ISBN 978-1-4441-7440-3. The “All That Matters” book on “Sustainability” by Chris Goodall was published by Hodder & Stoughton in 2012. This is a small book that fits nicely in your pocket with only 154 pages. The blurb says that “All That Matters” books are written by “the world’s leading experts”. Certainly Chris is that. We are a big fan (we admit it). We will read anything he writes including his excellent blogs. So it is interesting to see how his work has evolved over the years. Those who have followed his work can’t help but notice that THIS book reveals a lot about the current state of Chris’s mind. So, what does he think today about sustainability?
ISBN 978 1 84694 671 4. “No Local – Why Small-Scale Alternatives Won’t Change the World” by Greg Sharzer as published by Zero Books in 2012. This is a small book by a relatively unknown author. Its cover and title attempts to ape Naomi Klein’s “No Logo” but there is no comparison. At first glance the concept was very attractive to us: a critique of re-localisation. Yes, it is a critique but one by a devout Marxist. As such it is tortuous reading. It is like studying the work of an 18th Century Catholic theologian who argued that Buddhism was the work of the devil because Buddhists didn’t care how many angels could be stood on the head of a pin. The critique only makes sense if you are a Marxist.
Nothing more clearly illustrates the division between old fashioned green thinking & the modern sustainability movement than Genetically Modified food. A recent clash of Tweets between author Mark Lynas (“The God Species“) and Dr Vandana Shiva (author “Soil Not Oil“) exposes just how deep the battle wounds have become. The gloves are off but maybe both are missing the point.
ISBN 978 1 900322 50 8. “Future Scenarios – How communities can adapt to peak oil and climate change” by David Holmgren was published by Green Books in 2009. Although only three or four years old this book already looks dated somehow. It is a contemporary of Rob Hopkins’ original “Transition Handbook” and Shaun Chamberlin’s “Transition Timeline“. There was a brief flurry if such publications a few years back – but, no more. Their apparent visions of imminent energy collapse proved empty. What we got instead was financial collapse. Still, there is nothing obsolete in this publishing genre. It took as a while to catch up with this publication. So, let’s take a brief walk down memory lane to remember how it all began… Continue reading