Ecopsychology Reading

Recommendations from the Ecopsychology UK Ning:

Returning to Membership in Earth Community: Systemic Constellations with Nature

Human beings are deeply embedded in nature, not separate from it. Systemic Constellations are being used in many different ways to explore both nature within us and our position within nature as we try to find our place in the earth community. This anthology collects reports from both the originators and the latest explorers in this work. The book contains contributions from fourteen individuals working in five different countries in Europe and North American, including Daan van Kampenhout, Victoria Schnabel and Zita Cox, Edited by Francesca Mason-Boring and Kenneth Edwin Sloan. Publication date July 2013, in print and eBook, via Amazon. More information and sign-up for Early Reader Discount at

Abram, D., The spell of the sensuous: perception and language in a more-than-human world. 1996 Pantheon Books, New York. “Starting from the perspective of western magic and indigenous shamanism, this beautifully written text takes you on a journey deep into the nature of experience and the linguistic complexities of our human experience of nature.” Review by Dave Key

Bernstein, Jerome. Living in the Borderland: The Evolution of Consciousness and the Challenge of Healing Trauma. 2006. Routledge. “The author is a Jungian Analyst who writes about the emergence of ‘borderland’ experiences – a greater openness to transrational reality – as western psyche changes in relation to our current crises. Part One discusses the big picture. Part Two looks at clinical implications. Part Three builds bridges between Navaho and western healing systems; it is very rare to find an author who is so well steeped in both traditions and who is able to find a language to cross cultures. See” Review by M J Rust

Berry, Thomas. The Great Work. 2000. Three Rivers Press. “This may be the great summary work of Thomas Berry. It is historically up to date, as befits a great historian of religion, science and the Earth. The assessment of the present is realistic to any who appreciate what we have lost. He projects into the future from the past as far as can be seen and hoped. That is a very long distance indeed on both ends. The next stage is dependent on human choice to a large extent. The assessment of where we are and what we have done/accomplished is rather grim and realistic from a geophysical standpoint but is hopeful in its projections for Earth going forward, according to Thomas. Thank you, Thomas Berry, for this perhaps last published summary work. “Anon, Amazon

Birkeland, Inger. Making Place, Making Self. 2005. Ashgate Press. This is a remarkable book exploring our relationship to place. As a human geographer from Norway, Birkeland becomes fascinated by what draws people to make a journey to the most northerly point of mainland Europe, the North Cape in Norway. While on the surface it would seem to be yet another tourist destination, she takes a look at the deeper layers of what motivates people to go to the compass point “North”. She is first inspired by a Spanish woman, Sofia, who makes the newspaper headlines by walking the 2,100 km from Oslo to the North Cape. Sophia is propelled by the feeling that she is missing something in life and, despite everyone around her believing she is crazy, she gives up everything in her 30’s and sets off. Her mother thinks she has ‘lost her North’, a Spanish saying to describe someone who has lost direction in life and who has decided to do something out of the ordinary. After this, Birkeland interviews a series of people and devotes nine chapters of her book to exploring their very different stories and reasons for making their journeys. She draws on post-lacanian and feminist psychoanalytic thinking, as well as phenomenology and existentialism, to develop themes related to place and space, home and home-coming, sexual difference and subjectivity, travel as rite of passage, chora and the metaphysics of place. Birkeland’s capacity to weave together personal accounts with well argued academic theory makes for a compelling read, and a major contribution to the developing theoretical base of ecopsychology. Review by Mary-Jayne Rust

Bond, D. Stephenson. Living Myth: Personal Meaning as a Way of Life. Boston. Shambhala. 1993. “A Jungian and psychodynamic analysis of the relationship between human emotions, the need for meaningfulness, culture, behaviour and eco-systems; the relationship between ‘outer’ ecological and ‘inner’ emotional balance; the centrality of meaning, religion and cultural myth-making in ecological sustainability; how these can be functional in terms of sustaining ecological systems, dysfunctional in terms of the same, and how changes from dysfunctional to functional cultural myths depend on individuals who are bold enough to take the risk to be pioneers of new ways of living.” Review by Paul Maiteny.

