Books

 

Accumulation: The Material Politics of Plastic edited by Jennifer Gabrys, Gay Hawkins and Mike Michael 2014

This book explores the vitality and complexity of plastic. It’s an interdisciplinary collection focused on how the presence and recalcitrance of plastic reveals the relational exchanges across human and synthetic materialities. Through a series of themed essays on plastic materialities, plastic economies, plastic bodies and new articulations of plastic, the editors and chapter authors examine specific aspects of plastic in action.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Big Ideas: Linking Food, Culture, Health and the Environment — Center for Ecoliteracy  2014

Big Ideas offers a conceptual framework for integrating these big ideas into K-12 classroom.  Students are encouraged to explore questions such as: Where does our food come from and how is it produced?  How does culture shape our food choices and behavior? What is the relationship between food choices and health? And what are the links between our food and the environment.

 

 

 

 

Blue Mind: The Surprising Science That Shows How Being Near, In, On, or Under Water Can Make You Happier, Healthier, More Connected, and Better at What You Do by Wallace J. Nichols 2015

A landmark book by marine biologist Wallace J. Nichols on the remarkable effects of water on our health and well-being. Read why we are drawn to the ocean each summer and how being near water sets our mind and bodies at ease. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bottlemania: How Water Went on Sale and Why We Bought it by Elizabeth Royte 2008

In an intelligent, accomplished work of narrative journalism, Elizabeth Royte does for water what Michael Pollan did for food: she finds the people, machines, economies, and cultural trends that bring it from distant aquifers to our supermarkets. Along the way, she investigates the questions we must inevitably answer. Who owns our water? How much should we drink? Should we have to pay for it? Is tap safe water safe to drink? And if so, how many chemicals are dumped in to make it potable? What happens to all those plastic bottles we carry around as predictably as cell phones? And of course, what's better: tap water or bottled?

 

 

 

Bottled and Sold: The Story Behind Our Obsession With Bottled Water by Peter H. Gleick 2010

Bottled and Sold shows how water has gone from being a free natural resource to one of the most successful commercial products of the last one hundred years—and why we are poorer for it.  Gleick investigates whether industry claims about the relative safety, convenience, and taste of bottled versus tap hold water. And he exposes the true reasons we’ve turned to the bottle, from fear mongering by business interests and our own vanity, to the breakdown of public systems and global inequities. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cradle To Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things by Michael Braungart and William McDonough 2002

William McDonough and Michael Braungart argue in their provocative, visionary book, that the mantra of "Reduce, reuse, recycle" perpetuates a one-way, "cradle to grave" manufacturing model that dates to the Industrial Revolution. This approach casts off as much as 90 percent of the materials it uses as waste, much of it toxic. They challenge the notion that human industry must inevitably damage the natural world, suggesting that nature becomes our model? They propose that products be designed so that, after their useful life, they provide nourishment for something new-either as "biological nutrients" that safely re-enter the environment or as "technical nutrients" that circulate within closed-loop industrial cycles, without being "downcycled" into low-grade uses (as most "recyclables" now are). Based on their experience (re)designing everything from carpeting to corporate campuses, they elaborate on a viable, exciting case for change.

 

 

 

Flotsametrics and the Floating World — How one man's obsession with runaway sneakers and rubber ducks revolutionized ocean science by Ebbesmeyer, C. C. and E. Scigliano 2009

Pioneering oceanographer Curtis Ebbesmeyer seized the world's imagination when he and his worldwide network of beachcomber volunteers traced ocean currents using thousands of sneakers and plastic bath toys spilled from storm-tossed freighters. In this book, Ebbesmeyer tells the story of his lifelong quest to solve the sea's mysteries. He recounts how flotsam has changed the course of history. He reveals the rhythmic and harmonic order in the vast oceanic currents and uncovers the astonishing story of flotsam, altering the world's view of trash, the ocean, and our global environment.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Garbage Land: On the Secret Trail of Trash by Elizabeth Royte 2005

In Garbage Land, acclaimed science writer Elizabeth Royte leads us on the wild adventure that begins once our trash hits the bottom of the can. Along the way, we meet an odor chemist who explains why trash smells so bad. This book is a brilliant exploration into the soiled heart of the American trash can.

 

 

 

 

 

Garbology: Our Dirty Love Affair With Trash by Edward Humes 2012

In Garbology, Pulitzer Prize–winning author Humes investigates the trail of 102 tons of trash—what’s in it; how much we pay for it; how we manage to create so much of it; and how some families, communities, and even nations are finding a way back from waste to discover a new kind of prosperity. Along the way, he introduces a collection of garbage denizens unlike anyone you’ve ever met: the trash-tracking detectives of MIT, the bulldozer-driving sanitation workers building Los Angeles’ immense Garbage Mountain landfill, the artists in residence at San Francisco’s dump, and the family whose annual trash output fills not a dumpster or a trash can, but a single mason jar.

