17 April 2016: Earth Day 2016 special

Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself. – Rumi

Each year, April 22 marks the anniversary of the birth of the modern environmental movement in 1970. It acknowledges the responsibility we bear to promote harmony with nature and the Earth to achieve a balance between economic, social and environmental needs of present and future generations. Today, Earth Day is recognised as the largest secular observance in the world celebrated by more than a billion people every year, renewing the fight for a clean environment with increasing urgency, as the ravages of climate change become more manifest.

Areca Books invite you to be a part of Earth Day and help continue the tradition of promoting environmental awareness – not just today but any time throughout the year, with a selection of environmental-themed books. Be inspired to make the world a better place!

Cover 1 thumbnail smallAsian Environmental Documentaries: This complete collection of documentaries bring viewers into the heart of ecological challenges faced by Asia’s endangered natural habitats and the struggle of local communities to counter man-made and natural disasters.

Consumer Power: Anywhere, Anytime, Anyone enumerates three cardinal values that challenge consumers worldwide: that the consumer movement is not about getting ‘value for money’ but about ensuring ‘value for people’ and ‘value for environment’, from economics and health, to ecology and integrity. It talks not just of rights but of responsibilities, not just of choice but justice.

htrees-1Heritage Trees of Penang (reprinted 2015) is a celebration of 200 trees which form an integral part of the natural, cultural and urban heritage of Penang. Richly illustrated with 72 original watercolours and over 1,200 photographs of trees found not only in Penang but also in Southeast Asia. Incidentally,‘Trees for the Earth’ is the theme for Earth Day 2016!

Living Landscapes, Connected Communities: Culture, Environment and Change Across Asia encourages us to broaden our understanding of people’s changing relationship with nature to encompass essential elements of spirituality, identity, belonging, and well-being. Lavishly illustrated, these stories of resilience, perseverance, and collective action provide a timely and relevant counterpoint to fatalistic views of environmental degradation.

Living Pathways: Meditations on sustainable cultures and cosmologies in Asiaexplores the living ecological traditions of various Asian indigenous communities, and the ways in which environmental management grows out of their cosmologies and is built into their spiritual practices. Here, we are offered a glimpse of alternate pathways to the future; a form of sustainability built not on economic development, but on a deeply sustainable form of living that takes its lessons from traditional cultures and cosmologies.

Natural History Drawings: The Complete William Farquhar Collection, Malay Peninsula 1803–1818 is a colourful and fascinating showcase of some of the most fascinating wildlife still present in the region today, but is also an important record of the species that have been lost or are diminished in number. A must-read for anyone with a keen interest in the natural history of the region.

The Wisdom of the Ancients helps us to look back to an age when societies were designed to bring out the best in their people while enhancing their health and happiness; when people were cared for from cradle to grave; when leaders truly were the servants of the people and humans, like all other species, did not have to pay to live on the planet.


Water Watch: A Community Action Guide
provides important facts on water, emphasises the importance of wetlands, and presents a step-by-step guide to map out watersheds and conduct a field study. It highlights simple projects that can be undertaken by community-based organizations and school groups, and includes practical hints on how best to use water resources. This book aims to raise awareness of water problems and help communities.

Nature and Nation: Forests and Development in Peninsular Malaysia explores the relations between people and forests in Peninsular Malaysia where the planet’s riches terrestrial ecosystem has collided with the faster pace of economic transformation experienced in the tropical world. It engages the interplay of history, culture, science, economics and politics to provide a holistic interpretation of the continuing relevance of forests to state and society in the moist tropics.

Minority Cultures of Peninsular Malaysia: Survivals of Indigenous Heritage discusses a wide range of ‘Aslian culture’ issues, from cultural history to ethnozoology, of the Peninsular Indigenous minority cultures, in hopes of preserving their heritage and survival.

Winged Wonders: Malaysian Heritage and Winged Wonders in Malaysia showcase the spectacular beauty and remarkable drama of the country’s resident and migratory birds photographed in their natural habitat and environment – lowlands; mudflats and mangroves; rice fields; freshwater wetlands; scrublands; small hill and highland forests – from common species to rare ones.