Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Annual assessments of Eco-Libris' planting partners are available online

This is our last post for 2008 and we're happy to close the year with good news - our annual assessments of our planting partners are now available online!

Here's a little bit more about these assessments: as part of our pledge to quality service to our customers, we decided at the beginning of our operations to conduct annual assessments of our planting partners.The two main goals of these assessments are: 1. to verify the quality of the planting operations and to make sure the high standards we promise to our customers are kept and 2. to provide our customers with details on the tree planting operations they support to balance out their books.

Our first year of operation ended in July 2008 and we conducted later on these assessments under the guidance of our environmental advisor, Gili Koniak. The process took couple of months and now the finalized assessments are available online at the following links:

SHI's First Year Assessment:

RIPPLE Africa's First Year Assessment:

AIR's First Year Assessment:

We will do our best to continue and improve our quality assurance processes. We work closely with our planting partners and will continue to do so on 2009. Our goal for 2009 is to visit the planting operations of at least two of our planting partners.

We will keep you posted of course with more data, photos and hopefully also videos from the planting areas! Thanks again to our planting partners and to everyone that was involved in the work on the assessments.

Happy New Year,
Raz @ Eco-Libris

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

An update from Philly: A Judge is (temporarily) stopping the closure of 11 library branches

We reported two weeks ago on the fight to leave 11 branch libraries in Philadelphia open following the decision of Mayor Nutter to close them as part of a massive cost cutting effort of the city. Today we have an important update on this fight.

I firstly heard it on NPR and later on found it on the website of Friends of the Free Library Philadelphia (

This just in from Chris Brennan from the Daily News at 1:15 p.m.: Court of Common Pleas Judge Idee Fox just ordered Mayor Nutter and the Free Library of Philadelphia to halt their plans to shutter 11 branch libraries after 5 p.m. tomorrow. A group of seven library patrons, along with the union that represents librarians, sued Nutter and the Free Library, saying that a 20-year-old ordinance prohibits the mayor from closing city buildings without approval by City Council. Three Council members — Bill Green, Jannie Blackwell and Jack Kelly — filed a similar lawsuit. In November, Nutter announced plans to shut 11 of the city’s 54 library branches as part of a massive cost cutting effort to shore up a $1 billion budget gap in the city budget over the next five years.

I also heard that Mayor Nutter wants to appeal on this ruling, so it looks likes we'll hear more updates from the court. In any case, it will be interesting to see if the Judge's ruling will make any difference or it's just going to delay the closing for some time and that's it. I definitely hope the time out given by the Judge will be used to find creative ways to keep these branches open!


Raz @ Eco-Libris

Plant a tree for every book you read!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Book review of "The Legend of Ninja Cowboy Bear" (and a giveaway!)

When I first heard about the title of our today's book, I thought to myself 'wow, that's an interesting combo'. After reading the book it's looks like there isn't nothing more natural in the world than a friendship of a ninja, cowboy and a bear.

Yes, the book we review today is
"The Legend of Ninja Cowboy Bear" by David Bruins (author) and Hilary Leung (illustrator).

Firstly, few words on our collaboration with the author, David Bruins. As you can see from the photo of the cover of the book to your right, our logo is part of the cover, which means that for every copy printed of "The Legend of Ninja Cowboy Bear", a tree is planted with Eco-Libris. The book by the way is printed with vegetable-based ink on 30% recycled paper, by a FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) certified printer.

And now to the story. "The Legend of Ninja Cowboy Bear" is an illustrated children's story described as "a story about three friends (a ninja, a cowboy and a bear) who discover an important truth about equality, diversity and how to appreciate one another's unique traits".

I found it a great story about friendship and the way different characters can be friends. I believe the use of ninja, bear and a cowboy as the characters actually help kids to understand the way the idea behind the story and to identify with the way they act within the story.

The story has many lessons for kids and first and foremost is the idea that diversity is a good thing and can benefit us all if we approach it positively and from with the right approach.

This is all heavy stuff especially for kids and therefore it's a pleasure to see the way David Bruins and Hilary Leung are handling it and making this a fun story. The beautiful pictures of Leung together with Bruins' prose work together to capture children's attention, spark their imagination, and put a smile on their face.

The book also invites you (even if you're a grown up) to play the game Ninja Cowboy Bear, which is similar to to one you probably already know - rock, papers, scissors. The big difference is how you play it.. You can also play it online via the book's website.

Book details:
Book's name: The Legend of Ninja Cowboy Bear
Author: David Bruins
David Bruins spends most of his days as a computer programmer. However, he'd much rather spend his time riding his bicycle, playing guitar, or coming up with stories and telling them to anyone who will listen.
Illustrator: Hilary Leung
Hilary Leung is a designer by day, illustrator by night and ultimate player on weekends. Having spent the last five years pursuing other dreams, he is happy to return to his first true love - drawing.
Publication Date: November 2008
The book is available on: the book's website and on a long list of bookstores in Ontario
Facebook group:

Author David Bruins is giving away a copy of the book, and of course it comes with a tree that will be planted for the copy!

How you can win? please add a comment below with an answer the following question: A new year is beginning this week (yes, 2009..) - what's your green resolution for the new year? Submissions are accepted until Sunday, January 4, 12PM EST. The winner will be announced the following day.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Kindle and Sony Reader - big hits on the holiday season

Following yesterday's post on Amazon's successful holiday season and eco-friendly it is to buy online, we also tried to check out how e-books were doing this month.

