by Kenny Ausubel (Editor)
Sierra Club Books, 2004
Review by Courtney Young on Oct 29th 2004
The topics in this book are drawn
largely from the annual Bioneers Conference. Kenny Ausubel, is the founder of
the Bioneers, and author of the highly acclaimed book When Healing Becomes a
Crime. Here he has compiled very
diverse, and in depth analysis' of ecological dilemmas facing us today. Ecological medicine is based on the
understanding that the health of the environment, and our health are
inseparable. With each new dialogue in
the book we are introduced to a refreshingly different point of view; and
although the situations discussed are serious, most of the speakers remain
optimistic and hopeful that we can resolve these issues.
Ausubel separates this book into
six sections containing dialogues titled, "Generations at Risk: Children's
Health and the Environment", "Reversing the Cancer Epidemic",
"Healing Nature and Modern Medicine", " Why I went to Jail to
Protect my Daughter from Toxic Polluters", and many more equally
interesting dialogues. One subject of
particular interest is the notion of the precautionary principle.
Carolyn Raffensperger has helped
define and lead the ecological medicine movement. She co-edited the book, Protecting Public Health and the
Environment: Implementing the Precautionary Principle. This principle is quite important to
environmentalists and those interested in public health. One of its main points is that people have a
duty to take anticipatory action to prevent harm; secondly, the burden of proof
for a new technology, process, activity, or chemical lies with the proponents
not with the public. In other words the
polluter is responsible for taking care of any damage caused. This enables society to hold someone
accountable, and therefore forces industry to think more carefully about their
proposed activities. This is just one
of the many intelligent approaches to resolving current environmental problems,
and preventing future ones.
The speakers at the Bioneers
Conference seek to mend the split that has occurred between conventional
medicine and nature. The speakers also
recognize and see ways to make use of natures amazing ability to repair itself. The information in this book is easy to
understand, logical, and well thought out.
It leaves one with the sense that we can help repair the damage done to
the planet and in turn improve human health.
This book is of relevance to everyone who shares concern for health and
nature; it's not just for hippies.
2004 Courtney Young
Courtney Young lives on Long Island and is
interested in pursuing a career in complementary medicine.