What to give, when the planet is in peril?

Hosted by

The holidays can be a stressful time, and many of us know the pressure of shopping for the perfect gift. But as we scour Amazon or make one last dash to the mall, there’s another part of the equation worth considering: Are we simply buying too much stuff, and is all that stuff bad for the planet?  

The climate crisis has more of us looking for environmentally friendly gifts this holiday season. Eco-savvy gifts aren’t just bamboo, recycled plastic, or yet another Nalgene, but include a whole array of covetable items that don’t contribute to more waste.  

Roland Geyer, professor of industrial ecology at UC Santa Barbara, examines the question of consumption in his book “The Business of Less: The Role of Companies and Households on a Planet in Peril.” The book provides a road map for household and business communities to buy less in order to reduce their environmental impact.  

Geyer joins Jonathan Bastian to discuss how gift-giving creates and deepens relationships. Though gifting plays an important spiritual and social role, Geyer suggests other ways in which we can reduce our consumption and rethink what we value while still keeping the holidays magical. 

Roland Geyer and his book “The Business of Less: The Role of Companies and Households on a Planet in Peril." Photo by James Badham.



  • Roland Geyer - Author; Professor of Industrial Ecology, University of California, Santa Barbara. - @brenucsb


Andrea Brody