Earth Day 2024
April 15, 2024

5 Essential Earth Day Listens

Erin Murphy By Erin Murphy

Taking care of our one planet in the face of climate change is a daunting task, one that requires a radical shift from all of us. In this list of new audiobooks on the state of the Earth, you’ll find tangible solutions to greenhouse gas emissions and waste at the macro and micro levels, insights into how our bodies and minds are being altered by climate change, and in-depth looks at nature’s roles in our global system.

Your task this Earth Day (April 22!) is to take a walk with one of these outstanding audiobooks, and think about your own next steps. Literally and figuratively. Don’t forget to look up.

Drawdown edited by Paul Hawken

An international coalition of researchers, professionals, and scientists have come together to offer one hundred techniques and practices to reverse global warming—they range from clean energy to educating girls in lower-income countries to land use practices that pull carbon out of the air. They represent a path forward, not just to slow the earth’s warming but to reach drawdown, that point in time when greenhouse gases begin to decline, giving us every reason to see this planetary crisis as an opportunity to create a just and livable world.

The Weight of Nature by Clayton Page Aldern

Climate change’s effects on our brains have gone largely unreported. Based on seven years of research, this audiobook written and read by the award-winning journalist and trained neuroscientist Clayton Page Aldern synthesizes the neuroscience, psychology, and behavioral economics of global warming and brain health to show listeners how a changing environment is changing us today, from the inside out.

The Blue Machine by Helen Czerski

All of Earth’s oceans are a single engine powered by sunlight. In The Blue Machine, physicist and oceanographer Helen Czerski illustrates the mechanisms behind this defining feature of our planet, and reveals that while the ocean engine has sustained us for thousands of years, today it is faced with urgent threats. By understanding how the ocean works, and its essential role in our global system, we can learn how to protect our blue machine.

Total Garbage by Edward Humes

Waste is our biggest problem, and solving our inherent trashiness can fix our economy, our energy costs, our traffic jams, and help slow climate change—all while making us healthier and happier.  In Total Garbage, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Edward Humes dives into the waste embedded in our daily lives—and shows how individuals and communities are making a real difference for health, prosperity, quality of life, and the fight against climate change

Catastrophe Ethics by Travis Rieder

In a world of often confusing and terrifying global problems, climate change chief among them, how should we make choices in our everyday lives? Does anything on the individual level really make a difference? In Catastrophe Ethics, Travis Rieder tackles the moral philosophy puzzles that bedevil us, from how we should consume water to the decision to have children. Rieder explores vital ethical concepts from history and today and offers new ways to think about the “right” thing to do when the challenges we face are larger and more complex than ever before.