enterprise. Some “solutions” are merely the usual renewables. Some came as a nice surprise to me, such as LED lanterns with batteries and small solar panels for residents in off-the-grid regions.

But I fear many of the solutions will never be rigorously implemented and would have a high policing cost to ensure compliance. For instance, the first solution involves the collection of refrigerant gases from expiring air conditioners. Who will voluntarily pay for this?

By Paul Hawken (editor),

Why should I read it?

8 authors picked Drawdown as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

• New York Times bestseller •

The 100 most substantive solutions to reverse global warming, based on meticulous research by leading scientists and policymakers around the world

“At this point in time, the Drawdown book is exactly what is needed; a credible, conservative solution-by-solution narrative that we can do it. Reading it is an effective inoculation against the widespread perception of doom that humanity cannot and will not solve the climate crisis. Reported by-effects include increased determination and a sense of grounded hope.” —Per Espen Stoknes, Author, What We Think About When We Try Not To Think About Global Warming…


Book cover of Wilding: The Return of Nature to a British Farm

Caro Feely Author Of Cultivating Change: Regenerating Land and Love in the Age of Climate Crisis

From my list on biodiversity, plants and natural magic.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a published author specializing in nature, travel, and wine writing, and I have been an organic farmer for nearly two decades on an award-winning estate in France. I’ve written four books about the transformation of our organic farm. In my latest, Cultivating Change, I explore how biodiversity helps us address climate change and how important it is to the health of the land. It is also a human story; like the books below, stories are key to bringing these subjects to life. My list is women authors, not because I set out to do that, but because these books are beautiful, intuitive, and deep, like the women who wrote them.

Caro's book list on biodiversity, plants and natural magic

Caro Feely Why did Caro love this book?

This book by Isabella Tree is the story of how Isabella and her husband, Charlie Burrell, transformed their massive 3500-acre farm in England (100 times the size of our organic farm in France) from an intensively farmed operation that was losing money into a conservation haven and an icon of rewilding or ‘wilding’ as Isabella has termed it. Questions remain about exactly how this model can work without subsidies and/or a heavy emphasis on tourism (they are less than 2 hours drive from London and offer glamping and more) and where/how serious food production fits into this picture.

That said, the other model of intensive farming at Knepp failed both economically and environmentally. Wilding at Knepp is far kinder to the land and the wider environment. It’s economically successful, employing far more people than it did as an intensive farm, and the environmental benefits are off the charts. This book…

By Isabella Tree,

Why should I read it?

8 authors picked Wilding as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'A poignant, practical and moving story of how to fix our broken land, this should be conservation's salvation; this should be its future; this is a new hope' - Chris Packham

In Wilding, Isabella Tree tells the story of the 'Knepp experiment', a pioneering rewilding project in West Sussex, using free-roaming grazing animals to create new habitats for wildlife. Part gripping memoir, part fascinating account of the ecology of our countryside, Wilding is, above all, an inspiring story of hope.

Winner of the Richard Jefferies Society and White Horse Book Shop Literary Prize.

Forced to accept that intensive farming on…


Book cover of The Great Soul of Siberia

Neil Kitching Author Of Carbon Choices: Common-sense Solutions to our Climate and Nature Crises

From my list on climate change and our natural world.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a Scottish geographer and energy specialist. I love nature and snow and don't want to see it destroyed or lost. I wrote Carbon Choices, on the common-sense solutions to our climate and nature crises, to share my expertise and passion to help people to make a difference. People, businesses, and governments all need to understand the serious consequences of climate change. Education is the first step towards taking action. Carbon Choices focuses on the solutions, many of which are 'common sense', to protect people and nature upon which we all depend.

Neil's book list on climate change and our natural world

Neil Kitching Why did Neil love this book?