 

 

 

 

 

Marine Debris: Sources, Impacts, and Solutions edited by Coe, James, and Donald Rogers 1997

This book addresses the origin of persistent solid waste in the ocean, from urban and rural discharges to waste from ships and the recreational ocean use. It identifies the key issues from biological, technological, economic and legal perspectives, and gives a framework for controlling each of the main sources of marine debris.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Moby-Duck: The True Story of 28,800 Bath Toys Lost at Sea & of the Beachcombers, Oceanographers, Environmentalists Fools Including the Author Who Went in Search of Them by Donovan Hohn  2011

Writer Donovan Hohn notes that while no one would say that plastic pollution is the biggest environmental issue of the day, it is the most iconic because it is completely man-made and never goes away. As a symbol of our disposable consumer culture, it’s legacy can be seen and touched.  Hohn didn’t start his journey to learn about plastic pollution, but had heard of the mysterious loss of thousands of bath toys at sea. He figured he would interview a few oceanographers, talk to a few beachcombers, and read up on Arctic science and geography. But questions can be like ocean currents: wade in too far, and they carry you away. Hohn’s accidental odyssey pulls him into the secretive world of shipping conglomerates, the daring work of Arctic researchers, the lunatic risks of maverick sailors, and the shadowy world of Chinese toy factories.  And of course, plastic pollution.

 

 

   

Our Stolen Future by Theo Colborn, Dianne Dumanoski, and John Peterson Myers 1996

Our Stolen Future tells the story of how endocrine disruption was discovered, how it works, what it means, and how families can protect themselves and their communities. Presented in clear, simple language for a general audience to understand the health and environmental threats created by man-made chemical contaminants that interfere with hormones in humans and wildlife.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Plastic A Toxic Love Story by Susan Freinkel 2011

In her eye-opening, engaging book, journalist Susan Freinkel treks through history, science and the global economy to assess the real impact of plastic in our lives, describing the crisis point we’ve reached.  She tells her story through eight familiar plastic objects: the comb, chair, Frisbee, IV bag, disposable lighter, grocery bag, soda bottle, and credit card. Each one illuminates a different facet of our synthetic world, and together they give us a new way of thinking about a substance that has become the defining medium — and metaphor — of our age.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Plastic-Free: How I Kicked the Plastic Habit and How You Can Too by Beth Terry 2012

Plastic-free activist Beth Terry shares her journey learning to live a plastic-free life. The book is filled with personal anecdotes, environmental stats, individual solutions and tips on how to limit your plastic footprint. Terry includes handy checklists and tables for easy reference, ways to get involved in larger community actions, and profiles of individuals—Plastic-Free Heroes—who have gone beyond personal solutions to create change on a larger scale.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Plastic Ocean: How a Sea Captain's Chance Discovery Launched a Determined Quest to Save the Oceans by Charles Moore 2011

A seminal work by Captain Charles Moore, a prominent seafaring environmentalist and researcher, in which he describes his alarming discovery in 1997 of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch in the Pacific Ocean, and inspires a fundamental rethinking of the Plastic Age and a growing global health crisis.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Plastic Purge: How to use Less Plastic, Eat Better, Keep Toxins Out of Your Body, and Help Save the Sea Turtles! by Michael SanClements 2014  

Ecologist SanClements has put together the most up-to-date and scientifically-backed information available to explain how plastics release toxins into your body and the effect they have on your and your children's health.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Slow Death by Rubber Duck: The Secret Danger of Everyday Things by Rick Smith and Bruce Lourie 2009

Pollution is no longer just about belching smokestacks and ugly sewer pipes—now, it’s personal. The most dangerous pollution, it turns out, comes from commonplace items in our homes and workplaces. To prove this point, for one week authors Rick Smith and Bruce Lourie ingested and inhaled a host of things that surround all of us. Using their own bodies as the reference point to tell the story of pollution in our modern world, they expose the miscreant corporate giants who manufacture the toxins, the weak-kneed government officials who let it happen, and the effects on people and families across the globe. This book—the testimony of their experience—exposes the extent to which we are poisoned every day of our lives, from the simple household dust that is polluting our blood to the toxins in our urine that are created by run-of-the-mill shampoos and toothpaste. Ultimately hopeful, the book empowers readers with some simple ideas for protecting themselves and their families, and changing things for the better.

 

 

  

The White Boats by Mark Marinovich

The White Boats is is a rousing tale of daring adventure and harrowing survival on the open ocean with echoes of The Old Man and the Sea, updated with a contemporary environmental theme. The White Boats tells the story of a young boy named Cesar who, like Hemingway’s title character, Santiago, dreams of catching a big marlin and ventures far out to sea in a tiny skiff to pursue his trophy fish. Unlike Santiago, Cesar must overcome a very different obstacle—a humpback whale entangled in plastic debris that he will risk life and limb to save.

The White Boats contains elements of magical realism and will strike a deep, resonant chord with readers of environmental fiction.

A heartfelt tale of courage and adventure for all ages—and an essential story for our time.