We didn't find much data on e-books, but we did find an interesting article on the New York Times that reported on good sales for Amazon's Kindle. Maybe too good - there are no sales figures but we do know that the $359 Kindle, it is out of stock and unavailable until February. Actually, PC Magazine reported already on December 1st that "
Amazon now lists the Kindle's shipping date as 11 to 13 weeks".

Apparently it's the "fault" of Oprah Winfrey, who praised the Kindle on her show in October, and got many people to buy it. I guess Amazon didn't take Oprah into consideration and hence left with not enough Kindle devices for the holiday season.

The NYT reports that "the shortage is providing an opening for Sony, which embarked on an intense publicity campaign for its Reader device during the gift-buying season. The stepped-up competition may represent a coming of age for the entire idea of reading longer texts on a portable digital device."

Steve Haber, president of Sony's digital reading division, is quoted in the article saying that the sales of Reader 700, a $400 device, "had tripled this holiday season over last, in part because the device is now available in the Target, Borders and Sam's Club chains." He also said Sony had sold more than 300,000 devices since the debut of the original Reader in 2006.

How is it compared with the Kindle? it's hard to tell. Estimates mentioned in the article are anywhere between 260,000-1,000,000 units, and that's before Winfrey's endorsement.

Still, to put things in propotion we have to remember that e-books are still small fraction of the market. According to the artilce and other sources publishers like HarperCollins, Random House and Simon & Schuster say that the sales of e-books for any device constitute less than 1 percent o
f total book sales.

More related links:

Happy Holidays for Sony Reader by Craig Morgan Teicher - Publishers Weekly, December 22

No Happy Holidays For Publishing (Host Scott Simon speaks to Charlotte Abbott, contributing editor for Publishers Weekly) - NPR, December 20

E-books vs. paper books - Eco-Libris resource page

Raz @ Eco-Libris

Friday, December 26, 2008

Amazon is doing well this holiday season. Is it also good news for the environment?

 announced yesterday that the 2008 holiday season finished as its best ever, with record sales of 108 million products from Nov. 1 to Dec. 25. The company did not report holiday sales figures last year.

Many books were purchased on the holiday season (although don't disclose figures), and it got me to think if the fact that Amazon is doing well is good not only for its bottom line but also to the environment, or in other words - is it more eco-friendly to purchase a book online?

Firstly, let's take a look on what the top sellers were on the holiday season - well, according to the press release "top sellers in books included "The Tales of Beedle the Bard" by J.K. Rowling (standard edition, hardcover), "Eclipse" by Stephenie Meyer (The Twilight Saga, book 3, hardcover) and "Breaking Dawn" by Stephenie Meyer (The Twilight Saga, book 4, hardcover)."

One bit of information Amazon did release was that " sold enough "Breaking Dawn" books that stacked end to end they would reach the summit of Mt. Everest eight times." You're welcome to do the math and figure out how many copies were sold..

And back to our question - are online purchases of books as well as other items on greener than driving to a local store and making the purchase there? well, it depends.. yes, it seems it's very difficult to give here an unambiguous answer. But we'll do our best :)

One good source I found on this question is 'Ask Umbra' of Grist. On her column last year "Mall me: on online shopping" she explains that "driving alone to a faraway place to buy very little is worse than having a few things shipped". But what about driving to a nearby local store? well, that's more complicated, especially when you add to the green equation the "local economy factor", which is the support your dollars provide to the local economy and to your community when you buy local. With Amazon it might work out if you live in Seattle but not otherwise.

Umbra's bottom line back then was "The jury is out. Follow your common sense until the jury comes back in. Don't take long, single-occupancy, single-purpose car trips for lightweight consumer items. (I leave you an out for picking up a potter's wheel or an anvil.) Avoid shipping by air -- plan ahead and don't be impatient when online shopping. And bundle shopping, shipping, and driving with others when possible."

This year Umbra was asked again about this issue ('The Click and the Dread', Nov 19, 2008). Umbra mentions a new research prepared the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, which basically says that (and this is a quote of the ORNL's environmental scientist Jesse Miller) that "using several assumptions and data from several authoritative sources, we can reasonably estimate that nearly half a billion kilograms of carbon dioxide are kept out of the atmosphere by shopping on-line."

Another source I found is AskPablo of Triple Pundit. On his column "Online Shopping", Pablo is also trying to solve this riddle. He is examining a Digital Europe Project study entitled "The Environmental and Social Impacts of Digital Music," which published in July 2003, as well as some other studies.

His conclustion? "My conclusion is that dematerializing services that were previously delivered through the purchase of a physical good (CD's, books, movies, etc.) is less materials intensive. Additionally, delivery of purchased items in fully loaded semi trailers is much more efficient than driving to a store with an otherwise empty personal vehicle." So Pablo is leaning more towards online purchasing but also for him it's still not a clear cut.

Our conclusion? it looks like in general buying online is making more sense in terms of the purchase's footprint, especially if the alternative is driving by yourself for a relatively faraway store. But buying local is also important and therefore our advice would be to check local bookstores for books, see what they have to offer on their websites, compare prices and then make your decision.

This process might take a little bit longer but it will give you a much better chance to make the decision you will be the best fit for you and what you believe in.

