Guidance for Do-It-Yourself Earth-Keepers

Article excerpt

EARTH DAY 1990 spawned a whole library of "how to" books on protecting the environment. "Think globally, act locally" is their theme, and your home and backyard - and most of all your conscience - are their target. Polls say the vast majority of us would pay the cost of a cleaner environment. For those willing to put their effort where their mouth is, here are four books worth exploring:

The Global Ecology Handbook: What You Can Do About the Environmental Crisis (Boston: Beacon, $16.95, paper) is a doorstopper packed with information, advice, and enough footnotes and suggested readings to constitute a program of graduate studies. It is marketed as the "practical supplement to the PBS series `Race to Save the Planet"' that ran last fall on public television. It covers the full range of environmental problems - climate change, toxic waste, tropical forests, population, etc. - with plenty of advice on how the individual can make a difference.

The Green Lifestyle Handbook: 1001 Ways You Can Heal the Earth (New York: Henry Holt, $10.95, paper) is edited by author and activist Jeremy Rifkin. Writers include Francis Moore Lappe (author of "Diet For a Small Planet"), Maria Rodale and the late Robert Rodale of Rodale Press, geneticist Wes Jackson, head of the National Toxics Campaign John O'Connor, and United States Rep. Claudine Schneider (R) of Rhode Island, who has written many environmental bills in Congress. Among the subjects covered are household toxics, transportation, recycling, diet, gardening, personal investments, health care, environmental law, and community organizing. …