Learn the key ideas of the book by Paul Hawken


How to stop the climate disaster

Many people feel powerless when it comes to global warming and the climate crisis. The common misconception is that we are facing a disaster so large, so catastrophic, and with consequences that will be seen so far in the future, that whether sooner or later, it will be someone else who has to deal with it. In Regeneration: Ending the Climate Crisis in One Generation, Paul Hawken suggests quite the opposite, describing a series of practices that we can all adopt as part of our daily routine in order to take concrete action, and together, help stem the climate crisis. No one is coming to save us, so we all have to do what we can to save ourselves.

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Each and every one of us has the power to end global warming

Over the last century, human beings have gradually become less connected to nature, and the vital bonds, which until recently held entire ecosystems together, are starting to break. This also applies to the connections between peoples, religions, governments, and markets, and this mutual disconnection has given rise to the current climate crisis. We now live on a planet that is dying, but the biological decline of the Earth is nothing more than a result of human actions and behaviour.

Global warming is the consequence of a build-up of heat in the Earth’s atmosphere, land, and oceans, as a result of an increase in greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Climate change, on the other hand, describes a broader set of alterations affecting the Earth’s climate, including rainfall patterns, droughts, melting glaciers, and floods. Since the 1980s, the Earth’s average surface temperature has increased by about 0.18°C every decade. In 2020, the Earth’s surface was 0.98°C warmer than the average temperatures recorded in the pre-industrial era.

Many people feel overwhelmed by the way in which climate change is communicated, and this often prevents them from taking action. It is only natural to wonder what a single person could possibly do about such an enormous problem, and the answer is all too often: absolutely nothing. So we tend to leave the responsibility to take action in the hands of the technocrats, political leaders, experts, and scientists, in the hope that someone, at some point, will do something. However, the actions of individual people are what determine whether we will move forwards or backwards in the fight against global warming. We are more than capable of improving the situation, by simply asking how much our actions (even the simplest ones, such as buying food, clothes, appliances or moving around the city) are regenerative or destructive, how much they promote equity or increase poverty, and by understanding their impact on the environment.


The key ideas of "Regeneration"

Each and every one of us has the power to end global warming
Regeneration: making life the focus of our actions
Regeneration is based on six basic principles
Replacing fossil fuels with renewable sources is the first step to reducing carbon dioxide emissions
Creating cities that can support our lifestyles is another important step towards energy sustainability
Regeneration also requires a total rethink of the agri-food industry, increasing the variety of food we eat, and eliminating all waste
We can only contain the climate crisis by investing in poverty alleviation and girls’ education
We can also act on the finance and the clothing industries, in order to counter climate change
Marine Protected Areas and sea-forestation are other tools we can use to safeguard the oceans, and increase their capacity to absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere
It is also important to restore degraded land, particularly forests, grasslands and wetlands, and to safeguard wilderness
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