Sooyong Park spends years in the wilderness to monitor and track the last remaining Siberian tigers. He spends weeks in the middle of a freezing winter in a dug-out shelter to photograph these magnificent animals in their ever-diminishing wilderness. But neither the freezing weather nor climate change is the immediate problem for the tigers - poaching and human encroachment are destroying the habitat they need to live in to prevent interbreeding.  You could cry reading this book.

By Sooyong Park,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Great Soul of Siberia as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

There are five races of tiger on our planet and all but one live in tropical regions: the Siberian Tiger Panthera tigris altaica is the exception. Mysterious and elusive, and with only 350 remaining in the wild, the Siberian tiger remains a complete enigma. One man has set out to change this.

Sooyong Park has spent twenty years tracking and observing these elusive tigers. Each year he spends six months braving sub-zero temperatures, buried in grave-like underground bunkers, fearlessly immersing himself in the lives of Siberian tigers. As he watches the brutal, day-to-day struggle to survive the harsh landscape, threatened…


Book cover of Sustainable Energy - Without the Hot Air

Why am I passionate about this?

I got energized about the environment, climate, and energy as a physics undergrad during the first energy crisis. Since then, I’ve worked in activist groups (Anti-nuclear, the wrong side: Now I fight climate change as penance for the sins of my youth), held policy positions in the governments of the United States and Canada, worked in two international organizations, and taught energy, climate, and environmental policy at Harvard, Michigan, and now UCLA. There’s so much written on climate change that it’s a rare pleasure to find something that cuts through the noise and says something original or important. So I’m delighted to recommend these, which include a couple of overlooked gems.

Edward's book list on deepening your understanding of climate change, what it means, and what to do about it, and give you hope

Edward A. Parson Why did Edward love this book?

This is a miraculous book, an astonishing tour de force of clarity, insight, optimism, and fun. Yes, I’m calling an energy book fun. Transforming world energy–moving from fossil fuels to renewables and other climate-safe sources – is the biggest part of limiting climate change, but the field is littered with vague, confusing, and grandiose claims.

MacKay cuts through the nonsense and makes the numbers and charts sing, so they stick in your brain like a catchy melody. I don’t care that it was written mostly for the UK and in 2009. Nothing since is half as good, and the concepts and tools haven’t changed. You just need to remind yourself that solar, wind, and EVs have made huge gains since then, so the picture is somewhat more optimistic than MacKay paints.

Read this book. I mean it. You will feel empowered, and you will feel smarter.

By David JC MacKay,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Sustainable Energy - Without the Hot Air as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Addressing the sustainable energy crisis in an objective manner, this enlightening book analyzes the relevant numbers and organizes a plan for change on both a personal level and an international scale--for Europe, the United States, and the world. In case study format, this informative reference answers questions surrounding nuclear energy, the potential of sustainable fossil fuels, and the possibilities of sharing renewable power with foreign countries.

While underlining the difficulty of minimizing consumption, the tone remains positive as it debunks misinformation and clearly explains the calculations of expenditure per person to encourage people to make individual changes that will benefit…


Book cover of Pole to Pole

Argyro Graphy Author Of Inspiring Children to be Kind

From my list on children’s books where kindness wins every time.

Why am I passionate about this?

I know first hand the damage that bullying can have on children, It weighs heavy on your psyche, and emotional well-being. I was determined to find a way to teach children important values to fight the root causes of bullying. I found an old "sketch" and it was my "aha" moment. With continued tweaking, my bubbly hippo was born that I named Bentley. Sporting his red running shoes, Bentley has become a positive role model for children. He represents resilience, friendship, joy, and kindness. We all grew up hugging a teddy bear, but now it's time for the World to Hug a Hippo. The books I've picked below inspire me and will help kids learn the value of kindness. 

Argyro's book list on children’s books where kindness wins every time

Argyro Graphy Why did Argyro love this book?

An entertaining and educational series where our friendly polar bear continues on his adventure teaching children about climate change and how being responsible and caring for our environment and the planet is a form of kindness that we all benefit from.

