The best 22 Sustainability books

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Sustainability Books: The Necessary Revolution by Peter Senge, Bryan Smith, Nina Kruschwitz, Joe Laur and Sara Schley

The Necessary Revolution

Peter Senge, Bryan Smith, Nina Kruschwitz, Joe Laur and Sara Schley
How Individuals and Organizations Are Working Together to Create a Sustainable World
3.6 (50 ratings)
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00:00

What's The Necessary Revolution about?

The Necessary Revolution (2008) sheds light on the environmental and social challenges faced by people living in today’s world. Drawing on stories from real people and real communities, these blinks introduce the mentality we must adopt to fight for sustainability.

Who should read The Necessary Revolution?

  • Eco-conscious entrepreneurs
  • Anyone interested in sustainability

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Sustainability Books: We Are the Weather by Jonathan Safran Foer

We Are the Weather

Jonathan Safran Foer
Saving the Planet Begins at Breakfast
4.3 (235 ratings)
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00:00

What's We Are the Weather about?

We Are the Weather (2019) is a rigorous investigation of climate change, what it means and why humans seem so powerless to tackle it. Jonathan Safran Foer argues that while climate change is terrifying and hard to understand, there is a very simple action that we can take: By leaving out meat and animal products for breakfast and lunch, we can make a huge contribution to the health of the planet.  

Who should read We Are the Weather?

  • People who want to save the planet, but feel paralyzed by what first step to take
  • Psychology buffs who are interested in group dynamics, and what motivates people to act 
  • Would-be vegans who need a bit more persuasion to take the plunge

3
Sustainability Books: The Fate of Food by Amanda Little

The Fate of Food

Amanda Little
What We’ll Eat in a Bigger, Hotter, Smarter World
4.0 (67 ratings)
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What's The Fate of Food about?

The Fate of Food (2019) looks at a rapidly changing world and the question of how we’ll feed our ever-growing population. Is it possible to produce a clean, climate-resilient food supply that’s adequate to meet our needs? The Fate of Food examines the technological and sociological demands of feeding the world. 

Who should read The Fate of Food?

  • People concerned with the effects of industrial agriculture on the environment
  • Food lovers fascinated by the farm-to-table journey
  • Science buffs wanting to keep up with the latest trends in agricultural science

4
Sustainability Books: How Bad Are Bananas? by Mike Berners-Lee

How Bad Are Bananas?

Mike Berners-Lee
The Carbon Footprint of Everything
4.2 (273 ratings)
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What's How Bad Are Bananas? about?

In How Bad are Bananas? (2010), author Mike Berner-Lee provides readers with an A-to-Z guide of how they can start living a more environmentally conscious life and reduce their own carbon footprint. You may think you’re familiar with climate change and carbon footprints, but do you really know the everyday activities that contribute to the current environmental crisis? From grocery shopping to washing your clothes, you’ll learn how to be more efficient and less wasteful.

Who should read How Bad Are Bananas??

  • Anyone curious about their own carbon footprint
  • Environmentalists in the fight against global warming
  • Consumers who want to make more informed purchases

5
Sustainability Books: Drawdown by Paul Hawken (ed.)

Drawdown

Paul Hawken (ed.)
The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming
4.3 (136 ratings)
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What's Drawdown about?

There’s no doubt: global warming is real and its main driver is carbon emissions from human activity. Drawdown (2017) argues that despite the depth of the climate crisis humans have manufactured, it’s not too late for us to turn back the clock. From solar power to agroforestry to electric cars, Drawdown compiles countless proven ways that radically reduce human carbon emissions. This essential guide contains all the knowledge and technology that we need to reverse global warming and save the world.

Who should read Drawdown?

  • Individuals who care about the future of humanity
  • Business owners, policy makers, activists and homeowners who want to make a measurable difference
  • Science nerds, tech enthusiasts and nature lovers

6
Sustainability Books: Food Fix by Mark Hyman

Food Fix

Mark Hyman
How to Save Our Health, Our Economy, Our Communities, and Our Planet – One Bite at a Time
4.5 (140 ratings)
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00:00

What's Food Fix about?

