Carbon Zero: A Short Tour of Your City's Future - Kickstarting A New Book

Alex Steffen, the founding editor of the excellent (who I wrote for during the blog's seven year run), has announced an interesting new project. His new book-in-the-making "Carbon Zero" is being crowd-funded over at kickstarter.  If he can raise $10,000 to cover production costs by mid-April, he's promising to put out a short readable ebook on how cities can re-design themselves to go beyond the traditional limits of piecemeal urban sustainability projects.  The ebook will be release in time for Earth Day (April 22nd).  In under a week he's already raised $7,500. 

Alex is one of North America's most dedicated and insightful public thinkers.  You can see kickstarter for a full description of the "Carbon Zero" project, and to kick in a few bucks.  I like many things about the project, but I think he's really nailed it when it comes to explaining why a book like this is needed - not in general - but right now.

Earth Day is typically full of messages about do-it-yourself, small acts and ways to "go green." But this year, with a sense of malaise in the progressive community, a climate-hostile Congress and the oil, coal and chemical companies lobbying, spinning and greenwashing as never before, we need something more than a few simple steps.

But we can't build what we can't imagine, and we usually have a hard time imagining what we don't understand. Carbon neutrality is complex, but it's not rocket science: there's no reason why everybody can't understand its basics. But most people have never heard carbon neutrality explained, much less explained clearly in a book they actually have time to read.

This is a chance for us to not only create a resource for those people, but to push forward the larger debate as well, shining a light on the kind of change it will take to build a planet with a future.

image: treehugger


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This is a blog for news and views on the future of sustainable cites. A major revamp is in the works. Until then I am keeping this version up as an archive of my past writing.

You can expect occasional updates, but not with the same frequency as in the past.

You can also find my writing on urban redesign and sustainability in ReNew Canada, The Mark, Sustainable Cities Canada, WorldChanging, and other more specialized academic publications.

Info on my consulting work, c.v. and current research focus is all here.