By Alan J. Hesse,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Pole to Pole as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Driven from his melting Arctic home in search of food, Captain Polo once again takes to the ocean in his trusty boat. Little does he know about a hidden stowaway with a secret agenda...


"Must read. Fantastically enjoyable graphic novel with an eco-conscious theme - educational and thought-provoking for children and adults alike...[ ]..every bit as enjoyable as other contemporary and classic graphic novels." - Reedsy Discovery

Picking up from the previous books in the series, Pole to Pole sees the now well-seasoned globetrotter Captain Polo back on the ocean waves falling into one adventure after another. After nearly getting…


Book cover of Storms of My Grandchildren: The Truth about the Coming Climate Catastrophe and Our Last Chance to Save Humanity

Hans Ohanian Author Of Einstein's Mistakes: The Human Failings of Genius

From my list on the climate-change disaster and how to avoid it.

Why am I passionate about this?

Hans Ohanian is a physicist who has taught at several universities before retiring to engage in full-time research, writing, and acting as reviewer for several scientific journals. In one of his first books he included two chapters on “Energy, entropy, and environment” and “Nuclear energy.” This gave him valuable expertise for reviewing the five great books he recommends here.

Hans' book list on the climate-change disaster and how to avoid it

Hans Ohanian Why did Hans love this book?

James Hansen is our leading expert on climatology, whose research established that the increase of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere arising from human activities forces the global temperature upward. He recounts his strenuous efforts to alert the public and our political leaders to the dangers of greenhouse gases.

For me, the most intriguing tale told by Hansen is the mysterious mass killing of life 55 million years ago. After much sleuthing, Hansen decided this was caused by an outburst of frozen methane accumulated in the ocean, which escaped into the atmosphere and forced the temperature catastrophically upward. He reckoned that a similar accumulation of methane in today’s ocean poses a similar risk. After discussions with Bill McKibble, he urged that we must decrease atmospheric CO2 to 350 parts per million to eliminate this risk and other oceanic risks.  

By James Hansen,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Storms of My Grandchildren as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In his Q&A with Bill McKibben featured in the paperback edition of Storms of My Grandchildren, Dr. James Hansen, the world's leading climatologist, shows that exactly contrary to the impression the public has received, the science of climate change has become even clearer and sharper since the hardcover was released. In Storms of My Grandchildren, Hansen speaks out for the first time with the full truth about global warming: The planet is hurtling even more rapidly than previously acknowledged to a climatic point of no return. In explaining the science of climate change, Hansen paints a devastating but all-too-realistic picture…


Book cover of The Climate Book: The Facts and the Solutions

Hans Ohanian Author Of Einstein's Mistakes: The Human Failings of Genius

From my list on the climate-change disaster and how to avoid it.

Why am I passionate about this?

Hans Ohanian is a physicist who has taught at several universities before retiring to engage in full-time research, writing, and acting as reviewer for several scientific journals. In one of his first books he included two chapters on “Energy, entropy, and environment” and “Nuclear energy.” This gave him valuable expertise for reviewing the five great books he recommends here.

Hans' book list on the climate-change disaster and how to avoid it

Hans Ohanian Why did Hans love this book?

When Greta Thunberg first appeared in public as a schoolgirl-on-strike, I admired her talent as a performer of political theater. By now, as a young woman, she has become a phenomenon, and I admire her talents as a writer.

In her new book, she deftly intersperses essays of her own with those of a hundred other environmentalists. She raises the alarm over the cataclysmic shipwreck that is heading our way and also over the incompetence, mendacity, and lethargy of our political leaders.

I fully agree with Greta’s alarm, and I found some of the possible environmental disasters outlined in her book totally scary, especially those described in the charts of tipping points in oceanic currents, polar ice sheets, the Amazon rainforest, and the monsoon rains.

By Greta Thunberg,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Climate Book as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

We still have time to change the world. From climate activist Greta Thunberg, comes the essential handbook for making it happen.

