The One Planet Life

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The One Planet Life cover

The One Planet Life is a guidebook for everyone on the path towards a way of life in which we don’t act as if we had more than one planet Earth. It also represents a manifesto for a change in attitude towards land use.

At 438 pages and with almost 400 full colour illustrations it covers everything, with case studies and links to further resources.

Buy a copy using PayPal for £30.25 including postage and packing:  (full retail price is £34.99).

Review extracts:

“This year’s must have book.” Jane Davidson, former Environment Minister for Wales and Director of INSPIRE

Makes the irrefutable case for ‘one planet living’” – Oliver Tickell, editor, The Ecologist

“An excellent and immensely practical step by step guide” – George Marshall, author of Don’t Even Think About It, Why Our Brains Are Wired To Ignore Climate Change.

“There is much inspiration to be had from this comprehensive and beautifully illustrated book. David Thorpe is a master of lucid writing on one of the most important topics of our time.  I highly recommend this book to anybody who is interested in assuring that we leave a habitable planet to our children.” Herbert Girardet, founder of The World Future Council.

“An encyclopaedia covering just about everything practical” – The Land magazine.

“Rating: 5 out of 5. A very well written book that covers every conceivable aspect. Should be in the armory and on the bookshelves of those of us who work on the creation of a new society. What we need are one planet living communities and individual developments, and not just in the countryside. This book, I am sure, can help all of those of us who are working on creating such changes in the minds of planners and government.” – by Michael Smith, Green (Living) Review (incorporating The HOMESTEADER, Forestry Review, Ethical Living Review, Parks & Open Spaces, and Allotment Garden & Smallholding Review)

“Measures such as the ecological footprint seek to assess the ‘planet’ consequences of our consumption activities. Practically what it means to live a ‘one-planet’ lifestyle is rarely considered in terms of the benefits and challenges, and this book is therefore a welcome reckoning.” – Professor Max Munday, Director of the Welsh Economy Research Unit, Cardiff Business School.

“Essential reading. It contains a wealth of detailed statistics and references to numerous reports and sources to back up the data, together with very practical hands-on advice.” Chris Colley, of


This book uses the example of a pioneering Welsh policy, One Planet Development, but also that of BioRegional and other urban case studies. It includes:

  • how to find land, finance, and construct a management plan.
  • detailed information on: ecological land management, water supply and treatment, renewable energy, sustainable building, supplying your own food and reducing the carbon impact of travel.
  • 20 exemplary examples at all scales – from micro-businesses to suburbs.

The book will interest anyone seeking to find out how a sustainable lifestyle can be achieved. It will also be key reading for built environment practitioners and policy makers who are keen to support low impact initiatives, and for students studying aspects of planning, geography, governance, sustainability and renewable energy.

About the author

David Thorpe is a writer and consultant on sustainability issues. He is a Special Consultant on Sustainable Cities Collective, the primary website for urban leaders globally; a founder and core group member of the One Planet Council; and the author of several books on sustainability, including: Energy Management in Buildings, Energy Management in Industry, Solar Technology and Sustainable Home Refurbishment, all in The Earthscan Expert Guide series. Prior to this he was the News Editor and Opinion Writer of the UK’s Energy and Environmental Management magazine for 13 years. Before that he was director of publications at the Centre for Alternative Technology. Much of his personal experience is also in the book.

Order the book here.

The One Planet Council

I and a lot of talented individuals have set up the One Planet Council during the course of writing this book.

The One Planet Council is an independent voluntary body which exists to enable and promote One Planet Development and to support those who are making the transition to this more sustainable way of life by providing guidance and tools. It aims to work together with all those with an interest in One Planet Development: Local Planning Authorities, policy makers, academics, landowners, and those already living on and planning to live on OPD sites. See:

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