Resolve to Live Green: Books to Inspire Change

The new year brings all kinds of resolutions. If you've been inspired by our 2019-2020 One Book, One Chicago, The Sixth Extinction by Elizabeth Kolbert, you may be thinking about resolutions related to the environment and climate change. If you're resolving to be more green this year, take a look at some of our suggestions for books to help you reduce your impact on the environment. 

Cleaning is a new year's resolution for many people, but rather than just dusting and scrubbing more often, why not resolve to clean in a way that's better for the environment? It's not hard to reduce your use of harsh chemicals when you use the tips in Cleaning Hacks by Sarah Flowers. Using just common household items described in this book organized by subject, you'll be able to reduce your use of harsh chemicals that may hurt our environment, and maybe even save money. 

Saving money is a common resolution, but what if your finances could also help create a more environmentally friendly world? Invest for Good by Mark Mobius is a guide to the world of social investing, where you put your money to work in companies that follow environmental and social standards. After reading this book, you'll have the knowledge to evaluate your investments and put them to positive work for the planet and your pocketbook.

Maybe your resolution is to clean out your closets, or to dress better for a promotion at work. You'll enjoy The Conscious Closet by Elizabeth L. Cline, which provides a practical plan for making your wardrobe more ethical by avoiding the "fast fashion" that's so bad for our environment and workers. 

If your resolution is to cook more or eat better, there are plenty of books to help you do that in an environmentally friendly way. The Zero Waste Cookbook by Giovanna Torricio provides over a hundred recipes and tips to help make use of food that usually goes to waste. Another simple tip that's also good for your health is to decrease your consumption of meat and add more plants. Food Is the Solution by Matthew Prescott explores the science behind moving toward more vegetables, and includes essays from people like Paul McCartney and Wolfgang Puck, plus over 80 recipes. For more tips, check out our blog post 5 Articles: Fight Climate Change with Food

Got a gardening resolution? It's not too early to start planning your planting for the spring and summer. By thinking carefully about what you plant, you can help birds, butterflies and other important insects survive and thrive. Bringing Nature Home by Douglas W. Tallamy explains the important links between native plants and wildlife, and provides simple steps for choosing and planting native plants in your own backyard or balcony. For more ideas, take a look at our blog post Create a Buzz: Pollinator Gardening.

Perhaps your resolution is about self-care, or getting more exercise. The Nature Fix by Florence Williams explains why a simple "walk in the woods" is beneficial to our mental and physical health. By appreciating the nature around us, we refresh and renew ourselves. And, if you're feeling more ambitious than just the local park, check out Ted Villaire's book 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles : Chicago for ideas of other wildlife hot spots and local hikes. 

What's your new year's resolution? Share it in the comments! 

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