One Earth Books and Film List

Below is a selection of environmentally themed books and films recommended by the One Earth team. 

  • Achieving the Paris Climate Agreement Goals

    A state-of-the-art "1.5ºC Climate Model" released by the prestigious scientific publisher Springer Nature, offers a roadmap for meeting -- and surpassing -- the targets set by the Paris Climate Agreement, proving that we can solve the global climate crisis with a transition to 100% renewable energy and a large land conservation and restoration effort. The book, entitled Achieving the Paris Climate Agreement, was the culmination of a two-year scientific collaboration with 17 leading scientists at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS), two institutes at the German Aerospace Center (DLR), and the University of Melbourne’s Climate & Energy College. 

    Get book
  • The Nature of Nature: Why We Need the Wild

    Enric Sala wants to change the world--and in this compelling book, he shows us how. Once we appreciate how nature works, he asserts, we will understand why conservation is economically wise and essential to our survival.
    Here Sala, director of National Geographic's Pristine Seas project (which has succeeded in protecting more than 5 million sq km of ocean), tells the story of his scientific awakening and his transition from academia to activism--as he puts it, he was tired of writing the obituary of the ocean. His revelations are surprising, sometimes counterintuitive: More sharks signal a healthier ocean; crop diversity, not intensive monoculture farming, is the key to feeding the planet. With a foreword from Prince Charles and an introduction from E. O. Wilson, this powerful book will change the way you think about our world--and our future.

    Get book
  • The Botany of Desire

    Every schoolchild learns about the mutually beneficial dance of honeybees and flowers: The bee collects nectar and pollen to make honey and, in the process, spreads the flowers’ genes far and wide. In The Botany of Desire, Michael Pollan ingeniously demonstrates how people and domesticated plants have formed a similarly reciprocal relationship. Just as we’ve benefited from plants, we have also done well by them. So who is really domesticating whom?

    Get book
  • Kiss the Ground

    In Kiss the Ground, author Josh Tickell takes on humanity’s greatest challenge: Climate Change. And along the way he delivers surprising insights into diet, health, nutrition and our relationship with food, each other and the planet. By focusing on the role of soil as the largest and most overlooked carbon sink on Earth, Kiss the Ground finds a new lens through which to view many of our problems and new tools to solve them. 

    Get book
  • Cooked

    In Cooked, Michael Pollan explores the previously uncharted territory of his own kitchen. Here, he discovers the enduring power of the four classical elements—fire, water, air, and earth— to transform the stuff of nature into delicious things to eat and drink. Apprenticing himself to a succession of culinary masters, Pollan learns how to grill with fire, cook with liquid, bake bread, and ferment everything from cheese to beer. In the course of his journey, he discovers that the cook occupies a special place in the world, standing squarely between nature and culture. Both realms are transformed by cooking, and so, in the process, is the cook.

    Get book
  • The Carbon Farming Solution

    Agriculture is rightly blamed as a major culprit of our climate crisis. But in this groundbreaking new book, Eric Toensmeier argues that agriculture―specifically, the subset of practices known as “carbon farming”―can, and should be, a linchpin of a global climate solutions platform. 

    Get book
  • All We Can Save: Truth, Courage, and Solutions for the Climate Crisis

    All We Can Save illuminates the expertise and insights of dozens of diverse women leading on climate in the United States—scientists, journalists, farmers, lawyers, teachers, activists, innovators, wonks, and designers, across generations, geographies, and race—and aims to advance a more representative, nuanced, and solution-oriented public conversation on the climate crisis. These women offer a spectrum of ideas and insights for how we can rapidly, radically reshape society.

    Get book
  • Farming While Black

    Some of our most cherished sustainable farming practices have roots in African wisdom. Yet, discrimination and violence against African-American farmers has led to their decline from 14 percent of all growers in 1920 to less than 2 percent today, with a corresponding loss of over 14 million acres of land.  Further, Black communities suffer disproportionately from illnesses related to lack of access to fresh food and healthy natural ecosystems. Soul Fire Farm, cofounded by author, activist, and farmer Leah Penniman, is committed to ending racism and injustice in our food system. Through innovative programs such as the Black-Latinx Farmers Immersion, a sliding-scale farmshare CSA, and Youth Food Justice leadership training, Penniman is part of a global network of farmers working to increase farmland stewardship by people of color, restore Afro-indigenous farming practices, and end food apartheid.  

    Get book
  • Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants

    As a botanist, Robin Wall Kimmerer has been trained to ask questions of nature with the tools of science. As a member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, she embraces the notion that plants and animals are our oldest teachers. In Braiding Sweetgrass, Kimmerer brings these two lenses of knowledge together. In reflections that range from the creation of Turtle Island to the forces that threaten its flourishing today, she circles toward a central argument: that the awakening of ecological consciousness requires the acknowledgment and celebration of our reciprocal relationship with the rest of the living world.

    Get book
  • Entangled Life: How Fungi Make Our Worlds, Change Our Minds & Shape Our Futures

    In Entangled Life, the brilliant young biologist Merlin Sheldrake shows us the world from a fungal point of view, providing an exhilarating change of perspective. Sheldrake’s vivid exploration takes us from yeast to psychedelics, to the fungi that range for miles underground and are the largest organisms on the planet, to those that link plants together in complex networks known as the “Wood Wide Web,”  to those that infiltrate and manipulate insect bodies with devastating precision.

    Get book
  • Finding the Mother Tree

    Suzanne Simard, a pioneer on the frontier of plant communication and intelligence, brings us into her world, the intimate world of the trees, in which she brilliantly illuminates the fascinating and vital truths--that trees are not simply the source of timber or pulp, but are a complicated, interdependent circle of life; that forests are social, cooperative creatures connected through underground networks by which trees communicate their vitality and vulnerabilities with communal lives not that different from our own.