And what about the sales of e-Books this year?? about that we'll talk tomorrow..

Raz @ Eco-Libris

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Happy Holidays (and an advice on what to do with your holiday cards)

It's the festive season now and we would like to wish you all happy, peaceful, enjoyable and of course green holidays!

It's also an opportunity to remind you that if you look for tips and ideas how to green your holidays, you should check the great website of our friends Lynn and Corey of Celebrate Green! -

And if you're one of those who already got many holiday cards (you've got a lot of friends..) and don't really know what to do with them other than just throwing them to the recycled paper bin, here's a video that might be helpful, especially if you're looking for something creative to do with your children (source: Do The Green Thing):

Best wishes,
Raz @ Eco-Libris

Plant a tree for every book you read!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Why men read less than women? is it only their fault?

If you find yourself in front of your laptop looking for something interesting/fun to read, here's one. It's not about sustainable reading, trees, green books or any of our usual topics, but it's definitely worth reading. The topic: can we blame guys for not reading?

Chris Goldberg is discussing this important issue on Huffington Post ("Dudes Don't Read: The Book Biz's Self-Fulfilling Prophecy?"). In his own words: "Dudes aren't reading. But is it our fault? Or have publishers just given up trying to publish and market books that we'd want to read?"

Do men really read less than women?
the research Goldberg is referring to is not the only one claiming that. Eric Weiner reported last year on NPR about a A poll released last month by The Associated Press and Ipsos, a market-research firm: "Among avid readers surveyed by the AP, the typical woman read nine books in a year, compared with only five for men. Women read more than men in all categories except for history and biography." And it's not only in the U.S. - my guestimation is that this is a worldwide phenomenon. Check out Sweden for example.

Goldberg tries to figure out if it's us, the men, or the publishers who are putting almost all of their bets into girly books. He also makes a good point that these gender-biased reading habits also reflect similar bias in picking authors (hint: women rule). And he sums it up asking "How can we make reading novels -- and writing them -- cool again for guys under thirty?"

So check it out at

Happy Holidays!

Raz @ Eco-Libris

Monday, December 22, 2008

New collaboration with a Danish publisher of books that inspire, entertain and makes life less complicated

We are happy to announce on a new collaboration with a publisher. This time we have the pleasure to partner with the Danish publisher Clockwise: In collaboration with Eco-Libris, Clockwise will give costumers the opportunity to plant a tree for every book bought through the Clockwise website.

Clockwise is a new and innovative publisher. Here's a little bit more about it and two new books Clockwise is offering now (in Danish) from the publisher,
Marie Halkjær:


Books that inspire, entertain and makes life less complicated. Clockwise is a Danish publishing company specialising in quality non-fiction that helps the reader deal with issues such as career development, parenting, relationship, health, hobbies and sports. Clockwise’s ambition is to make every book special in terms of innovative content and new formats.


This is the complete guide to putting together a fun, challenging, relaxing or charitable weekend. Find inspiration for more than 100 great weekend activities and projects to enjoy with your friends, family or all by yourself. From a nostalgic trip down memory lane to wellness, extreme sports light, DIY or throwing theme parties. The book is stuffed with guides, tips and great advice on how to make your weekend special.


In 45 chapters the authors of Manual gives advice on how to become a winner in the garage, the car, the kitchen, the bedroom, the wilderness and lots more. It’s a manual for making your own schnapps, building an arcade machine and tacking great photos. An inspirational book guaranteeing many hours of entertainment with the guys, from wine tasting to kitesurfing and races with r/c cars. And a helping hand to avoid many unpleasant experiences – getting beaten up on a night out, loosing a discussion or embarrassing silence after your speech at your best friends wedding.

Clockwise is the third European publisher we partner with after BookHouse Publishing of Sweden and Flux of Norway.You're welcome to check out Clockwise's website at:


Raz @ Eco-Libris

Plant a tree for every book you read!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

And the winner of the "White Road" giveaway is...

Thank you for all the participants in our giveaway of the "The White Road and Other Stories" following the visit of the author Tania Hershman in our blog as part of her book tour on December 10.

We got great comments about your preferences when it comes to short storeis vs. flash fiction and your preferred length for a short story.And the winner in our giveaway, chosen by Tania, is Leah, who wrote the following:

It's so magical the many ways to swindle the alphabet!!! But, I have to confess that short stories steal my heart! There is room to expand and leave trails of adventure and create a mystery that only the reader will imaginatively be able to solve! Romance burns with more intensity and there always is a fire or two burning whether figuratively or literally in the distance or within. I'd say anywhere from 8 to 32 pages is brilliant for a short story. And, some of my most magical inspirations are Anais Nin, Jane Bowles, Ernest Hemingway, Flannery O’Connor, James Baldwin and more. : ))) Thanks so much for this fabulous give~away! : )))

Congrats Leah! You will receive a copy of "The White Road and Other Stories", and I'm sure you will be happy to know that a tree is being planted with Eco-Libris for this copy, as well as with every other copy of the book!

And two more exciting updates about the book:

Firstly, Tania's visit on our blog was reported in the LA Times book news blog, Jacket copy (which also wrote about us in the past)!

And Tania's book also got into the Amazon UK's list of Bestselling Short Story Collections. It was all the way up to no. 7 and right now it's ranked no. 16 because the book is currently out of stock in the UK (new copies are printed right now). Congrats to Tania!

