Trinity University Press

Wisdom for a Livable Planet

The Visionary Work of Terri Swearingen, Dave Foreman, Wes Jackson, Helena Norberg-Hodge, Werner Fornos, Herman Daly, Stephen Schneider, and David Orr

Carl N. McDaniel (author)

Explores critical issues that affect everyone, including climate change, population control, local living, and sustainable farming

Carl McDaniel profiles the work and lives of eight visionaries who have dedicated their lives to various environmental issues. Each of their stories provides a portrait of an individual's valiant and inspiring campaign to improve the health of our planet.  The narratives of these visionaries collectively give us hope, and they suggest to us ways to act to create a brighter future for all life.

*Terri Swearingen, nurse and mother in Chester, West Virginia, takes on one of the world's largest hazardous waste incinerators burning toxic waste next door to an elementary school.

*Stephen Schneider (1945-2010), Stanford University biologist, establishes the scientific basis for climate change

*Herman Daly, University of Maryland professor and past World Bank economist, advocates a dynamic steady-state economy that respects the laws of nature and human behavior.

*David Orr, professor of Environmental Studies, Oberlin College, Ohio, champions educational reform to make universities a place where students learn how to be environmentally aware citizens

*Werner Fornos, President of the Population Institute, in Washington, DC, works toward empowering every person with the knowledge and means to decide when and how many children to have

*Helena Norberg-Hodge, founder of the International Society for Ecology and Culture champions local living with appropriate technologies to enhance our spiritual and ecological well-being.

*Wes Jackson, geneticist and cofounder of The Land Institute in Salina, Kansas, promotes sustainable agriculture based on local ecology and community values

*Dave Foreman, cofounder of the Wildlands Project,leads the effort to rewild almost half of North America with wolves, mountain lions, jaguars, falcons, and others to restore functional ecosystems and preserve biodiversity

Collectively these environmental champions point the way toward an ecologically sane future, in a book Bill McKibben calls “a primer for twenty-first century citizenship.”


  • Winner of the Foreword Magazine Best Book Award (finalist, environment)
  • Designated as a Working Assets Recommended Reading Book


“A supremely important book about some of the leaders in the battle to maintain our life support systems. Read it and be inspired and thankful.”

Paul R. Ehrlich

“Contains a number of home truths, calmly and moderately enunciated, that point the way toward a world more sturdy and robust than the troubled one we now inhabit. It is a kind of primer for twenty-first-century citizenship, and well worth the reading.”

Bill McKibben

Wisdom for a Livable Planet cover
  • Price: $17.95 buy »
  • Pages: 288
  • Size: 6 x 9
  • Published: Apr 2005
  • Status: Available
  • ISBN: 9781595340092
  • Price: $17.95
  • Published: Apr 2011
  • Status: Available
  • ISBN: 9781595341037


Environment, Ecology