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The Green Life: Media Lounge

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January 30, 2008

Media Lounge

Come on in and feed your mind

a book by Ron Pernick and Clint Wilder
Sprinkled with enough acronyms to satisfy geeks and policymakers but accessible to the layperson, this roundup of the latest in renewable energy, transportation, and efficiency offers welcome solutions to global warming. The authors highlight innovations such as building-integrated wind power, flex-fuel plug-in hybrid cars, and a "smart" electricity grid that would monitor and modulate energy use--plus consumer tips and hot companies. --Debra Jones

a book by Binka Le Breton
Walking alone on an isolated Amazon road one morning in 2005, the 73-year-old American nun Dorothy Stang was shot to death by hired gunmen. Infuriated by her work to secure small land plots for sustainable cultivation, ranchers and loggers had put a bounty on Stang's head. Extensive quotes from those who knew her help recount the nun's fierce struggle on behalf of the forest and those who depend on it. --Marilyn Berlin Snell

a film by Rob VanAlkemade
Feeling postholiday buyer's remorse? Confess your material sins to Reverend Billy. In this docu-comedy, the pompadoured preacher and his Church of Stop Shopping Gospel Choir sing at the Mall of America, get arrested at Disneyland, and hold an exorcism over a Wal-Mart sign. The real man behind the fake collar remains enigmatic, but his message is clear: Unless we repent our consumerist ways, the "shopocalypse" is nigh. wwjbmovie.com

a film by Daniel Gold and Judith Helfand
When even Oprah is talking about global warming, it's clear the issue has hit the mainstream. So why are so many people still blase about climate change? In examining the causes of this complacency, this documentary profiles some of the people who are trying to wake Americans up, including a government whistle-blower, a ski-resort employee who brews his own biodiesel fuel, and an appealingly nerdy climatologist who's turning science into on-camera sound bites. everythingscool.org

ArrowLet's Talk: Discuss this selection with your friends and neighbors.

The Art of Simple FoodTHE ART OF SIMPLE FOOD
a book by Alice Waters
OK, you've got organic food from the farmers' market. Now what to do with it? Seasonal-food evangelist Alice Waters takes the beginner cook by the hand, explaining everything from boiling an egg to planning a doable dinner party. Her foolproof secret is what made her Chez Panisse restaurant famous: the best ingredients, simply prepared. --Paul Rauber

(The Art of Simple Food cover courtesy Clarkson Potter/Publishers; Everything's Cool cover courtesty City Lights Media)

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