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Fred Pearce does not do orthodoxies; he has made it his business to challenge accepted wisdom. So, travelling from Liverpool to Alaska, from Dubai to India and the Far East to discover the source of the shirt on his back, his phone, his beer can and Saturday night curry, his wedding ring and Confessions of an Eco Sinner he writes on, he finds that recycling paper may not be such a great thing to do in the UK.That we should think twice about buying M&S fair trade cotton shirts. That to imagine that we are no longer in hock to the coal industry is potty – and remarkably, that we owe thanks for the food we eat to a royal family in north Africa.
By 2050 it is estimated there will be 9 billion of us living on earth. Our ecological footprint has become a jackboot, placed across the jugular of the planet's life support systems. Are we committing eco-side? Or are there in fact, signs of good things in strange places and huge opportunities crying out to be taken. Homo sapiens has been nearly wiped out before. But survival is in our genes.
Fred Pearce is an author and journalist. He is married with grown-up children and lives in Wandsworth in London. For much of the time he works from home. But reporting about environment and development has taken him all over the world for publications such as New Scientist, the Daily Telegraph, the Independent, Country Living, Geographical and the Ecologist.