Humans first

EQUATION FOR LIFE·Edited by George Cheriyan·Published by: Books for change·110p; Price: 120

Published: Friday 31 March 2000

"THE first most important thing in life is people. The second most important thing is people and the third most important thing is also people," - this aptly sums up the focus of this reader-friendly book which highlights the unique relationship between humans and nature.

The chapters - including "Concepts and dimensions", "A women's perspective", "The new challenges of energy systems" and "A critical international perspective" besides others - have been penned by erudite scholars and are elaborately detailed.

Especially engrossing is the introduction titled "Greening of the heart...". Written by Kamla Bhasin, the three-page chapter accurately portrays the common man's perception of environment. In one phrase she deftly sums up the present predicament of developing nations: "The 'American Dream' has become a nightmare for billions of people all over the world who live in poverty, who are not 'educated' to get the few jobs created by globalisation, who do not have the purchasing power to intervene in the free market."

For the layperson, simple usage of English to explain 'green' issues may present an opportunity to get acquainted with the intricate nuances of sustainable development.
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