Food Fix (2020) shows us how the world's gravest problems, like chronic disease, inequality, and climate collapse, can all be traced back to our food and the way we produce it. Here, American physician Mark Hyman describes what we should do next, setting out the path to healthy eating and regenerative farming. 

Who should read Food Fix?

  • Anyone interested in eating and living well
  • Environmentalists and climate activists
  • Farmers looking to transition to sustainable agriculture

7
Sustainability Books: The Future We Choose by Christiana Figueres, Tom Rivett-Carnac

The Future We Choose

Christiana Figueres, Tom Rivett-Carnac
Surviving the Climate Crisis
4.1 (212 ratings)
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00:00

What's The Future We Choose about?

The Future We Choose (2020) presents us with two potential visions of life on earth: one of sweltering heat, diminishing biodiversity, and severely declining quality of life, and one where the planet’s temperature has stabilized, life flourishes, and humanity prospers. The world we choose will depend on the actions we take now, in what is a critical decade in the fight against climate change. While the prospect may seem daunting, it’s time to rise to the challenge and determine our future.

Who should read The Future We Choose?

  • Climate crusaders feeling hopeless about their cause
  • Anyone who wants to know how they can contribute to a sustainable world
  • Those worried about the future

8
Sustainability Books: Food and Nutrition by P.K. Newby

Food and Nutrition

P.K. Newby
What Everyone Needs to Know
4.0 (266 ratings)
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What's Food and Nutrition about?

Food and Nutrition (2018) looks at the science behind what we eat. Based on only the best and most thorough studies, it cuts through the noise and fads to reveal what we really know about healthy eating.

Who should read Food and Nutrition?

  • Anyone interested in what actually constitutes a healthy diet
  • Foodies who want to make better choices
  • People curious about sustainable farming

9
Sustainability Books: A Life on Our Planet by David Attenborough

A Life on Our Planet

David Attenborough
My Witness Statement and a Vision for the Future
4.6 (220 ratings)
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What's A Life on Our Planet about?

A Life on Our Planet (2020) is celebrated naturalist David Attenborough’s account of the incredible wonders he’s seen in his 94 years on Earth – and a vivid warning of what will happen if we continue on our current path. It’s accompanied by a Netflix documentary of the same name.

Who should read A Life on Our Planet?

  • Anyone who loves nature television
  • Those concerned about global warming
  • People who want to take action to save our planet before it’s too late

10
Sustainability Books: The Creator Mindset by Nir Bashan

The Creator Mindset

Nir Bashan
92 Tools to Unlock the Secrets to Innovation, Growth, and Sustainability
4.2 (136 ratings)
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00:00

What's The Creator Mindset about?

The Creator Mindset (2020) is a comprehensive guide to incorporating creativity into everything you do. Far from being something that only artists possess, creativity is in fact an essential ingredient in any successful career or business. Unfortunately, most of us squander our full creative potential by not realizing we have it to begin with. Get ready to unlock the latent creative talent that’ll give you and your business an edge over the competition.

Who should read The Creator Mindset?

  • Professionals who want to improve their careers and businesses
  • Leaders who want to inspire their employees to be more creative
  • Anyone who wants to think and act more creatively

11
Sustainability Books: 21st Century Investing by William Burckart and Steven D. Lydenberg

21st Century Investing

William Burckart and Steven D. Lydenberg
Redirecting Financial Strategies to Drive Systems Change
3.4 (198 ratings)
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What's 21st Century Investing about?

21st Century Investing (2021) is a guide to ethical and responsible investment strategies. Instead of making money at the expense of our fragile social and environmental systems, you can invest in ways that will actually strengthen them – ensuring societal stability and long-term returns. 

Who should read 21st Century Investing?

