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13 Best Books on Sustainable Living

How can we transform our environmentally chaotic world into a more eco-conscious one? Well, reading some of the best books on sustainable living is a great start in helping us do our part. The truth is, saving the earth for this and future generations begins with simple individual choices and actions.

Today, governments, corporates, and individuals are becoming more eco-conscious. That’s because the relations between our actions and the impact on the environment are clearly evident.

Therefore, there’s a need to lead a sustainable lifestyle that ranges from organic eating, wearing ethically produced attires, reducing plastic pollution, minimizing food waste, and creating cruelty-free products. Small eco-conscious actions can help us solve the current climate crisis.

Recent research shows that most people could put more effort into living more ethically but don’t know where to start. Some feel they lack the ability to create any impact, while others are uncertain whether the little they do could make any difference.

While environmental issues seem overwhelmingly daunting, doing something small is better than doing nothing. In this article, we’ve compiled a list of the best books on sustainable living to help you lead a sustainable lifestyle.

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Best Books on Sustainable Living

To help you develop a more environmentally-friendly lifestyle, here are some of the best sustainable living books :

1. Be a Hobbit, Save the Earth by Steve Bivans

Be a hobbit, save the Earth

Steve Bivans delivers the message of saving the earth and living sustainably with a fictional character, ‘Hobbit,’ like in the Lord of the Rings film. The book is a guide to help transform the chaotic world into an eco-orderly shire. He says it starts with mind transformation, which involves evolving from home sapiens to homo hobbitla or modern hobbits.

Hobbits represent individuals that are ready to take responsibility for environmental conservation.  His narrative is about how we can become minimalist in our condos or burbs without radical actions like moving or living in the holes.

In this book, the author urges the readers to transform their homes into hobbit holes by embracing minimalism, eating healthy organic food, and using less plastic and more sustainable materials.

Steve also talks about converting our communities and neighborhoods into shires. This can be through building community gardens or farmers’ markets, utilizing the shared-economy, and working to maximize understanding, compassion, and acceptance.

Reduced use of fossil fuels, support of renewable energy initiatives, and cleaning oceans are also key points in this book. The book certainly deserves the first position on our list of best books on sustainable living.

2. The Sustainable(ish) Living Guide’ by Jen Gale

The sustainable(ish) living guide

Sustainable (ish) is also one of the best books on green living. Jen Gale wrote this book to guide people on the small changes they can make to create a huge lasting impact on the planet. This blogger turned author is passionate about living sustainably, which pushed her into documenting this challenge.

She highlights eco-conscious practical, down-to-earth ideas and suggestions covering everything from fashion, food, celebrations, travel, and work, to help save the planet. Also, she provides tons of tips on ‘doing good’ every day without changing your life radically.

The author emphasizes the need to reduce plastic waste by embracing green-living. She tells her readers to find out how they can fit sustainable living in their schedule in a way that works best for them.

3. 12 Small Acts to Save Our World’ by WWF

12 Small Acts to Save Our World

Just like Jen Gale, the authors of ‘12 Small Acts to Save the World’ also describe the small everyday things and easy actions that you can take to save the planet.  This book was written in collaboration with influential environmental experts from WWF.

It’s a short manuscript that highlights simple changes that people can make daily, which take minimal effort but make a real difference on the planet. The acts are summarized in 12 easy steps, and some of them include:

  • Purchasing less cotton clothing (for instance, a t-shirt that uses 2400 liters of water to create)
  • Completely turning off our devices when not in use instead of putting them on standby mode.
  • Using reusable items like straws (where possible)
  • Turning off the tap when brushing the teeth

This is a great sustainable lifestyle book that can guide you towards making small steps in living sustainably at home.

See Related: Solar vs Wind Energy: What’s the Difference?

4. ‘Turning the Tide on Plastic’ by Lucy Siegle

best books on sustainable living-turning the tide on plastic

Research shows that 1 billion plastics end up in landfills and are later washed into the oceans each year. If we don’t act powerfully now, this may escalate, and our oceans will host more plastic than fish by 2050, according to Lucy Siegle.