Brody, Hugh. The Other Side of Eden. 2001. North Point Press. ”Hugh Brody has written a learned, eloquent, and mysteriously moving introduction to the enduring culture of hunter-gatherers. But none of these adjectives does justice to the deeply transformative experience of reading The Other Side of Eden, which led me beyond the limits of familiar mythology, introduced me to people whose lives are radically different from my own, and reminded me, at the same time, that different as they are, hunter-gatherers are an essential piece of my humanity and I cannot truly understand myself without them.” Review by Jonathan Rosen

Brazier, Caroline Acorns Among the Grass: Adventures in Eco-Therapy. 2011. O books. This book presents an approach to working with the environment which embraces the therapeutic and the spiritual, offering a model of working which is sympathetic and creative. incorporating both theoretical understanding and vivid description of experiential work, it will appeal to both the professional and the general reader. Connecting with nature, we open to life in new ways.

Burns, George. Nature Guided Therapy – Brief Integrative Strategies for Health and Well-Being. 1998. Taylor & Francis. “This book goes beyond a simple symptom-elimination approach to psychotherapy and integrates our interactions with nature to more likely resolve problems by creating a desired positive affective state. Fascinating evidence from cross-cultural sources and experimental evidence of science, are combined to demonstrate a direct nature-mind-body connection that can be utilised both practically and therapeutically. Burns has done therapists a great service, reminding us…that the world is much larger than the room in which we see our clients. This rich and often moving book is about much more than therapy – it is about the quality and course of our existence on many levels. I recommend it highly – and with a sense of urgency.” Review by Michael D.Yapko

Butterfly Hill, Julia. The Legacy of Luna. 2000. San Francisco. Harper. “This accessible book describes a young woman’s evolving relationship with a redwood tree, developed over two years of living among her branches to prevent loggers from clear-cutting the redwood forest. Further, it tracks her dialogues with the loggers, rooted in her commitment to loving, non-violent dialogue. Deeply inspiring!” Review by Sandra White

Buzzell, L., Chalquist, C. Ecotherapy: Healing with Nature in Mind. 2009 Sierra Club Books. “This anthology is the follow-up to Ecopsychology: Restoring the Earth, Healing the Mind, edited by Theodore Roszak, Mary Gomes and Allen Kanner, also published by Sierra Club Books (in 1995). It is the first book to take a broad approach to the practice of applied ecopsychology and ecotherapy.”

Clayton, S. & Opotow, S. (eds). Identity and the natural environment: the psychological significance of nature. 2003 London: MIT Press. “Identity and the Natural Environment is just the right mix of empirical research, statistics and theory for a student of environmental aesthetics, ethics and social dynamics. The movement between ecological moralism and political activism between essays is actually a useful index of the varied nature of the environmental movement. Focusing on social interaction enables the volume to show the linkage of democratic decision-making, political activism and the environment. An environmental psychology, one concludes, is rarely an individual “condition” – it is social and cultural.” Review by Pramod K Nayar, Electronic Green Journal

Cooper Marcus, Clare and Barnes, Marni. Healing Gardens; Therapeutic Benefits and Design Recommendations. 1998. Wiley and Sons. “Unique and comprehensive, Healing Gardens provides up-to-date coverage of research findings, relevant design principles and approaches, and best practice examples. For more and more people, the shortest road to recovery is the one that leads through a healing garden. Combining up-to-date information on the therapeutic benefits of healing gardens with practical design guidance from leading experts in the field, Healing Gardens is an invaluable guide for landscape architects and others involved in creating and maintaining medical facilities as well as an extremely useful reference for those responsible for patient care. With the help of site plans, photographs, and more, the editors present design guidelines and case studies for outdoor spaces in a range of medical settings.” Review by Publisher

Cullinan, Cormac Wild Law: A Manifesto for Earth Justice. 2003. Green Books. Totnes. “This book of Cormac Cullinan explains with great clarity how we can change our entire approach to governance so that we can continue life on a liveable planet. In its basic outlines this book is one of the finest contributions to the entire field of jurisprudence in recent times.”Review by Thomas Berry, author of The Dream of the Earth.

Curtis, Adam. Century of the Self. BBC Documentary series. 2002.

Eisenberg, Evan. The Ecology of Eden: Humans, Nature and Human Nature. 1998. Picador. London. “An amazing historical account of ecological themes, starting before humans and coming up to the present, with a lot of attention to ancient Middle Eastern culture and its lasting effects. He identifies what he calls the Tower and the Mountain as two ancient approaches to the nature/culture divide, and traces them down to the current opposition in the green scene between ‘planet managers’ and ‘planet fetishers’. Full of amazing scholarship and ideas.” Review by Nick Totton

Laszlo, Ervin. The Inner Limits of Mankind: Heretical Reflections on Today’s Values, Culture and Politics. Oxford: One World. 1989. “Explains how the key limits and constraints on sustainability are cultural, political and psycho-emotional (ie ‘within’ humans), not bio-physical (or ‘outside’ humans) as generally emphasised. Bio-physical ‘environmental problems’ are symptomatic of behaviour rooted in cultural priorities. It is these which are the cause and, therefore, the real underlying problem. The book contains materials that can be used for self-reflective educational activities.” Review by Paul Maiteny.

