Cover image for One makes the difference : inspiring actions that change our world
One makes the difference : inspiring actions that change our world
Hill, Julia Butterfly.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
San Francisco : HarperSanFrancisco, [2002]

Physical Description:
x, 198 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
General Note:
Includes index.
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
GE195.7 .H55 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



After her record-breaking two year tree sit, Julia Butterfly Hill has ceaslessly continued her efforts to promote sustainability and ecologically-minded ways to save the old-growth redwoods she acted so valiantly to protect. Here she provides her many young fans with what they yearn for most -- her advice on how to promote change and improve the health of the planet, distilled into an essential handbook. This book will be accessible to school-aged children, while accomodating the audience of parents and teachers who look to Julia as an example of how one person can "change the world." Packed with a variety of charts, diagrams, and interesting factoids, the book will be broken down into a series of steps and easy-to-follow lessons. It will be written broadly so as to accommodate all kinds of activism, though its core focus will be on environmental issues.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

An inspiration to many in the environmental movement following her two-year stint atop a thousand-year-old redwood to protest old-growth logging, activist Hill's motivational message and methods come down to ground level as she eloquently advocates the power of an individual approach in the preservation and conservation of the earth's resources. Constantly asked, "But what can I do?" Hill effectively illustrates those simple acts that profoundly impact the environment yet are easily incorporated into daily routines. Profiles of equally passionate people--many of them school-age children--who translated their ecological awareness and outrage into concrete acts designed and destined to effect change stand as striking examples of how global issues can be addressed through the actions of just one person, regardless of age or background. Salient facts that surprise and educate combine with extensive lists of organizations and resources to make this an invaluable guide for anyone who wants to make the world a better place but doesn't know what to do or how to begin. --Carol Haggas

Publisher's Weekly Review

Environmental activist and writer Hill, whose The Legacy of Luna recorded her attempt to save a redwood forest by living in a tree for two years, now offers practical tips for environmentally sound living. In short, punchy chapters, she suggests steps that readers of all ages can take to reduce waste and pollution. Using nontoxic household products for cleaning, organizing recycling programs and buying locally grown produce are just a few of the measures Hill recommends in this accessible guide. She also gives a crash course in nonviolent protesting and other forms of political action. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

Though without formal environmental training, Hill has earned the right to her title; as she described in The Legacy of Luna, she endured a 738-day tree-sit in a successful defense of ancient redwoods. She is now back on terra firma, and her optimism and goals remain high. Covering such topics as recycling, air pollution, environmental justice, land use, and other topics, she presents brief background and statistics, motivating quotes, sidebars on individuals who took courageous action, "inspirational activities," "meditation," and lists of organizations. Regrettably, the treatment is uneven. Many suggestions are quite detailed (e.g., considerations when purchasing energy-efficient appliances or how to prepare a press release), while others are so unsupported that they appear unreasonable. Family planning, zero population growth, and adoption are all covered in two sentences. Hill admonishes readers to dispose of toxic chemicals properly but then adds, "if you don't have a place, start one." More substance and more advice are needed to make this book really effective. Potentially inspirational for young adults and largely worthwhile despite some shortcomings, this is recommended for public libraries and Hill's many fans. Nancy Moeckel, Miami Univ. Libs., Oxford, OH (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



One Makes the Difference Inspiring Actions that Change our World Making the Difference Until one is committed there is always hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth -- ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: That the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events and issues from the decision, raising in one's favor all manners of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would come his way. Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now. -- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe Our country was founded on some unassailable values. In our Declaration of Independence it says that we have inalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. This book, which you may think is about the Earth, is about more than that. It is about these fundamental principles -- about living freely and joyfully on a planet that is treated as responsibly as we ourselves wish to be treated. This is a book about the freedom to choose and the freedom to act. This is a book whose aim it is to open our eyes and hearts so that we define happiness as more than what we own or what we wear or how easy it is to buy, and get, and spend. Throughout our history, we have struggled to maintain these privileges of freedom, choice, and self-determination. We have never backed down from protecting these rights, but have taken the actions we needed to protect what we so value. Now it is time to take these values and principles and apply them to our planet. Many of us have already begun to take steps to reverse the damage done by pollution and waste, but many more of us, when confronted with the size of some of these problems, sigh and feel we just can't make a difference. Well, the truth is you can do it. And you must. The greatest act of self-love and love for the Earth is to take one step at a time. The following pages will explain some of the greatest threats to our environment, will provide inspirational stories about people who found the courage to act on their concerns, and will give you loving actions you can take to help save the planet. The actions here can be practiced by all, young and old. All that matters is that we take them. Where to Begin? Better to light a candle than to curse the darkness. -- Chinese proverb Many people are paralyzed by the number of environmental burdens placed upon our planet. They want to make a difference, but it seems so overwhelming that they quit before taking the first step. In actuality, there are only two places to start: in your head and in your heart. When you choose to become educated on environmental problems and solutions, you start with your head. And, once ignited, the spark of knowledge can fan into the flame of passion. So, in essence, by simply picking up this book, you have already taken your first step. The more you learn about the issues, the more you'll find that knowledge can be a surprising impetus to taking action. Read, investigate, ask questions, and pay attention to ways in which your spirit opens up. Many individuals who have made a difference started, not with the head -- with getting educated on the facts -- but with the heart. Their hearts were sparked, and this in turn ignited their quest for knowledge. This might be someone who entered a forest and suddenly felt the interconnections between all life. Or it might be a mother who felt helpless watching her child die as a result of exposure to environmental contamination. Take a deep look inside yourself, and explore the possibilities of your untapped passions. In the end, it really doesn't matter whether your motivation comes from the head or the heart, as they are forever intertwined and are both essential in creating change. The Courage to Act The vision must be followed by the venture. It is not enough to stare up the steps; we must step up the stairs. -- Vance Havner So, after your interest has been sparked, how do you find the courage to take your actions to the next level? This comes from a lot of self-reflection and can lead to incredible personal growth. With your passion in your back pocket, explore the ways in which you can build upon your strengths to make a difference. Maybe you're good with people and can volunteer on public relations (PR) efforts for a local cause. Perhaps you're an artist and can create banners or signs for protests. The great thing is that even attributes others may not consider positive can come in handy when trying to make a difference. Qualities once known as "stubborn" and "relentless" are magically transformed into "fearless" and "dedicated." Another way you can fan the flames of your passion is to learn to redirect your negative emotions toward creating positive change. Anger and frustration, channeled positively, can become an unstoppable energy force. Don't confuse this with directing hostility at others or building upon your existing unhappiness. On the contrary, redirecting negative emotions means using those uncomfortable feelings as fuel to get you off your couch and take action-loving action. Often, when you have an outlet for these kinds of feelings, it's a step toward feeling better about yourself-and when you feel better about yourself, you begin to feel the power within. When your actions are in alignment with your beliefs, the energy synthesized makes anything possible. One Makes the Difference Inspiring Actions that Change our World . Copyright © by Julia Hill. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold. Excerpted from One Makes the Difference: Inspiring Actions That Change Our World by Julia Butterfly Hill All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.