Eaarth: Book summary and reviews of Eaarth by Bill McKibben

Eaarth

Making a Life on a Tough New Planet

by Bill McKibben

Eaarth by Bill McKibben X
Eaarth by Bill McKibben
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Book Summary

Twenty years ago, with The End of Nature, Bill McKibben offered one of the earliest warnings about global warming. Those warnings went mostly unheeded; now, he insists, we need to acknowledge that we've waited too long, and that massive change is not only unavoidable but already under way. Our old familiar globe is suddenly melting, drying, acidifying, flooding, and burning in ways that no human has ever seen. We've created, in very short order, a new planet, still recognizable but fundamentally different. We may as well call it Eaarth.

That new planet is filled with new binds and traps. A changing world costs large sums to defend—think of the money that went to repair New Orleans, or the trillions it will take to transform our energy systems. But the endless economic growth that could underwrite such largesse depends on the stable planet we've managed to damage and degrade. We can't rely on old habits any longer.

Our hope depends, McKibben argues, on scaling back—on building the kind of societies and economies that can hunker down, concentrate on essentials, and create the type of community (in the neighborhood, but also on the Internet) that will allow us to weather trouble on an unprecedented scale. Change—fundamental change—is our best hope on a planet suddenly and violently out of balance. 

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. What distinguishes McKibben as an environmental writer beyond his literary finesse and firm grasp of the complexities of science and society is his generous pragmatism, informed vision of small-scale solutions to our food and energy needs, and belief that Eaarth will remain a nurturing planet if we face facts, jettison destructive habits, and pursue new ways of living with creativity and conscience." - Booklist

"Stark, no-nonsense manifesto about global warming and its unstoppable effects. .... An absolute must-read." - Kirkus Reviews

"McKibben's words are well researched, forceful, and well timed." - Library Journal

"... a glass-half-full attitude that might strike some as Pollyannaish or merely insufficient. But for others McKibben's refusal to abandon hope may restore faith in the future." - Publishers Weekly

"Read it, please. Straight through to the end. Whatever else you were planning to do next, nothing could be more important." - Barbara Kingsolver

"With clarity, eloquence, deep knowledge and even deeper compassion for both planet and people, Bill McKibben guides us to the brink of a new, uncharted era. This monumental book, probably his greatest, may restore your faith in the future, with us in it." - Alan Weisman, author of The World Without Us

"Bill McKibben foresaw 'the end of nature' very early on, and in this new book he blazes a path to help preserve nature’s greatest treasures." - James E. Hansen, director, NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies

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Author Information

Bill McKibben

Bill McKibben is the author of The End of Nature, Deep Economy, and numerous other books. He is the founder of the environmental organizations Step It Up and 350.org, and was among the first to warn of the dangers of global warming. He is a scholar in residence at Middlebury College and lives in Vermont with his wife, the writer Sue Halpern, and their daughter.

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