  • Investors wondering how to square profitability with social justice 
  • Anyone curious about the future of investment strategy
  • Savers hoping to future-proof their investments in an increasingly uncertain world

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Sustainability Books: How to Avoid a Climate Disaster by Bill Gates

How to Avoid a Climate Disaster

Bill Gates
The Solutions We Have and the Breakthroughs We Need
4.6 (447 ratings)
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What's How to Avoid a Climate Disaster about?

How to Avoid a Climate Disaster (2021) is a guidebook to getting the world to an important milestone: zero greenhouse gas emissions. Bill Gates shares the knowledge he’s gained through his role on international climate commissions and as a go-to source of funding for climate solution startups. He pinpoints the ideas that show the most promise and explains the work that still needs to be done. 

Who should read How to Avoid a Climate Disaster?

  • Anyone concerned about climate change
  • Investors interested in new funding opportunities
  • Business leaders looking for ways to help

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Sustainability Books: Waste Not by Erin Rhoads

Waste Not

Erin Rhoads
Make a Big Difference by Throwing Away Less
4.0 (49 ratings)
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What's Waste Not about?

Waste Not (2019) is a practical guide to changing your consumption lifestyle in order to have a big, eco-friendly impact. Learn how to enjoy the conveniences of the modern world without leaving behind a pile of modern trash.

Who should read Waste Not?

  • People who want to reduce their waste output
  • Parents looking to educate their kids about recycling
  • All those concerned with climate change

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Sustainability Books: What We Owe the Future by William MacAskill

What We Owe the Future

William MacAskill
4.3 (236 ratings)
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What's What We Owe the Future about?

What We Owe the Future (2022) makes the case for longtermism –⁠ the idea that people today have an obligation to create a good future for successive generations. Using philosophical reasoning, historical anecdotes, and social science research, it argues that the current moment could decide whether future people will live happy, flourishing lives or extraordinarily miserable ones. By carefully considering our actions with respect to issues like AI safety, biotechnology, and value lock-in, we increase the chances that future people will thrive –⁠ just as many of us do, now, thanks to people from the past.

Who should read What We Owe the Future?

  • Activists and charity donors who want to maximize the good they do
  • People interested in moral philosophy and ethics 
  • Anyone concerned about the future of humanity

15
Sustainability Books: The Climate Book by Greta Thunberg

The Climate Book

Greta Thunberg
The Facts and the Solutions
3.8 (79 ratings)
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What's The Climate Book about?

The Climate Book (2023) unites dozens of voices in a compelling and eye-opening exploration of the complex relationships between climate change, politics, and media. Offering insights into the interconnectedness of various global issues and the urgent need for systemic change, it contains practical, actionable steps towards a sustainable and equitable future.

Who should read The Climate Book?

  • Everyone concerned about our planet Earth
  • Climate activists looking to bolster their tactics arsenal 
  • Politicians and journalists who want to be part of the solution, not the problem 

16
Sustainability Books: The Anthropocene Reviewed by John Green

The Anthropocene Reviewed

John Green
Essays on a Human-Centered Planet
4.1 (14 ratings)
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What's The Anthropocene Reviewed about?

The Anthropocene Reviewed (2021) offers a unique collection of essays exploring the human experience in the current geological age known as the Anthropocene. It delves into various aspects of human life and the world, reviewing them on a somewhat satirical five-star scale, blending humor with deep reflection on the complexities and paradoxes of modern human existence.

Who should read The Anthropocene Reviewed?

  • Environmental enthusiasts exploring the impact of humans on Earth
  • Young adults interested in introspective, reflective writings
  • Admirers of John Green's narrative style and humor

17
Sustainability Books: The Road by Cormac McCarthy

The Road

Cormac McCarthy
4.4 (26 ratings)

What's The Road about?

The Road (2006) is a dystopian thriller following a father-and-son duo fighting to survive in a bleak, post-apocalyptic landscape. Forced to scavenge for food and supplies, threatened by gangs of outlaw survivors, and faced with death and illness, the duo struggle to maintain morality and hope in a world that seems to have lost all humanity.