    Get book
  • The Overstory

    The Overstory, winner of the Pulitzer Prize in Fiction, is a sweeping, impassioned work of activism and resistance that is also a stunning evocation of—and paean to—the natural world. From the roots to the crown and back to the seeds, Richard Powers’s twelfth novel unfolds in concentric rings of interlocking fables that range from antebellum New York to the late twentieth-century Timber Wars of the Pacific Northwest and beyond. There is a world alongside ours—vast, slow, interconnected, resourceful, magnificently inventive, and almost invisible to us. This is the story of a handful of people who learn how to see that world and who are drawn up into its unfolding catastrophe.

    Get book
  • Decolonizing Wealth: Indigenous Wisdom to Heal Divides and Restore Balance

    Decolonizing Wealth is a provocative analysis of the dysfunctional colonial dynamics at play in philanthropy and finance. Award-winning philanthropy executive Edgar Villanueva draws from the traditions from the Native way to prescribe the medicine for restoring balance and healing our divides.

    Get book
  • Education in Movement Spaces: Standing Rock to Chicago Freedom Square

    This book amplifies the distinct, intersecting, and coalitional possibilities of education in the spaces of ongoing movements for Native and Black liberation. Contributors including Alayna Eagle Shield, Django Paris, Rae Paris, and Timothy San Pedro highlight the importance of activist-oriented teaching and learning in community encampments and other movement spaces for the preservation and expansion of resistance education. With chapters from scholars, educators, and organizers, this volume offers lessons taken from these experiences for nation-state schools, classrooms, and spaces of teaching and learning that are most commonly experienced by Native and Black children and educators. Through attention to recent social movements across the United States—from Standing Rock to Black Lives Matter—this book demonstrates the vital connections between Native and Black communities’ educational futures.

    Get book
  • Dune

    Dune is a renowned classic science-fiction novel that has engaged and fascinated readers for decades. At One Earth, we also recognize its ecological contributions. The book is set on the arid, desert planet Arrakis, also called Dune. However, the climate is not only used as a setting but also as a testament to the influence of natural forces in our lives. Frank Herbert blends his esteem for ecological literacy into the book and presents ideas based in permaculture and regeneration as part of an integral way of life on the planet. His obvious desire for humans to live in harmony with nature show throughout the book in lines such as “Men and their works have been a disease on the surface of their plane… you cannot go on forever stealing what you need without regard to those who come after."

    Get book
  • The Flower Yard

    With his bantam hens at his feet, Arthur shares his life, knowledge, flair and influences for planting creatively, all of which combine to create a space that's rich in ever-changing color and life.

    Get book
  • Ecological Silviculture

    This book is a great resource when attempting to bring management more in line with natural forest processes. Rather than simply adding a layer of ecological objectives to classic forestry treatments, Ecological Silviculture purposefully changes the language we use in the field. Reframing silviculture through an ecological lens captures the whole system, including the economic importance to forest-dependent communities.

    Get book
  • Inquiries Into the Nature of Slow Money: Investing as If Food, Farms, and Fertility Mattered

    Could there ever be an alternative stock exchange dedicated to slow, small, and local? Could a million American families get their food from CSAs? What if you had to invest 50 percent of your assets within 50 miles of where you live? Such questions-at the heart of slow money-represent the first steps on our path to a new economy. Inquiries into the Nature of Slow Money presents an essential new strategy for investing in local food systems and introduces a group of fiduciary activists who are exploring what should come after industrial finance and industrial agriculture. 

    Get book
  • Living Soil

    Living Soil tells the story of farmers, scientists, and policymakers working to incorporate agricultural practices to benefit soil health for years to come. Living Soil takes you on a journey from lush landscapes in Oregon, the sun-baked fields of California, the vast green acres of the Midwest, to the waterfront farming and fishing communities in and around the Chesapeake Bay. Each farmer shares a story as unique as the soil they manage with a shared theme that resonates throughout the film: Our soil is a special resource we should all cherish and strive to protect.

    Watch film
  • My Octopus Teacher

    My Octopus Teacher, a Netflix Original film, tells the story of filmmaker Craig Foster, who develops an extraordinary bond with an inquisitive octopus that lives in the Great African Seaforest on the coast of South Africa. The film was made by the Sea Change Project, who hope that this profound story reminds us we are part of nature.

    Watch film
  • The Garden Awakening: Designs to Nurture Our Land and Ourselves

    Author Mary Reynolds demonstrates how to create a groundbreaking garden that is not simply a solitary space but an expanding, living, interconnected ecosystem. Drawing on old Irish ways and methods of working with the land, this beautiful book is both art and inspiration for any garden lover seeking to create a positive, natural space.

    Get book
  • Earthshot: How To Save Our Planet

    Earthshot: How To Save Our Planet is the first definitive book about how these goals can tackle the environmental crisis. It is a critical contribution to the most important story of the decade.

    Get book
  • Becoming Wild

    Becoming Wild brings readers into intimate proximity with various nonhuman individuals in their free-living communities. It presents a revelatory account of how animals function beyond our usual view. Safina shows that for non-humans and humans alike, culture comprises the answers to the question, “How do we live here?” It unites individuals within a group identity. This book takes readers behind the curtain of life on Earth, to witness from a new vantage point the most world-saving of perceptions: how we are all connected.

    Get book
  • From What Is to What If: Unleashing the Power of Imagination to Create the Future We Want

    From What Is to What If is a call to action to reclaim and unleash our collective imagination, told through the stories of individuals and communities around the world who are doing it now, as we speak, and witnessing often rapid and dramatic change for the better.

    Get book