THE JOYFUL ENVIRONMENTALIST

An inspirational book by

ISABEL LOSADA

“This is the joy we need in our lives.” George Monbiot

“Practical and realistic as well as visionary” Rowan Williams

These accolades encapsulate the effect that Isabel Losada’s book ‘The Joyful Environmentalist’ has on its readers. She sets out to examine all the possible ways of caring for our planet whilst enjoying and being uplifted by the difference it makes to her own life. The one thing that this book does not do is demoralise its readers with the doom and gloom of climate change or the problems besetting the environment. Instead, she cuts straight to the quick and sets about examining, and practising, the solutions.

‘The Joyful Environmentalist’ is imbued with joy and inspiration.  Easy to read and very funny in places, it’s the ultimate feel-good book.  It sells for £12.99 and is published by Watkins Publishing  www.watkinspublishing.com.  Give all your friends and family a copy for Christmas!  Better still, buy them second-hand and do even more to save the planet!

Here are some examples:

In the Scottish Highlands, she spends a week volunteering for a tree-planting scheme. As a townie she is delighted at how much she learns about trees, loves the warmth of her fellow volunteers, see her first ever Golden Eagle and is even pleased to learn how to recognise a tick.

She had wanted to give up eating meat but found it difficult until at a children’s farm she got to spend ‘quality one-to-one time with a cow’, realised how beautiful it was and imagined someone else pulling the trigger which would eventually lead to her having meat on her plate.  She hasn’t eaten meat since. This led to learning from friends about nutrition and eventually to veganism.

Acknowledging that not everyone lives in central London and that some people still need a car, she gives hints on how to use ours less and extolls the virtues of walking and cycling, including electric bikes.  Quoting a friend who had bought such a bike for the school run, with a buggy on the back for her children; ’It’s changed our lives in so many ways.  The kids enjoy riding in it and they didn’t enjoy the car.  We seem to make everyone smile as they see us pass  …..  And I know I’m one parent who’s not polluting the air around the school.’

The list goes on.  From the joy of drumming in a samba band at a climate crisis demonstration, to insisting on metal cutlery (and eventually being given it!) in her local café, to sharing ways of avoiding single use plastic, making her garden more wild-life friendly, signing up to a green energy company, de-cluttering and limiting the amount of new clothes she buys, Isabel Losada never preaches.  She simply recounts her own experiences and recommends that we try some of them – all with a ‘Try it, you might like it’ approach. 

A final highlight was hearing her first nightingale at the rewilded Knepp Castle Estate in West Sussex.   Isabella Tree, author of the book ‘Wilding’, which tells the story of Knepp, says of ’The Joyful Environmentalist’; ‘Told with humour and candour, this book is a manifesto of brilliant advice offered with humility and good grace – it is a practical guide to empower us all.’