Raz @ Eco-Libris

Saturday, December 20, 2008

An interview on

I had the pleasure to be interviewed by Karin Kloosterman of, which is the leading media outlet and probably the most popular green blog on the internet (how popular? it has 2,628,000+ unique visitors (March 08) and is ranked no. 20 on technorati out of 75,000,000+ blogs).

You are welcome to read the interview on this link:

Raz @ Eco-Libris

Friday, December 19, 2008

Help to stop the closing of 11 library branches in Philadelphia

I'm a strong supporter of public libraries, not to mention the fact that my mother is a librarian for almost three decades. Unfortunately libraries are also taking the hit of the economic slowdown, including in Philadelphia where 11 Library Branches are slated for closure at the end of the day on December 31st.

Friends of the Free Library Philadelphia, an independent, non-profit organization whose mission is to support the Free Library of Philadelphia, is leading a struggle to keep these branches open. We would like to share with you an email with an update (including an important call for action) we received on this matter from fellow SBN member, Ruth Schanbacher. The email Ruth forwarded us was written by Amy Dougherty, Executive Director, Friends of the Free Library.

So here it is:
Dear Library Friends and Supporters:

Eleven Library Branches are slated for closure at the end of the day on December 31st. The city's financial crisis is of real concern. However, as reported on NBC News, the demand for library services and the number of library card holders are up 40%, reaching an all time high. The Friends of the Free Library of Philadelphia and our affiliate Friends Groups believe that we should and can share in the sacrifice by reducing library operations equally throughout the entire 54 branch system through the current school year and not permanently shutter these 11 branches. We believe that this is a more equitable and viable option to solving this crisis and one that does not target low income households, children, students of all ages, the elderly, and job seekers in communities where unemployment, poverty, and illiteracy and those living on the wrong side of the digital divide are among the nation's highest.

My op-ed on the front page of the Currents Section in Sunday's Philadelphia Inquirer, Alternatives to Closings, and the endorsement by the editorial board on page C4, Schools and Libraries: Those Nagging Details, describe why we should not support such a hasty, behind closed doors decision. Instead, we want to do our part and are pleading for time to help the city to preserve our wonderful library system that is a true American story and belongs to all of us.
We ask you now to write to the Mayor and voice your opinion.

Mayor Michael Nutter
City Hall, Room 215
Philadelphia, PA 19107
Phone: 215.686.2181
Fax: 215.686.2180
E-mail: or send a message via the web:

I truly hope that these branches will stay open and urge everyone to get into the website of Friends of the Free Library Philadelphia ( for further information and updates.

Below you can find a video from the Friends of the Free Library Philadelphia's website on the rally that took place two weeks ago (Dec 6):


Raz @ Eco-Libris

Thursday, December 18, 2008

New collaboration with Gita's, a green holiday cards maker!

Holidays are also about greetings and we couldn't find a better timing to announce on a new collaboration with Gita's, a young company that is offering customer eco-friendly products, among them are eco-friendly holiday cards!

Gita's partnership with E
co-Libris aims to raise awareness to the environmental impacts of using paper for the production of paper and cards, books, and other products and provide people and businesses with an affordable and easy way to do something about it. Gita's will plant one tree with Eco-Libris for every 20 cards or a journal you buy from them!

Gita's is currently offering unique and creative, eco-friendly paper products including holiday cards, thank you cards, and journals. They will soon be offering every day note cards and gift bags.

How green they are? here's a list of their environmental benefits:

All Gita's Tree-Free Greetings and Gift Bags are:

  • Environment Friendly
  • 100% tree-free, 100% recycled, or FSC certified mixed sources
  • Every card has a “Sustainability Grid” on the back with details of material used
  • All cards are printed with soy-based inks
  • Paper is made from sustainably harvested sources, including kenaf plant, sugar-cane bagasse, and bamboo.
  • Paper is manufactured with no chlorine or harmful chemicals and requires less water and energy.

All Gita's Handmade Paper Products are:

  • 100% recycled from cotton waste and processed chlorine free
  • Cards, journals, and paper are embedded with recycled hemp, flower petals, and other natural raw material
  • Every card is handmade with a process that requires less water and energy
Gita's is also proud to support EarthShare and its member organizations in creating a healthy and sustainable environment. You contribute to these causes every time you buy our products. They are also working directly with non-profit organizations and artisans to source our handmade paper products in a socially responsible way while offering environmental benefits to customers.

Gita's strives to offer their customers eco friendly products that are of great quality, unique in design, affordable and a great value. They're dedicated to the good of the environment and the people who live in it, and we're very happy to partner with them and add our part to their good and green work!

For additional information on their products please visit Gita's website at


Raz @ Eco-Libris

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The eBooks that will help your business go green!

In the last couple of weeks we're busy with recommendations on great green-themed books. Today we're focusing on green-themed eBooks. We're happy to host Angela Wieck from EcoBrain who recommends on few green eBooks for businesses.

EcoBrain, eBook Distributor, Provides Resources for Businesses to Go Green

EcoBrain, the #1 eBook marketplace for books on green living for individuals and businesses highlights three eBooks to help businesses in their quest to create corporate sustainability.

A lot of attention has been given to the growth of eBooks recently, with eBooks reportedly rising by 58.9% and most categories of paper books decli
ning. EcoBrain would like to now focus attention on some titles that can help businesses do a better job of going green.

