How-to Booklets that Show You the
Purpose of Series * Original Series * Current Booklet Descriptions * How to Order by Check
Once you understand the importance of pursuing
sustainability, the next question is usually, "How? So what do I do?"
Many organizations get stuck at this point. But now there's a resource to
Many of the booklets in this series (originally written early in this decade) have been superceded by The Step by Step Guide to Sustainability Planning (Earthscan, 2008). We are still selling the booklets that are not covered there. If you need one of the old booklets for some reason, please see the original listing at the bottom of this page and use the order form. Other booklets can be ordered through Paypal.
"The material was directly applicable to the work we are doing to 'institutionalize' sustainability into the way the County does business. I found the information easily adaptable to our organization and was able to use it immediately. When I handed it out to my team, the response was immediate - they really seemed to 'get it.'"
Amy Joslin, Acting Assistant Director of Sustainability, Multnomah County
Each of the how-to booklets contains:
- Helpful background information you need to complete the task.
- A step-by-step facilitator's guide that shows you how to do the task, including a meeting agenda, visual aids and narrative.
- Quotes and advice; lessons learned by those in the field doing the work
- Resources and masters of activity materials
Here are descriptions of the booklets that contain content that is not covered in The Step by Step Guide to Sustainability Planning. We make them available in electronic form for only $10 each (except the employee primer called Making Sense of Sustainability). Special arrangements can be made for print copies.
- Embedding Sustainability into your Environmental
Management System. If you have an existing EMS, this booklet shows
you how to take it to the next level, a sustainability management system.
It shows you how and where to embed sustainability principles and practices.
Co-authored with Dorothy Atwood, a renowned EMS consultant.
- Greening Your Supply Chain -- What you buy
can have an important influence on your environmental impacts. So many
organizations are writing environmental criteria into their contracts,
surveying suppliers, setting up coalitions, even collaborating with non-governmental
organizations. But how do you know what approach will be best for you?
This booklet helps you think through your strategy. You'll pick a product,
process or supplier relationship and then select the best strategy for
- Training Employees on Sustainability (based
on The Natural Step framework) -- This booklet shows you how to tailor
training for your staff as well as explains what's important to do before
or after the training. The booklet is filled with learning activities and
demonstrations you can use in your own training. Don't reinvent the wheel
with your own training. Start here.
- Forming and Facilitating Sustainability Teams
-- Sustainability usually requires working with people from across the
organization, or sometimes even people outside the organization. These
teams may include steering committees to oversee the whole effort or individual
task forces/project teams to investigate promising options. In any case,
it is critical to form and facilitate these teams carefully. A room-full
of people represents a sizeable investment so you don't want to waste time
sorting out confusion or backtracking down dead ends! This booklet provides
the principles and practices that will help your teams succeed. It includes
a toolbox of our favorite facilitator techniques.
- Reducing Energy Use and Greenhouse Gases:
Doing Your Part for the Climate -- If you're in shock over your latest
energy bill or want to help prevent global warming, order Reducing Energy
Use and Greenhouse Gases: Doing Your Part for the Climate. This how-to
booklet shows you how to approach this task in an organization.
- Approaching Zero Waste. Many companies have
achieved zero waste (or at least a 90% reduction). They have redesigned
their product so manufacturing waste can be captured and put back into
the product. They've found markets for their waste streams ("residual
products"). they've developed resusable containers to eliminate packaging
waste. Some companies are taking back their products at the end of their
useful life to make new products. If you want to save money, develop product
innovations, and get rid of your dumpster, get this booklet. It was co-authored
with Larry Chalfan, executive director of the Zero Waste Alliance.
- Choosing Greener Products -- While
not every organization may be in the business churning natural resources
into products, every organization consumes those products in the operation
of its business. Look no farther than your purchasing department to understand
your link to consumption and waste production. Purchasing patterns not
only have significant environmental implications, but they also impact
an organization's financial bottom line, its relationships with its vendors
and its exposure to public opinion. Purchasing is the one common practice
that all organizations share that has a significant impact on sustainability.
Choosing Greener Products will walk you through the process of cleaning
up your purchasing habitswhile finding savings and efficiency gains along
the way. Written by Marsha Willard, CEO of AXIS Performance Advisors, Inc.
and Chris James researcher and consultant for non-profit organizations,
governmental agencies and Fortune 500 companies on green products and services
and founder and former president of FatEarth, Inc.
- Partnering with Vendors: Supplier Workshops
for Mutual Gain -- According to research published by Business for
Social Responsiblity, inefficiencies across your supply chanin can waste
up to 25% of a company's operating costs. So if you want to engage some
of your first tier suppliers in a discussion about how you might improve
your quality, cost, and environmental performance, read this booklet to
learn how to conduct these supplier workshops.
- Making Sense of Sustainability: An Employee
Guide -- This is an easy-to-read overview for employees, filled with
delightful illustrations by Charles Carroll. Unlike the other booklets,
it's not a how-to booklet but instead a wonderful tool for educating employees
about sustainability. It covers the "Three E's" as well as The
Natural Step framework. It's filled with exercises that employees can use
to identify opportunities to become more sustainable at work as well as
Order one per person or employee. For quantities greater than 1 but less than 20, you can order multiple copies of the One Copy price below. If you want print versions, contact us for a quote.) (5.3MB)
To order early booklets or pay by check.
To order and pay by check, download the order
form and indicate the booklets you want and mail the order form with your check to the address on the
The Sustainability Series at a Glance—Original booklets
"Your booklets are awesome; I would pay 20 bucks for them without even thinking."
-- George Lundberg, Epson
Click here if you want to see a Master Index of materials contained in the booklets.
STEP 1: Form a sustainability strategy
First you need to clarify why your organization should pursue sustainability and then develop a plan. We have two booklets for this step.
Developing a Business Case for Sustainability
Developing an Implementation Plan: How to embed sustainability into your existing initiatives
STEP 2: Find the best entry point to bring sustainability into your organization
Many organizations have existing programs that they can tie sustainability to. In this Step, we provide booklets around two of the more common. If you have an existing EMS or are working on supply chain issues, these booklets will help you align sustainability with those efforts. There are other possible entry points, including integrating it into your strategic planning or quality/process improvement teams, but these booklets have yet to be written.
Making Sustainability Part of your Long-range Planning Process (not available yet)
Embedding Sustainability into your Environmental Management System
Using Teams to work on Sustainability (not available yet)
Greening Your Supply Chain
STEP 3: Navigate the analysis every organization must do
There are a host of analytical steps that are useful to undertake early in the implementation. These include training, conducting an impacts analysis, and forming a team structure and systems to manage your sustainability effort.
Training Employees on Sustainability (based on The Natural Step framework)
Identifying Your Environmental Impacts
Developing Sustainability Metrics and Targets
Forming and Facilitating Sustainability Teams
Selecting a High-Impact Sustainability Project
Developing Effective Systems to Manage Sustainability - Creating an EMS Lite
STEP 4: Pick project(s) to work on
The following booklets represent common projects organizations take on: reducing waste, green purchasing, energy and climate change, and supply chain improvements.
Reducing Energy Use and Greenhouse Gases: Doing your part for the climate
Approaching Zero Waste
Choosing Greener Products
Partnering with Vendors: Supplier Workshops for Mutual Gain
SUPPLIES: Tools to Help You Along the Way
Making Sense of Sustainability: An employee guide (an illustrated primer to educate employees on sustainability and help them identify possible projects. Great to use in orientations or employee training. Can also be the basis of discussions in staff meetings. This is not a how-to booklet but instead is intended to be read cover to cover.)