Recognizing Earth Day

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This Earth Day, we’ve compiled a list of essential Environmental Studies titles worth exploring, especially for those interested in the effects of climate change.

Solved: How the World’s Great Cities Are Fixing the Climate Crisis

By David Miller

Foreword by Bill McKibben

Afterword by Anne Hidalgo

If our planet is going to survive the climate crisis, we need to act rapidly.

Taking cues from progressive cities around the world, including Los Angeles, New York, Toronto, Oslo, Shenzhen, and Sydney, this book is a summons to every city to make small but significant changes that can drastically reduce our carbon footprint. The updated paperback edition of Solved: How the World’s Great Cities Are Fixing the Climate Crisis demonstrates that the initiatives cities have taken to control the climate crisis can make a real difference in reducing global emissions if implemented worldwide. 

Transformative Politics of Nature: Overcoming Barriers to Conservation in Canada

Edited by Andrea Olive, Chance Finegan, and Karen F. Beazley

Transformative Politics of Nature highlights the most significant barriers to conservation in Canada and discusses strategies to confront and overcome them. Featuring contributions from academics as well as practitioners, the volume brings together the perspectives of both Indigenous and non-Indigenous experts on land and wildlife conservation, in a way that honours and respects all peoples and nature.

Organizing Nature: Turning Canada’s Ecosystems into Resources

By Alice Cohen and Andrew Biro

Organizing Nature explores how the environment is organized in Canada’s resource-dependent economy. The book examines how particular ecosystem components come to be understood as natural resources and how these resources in turn are used to organize life in Canada.

In tracing transitions from “ecosystem component” to “resource,” this book weaves together the roles that commodification, Indigenous dispossession, and especially a false nature-society binary play in facilitating the conceptual and material construction of resources. Ultimately, Organizing Nature encourages readers to think critically about what is at stake when Canadians (re)produce myths about the false separation between Canadian peoples and their environments.

Understanding Climate Change: Science, Policy, and Practice, Second Edition

By Sarah Burch and Sara E. Harris

Conversations about climate change are filled with challenges involving complex data, deeply held values, and political issues. Understanding Climate Change examines climate change as both a scientific and a public policy issue. Sarah L. Burch and Sara E. Harris explain the basics of the climate system, climate models and prediction, and human and biophysical impacts, as well as strategies for climate change adaptation and mitigation. The second edition has been fully updated throughout, including coverage of new advances in climate modelling and of the shifting landscape of renewable energy production and distribution.

Serpent River Resurgence

Serpent River Resurgence: Confronting Uranium Mining at Elliot Lake

By Lianne C. Leddy

Serpent River Resurgence tells the story of how the Serpent River Anishinaabek confronted the persistent forces of settler colonialism and the effects of uranium mining at Elliot Lake, Ontario. 

Focusing on Indigenous-settler relations, the environmental and health consequences of the uranium industry, and the importance of traditional uses of land and what happens when they are compromised, Serpent River Resurgence explores how settler colonialism and Anishinaabe resistance remained potent forces in Indigenous communities throughout the second half of the twentieth century.

The New Climate Activism: NGO Authority and Participation in Climate Change Governance

By Jen Iris Allan

At the 2019 UN climate change conference, activists and delegates from groups representing Indigenous, youth, women, and labour rights were among those marching through the halls chanting “Climate Justice, People Power.” In The New Climate Activism, Jen Iris Allan looks at why and how these social activists came to participate in climate change governance while others, such as those working on human rights and health, remain on the outside of climate activism.

Forecasts: A Story of Weather and Finance at the Edge of Disaster

By Caroline E. Schuster

Illustrated by Enrique Bernardou and David Bueno

Based in the agrarian world of commercial sesame farming in northern Paraguay, Forecasts tells a story about what happens when global insurance companies promise financial safety nets to local farmers struggling with the effects of climate change. This striking graphic novel brings together original ethnographic research and Paraguayan gothic art to confront the limitations of finance to respond to a deteriorating environment.

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