Fisher, Andy. Radical Ecopsychology: Psychology in the Service of Life. 2001 State University of New York Press. “Personal in its style yet radical in its vision, Radical Ecopsychology offers an original introduction to ecopsychology–an emerging field that ties the human mind to the natural world. In order for ecopsychology to be a force for social change, Andy Fisher insists it must become a more comprehensive and critical undertaking. Drawing masterfully from humanistic psychology, hermeneutics, phenomenology, radical ecology, nature writing, and critical theory, he develops a compelling account of how the human psyche still belongs to nature. This daring and innovative book proposes a psychology that will serve all life, providing a solid base not only for Ecopsychological practice, but also for a critical theory of modern society.”

Fromm, Erich. To Have or To Be? London: Jonathan Cape. 1978. “Explains how humans are motivated by two basic orientations in seeking satisfaction – Having mode and Being mode. Explains the behavioural impacts of each and implications for relationship with self, others, and societal and ecological contexts. Includes section on 13th century mystic Meister Eckhart as early pioneer of the Being mode of life.”

Greenway, R., Wilderness Experience and Ecopsychology. International Journal of Wilderness 2, 26-30. 1996. “A classic from Robert Greenway, which speaks for itself from the title on.”

Harding, Stephan. Animate Earth. 2006. Green Books. “A delightful and stimulating take on Deep Ecology and the Earth/Gaia being truly a living being, with all of nature invested with an aliveness of which we are part. Also, rock-solid science. Harding has worked with the Schumacher College since it began, and knits together as well as anyone the science and the mystery of how our planet works.” Review by Mark Brayne.

Hathaway, M and Boff, L. The Tao of Liberation: Exploring the Ecology of Transformation (Ecology and Justice) 2009. The book includes a chapter on the psychological dimensions of global transformation, much of it drawing from ecopsychology. It also contains several chapters on cosmological perspectives. The book website is:

Henderson, R., In: Miles, J., and Priest, S., (Eds.). The Place of Deep Ecology and Ecopsychology in Adventure Education. 1999. Adventure Programming. Venture Publications, PA. “This chapter, in what is a seminal text in outdoor education, introduces the outdoor education sector to deep ecology and ecopsychology in a direct and engaging way. It places these perspectives squarely into the often relatively technocratic outdoor education literature.” Review by Dave Key.

Huxley, Sir Julian. New Bottles for New Wine London: Harper and Row. 1957. “A compilation of Huxley’s prescient essays on the role of the human and our emergent capacities in future, psycho-social evolution. Includes the essay Transhumanism.” Review by Paul Maiteny.

Johnstone, Chris. The Lens of Deep Ecology. Pain for the World, Systems Theory, and finding our Power to Make a Difference. 1994. Institute of Deep Ecology UK. “This booklet introducing systems thinking and the Deep Ecology approach was published by the Institute for Deep Ecology (UK) in 1994, and revised in 1997. It has been used as a core text on university courses in several countries. It is currently out of print, though extracts from it are still used on several distance-learning packages.”

Kahn, P.H. The human relationship with nature: development and culture. 1999. Cambridge MA. MIT Press. “Urgent environmental problems call for vigorous research and theory on how humans develop a relationship with nature. For eight years, UW psychologist Peter Kahn studied children, young adults, and parents in diverse geographical locations, ranging from an economically impoverished black community in Houston to a remote village in the Brazilian Amazon. In these studies Kahn sought answers to the following questions: How do people value nature, and how do they reason morally about environmental degradation? Do children have a deep connection to the natural world that gets severed by modern society? Or do such connections emerge, if at all, later in life, with increased cognitive and moral maturity? Are there universal features in the human relationship with nature? Kahn’s empirical and theoretical findings draw on current work in psychology, biology, environmental behavior, education, policy, and moral development.”