 

 

 

 

 

The World is Blue: How Our Fate and the Ocean’s are One by Sylvia Earle 2010

Legendary marine scientist Sylvia Earle portrays a planet teetering on the brink of irreversible environmental crisis. This eloquent,urgent and fascinating book reveals how just 50 years of swift and dangerous oceanic change threatens the very existence of life on Earth.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Children's books

 

All the Way to the Ocean by Joel Harper 2006

An uplifting story about two best friends, Isaac and James, and their discovery of the cause and effect relationship between our cities' storm drains and the world's oceans, lakes and rivers. It will inspire readers with a timeless lesson--If we all do our part, a cleaner, safer environment is within our reach.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Plastic Ahoy!  Investigating the Great Pacific Garbage Patch by Patricia Newman, photographs by Annie Crawley 2013

Three graduate students turn into trash detectives aboard the Scripps Environmental Accumulation of Plastic Expedition SEAPLEX.  They journeyed to the North Pacific Gyre on a scientific adventure to discover what lies below the surface of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.  A Junior Library Guild Selection.   

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sea Change by Joel Harper

An enjoyable day at the beach turns into a passion for art and marine conservation. With a swell comes a wave and a Sea Change! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sea Turtles Up Close by Jim Abernethy and award-winning author and conservationist Jennifer R. Nolan 2013

Sea Turtles Up Close takes the reader on an amazing journey into the fascinating world of the sea turtle. Brilliantly transforming from surface to sea creature over the course of 235 million years, these animals have a mystique and magnetism like none other. From their ability to migrate thousands of miles, to their unique anatomy, they are nothing short of sensational. Through Jim Abernethy's captivating photographs and Jennifer Nolan s inspirational writing, readers will deepen their appreciation for the seven sea turtle species, better understand the important role they play in our coastal ecosystem, and realize the choice is clear - we must protect

these amazing creatures while we still can.

 

 

 

 

Sharks Up Close by Jim Abernethy and award-winning author and conservationist Jennifer R. Nolan 2009

Explore the amazing beauty and life of sharks with one of the world's most experienced shark divers. Jim Abernethy, author and award-winning photographer, has spent a lifetime getting Up Close with many of the largest species of shark. His knowledge and love for these misunderstood creatures have fueled his passion to share the true nature of sharks with the world. Through stunning imagery, the reader will come away with a new appreciation for sharks and their plight for survival. 

 

 

Sullie Saves the Seas by Goffinet McLaren 2011

Sullie and his Secret Society of birds create a fun-filled, exciting, adventure that takes aim at specific thoughtless humans who are causing environmental damage to the beach and to Sullie`s ocean pals. Chapter by chapter, Sullie`s clever plot delivers a delightful tale that children will enjoy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Secret of Pig Island, by Jim Abernethy and award-winning author and conservationist Jennifer R. Nolan 2010

When a young boy learns of a secret awaiting him on a tropical island inhabited by some curly-tailed creatures, he sets his course across the ocean. There he meets a friendly family of pigs that are ready to share their wisdom about why all must join together and care for our universal home, Earth. In The Secret of Pig Island, Plato the pig comes to life with a timely message that all readers, young and old, are sure to embrace. Enjoy reading, and adopting, Plato's message of conservation wrapped in wisdom and love.

 

 

  

 


Watercolors: How JJ the Whale Saved Us by Terry Tamminen 2011

Terry Tamminen, former Secretary of the California Environmental Protection Agency, shares his remarkable true story about the rescue of JJ the whale, a day old gray whale that was found abandoned in Marina del Rey, California. The author takes us through his incredible journey and the setbacks he encountered, including bureaucratic obstacles, the daunting task of figuring out what and how to feed a 1600 pound baby, and finding a safe home for the infant.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Comics 

 

 

ARCHIE & FRIENDS DOUBLE DIGEST No. 4
Adventures in the Wonder Realm, Part 4, "Bottle Battle!"

Archie and his friends go underwater for a science project and discover the heaps of plastic submerged beneath the surface.  They learn about the threat plastics pose to our environment and their fight against plastic pollution.  Click to download.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ARCHIE & FRIENDS DOUBLE DIGEST No. 31 Archie Gets Drastic with Plastic 

Another double issue.  The first story is "A Change of Plans!"  In the second story, "Getting Drastic with Plastic," Veronica sets out to save the world - one shop at a time!  After learning of the positive effects on the environment in Rwanda because a nation-wide ban of plastic bags, she bans plastic from her own life - and tries to do the same in Riverdale!  Will Rievrdale be plastic-free?  Or is Veronica in over her head? 

 

 

 

 

 

e-books

 

 

 

Enough is Enough: 18 Ideas for Embracing a Life with Less Waste + Less Stuff by Lindsey Miles

Get a subscriber-only insights plus a copy of Miles latest eBook "Enough is Enough: 18 Ideas for Embracing a Life with Less Waste + Less Stuff"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

That’s a Wrap by Lindsey Miles

That’s A Wrap: a beautifully illustrated, 119-page Guide packed with tips, ideas and inspiration for living plastic-free.

The world is a beautiful place, and the waste that we create is spoiling it for everyone – not just people but the animals and plants that live here too. Zero waste and plastic-free living is a way to nurture our curiosity and creativity as well as reducing our rubbish… it’s all about finding solutions to making the world a better place. Plastic-free living was where it all began for me.