Stop thinking about efficiency and start thinking about sufficiency
Living the 1.5 Degree Lifestyle reveals the carbon cost of everything we do, identifying where we can make big reductions, while not sweating the small stuff.
The international scientific consensus is that we have less than a decade to drastically slash our collective carbon emissions to keep global heating to 1.5 degrees and avert catastrophe. This means that many of us have to cut our individual carbon footprints by over 80% to 2.5 tonnes per person per year by 2030. But where to start?
Drawing on Lloyd Alter's journey to track his daily carbon emissions and live the 1.5 degree lifestyle, coverage includes:
- What it looks like to live a rich and truly green life
- From take-out food, to bikes and cars, to your internet usage – finding the big wins, ignoring the trivial, and spotting marketing ploys
- The invisible embodied carbon baked into everything we own and why electric cars aren't the answer
- How to start thinking about sufficiency rather than efficiency
- The roles of individuals versus governments and corporations.
Grounded in meticulous research and yet accessible to all, Living the 1.5 Degree Lifestyle is a journey toward a life of quality over quantity, and sufficiency over efficiency, as we race to save our only home from catastrophic heating.
About the author
Lloyd Alter is writer, public speaker, sustainable design instructor, and former architect, builder, and developer. He has written over 14,000 articles published on Treehugger.com and the Mother Nature Network, and he has contributed to The Guardian, Corporate Knights, and Azure magazines. He lives in Toronto, Ontario.
"Lloyd Alter has created a highly engaging, intelligent, and thoughtful "manual for living the 1.5-degree lifestyle." There is plenty of myth-busting, supported by quality, in-depth research which goes far beyond the usual well-worn clichés and mantras. He humanises and crystallizes the "choices and trade-offs" we have to make to keep within 1.5°C global warming, so 'it is sufficient with enough to go around for everyone.'"
— Rosalind Readhead, English climate activist
"This joyful adventure in 1.5 degree living shows that a focus on "sufficiency" can unlock a happier, healthier sustainable way of life. "Efficiency" has dominated precisely because it perpetuates the status quo but Lloyd´s story shines a light on why we must transform our vision of a "good life" as well as practical tips for how to do it."
— Kate Power, development director, Hot or Cool Institute
"For years I've relied on Lloyd Alter's no-nonsense insight in Treehugger, including his direct, and to-the-point reflections on the elements of a better urban life. In his new, equally clear book, he's done it again with an immensely practical set of insights and rules to live by. With wisdom gleaned during the pandemic-year, Lloyd joins Paul Hawken as a master of the carbon drawdown roadmap."
— Chuck Wolfe, Seeing Better Cities Group, author, Sustaining a City's Culture and Character
"With fact-based research and tales of personal experience, Lloyd will reach many new audiences with this book. I, for one, embrace a return to the concept of sufficiency with regard to transportation, food, and more. For all who've been preaching climate action, or skirting it, I implore you to read this book and own up to all the ways you could try harder, and then get louder about sharing the overall life benefits you gain."
— Andrea Learned, climate leadership strategist, founder, #Bikes4Climate
"Lloyd Alter's writing is always fresh, incisive, and thoughtful and, in this timely and clearly written call to action, he tells us exactly what we as citizens of the world must do in our everyday lives to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions before it's too late. Reflecting Alter's background as an architect and real estate developer, this book is at once idealistic and pragmatic, and the lifestyle issues it addresses — based on the author's own experience — could not be more urgent. Governments and businesses cannot solve this problem without actions by each of us as individuals, and Alter tells us how."
— F. Kaid Benfield, Senior Counsel, PlaceMakers LLC