Kahn, P.H. & Kellert, S.R. (eds). Children and nature: psychological, sociocultural and evolutionary investigations. 2002. London. MIT Press. “Nothing is more important to us than our children, and nothing is more important to our children than maintaining a high quality environment. If they are to have a benign and nurturing environment, much will depend on the ideas and surroundings they are exposed to today. The authors in “Children and Nature” discuss a fascinating and diverse range of topics related to these critical issues. Everyone with an interest in the human future could profit from reading it.” Review by Paul R. Ehrlich

Kidner, D. Nature and Psyche. 2001. State University of New York Press. “Why has psychology had so little to say about the destruction of nature; and what sort of psychological understanding might help us to regenerate our relation to the natural world? In this groundbreaking book, David Kidner outlines a radically new form of social science that moves beyond the sterile separations between sociology, psychology, anthropology, and politics, and sets the agenda for the sort of understanding that is necessary if we are to successfully address environmental issues.”

Louv, R. Last child in the woods: saving our children from nature-deficit disorder. 2005. Chapel Hill, NC. Algonquin Books.In this influential work about the staggering divide between children and the outdoors, child advocacy expert Richard Louv directly links the lack of nature in the lives of today’s wired generation—he calls it nature-deficit—to some of the most disturbing childhood trends, such as the rises in obesity, attention disorders, and depression. Last Child in the Woods is the first book to bring together a new and growing body of research indicating that direct exposure to nature is essential for healthy childhood development and for the physical and emotional health of children and adults. More than just raising an alarm, Louv offers practical solutions and simple ways to heal the broken bond—and many are right in our own backyard.”

Macy, Joanna. & Young-Brown, Molly. Coming Back to Life: Practices to Re-Connect our Lives, our World. 1998. New Society Publishers. “An excellent book full of practices for experiential workshops, as well as concise overviews of the terrain of what Joanna Macy calls “The Work that Reconnects”. Review by M J Rust

Macy, Joanna. World As Lover, World As Self. 1991. Berkeley. Parallax Press. “An extremely eloquent and beautiful account of early Buddhism, especially the concept of dependent co-arising (mutual causality), as the ground for an ecopsychology and an eco-politics.” Review by Nick Totton

Metzner, R. Green Psychology: Transforming our Relationship to the Earth. 1999. Park Street Press. “Building on the work of Mircea Eliade, Marija Gimbutas and others, Metzner traces our dissociation from Mother Earth some 6000 years back, when invading Indo-European tribes conquered the relatively peaceful, matriarchal cultures of Old Europe. In later epochs, he maintains, as Christian monotheism and mechanistic science stamped out polytheistic animism, the Western psyche was increasingly marked by a “human superiority complex,” along with a presumed right to dominate and exploit nature, animals and other societies. Metzner seeks the basis for an ecological ethic, not always convincingly, in shamanistic interaction with nature, alchemy, yoga and mind-expanding plants used sacramentally by indigenous cultures.”

Norberg-Hodge, Helena. Ancient Futures. 1992. San Francisco. Sierra Club Books. “When the author went to Ladakh as a linguist in the late 1970’s she witnessed the abrupt transition within this traditional culture as they opened their borders to western tourists. The book is full of stories about lifestyle changes and the psychological effects that accompany them. Inspiration comes from some of the Ladakhi people who are choosing a different way forward, perhaps one of the first communities to leapfrog industrial growth culture into a more modern sustainable living. Here you will find great insight and inspiration for our present predicament, reminding us of what we have lost, as well as where we might be headed.” Review by M J Rust.

Plotkin, B. Soulcraft: Crossing into the Mysteries of Nature and Psyche. 2003. Soulcraft describes in detail over two dozen practices, including soul-centered dreamwork, deep imagery, council work, dialogues with nature, self-designed ceremony, and the contemporary vision fast. The book is filled with absorbing, evocative stories from the author’s life and from many others who he has guided. In the well-crafted words of Frank MacEowen, author of The Mist-Filled Path, “Every now and then a book is birthed into the world that is destined to irrevocably alter the spiritual face of modern culture. Bill Plotkin’s Soulcraft is just such a book. Charting a course through the underworld pathways with the heart of a shaman, mapping the powers of myth and psyche with all the soul and interpretive skill of Jung or Campbell, Plotkin’s guide to the journey of initiation is to nature-based soulwork what Huxley’s Doors of Perception was to consciousness studies. This book is an immense treasure that will provide wisdomseekers, psychologists, and seasoned wilderness guides alike with a fresh heart-opening soul language, a new mythos for fathoming the depths of change, as well as time-tested practical methods for navigating the landscape of authentic transformation….Plotkin shows the way.” Review by Hilary Leighton.