Ending or minimizing plastic wastes is the only way to ensure this does not happen. Lucy Siegle, a broadcaster, journalist, and eco-lifestyle expert, has written this book to show people how to cut back on plastic usage.

She advocates for replacing single-use plastic bottles with more sustainable alternatives like using eco-friendly coffee cups, grocery bags, and even water bottles.

Lucy teaches that people should embrace the ‘reduce, refill, rethink and refuse’ approach to ending plastic wastes. She reckons that if a few of her readers, say 12, adopt a sustainable lifestyle, they can impact the world and, in turn, teach others to do the same.

5. Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life, by Barbara Kingsolver

Animal, Vegetable, Miracle

This real-life account by Barbara Kingsolver is a must-read for all people who want to live sustainably. Barbara Kingsolver recounts how her family moved from suburban Arizona to rural Appalachia to farm and adapt to locally-produced food habits.

Her book ‘Animal, Vegetable, Miracle’ book is among the best books on sustainable living and has been a bestseller for ten years in a row. In this book, she focuses on the concerns of the environmental, social, and physical impact of agriculture in America, as well as issues touching on the origin of what we consume.

Living sustainably is critical for conserving the environment. That’s why she emphasizes the need to adopt sustainable actions, to not deplete natural resources as quickly for the sake of our future generations.

See Related: Best Sustainable Subscription Boxes

6. ‘No One is Too Small to Make a Difference’ by Greta Thunberg

No One Is Too Small to Make a Difference

Greta Thunberg is a young activist that has motivated many in the fight against climate change. She wrote this pocket-sized manifesto compiled from the 11 ground-breaking speeches she has written and presented on the global stage about living sustainably.

This New York Times Bestseller coined ‘Tiny Book, Big Voice,” truly shows that no one is too small to make an impact. The young climate Swedish activist began her fight against climate change at a very young age. She has at one time boycotted school to rally a cry to the authorities to do something to solve the climate crisis.

Her actions have sparked a movement that inspired students globally to go on a strike to protect the planet. This has seen her get the Nobel Peace Prize nominee.

See Related: Best Rainwater Collection Systems for Sustainable Living

7. 101 Ways to Go Zero Waste, by Kathryn Kellogg

101 Ways to Go Zero Waste

Reducing the carbon footprint in our environment is vital, but many people don’t know where to start. That’s why Kathryn Kellogg created this beginner’s guide on how to reduce household waste through practicing minimalism.

This practical blueprint focuses on using reusable products ranging from water bottles, straws, grocery bags to biodegradable dish scrubbers. She shares tips and suggestions for DIY recipes for home and beauty products and cost-effective ways to save money and space.

Also, she advises people on responsible shopping, consumption, and making good choices in fashion, home goods, at the office, and even at the airport. It doesn’t have to be perfect, she says, but just start with making better choices.

8. ‘Vegan(ish)’ by Jack Monroe

best books on sustainable living-Vegan (ish)

The award-winning environmental campaigner and best seller Jack Monroe wrote this book to help more people adopt weekly, plant-based meals in their diets. This small action will not only help cut down food bills but make a huge environmental impact.

If you want to adopt a vegan lifestyle and reduce animal cruelty, then you can start by getting this gorgeous book. Vegan(ish) includes a hundred simple, creative, affordable, and tasty vegan recipes that anyone can follow at their home.

This book also comes in handy if you want to surprise your vegan friend with a delicious vegan meal or as a gift for their birthday or anniversary.

9. ‘Sustainable Kitchen’ by Jayne McCloskey and Heather Wolfe

Sustainable Kitchen

Like Vegan (ish), ‘Sustainable Kitchen’ is another great edition of tantalizing recipes compiled by dietician Heather and Jayne.  The authors of this book came up with amazing daily food choices that help us connect to our creation and creator.

Their well-thought-out recipes help reduce diets that can harm our bodies, communities, families, and planet.  They bring out their years of experience in health coaching, holistic nutrition, scratch cooking, and homesteading to this practical guidebook on home cooks.