Who should read The Road?

  • Fans of post-apocalyptic fiction 
  • Admirers of Cormac McCarthy’s unique literary style
  • Anyone who enjoys thought-provoking allegorical tales

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Sustainability Books: To Dye For by Alden Wicker

To Dye For

Alden Wicker
How Toxic Fashion Is Making Us Sick
4.2 (33 ratings)
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What's To Dye For about?

To Dye For (2023) exposes how the fashion industry harms human health and exploits workers through its use of toxic dyes and lack of supply chain transparency. It delves into the environmental and human costs behind our clothes, while also spotlighting companies innovating health-conscious dyes and production methods. Ultimately, it challenges consumers to make informed choices in order to pressure brands to clean up one of the world’s dirtiest industries.

Who should read To Dye For?

  • Consumers wanting to make health- and eco-conscious clothing choices
  • Fashion and textile industry professionals
  • Environmental and workers’ rights activists

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Sustainability Books: Net Positive by Paul Polman & Andrew Winston

Net Positive

Paul Polman & Andrew Winston
How Courageous Companies Thrive by Giving More Than They Take
3.7 (187 ratings)
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What's Net Positive about?

Net Positive (2021) explores the transformative concept of businesses moving beyond profit to creating substantial, positive value for people and the planet. It delves into the revolutionary approach of net positive companies which are embracing a holistic responsibility to benefit multiple stakeholders, drive systemic change, and foster sustainable futures. It offers profound insights into how companies and leaders can be harbingers of positive, enduring change in the world.

Who should read Net Positive?

  • Entrepreneurs seeking to integrate sustainable and responsible practices into their business models
  • Business students exploring innovative and conscientious business models that prioritize ecological balance and societal benefit
  • Corporate strategists focused on achieving long-term prosperity through responsible and sustainable business practices

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Sustainability Books: Material World by Ed Conway

Material World

Ed Conway
The Six Raw Materials That Shape Modern Civilization
3.7 (41 ratings)
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What's Material World about?

Material World (2023) delves into the profound influence of six fundamental materials on the course of human civilization: sand, salt, iron, copper, oil, and lithium. You'll explore how these elements have not only built and destroyed empires, but are also crucial to shaping our present existence and future. It's a captivating journey revealing the largely unseen impact of everyday materials on our lives, from ancient times to the digital age.

Who should read Material World?

  • History enthusiasts intrigued by how materials have impacted civilizations
  • Environmentalists interested in sustainable resource management
  • Technology buffs fascinated by material innovation and usage

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Sustainability Books: Sustainable Leadership by Clarke Murphy

Sustainable Leadership

Clarke Murphy
Lessons of Vision, Courage, and Grit from the CEOs Who Dared to Build a Better World
3.2 (9 ratings)
Listen to the Intro
00:00

What's Sustainable Leadership about?

Sustainable Leadership (2022) explores the strategies and insights from top CEOs who’ve successfully integrated sustainability into their business models. It serves as a comprehensive guide for leaders aiming to achieve remarkable sustainability results, offering practical advice and real-world examples. The focus is on vision, courage, and grit as essential qualities for sustainable leadership.

Who should read Sustainable Leadership?

  • CEOs and senior business executives
  • Business strategy and leadership students
  • Entrepreneurs interested in sustainable business practices

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Sustainability Books: No Impact Man by Colin Beavan

No Impact Man

Colin Beavan

What's No Impact Man about?

"No Impact Man" is a thought-provoking memoir by Colin Beavan that chronicles his year-long experiment to live a zero-waste, environmentally sustainable lifestyle in the heart of New York City. Through his personal journey, Beavan challenges readers to reconsider their own impact on the planet and inspires them to make positive changes for a more sustainable future.

Who should read No Impact Man?

  • Individuals looking to reduce their environmental impact and adopt a sustainable lifestyle
  • Those interested in exploring alternative ways of living and challenging societal norms
  • Anyone seeking inspiration and practical tips on making positive changes in their lives and the world

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