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The first output from our green stories short stories competition is now available to buy: ‘Resurrection Trust‘ – a collection of funny, dark, mad, bad, upbeat, downbeat and fantastical short stories about living sustainably. It has a foreword by Caroline Lucas and review by Jonathon Porritt. It’s £3.99/£7.99 available on Amazon or even better https://www.hive.co.uk/ which allows you support your local bookshop. Writers may find it a useful source of ideas.
The Ministry for the Future by Kim Stanley Robinson is a wonderful example of a novel that showcases what is likely to be happen as a result of climate change and how we might deal with it. At times alarming, it also incorporates positive visions of how we may overcome huge challenges, so showcases all kinds of solutions – technological, economic, political and behavioural. It’s also a great read.
Woman on the Edge of Time – Marge Piercy. This alternates between Utopian and dystopian visions of the future – may well inspire you.
It was reading ‘Stark’ by Ben Elton that turned me onto green issues. At the same time I was laughing till I cried, and frantically turning the page to see what happened next, I was also becoming aware of issues such as ethical investment, the power of the media, sustainable transport options, resource issues and climate change. Ben Elton’s first three novels: ‘Stark’, ‘This Other Eden’ and ‘Gridlock’ all integrate green issues into exciting plots in a fabulous way (although I on re-reading Gridlock, I found it hadn’t dated as well as the others).
The Renegades Arctic Meltdown, raises awareness of climate change in comic format.
A great new film that presents a positive visions of some of the sustainable ideas that are currently working well across various countries is ‘Demain’ – it is in French, but subtitles are available and there is an English version called ‘Tomorrow’. The film shows how small scale gardens are many times more productive than large scale agriculture, so gives us hope that we need not worry about running out of food, we just need to do more on a small scale. It also looks at alternative currencies such as the Bristol Pound, democratic innovations in Iceland, transport innovations in Europe, and education.
Yes, predominantly this film is aimed at the younger members of our society, but it actually defines and details a lot of our waste problems in 2018. Wall-e stands for Waste allocation load lifter earth-class. IMDB
A relatively abstract film with no conventional plot, rather a series of photographs portraying the relationships between nature and humanity. It has a strong environmental essence about it.
For a regular supply of news on projects across the world that are making a positive difference, sign up to Positive News
Or check out the Responsible Innovation Stories @ LIVING INNOVATION
Blogs on sustainable futures
Imagine a world with no money: This blog has a vision of a new kind of society
The Ecotopia 2121 Project sets out to artistically present 100 cities throughout the world as they would appear in the year 2121 — if they’ve managed to survive and become super eco-friendly.
Climate Optimist shares examples of how people all over the world are solving climate change.
Baden, D.: 2020, ‘Which work best? Cautionary tales or positive role models? ‘, In Molthan-hill, P., H. Luna and D. Baden (Eds.), Storytelling for Sustainability in Higher Education: An Educator’s Handbook (Routledge, Abingdon).
Buddhist Economics: Small is beautiful: economics as if people mattered by EF Schumacher, A little dated and sexist but some great ideas otherwise
Another book that’s been suggested is Stories of the Great Turning. This is a collection of true stories from people who have changed their lives (in a variety of different ways) in response to climate change and other global issues.
Here is a 21 minute film showcasing some of the projects that the sustainable development commission thought could have a transformative effect:
One of these projects is project dirt – their website presents numerous sustainability-related projects http://www.projectdirt.com/
Another project is Groundwork which is about creating green employment – perhaps a story could be set in a groundwork project – see http://www.groundwork.org.uk/
For the more academic Springer are allowing open access to some of their articles that present research that has the potential to change the world for the better.
Baden, D.: 2019, ‘Solution-focused stories are more effective than catastrophic stories in motivating pro-environmental intentions,’ Ecopsychology 11 (4), 254-263
A competition by Global Action Plan encouraged young film-makers to submit ideas for films with themes around green solutions – check it out on https://www.globalactionplan.org.uk/flickers-of-the-future-inspiration-starters