The threat of global warming has never seemed clearer - with tornados, blazing hot summers and melting ice caps, we are forced to take notice. One way to communicate this danger and the necessity for change to younger generations is to show a success story. The beautifully illustrated children’s book Energy Island
by Allan Drummond is such a tale.
The Danish Ministry of Environment chose the island of Samsø be the first to become independent of nonrenewable energy. One of the teachers, Søren Hermansen, was selected to lead this project and take the island on a newer and cleaner path. He talked to everyone on the island and, after years of coaxing, the first two wind turbines were erected. This was the beginning of a revolution, because after a particularly bad blackout in the middle of the winter, the wind turbine seemed to be the way to go. Slowly, and over ten years, the town switched to solar panels, wind powered electric cars, and burning wood and straw instead of oil. A previously non cooperative town had banded together to really make a fantastic change in the world.
The main body of the book illustrates and tells the story of the community, while sidebars give background information about renewable and nonrenewable energy sources. It is a wonderfully accessible way to talk to children about the changing world around us, and how they can also make a difference.