The Next Sustainability Wave: Building Boardroom Buy-in, by Bob Willard ($16.95)

It provides a compelling business case and emphasizes the importance of how sustainability is presented to corporate leaders - using the right language, and avoiding threats to the status quo that provoke habitual corporate defense mechanisms -- the book applies effective
selling techniques to reposition sustainability strategies as a means to achieving existing corporate ends, rather than as a separate priority to worry about. It sells sustainability as a solution, a business strategy, and a catalyst for business transformation.

Another excellent title is Dancing with the Tiger: Learning Sustainability Step by Natural Step, by Brian Nattrass and Mary Altomare ($22.95).

For corporations, communities and other organizations, the choreography of the dance toward sustainability has been systematized by The Natural Step: a framework that provides the science, analysis, methodologies and tools to use in the quest for sustainability.

Dancing with the Tiger presents the stories of individuals, teams and organizations learning about change and sustainability, and then acting on that learning. Case studies include some of the mo
st successful companies and communities in North America:

Nike: its struggles, victories and setbacks on the road to sustainability
Starbucks: the tension of modeling corporate responsibility with alarming growth
CH2MHill: its gradual evolution from environmental to sustainability engineering
Whistler: grappling with the paradox of sustainability in a high profile resort town
as well as Home Depot, Norm Thomson Outfitters, the municipalities of Seattle and Santa Monica, and others.

Firms of Endearment: How World-Class Companies Profit from Passion and Purpose, by Rajendra Sisodia, David Wolfe, Jagdish Sheth ($20.12)

It's a fact: People are increasingly searching for higher meaning in their lives, not just more possessions. This trend is transforming the marketplace, the workplace, and the very soul of capitalism. Increasingly, today's most successful companies are those who've brought love, joy, authenticity, empathy, and soulfulness into their businesses: companies th
at deliver emotional, experiential, and social value, not just profits. Firms of Endearment illuminates this: the most fundamental transformation in capitalism since Adam Smith.

It's not a book about corporate social responsibility: it's about building companies that can sustain success in a radically new era. It's about great companies like IDEO and IKEA, Commerce Bank and Costco, Wegmans and Whole Foods: how they've earned powerful loyalty and affection from all their stakeholders, while achieving stock performance that is truly breathtaking. It's about gaining "share of heart," not just share of wallet. It's about aligning the interests of all your stakeholders, not just juggling them.

It's about understanding how the "new rules of capitalism" mirror the self-actualization focus of our aging society. It's about building companies that leave the world a better place. Most of all, it's about why you must do all this, or risk being left in the dust... and how to get there from wherever you are now.

Not only does EcoBrain offer titles for businesses, but individuals as well. A recommended title for individuals is Global Profit AND Global Justice: Using Your Money to Change the World, by Deb Abbey ($11.95).

Although debate still rages about the merits of globalization, the fact remains that it is inevitable. But instead of people expending their energies on fighting the global economy, we may be much better off trying to shape it. Global Profit AND Global Justice shows how you can use your money creatively to change the world for the better. It aims to empower people to leverage capital for progressive social and environmental change. Arguing that the marketplace is a viable forum for individuals to effect such change, it shows that consumers and investors already have many tools at their disposal to help ensure that the benefits of globalization are distributed equitably. offers thousands of titles, from hundreds of top publishers, about the environment. EcoBrain’s offers eBooks on the environment, sustainable living, cookbooks, biographies, kids’ books, how-to guides, green architecture titles, organic gardening, composting, fiction and more.

Book reviewers and journalists are encouraged to contact EcoBrain for access to complimentary copies.

Angela Wieck
Sales & Marketing

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

How short is long enough? let us know and get a chance to win "The White Road and Other Stories"

We are extending the deadline of the "The White Road and Other Stories" giveaway in 3 days until Friday, December 19 12 pm EST.

If you haven't checked it out yet, please go to the book's tour post, where we hosted the author Tania Hershman last week - Tania is giving away one copy of her new book, and it already includes a tree planted for this copy with Eco-Libris.

So how do you get a chance to win this prize? just add a comment to the book tour's post ( with an answer for the following question:

what do you prefer - short stories or flash fiction, and what's the best length for a short story?
feel free to mention your favorites!

Tania will pick the comment she liked best and the winner will be announced on our blog on Sunday, Dec 21.

Raz @ Eco-Libris

Monday, December 15, 2008

The Green Collar Holiday Gift Guide for Book Lovers - Part 5

The final part is here! After almost two exciting weeks, in which we presented forty recommendations on our holiday guide, we're happy to bring you the final part with the last 10 recommendations.

Just to remind you what the
Green Collar Holiday Gift Guide for Book Lovers is all about - we try to assist all the good people who want to give books as gifts this year with recommendations on the best green books to give as gifts this holiday season.

We do so by having a very special holiday guide with 50 recommendations of great green-themed books that will be a good fit as holiday gifts. As you will see the guide is not only about the books, but also about the people who recommend it.

We tried to personalize the guide as much as possible so we will learn not only about green books but also about the people who carry the green economy on their shoulders. Therefore with each recommendation you will find a personal angle that presents the recommender, his workplace and/or why they chose that specific book to recommend on.

As promised, today we present part 5 (last part) of the guide. As you can see today and on other parts of the guide, we have some great people who are part of the green economy and also wrote great books which the recommend on. We hope you will enjoy the variety of offers and find here great ideas for green gifts. Enjoy!

