I read lots of environmental titles. In the past few years, some of my favourites have been The World Without Us by Alan Weisman, The Geography of Hope by Chris Turner, and Waking The Frog by my friend and fearless climate change advocate Tom Rand. Also, Adria Vasil’s Echolic Body and Echoholic Home are essential for anyone searching out the best Eco brands on the market. We were thrilled to be included as one of Canada’s best salons – www.worldSALON.ca and best hair and skin lines – www.world.ca.
This past December, I was greatly moved by a panel discussion on the links between climate change and toxic pollution put on by Environmental Defence – www.environmental defence.ca. On the panel were Roy Scranton, touring with his latest book – Learning to Die In The Anthropecene, and Bruce Lourie of Slow Death by Rubber Duck and Toxin Toxout infamy. Roy Scranton, an Iraq war veteran, cut us to the quick with his personal story of PTSD and patrolling the streets of Bagdad. Once leaving the army, it is as if his stress disorder trasfers onto his anxiety about climate change – thus his piercing trope on the futility of turning our climate juggernaught around. In a book review for Wreck Park, writer Pete Figler calls Learning to Die… “Like a bullet to the brain”. Dale Johnson says “It cuts deeper than anything that has yet been written on the subject.”
Bruce Lourie and Rick Smith’s Toxin Toxout is a much lighter, but just as thought provoking work on the best detox therapies on the market. In Slow Death By Rubber Duck, the two went under lock down for a period of time, exposing themselves to all sorts of “hidden” chemicals in food and personal care products – watching the levels of these chems climb dangerously high in their blood. The obvious follow-up was to anylize which detoxes would be most effective in pulling these toxins out of the body – there were some surprising results. I am still in awe of the fact that they used their own bodies to experiment on, like lab rats. The chapter on organic food was extremely insightful. I had no idea, for instance, that while the benefits of consuming organics are obvious, the farms themselves are responsible for removing huge amounts of greenhouse gasses from the atmosphere – this is what healthy soil does.
I highly recommend any one of these books for some heavier reading. Two of my lighter faves are The Tiger, by John Vaillant and The Wave, by Susan Casey – enjoy!