Monday, October 26, 2015

Two Percent Solutions for the Planet - Courtney White

My review of Courtney White's Two Percent Solutions for the Planet: 50 Low-Cost, Low-Tech, Nature-Based Practices for Combatting Hunger, Drought, and Climate Change (whew, how about that for a subtitle!) first appeared in Shelf Awareness for Readers. I am posting it today with their permission. Hope you enjoy!

First line: "We live in an era of seemingly intractable challenges: increasing concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere, rising food demands from a human population that is projected to expand from seven to nine billion people by 2050, and dwindling supplies of fresh water, to name just three."

Eliminating pesticides, sequestering carbon, making healthy food available to the poor and harvesting rainwater are some of the many positive outcomes Quivira Coalition co-founder Courtney White (The Age of Consequences: A Chronicle of Concern and Hope) uncovers in the 50 regenerative practices outlined in Two Percent Solutions for the Planet. White organizes these green ideas into five sections--ranching, farming, technology, restoration and wildness--includes pictures and charts to help illustrate and provides information on how readers can learn more about each concept.

The common theme underlying them all, however, is "nature knows best." From organic no-till and year-round farming to flerds--the co-existence of range animals--to "poop 'n' stomp"--using livestock to regrow grass--the solutions return the work to natural processes. White believes, "sometimes innovation isn't a thing, a practice, or a new technology, but simply a different way of looking at the world."

While Two Percent Solutions for the Planet would make an excellent resource for any agri-science program, it's also an enlightening reading experience for city dwellers and others far from agrarian lifestyles. Understanding processes described in the book can inform buying decisions, community involvement even backyard gardening practices, all that can help combat some of the world's most pressing environmental issues while simultaneously treating the planet with kindness and respect.

Two Percent Solutions for the Planet is easy to understand, fascinating and enjoyably educational. Whether readers are entrenched in agricultural business or simply interested in sustainability, there's plenty to glean from White's collection of innovative practices.

Two Percent Solutions for the Planet is available in paperback from Chelsea Green Publishing (9781603586177).

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