41. "Good News for a Change: Hope for a Troubled Planet" by David T. Suzuki and Holly Dressel

Recommended by: Ryan Anderson, Industrial Designer at Admark Display

What the book is about? (from David Suzuki Foundation's website) We all know the bad news. Every day, along with all the bulletins on social upheavals and terrorist attacks, we read reports of the damage that industrial development is wreaking on our soil, air and water. We seem intent on continuing to live this way, even though many scientific experts tell us our actions are suicidal. The good news is that thousands of individuals, groups and businesses are already changing their ways.

A growing number of companies are still making money while benefiting their local communities. The authors have also uncovered hundreds of working solutions that can help all of us to imagine and achieve a new and happier future. There is a spontaneous, global quest for ways to survive sustainably that is opening up a very different planetary futu
re from the one based on endless economic and industrial demands. And, say Suzuki and Dressel, many of the technologies we need to realize our goals—to save species, to conserve soil, to right social wrongs—are already within our grasp.

Why would this book make a great gift? Easy to read collection of non fiction stories from around the world, written by a Canadian environmentalist. Offers a glimmer of hope while addressing how much work is required, and the simple small steps that need to happen to get there. Not over complicated, a Good Read!

Getting personal: This book was part of my Industrial Design College Curriculum.

42. "The Ecology of Commerce" by Paul Hawken

Recommended by:
Frank Marquardt, Writer, Editor and Director of Content at Native Instinct

What the book is about? ( review) Paul Hawken, the entrepreneur behind the Smith & Hawken gardening supplies empire, is no ordinary capitalist. Drawing as much on Baba Ram Dass and Vaclav Havel as he does on Peter Drucker and WalMart for his case studies, Hawken is on a one-man crusade to reform our economic system by demanding that First World businesses reduce their consumption of energy and resources by 80 percent in the next 50 years.

As if that weren't enough, Hawken argues that business goals should be redefined to embrace such fuzzy categories as whether the work is aesthetically pleasing and th
e employees are having fun; this applies to corporate giants and mom-and-pop operations alike. He proposes a culture of business in which the real world, the natural world, is allowed to flourish as well, and in which the planet's needs are addressed. Wall Street may not be ready for Hawken's provocative brand of environmental awareness, but this fine book is full of captivating ideas.

Why woul
d this book make a great gift? The Ecology of Commerce came out nearly 15 years ago, but it remains fresh and inspiring- and more topical than ever now that businesses have started to catch up with its central insight, that if we ruin the natural world, we'll ruin business. This book is responsible for many notable career-conversions, the most notable of whom is Interface's Ray Anderson. If the person's a neophyte to sustainability, I think this book remains the best big-picture, in-depth view of sustainability and business.

Getting Personal: I read it for the first time at the end of 2000, and it changed my life. I've been writing about and working with nonprofit and startup organizations to promote sustainability ever since, and credit Paul Hawken's passionate, clear-eyed vision for giving me the framework for understanding the urgency for going green. I still think it's among the best written and most engaging books in the growing literature of green.

43. "Low Carbon Diet: A 30 Day Program to Lose 5000 Pounds--Be Part of the Global Warming Solution!" by David Gershon

Recommended by: Angela Ford, President/CEO, T.A.G. Worldwide, Inc.

What the book is about? from the book's website): This “30 Day Program to Lose 5000 Pounds” is a fun, accessible, easy to use guide that will show you, step-by-step, how to dramatically reduce your CO2 output in just a month’s time.

Grounded in over two decades of environmental behavior change research, this illustrated workbook offers much more than a list of eco-friendly actions. It walks you through every step of the process, from calculating your current CO2 “footprint” to tracking your progress.

By making simple changes to actions you take every day, you’ll learn how to reduce your annual household CO2 output by at least 15%. And, for those who are more ambitious, you’ll discover how you can help your workplace, local schools, and community do the same.

Why would this book make a great gift? It is a really simple way for a family or novice to begin a sustainable lifestyle.

Getting Personal: About Angela (from LinkedIn) - Licensed Real Estate Broker; Sustainability Consultant; Real Estate Property Manager; LEED-AP (Accredited Professional); Climate Exchange initial assessment consultant; an emphasis on the construction, maintenance, management and “greening” of both residential and commercial properties.

44. "Small Is Beautiful: Economics as if People Mattered" by E. F. Schumacher

Recommended by: Fred Schlomka, Entrepreneur & Consultant
What the book is about? (from Wikipedia) First published in 1973, Small Is Beautiful brought Schumacher's critiques of Western economics to a wider audience during the 1973 energy crisis and emergence of globalization. The Times Literary Supplement ranked Small Is Beautiful among the 100 most influential books published since World War II. "Can such a system conceivably deal with the problems we are now having to face? The answer is self-evident: greed and envy demand continuous and limitless economic growth of a material kind, without proper regard for conservation, and this type of growth cannot possibly fit into a finite environment. We must therefore study the essential nature of the private enterprise system and the possibilities of evolving an alternative system which might fit the new situation." E.F.Shumaker 1973

Why would this book make a great gift?
Shumaker's 'Small is Beautiful' remains a good primer, and a useful reminder that today's 'Green Movement' has roots going back decades. In many ways British economist E.F.Shumaker helped provide the philosophical basis for the modern environmental movement, appropriate technology, and sustainable economies.

