Life on 1/10th the fossil fuels turns out to be awesome.
We all want to be happy. Yet as we consume ever more in a frantic bid for happiness, global warming worsens.
Alarmed by drastic changes now occurring in the Earth’s climate systems, the author, a climate scientist and suburban father of two, embarked on a journey to change his life and the world. He began by bicycling, growing food, meditating, and making other simple, fulfilling changes. Ultimately, he slashed his climate impact to under a tenth of the US average and became happier in the process.
Being the Change explores the connections between our individual daily actions and our collective predicament. It merges science, spirituality, and practical action to develop a satisfying and appropriate response to global warming.
Part one exposes our interconnected predicament: overpopulation, global warming, industrial agriculture, growth-addicted economics, a sold-out political system, and a mindset of separation from nature. It also includes a readable but authoritative overview of climate science. Part two offers a response at once obvious and unprecedented: mindfully opting out of this broken system and aligning our daily lives with the biosphere.
The core message is deeply optimistic: living without fossil fuels is not only possible, it can be better.
Peter Kalmus is an atmospheric scientist at Caltech / Jet Propulsion Laboratory with a Ph.D. in physics from Columbia University. He lives in suburban Altadena, California with his wife and two children on 1/10th the fossil fuels of the average American.