This a great read for anyone looking for plant-based and planet-based conscious meals for themselves, loved ones, friends, and people around them. In this book, you will get awesome recipes ranging from:

  • Veggie-Studded Frittata,
  • Spring Veggie and Pesto Pasta,
  • Breakfast muffins
  • Three Sisters Succotash Enchiladas, etc.

10. ‘Minimal: How to Simplify your Life and Live Sustainably,’ by Madeleine Olivia

Minimal: How to simplify your life and live sustainably

Climate change is an urgent global crisis that requires everyone to take action, no matter how small. Leading environmentalist Madeleine Olivia, the author of ‘Minimal,’ coins that in a simple quote of “love yourself, love the planet.”

While most of us won’t know where to start, she says that making minimal changes using the shared practical tips is all it needs. In this book, she introduces a mindful approach to your daily habits and offers insights into caring for yourself in a more eco-friendly way.

This can be achieved through these practical ideas:

  • Declutter your life
  • Reduce wastes and consumption
  • Make your own natural beauty and cleaning products.
  • Eat seasonally-produced foods.

If you are looking for some of the best books on sustainable living, this is a great piece. It teaches you just how to minimize the areas that aren’t giving you anything back, to discover content, happier, and more fulfilled life while conserving the environment.

11. ‘The Plastic Problem: 60 Small Ways to Reduce Waste and Help Save the Earth’ by Lonely Planet Kids

The Plastic Problem

Lonely planet kids challenge everyone to look around and see how plastic wastes everywhere create a problem in the world, especially the oceans and marine life.

The book inspires young readers on easy ways to cut on plastic wastes from their lives both at home and in school. Their actionable tips will challenge you, your friends, and your family on how to protect the earth.

Some of the practical tips they teach include:

  • Use a zero waste travel kit to reduce rubbish on trips you go with your family.
  • Switch your usual toothpaste for natural-made tooth powders and go for an electric, non-throwaway toothbrush instead of the plastic one
  • Swap certain items with friends, take better care of your clothes and be enthusiastic about hand-me-downs.
  • Carry lunch to school in an eco-friendly reusable tin and cutlery
  • Take reusable bags to the grocery stores, supermarket, or wherever you go shopping.

The authors challenge the young generation to say no to plastic as a future guardian of the planet. These actions, however small, can make a huge impact every day.

See related: 12 Energy Efficient TVs to Start Lowering Your Monthly Bill

12. ‘Zero Waste: Simple Life Hacks to Drastically Reduce Your Trash’ by Shia Su

best books on sustainable living-Zero Waste

Zero waste is a guide on how to adopt effective and easy strategies to jumpstart a waste-free or sustainable lifestyle.

According to Shia Su, an average American disposes 4.4 pounds of garbage every single day, and our landfills hold around 254 million waste products. With this trash epidemic, something must be done- and everyone must participate.

The author helps people with fun and simple ways to make a difference in the environment. This involves everyone taking the responsibility of reducing both their waste production and carbon footprint.

In this book, Shia simplifies and demystifies the zero-waste lifestyle that anyone can adopt. The author also shares practical advice, quick tips & tricks, and easy solutions to help make the world a trash-free one.

13.  ‘The Everything Green-living Book’ by Diane Gow McDilda

The Everything Green Living Book

‘The everything green-living book’ is one of the best green-living books written by Diane Gow. It teaches people about organic food and alternative power sources that help save the environment.

The author says the way you live, eat, work, travel, dress, and drink all affect the earth. This book offers people everything they need to lead a sustainable lifestyle. By reading this eye-opening book, you’ll learn how to:

  • Build or buy a greenhouse
  • Get involved in Earth Day
  • Select and use non-toxic cleaning supplies
  • Use non-polluting modes of transport
  • Reap the benefits of organic foods
  • Recycle efficiently and more.

And while it takes the last position on our list, it doesn’t in any way mean its ideas are less applicable or important. It is undoubtedly amongst the best books on sustainable living you’ll ever come across.

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