Getting Personal: (from LinkedIn) For over twenty-five years Fred Schlomka has been the chief executive of several companies and non-profit organizations on both sides of the Atlantic including American Caribbean Builders in Florida and Mosaic Communities in Israel. In 2003 he was awarded a Social Entrepreneur Fellowship from the Echoing Green Foundation in New York. He has also lectured on Palestine/Israel issues in Europe and the USA, and his articles have been published widely.

45. "Earth: The Sequel: The Race to Reinvent Energy and Stop Global Warming" by Fred Krupp and Miriam Horn

by: Phil Cavanagh, CMM, Senior Director, Global Events and Trade Shows at Monster Worldwide, Inc

What the book is about? (from Eco-Libris review) "Earth: The Sequel" is not only a primer on the various new technologies being developed to produce clean energy, reduce pollution and increase efficient energy use, but also a celebration of the spirit of entrepreneurship around these developments; a spirit embraced and promoted by EDF for several decades since its founding in 1967. Neither a textbook nor a scientific investigation, Earth: The Sequel is more than anything a journalistic journey that follows the unfolding saga of various energy start-ups and technologies through the shifting sands of venture capital, big $$$, crazy R&D dreams and policy nightmares.

Why would this book make a great gift? In this environment, this is a great business-centric read. Throughout this hardcopy book, there are very engaging profiles of individuals who are at various levels of blending business practices with an environmental position...It is a great and uplifting read on what we can do at work with a focus towards the race to reinvent energy and stop global warming.

Getting Personal:
I do not work in an environmental or energy industry, but found the book inspiring in the use of engaging profiles of how others are creatively enhancing their diverse businesses.

46. "It's Easy Being Green: A Handbook for Earth-Friendly Living" by Crissy Trask

Recommended by: Cameron Ruen, Graphic Designer/Marketing Coordinator at SWANCC

What the book is about? (from the back cover) It's Easy Being Green is a handy tool to help you make better choices for the environment. This is what the busy person needs to start making changes today. Get informative, comprehensive and practical information for adopting greener buying habits and identifying earth-friendly products; shopping for green products online; participating in online activism; and learning from over 250 eco-tips for cultivating a sustainable environment.

Take the difficulty and
guesswork out of greener living by learning the following:
Install rain gutters and rain barrels to collect rainwater from your roof to use in the garden.
Shift appliance use to off-peak hours. Some utility companies offer off-peak rates!
Make your own household cleaners instead of relying on toxic commercial products.
Submerge a plastic bottle in your toilet tank to save one quart of water per flush and thousands of gallons a year.

This book concurrently presents a plan, tips and an Internet resources list that you can use to follow-through on good intentions. An extensive product labels list is also provided to help interpret how some foods are produced. If you haven't invested in substantially greener behaviors, consumerism and politics because you didn't know how or thought it was difficult, help is here: It's Easy Being Green is a handbook for all those who aspire do more to protect the environment but want it to be simpler. You can make a difference!

Why would this book make a great gift? An easy read with practical tips for everyday actions. I think it is particularly useful for the person who doesn't know where to start.

Getting Personal: (from LinkedIn) The Solid Waste Agency of Northern Cook County (SWANCC) is a unit of local government and a non-profit corporation. Twenty-three towns in northern Cook County joined together to form SWANCC in 1988. SWANCC developed a long-term plan to manage the region’s garbage that was adopted by its Board of Directors in 1991. Since then, SWANCC has been at work implementing this balanced and environmentally safe solution to the region’s garbage challenges.

47. "Fish Forever: The Definitive Guide to Understanding, Selecting, and Preparing Healthy, Delicious, and Environmentally Sustainable Seafood" by Paul Johnson

Recommended by: Kate Wing, Senior Program Officer, Marine Conservation Initiative at Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and Board member at Pacific Marine Conservation Council

What the book is about? (from Few people know more about fish than Paul Johnson, whose Monterey Fish Market in San Francisco supplies seafood to some of the nation's most celebrated chefs, from Alice Waters, Thomas Keller, and Michael Mina to Todd English, Daniel Boulud, and Alain Ducasse. Now, Johnson at last shares his peerless seafood expertise.

Written for people who love seafood but worry about the overfishing of certain species as well as mercury and other contaminants, Fish Forever pinpoints today's least-endangered, least-contaminated, best-tasting fish and shellfish species. Johnson provides in-depth guidance on 70 different fish along with 96 stylish international recipes that highlight the outstanding culinary qualities of each.

In addition to
teaching readers about sustainable fishing practices, Johnson will be donating a portion of his royalties to Save Our Wild Salmon, an organization that works to restore wild salmon runs. Complete with over 60 beautiful color photographs, how-to tips, and fascinating sidebars, Fish Forever is a must-have kitchen resource for seafood lovers everywhere. A mutiple award winner, this great book also won the IACP's "Best Single-Subject Cookbook."

Why would this book make a great gift? The best thing about giving Paul Johnson's "Fish Forever" is that it includes recipes for almost any fish you might encounter in North America. So it works for your mom in Minnesota and your friend in Florida.

Paul's the owner of Monterey Fish Market, which supplies restaurants like Hayes Street Grill and Chez Panisse. He has been a long time proponent of sustainab
le fishing, but as a businessman, he also knows that he has to satisfy customers who want something "firm and not too fishy." This book will get you to break out of your habits of eating top predators, like tuna and swordfish, and into snacking further down the food chain.