Ploktin, B. Nature and the Human Soul – Cultivating Community in a Fragmented World (2008) by psychologist and wilderness guide Bill Plotkin, offers an engaging map to the paths and pitfalls of the lifelong journey to wholeness and maturity. Nature & the Human Soul introduces an innovative developmental psychology that shows how fully and creatively we can mature when we allow soul and wild nature to guide us. Plotkin presents a model for a human life span rooted in the patterns and rhythms of wild nature, a template for individual development that ultimately yields a strategy for cultural transformation. (from Review by Hilary Leighton.

Rappaport. Roy A. Ecology, Meaning and Religion Berkeley: North Atlantic Books. 1979.“An anthropological analysis of the evolutionary and adaptive significance of numinous experience, religious meaningfulness and their distortions up to the present and into the future. The latter chapters explains how and why currently prevalent belief systems are undermining of human/ecological sustainability.” Review by Paul Maiteny.

Rust, MJ & Totton, N. (Eds) Vital Signs: Psychological Responses to Ecological Crisis 2011. Karnac, London. This anthology includes mostly UK authors. See the list of chapters here. Yet to be reviewed!

Ryley, Nancy. The Forsaken Garden. Four Conversations on the deep meaning of environmental illness. 1998 (with Laurens van der Post, Marion Woodman, Ross Woodman, and Thomas Berry) Quest Books.

Sabini, M (ed). The Earth Has a Soul – The Nature Writings of C.G. Jung. 2002. Stringing together a series of writings from conversations, letters, lectures, and essay fragments, this book reveals a lesser known side of the man, Carl Jung and gives us a sense of the wild call he answered in his nature-loving life. He writes of the original unity of Nature and spirit – of the primordial, original or natural mind as a source of collective wisdom, a wellspring, source of the evolutionary experience. His references to archaic clearly did not mean ancient as Joseph Henderson writes in the foreword, rather he was speaking to the original in the sense of the archetype – an everliving presence. His own journey into a more emotional and mythic relationship with Nature (the book includes photos of him playing with his grandchildren at the beach, with sticks creating streams, hand-building the “tower” at Bollingen, etc) suggests a healing connection that contributes to the whole and helps to illuminate the path he made by walking in this world. “Natural life is nourishing soil of the soul.” p 120. Review by Hilary Leighton.

Seed, J.; Macy, J; Fleming, P; Naess, A. Thinking Like a Mountain. Towards a Council of All Beings. 1988. New Society Publishers. “This is a collection of readings, meditations, poems, guided fantasies, workshop notes – and exquisite drawings of the Tasmanian forest – designed by experienced workshop leaders and activists to help us move beyond the sense of alienation from the living earth that most of us feel.” Review from back cover of book

Shepard, Paul. The Others: How Animals Made Us Human. 1996. Washington DC. Island Press. “The human mind is the result of a long series of interactions with other animals.” This book traces some of them, from Pooh, Paddington and Smokey the Bear to dragons, dinosaurs and other mythical beasts. The title says it all, and the book makes it clear that without animals we can’t be human.” Review by Nick Totton

Shogan, D. The Paradox of Physical Activity in the Wilderness. 1988. World Leisure Congress, Lake Louise, Alberta, Canada. “If the whole of a nation’s population decide to head out into the wilds in search of ecological healing, what will happen to the Earth’s wild places? This paper, although it doesn’t even mention ecopsychology, overlays Garret Harding’s seminal text on the ‘Tragedy of the Commons’ onto contemporary wilderness ‘use’.” Review by Dave Key

Snyder, Gary. The Practice of the Wild. 1990. San Francisco. North Point Press. “Wilderness may temporarily dwindle, but wild won’t go away. A ghost wilderness hovers around the entire planet: the millions of tiny seeds of the original vegetation are hiding in the mud on the foot of an arctic tern, in the dry desert sands, or in the wind. These seeds are each uniquely adapted to a specific soil or circumstance, each with its own little form and fluff, ready to float, freeze, or be swallowed, always preserving the germ. … Do you really believe you are an animal? We are now taught this in school. It is a wonderful piece of information: I have been enjoying it all my life.” Review by Dave Key

Soper, Kate. What Is Nature? Culture, Politics and the Non-Human. 1995. Oxford. Blackwell. “A crucial deconstruction of ‘nature’ and an unpacking of the political implications of distinct uses of the word. Soper focuses especially on ‘ecological’ and ‘post-modernist’ approaches. She makes it clear that we need to raise our game if we are to talk intelligibly and usefully about the human/non-human.” Review by Nick Totton.