You might think it's an impossible task: secure a safe future for life on Earth, at a scale and speed never seen, against all the odds. There is hope—but only if we listen to the science before it's too late.

In The Climate Book, Greta Thunberg has gathered the wisdom of over one hundred experts—geophysicists, oceanographers and meteorologists; engineers, economists and mathematicians; historians, philosophers and Indigenous leaders—to equip us all with the knowledge we…


Book cover of Straphanger: Saving Our Cities and Ourselves from the Automobile

Mary Soderstrom Author Of Concrete: From Ancient Origins to a Problematic Future

From my list on to design a workable, walkable, wonderful city.

Why am I passionate about this?

I like to say I'm a born-again pedestrian. After a childhood in car-friendly Southern California, I moved first to the San Francisco Bay Area and then to Montreal. There I discovered the pleasures of living in walkable cities, and over the years I've explored them in a series of books about people, nature, and urban spaces in which the problems of spread-out, concrete-heavy cities take a front-row seat. The impact of the way we've built our cities over the last 100 years is becoming apparent, as carbon dioxide rises, driving climate changes. We must change the way we live, and the books I suggest give some insights about what to do and what not to do.

Mary's book list on to design a workable, walkable, wonderful city

Mary Soderstrom Why did Mary love this book?

Should be upfront about this: Taras is a neighbor and I see him riding his bike frequently. But he's also ridden public transportation around the world, and his book about what he found is profoundly inspiring. Public transit can work, it indeed must work if we're going to cut our carbon footprint and live in cities that are sustainable. It's full of great stories about his adventures: if you thought subways and buses are boring, he'll convince you otherwise.

By Taras Grescoe,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Straphanger as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"I am proud to call myself a straphanger," writes Taras Grescoe. The perception of public transportation in America is often unflattering - a squalid last resort for those with one too many drunk-driving charges, too poor to afford insurance, or too decrepit to get behind the wheel of a car. Indeed, a century of auto-centric culture and city planning has left most of the country with public transportation that is underfunded, ill maintained, and ill conceived. But as the demand for petroleum is fast outpacing the world's supply, a revolution in transportation is under way. Grescoe explores the ascendance of…


Book cover of The Climate Conscious Gardener

Pam Peirce Author Of Golden Gate Gardening,  The Complete Guide to Year-Round Food Gardening in the San Francisco Bay Area & Coastal California

From my list on gaining garden know-how.

Why am I passionate about this?

When I was studying plant science in graduate school, I realized that what I really wanted to do was not lab research but to help people understand plants better so they could grow more beautiful and bountiful gardens. To this end, I have written several books, founded the San Francisco League of Urban Gardeners (SLUG), taught horticulture at City College of San Francisco for several decades, and, since 2006, written a column on gardening for the SF Chronicle. My list of books about gardening know-how will painlessly prepare you to grow plants well.

Pam's book list on gaining garden know-how

Pam Peirce Why did Pam love this book?

This little book, part of a series put out by the Garden, will show you the best ways to offset climate change in your gardening and landscaping. It includes tips on materials, energy efficiency, and increasing carbon sequestration. A chapter by Amanda Knaul and Susan K. Pell covers the climate footprint of homegrown food. 

By Janet Marinelli,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Climate Conscious Gardener as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This technique can save the earth—while resulting in a beautiful garden, too!

Climate Conscious Gardener picks up where Brooklyn Botanic Gardening’s groundbreaking Environmental Gardener left off, giving homeowners, landscapers, and public park managers practical strategies for greening the planet through sustainable and organic gardening. In simple terms, an introductory section explains what happens when the balance of carbon and nitrogen in the atmosphere goes awry, and how plants, soil, and synthetic gardening aids (such as fertilizer and pesticides) affect climate change. Most important, readers will learn how to calculate their garden’s carbon footprint—and what they can do to decrease it…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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