WASHINGTON, April 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Island Press -- Many speculate that recent extreme weather patterns are due to global warming and the increase of carbon dioxide in the air. In his new book, Hayes quotes a report by the International Federation of Red Cross Societies: "Extreme weather events have become more common. Unprecedented hurricane damage, winter floods, and summer droughts are wreaking serious havoc. More such disasters are expected, according to a report by the International Federation of Red Cross Societies." "Unless we swiftly undertake several bold initiatives, global CO2 levels are likely to triple or even quadruple those from preindustrial times," says Hayes. "The Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory at Princeton University recently modeled as best it could, a scenario in which CO2 quadruples. It concluded, among other things, that soil moisture could drop by 50 percent or more, wiping out much of agriculture in the Northern Hemisphere. The forces of nature that we have sought to master -- wild rivers, tropical storms, gale-force winds, extremes of heat -- would all increase in intensity." Denis Hayes was national coordinator for the first Earth Day in 1970, and he is the chair of Earth Day Network, the organization coordinating Earth Day 2000 events worldwide. He was formerly the director of the world's largest solar energy laboratory, a professor of engineering at Stanford University, and a visiting scholar at the Smithsonian Institution. Although many of our environmental problems and challenges seem daunting, there are numerous things, big and small, that each of us can do to make conditions better on planet Earth. THE OFFICIAL EARTH DAY GUIDE TO PLANET REPAIR lists dozens of suggestions, from commonsense basics to new technologies, resource centers, organizations and web sites now available to the public. An added bonus is that all of the suggested changes will save you money in the process. The following are a few examples: * Log onto http://www.HomeEnergySaver.lbl.gov and calculate how much you're spending on energy and get suggested changes. * Recycle more! Each recycled beer can saves enough electricity to run a television set for three hours. * Replace your energy-guzzling furnace, refrigerator, washing machine, and oven with newer, much more efficient models. A government program called Energy Star gives suggestions at http://www.energystar.gov or by calling 1-888-STAR-YES. * Use compact fluorescent bulbs instead of incandescent lamps. * Invest in ultra-efficient Superwindows. * Sign the Clean Energy Agenda, and petition Detroit for greener cars. * Boycott companies that support the Global Climate Coalition. * Seriously consider buying a solar water heater. Florida Solar Energy has excellent pamphlets and information to help you decide. The web site is http://www.fsec.ucf.edu and the telephone number is 407-783-0300. * Plant shade trees around your house, reducing your air conditioning bill. For each degree Fahrenheit you raise your thermostat in the summer you cut roughly 5% off your energy use. * Buy a hybrid electric/combustion engine car, like the Toyota Prius, for your next vehicle. If everyone owned the most efficient car in the same size category as their current vehicle, the US would save 1.47 billion gallons of gasoline a year. "What I set out to do with this book is to offer people a practical, readable how-to guide for cleaning and beautifying our planet," Hayes says. "What I wound up with is a manifesto for environmental activism that anyone, anywhere, can subscribe to. If each of us starts paying attention to the environmental impacts of our choices -- as consumers and as citizens and voters -- we can change the world. In fact, that's the only way we can change the world." "I want to show Americans that there are hundreds of things they can do, easily and economically, to improve the living conditions of every living thing on this planet," says Denis Hayes. All royalties from the sale of THE OFFICIAL EARTH DAY GUIDE TO PLANET REPAIR will be donated to an endowment for Earth Day to ensure that the education and celebrations will continue throughout the years. THE OFFICIAL EARTH DAY GUIDE TO PLANET REPAIR is available from Island Press for $11.95 by visiting http://www.islandpress.org or calling 1-800-828-1302. For more information, contact CHC at 505-474-6783 or Robbie Kaplan at 202-232-7933.
SOURCE Island Press