Great Review from Midwest Book Review on Feasible Planet !
Review by D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review
Feasible Planet: A Guide to More Sustainable Living joins a host of other books on the topic, but several features and approaches set this discussion apart from similar-sounding books on the market.
Where similar books propose individual actions that involve lifestyle changes based on ideological principles, Feasible Planet considers feasibility’s monetary benefits and incorporates a rational approach that ties many different kinds of beneficial economic results to more sustainable choices.
Thus, chapters clearly explain the impact of less environmentally conscious choices, which can be as simple as choosing one type of fabric over another. For example: “A single wash of a fleece (polyester) jacket can release as much as 1 ½ grams of micro fiber plastic. Half of this will probably not be picked up by water treatment and will end up in rivers.” A chart contrasts the impact of different fabrics, with hemp, linen and cotton winning heavily over nylon, acrylics, and polyester. (Many influences are profiled in this chart; from chemical usage to the ancillary effects of cashmere, produced from goats “that can cause significant land damage,” or silk, which requires a fair bit of land to produce.)
The notion of ‘environmental compromises’ enters the picture in a discussion of the issue of hard water, which increases one’s environmental footprint, costs money, yet can only be resolved by method which hold their own environmental impact. Knowing exactly what these consequences are or mean can translate neatly to undertaking the balancing act that results in the least damaging and most financially appropriate decisions, which Feasible Planet excels in profiling.
One wouldn’t expect discussions of random acts of kindness, humility, and child-rearing to enter this bigger picture, but Feasible Planet promotes a holistic approach that moves from individual choice to family cooperation and community impact, and no real discussion would be complete without such a focus – again, something too often missed in similar-sounding books.
Feasible Planet is in many ways a wake-up call: but it doesn’t bat its readers over the head: it gently taps them on the shoulder with facts that directly relate to personal choices.
Real facts, motivations, and consequences for actions all form a solid foundation from which Feasible Planet advocates changes that support economic growth, lifestyle improvement, and both social and environmental consciousness. It’s difficult to impart all this without sounding ‘preachy’ or dogmatic, but another big difference between Ken Kroes and his contemporaries is that his book is invitational and contemplative; not a lecture that makes harsh judgment calls or promotes hard-line approaches.
Sustainability is a big subject that’s often overwhelming in scope. Readers newly embarking on the journey towards better choices that begin with the microcosm of daily living and move into broader social, political and economic realms would do well to begin here. Feasible Planet not only provides a road map, but embraces those new to these ideas and processes by providing an easy discussion clearly applied to daily life.
Feasible Planet is available in both ebook and paperback formats through all major online bookstores
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