Getting Personal: (from LinkedIn) Starting as a phycologist, at the bottom of the food chain, I moved on to the Senate as a fellow on the Oceans & Fisheries subcommittee. From there, I've tackled tuna & shark fisheries, collaborative research, ocean renewable energy, aquaculture, California's nearshore rockfish, and marine protected areas. I'm interested in finding common sense solutions among diverse viewpoints, working with economic incentives to reach conservation goals, and innovations that protect scarce natural resources.

48. "Little Green Books" of Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing (4 books)

Recommended by: Larry Kaufman, Communications Manager at Keep America Beautiful

What the book is about? The theme of Little Green Books focuses on improving the environment and preserving habitats, aiming to get kids and their parents interested in going green. Each book in the series is made out of recycled materials and printed with soy ink and will include tips for kids on what they can do to become more “green,” etc. The four titles that launched in Sept. include:

* "I Can Save the Earth!: One Little Monster Learns to Reduce, Reuse and Recycle" - The story of Max, a little green monster, and his journey from being a wasteful “environmental nightmare” to environmental awareness.

* "The Polar Bears’ Home: A Story About Global Warming" - A father and daughter learn about polar bears, and how they can reduce global warming through conservation.

* "Little Panda and Little Monkey" - Little ones will love to cuddle with these super soft fleece cloth books that are made out of cotton and recycled Polartec® fleece.

In January, a new book ... "The Adventures of a Plastic Bottle: A Story about Recycling” ... will be coming out.

Why would this book make a great gift? This is an eco-friendly line of Little Green Books children’s novelty and storybooks aimed at parents and children looking to learn more about the environment. These books are nicely done ... and they're for kids!

Getting Personal: Keep America Beautiful is partnering with Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing to promote Little Green Books.

Eco-Libris is also collaborating with Simon and Schuster Children's Publishing - in a celebration of their new line of Little Green Books, Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing has partnered with Eco-Libris in an educational contest - I CAN SAVE THE EARTH!.

49. "The Green Business Bible" by Gareth Kane

Recommended by: Graeme Mills, Director at GPM Network

What the book is about?(from the book's web page) Business is coming under increasing pressure from Government, customers and campaigning groups to improve its environmental performance. Soaring oil, utility and compliance costs are hitting companies where it hurts - on their bottom line. But there is another way of looking at the green agenda - as an opportunity rather than a threat.

Written by renowned green business expert Gareth Kane, this e-book contains everything you need to know about making your business green and increasing profits:

  • The Three Secrets of Green Business Success.

  • Preparing To Go Green - change management, indicators , communication and marketing.

  • Small Steps - the easy actions that will cut waste of materials, water and energy and save you money.

  • Huge Leaps - the really big changes that will make your business truly green by changing your processes, products and business models.

  • Hundreds of handy hints and tips.

  • Includes brainstorming checklists and brainstorming tool.

Why would this book make a great gift? This eBook is practical and although sometimes dealing with technical subjects, its doesn't over complicate.

Getting Personal: My business is a consultancy dealing in environmental communications and research, so I do use this book as an aid to research projects or copy writing.

50. "Greening Your Business: The Hands-On Guide to Creating a Successful and Sustainable Business" by Daniel Sitarz

Recommended by: Dan
Sitarz, the author, attorney, lecturer, educator, and business entrepreneur.

What the book is about?
Every element of a business’s impact on the environment is examined in this comprehensive book—energy and water use, waste generation, transportation, computing and office equipment, supply chains and purchasing, building practices, and product and service design. The included CD contains dozens of fillable worksheets for developing a comprehensive business environmental plan, many Excel® spreadsheet programs for business carbon emission calculations and other green business strategies, and over 1,500 pages of additional business environmental publications. It retails for $29.95 and is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other book stores. More information about this book is available at:

Why would this book make a great gift? Greening Your Business: The Hands-On Guide to Creating a Successful and Sustainable Business" would make an excellent gift for anyone who owns or operates a business. It provides a hands-on guide to saving energy, saving materials, and saving money by reducing their businesses’ impact on the Earth.

Getting personal: (from the book's website) Dan Sitarz is an attorney, author, lecturer, educator, and business entrepreneur. In 1992, in cooperation with the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, he wrote and edited the popular abridged version of the central agreement of the Earth Summit: Agenda 21: The Earth Summit Strategy to Save our Planet.

This book was selected as one of the top 25 Environmental Reference Books by the Sierra Club (Sierra Club Green Guide) and one of the top 21 Books for the 21st Century, jointly by the International Center for Environment and Public Policy of the California Institute of Public Affairs, The Commission on Environmental Strategy and Planning of the World Conservation Union (ICUN), and the World Future Society (Future Survey).

If you choose to give your friends or family this book as a present on the holidays, you are more than welcome to balance it out with Eco-Libris, add our sticker to the book and make it the perfect green gift for the holidays.

The Green Collar Holiday Gift Guide for Book Lovers - Part 1

The Green Collar Holiday Gift Guide for Book Lovers - Part 2

The Green Collar Holiday Gift Guide for Book Lovers - Part 3

The Green Collar Holiday Gift Guide for Book Lovers - Part 4

Raz @ Eco-Libris