Vickers, Sir Geoffrey. Value Systems and Social Process. London: Tavistock. 1968. “A collection of writings by this prescient pioneer in psycho-social evolution, systems thinking and human ecology, exploring the process by which humans develop and change the values we live by, and the impacts we have on our societal and eco-systemic sustainability. Includes the essayEcology, Planning and the American Dream quoted in this article. See for video of Vickers explaining his ideas.” Review by Paul Maiteny.

Watkins, M. From Individualism to the Interdependent Self; Changing the Paradigm of the Self in Psychotherapy’. 1992. Psychological Perspectives 27. pp52 – 69.

Watkins, M & Schulman, Helene. Toward Psychologies of Liberation. 2008. Palgrave Macmillan. ”This landmark book takes us on an unforgettable journey across disciplines, countries, spiritualities, and techniques to teach us twenty-first century psychologies of liberation. Authors Watkins and Shulman transform the discipline of psychology, showing us its connections to all disciplines concerned with liberating the imagination. Across international fields of difference, these authors never give up the prize: social and psychic emancipation. In doing so, they define what “decoloniality” means for the twenty-first century.” Chela Sandoval, Associate Professor of Liberation Philosophy Chair, Department of Chicana and Chicano Studies, University of California, Santa Barbara

Watts, A. The Way of Zen.1990. Arkana/Penguin, New York. “Although perhaps relevant only in generic terms, this text has deeply influenced my own practice and research in facilitating therapeutic experiences outdoors. Alan Watts is the master of translating complex (yet simple!) Zen concepts into modern English. The essence of working with nature can be found here.”Review by Dave Key

Weber Nicholsen, Shierry. The Love of Nature and the End of the World. The Unspoken Dimensions of Environmental Concern. 2001. MIT Press. “A very sensitively written and in-depth book on ecospychology written by a psychoanalytic psychotherapist. Nicholsen draws on the thinking of Wilfred Bion, Robert Jay Lifton, Susan Griffin, James Hillman, and others, to reflect on the state we are in and the silence that surrounds it; the relationship between trauma, apathy and destructiveness; and “what beauty can tell us: the face of nature”. Review by M J Rust

Winter, Deborah DuNann & Koger, Sue. The Psychology of Environmental Problems. 2003. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. “A revision of Winter’s Ecological Psychology (1996), this book applies psychological theory and research to environmental problems. After outlining current environmental difficulties, the authors demonstrate how 6 major approaches in psychology (social psychological, psychoanalytic, behavioral, physiological, cognitive, and holistic) can be applied to environmental problems. The authors demonstrate why it is critical to address environmental threats now, and offer ideas on how psychological principles can contribute to building a sustainable culture. Personal examples engage the reader and provide suggestions for changing behavior and political structures. Reorganized and updated throughout, the second edition features a new chapter on neuropsychological and health issues and a list of key concepts in each chapter.

The following are not ecopsychology texts, but are a good overview of the current situation from a scientific point of view. These are all reviewed by Mark Brayne:

Lovelock, J. The Revenge of Gaia. 2007. Penguin. “Lovelock is truly the guru of earth system science, now acknowledged by global science as right all along with his late 60s concept of all systems being interconnected. No longer the Green flavour of the year (he supports nuclear and hates wind farms), Lovelock writes like an angel, and if you’re prepared to be convinced, there’s no more powerful writer and thinker on what might happen next. Not a pretty picture.”

Lynas, M. Six Degrees. 2007. Fourth Estate (HarperCollins). London. “A definitive and authoritatively scientific look at how various scenarios of temperature rise are likely to affect the world we currently live in and on. Lynas’s chapters take warming one degree at a time, looking at fossil records of what happened last time, computer models of what might happen next, and especially also of what’s observably happening already. The conclusion – we just can’t afford to go above 2 degrees of warming without invoking catastrophe on an scarcely imaginable scale.”

MacKay, D. Sustainable Energy without the Hot Air. 2009. UIT Cambridge.David MacKay, now the UK government’s chief scientific adviser on energy, has gone deeper into the mathematics and number-crunching of sources of power than anyone, exploring the cold physical reality of political promises and environmental hopefulness, including biofuels, fossil fuels, nuclear, solar, photovoltaic agriculture, food production, and the kitchen sink. Do the sums add up? It’s an intense read, but there’s no-one more authoritative.”