Description : Since humans first appeared on the earth, we've been cutting down trees for fuel and shelter. Indeed, the thinning, changing, and wholesale clearing of forests are among the most important ways humans have transformed the global environment. With the onset of industrialization and colonization the process has accelerated, as agriculture, metal smelting, trade, war, territorial expansion, and even cultural aversion to forests have all taken their toll. Michael Williams surveys ten thousand years of history to trace how, why, and when human-induced deforestation has shaped economies, societies, and landscapes around the world. Beginning with the return of the forests to Europe, North America, and the tropics after the Ice Ages, Williams traces the impact of human-set fires for gathering and hunting, land clearing for agriculture, and other activities from the Paleolithic through the classical world and the Middle Ages. He then continues the story from the 1500s to the early 1900s, focusing on forest clearing both within Europe and by European imperialists and industrialists abroad, in such places as the New World and India, China, Japan, and Latin America. Finally, he covers the present-day and alarming escalation of deforestation, with the ever-increasing human population placing a possibly unsupportable burden on the world's forests. Accessible and nonsensationalist, Deforesting the Earth provides the historical and geographical background we need for a deeper understanding of deforestation's tremendous impact on the environment and the people who inhabit it.
Description : Annotation This title studies the role of cattle ranching its dynamic and profitability in the expansion of deforestation in Brazilian Amazonia. It provides a social evaluation of deforestation in this region and presents and compares a number of different scenarios and proposed recommendations.
Description : This book offers an examination of the role of emancipation in the study and practice of security, focusing on the issue of environmental change. The end of the Cold War created a context in which traditional approaches to security could be systematically questioned. This period also saw a concerted attempt in IR to argue that environmental change constituted a threat to security. This book argues that such a notion is problematic as it suggests that a universal definition of security is possible, which prevents a recognition of security as a site of contestation, in which a range of actors articulate alternative visions of who or what is in need of being secured. If security is understood and approached in traditional terms - as the territorial preservation of the nation-state from external threat - then it is indeed difficult to see how environmental issues would benefit from being placed on states’ security agenda. If, however, security is defined in terms of the emancipation of the most vulnerable individuals from contingent structural oppressions, then drawing a relationship between environmental change and security may be beneficial for redressing those environmental issues and prioritising the needs of those most at risk from the manifestations of global environmental change. This book takes the limitations of contemporary approaches to the relationship between the environment and security as its starting point, and seeks to do two things. First, it aims to illustrate the ways in which arguments over approaches to environmental issues can be viewed as contestation over the meaning of 'security‘ in particular political contexts. Central here is the composition and assumptions of the dominant security discourse to emerge regarding those issues: a framework of meaning for the most important forms of action on behalf of a particular group, defining the terms for meaningful contestation and negotiation about security itself within that group. As such, the book attempts to illustrate the dynamics of competition over the meaning of security with reference to environmental issues, particularly focusing on instances of political change in the dominant security discourse through which that issue is approached. In the process the author points to the central role of these dominant security discourses in underpinning the most practically significant actions regarding environmental issues such as deforestation and global climate change. The book employs methodological tools that enable a focus on how particular frameworks of meaning are constituted and become dominant; how they provide a lens through which various issues are approached; and how discourses most consistent with redressing environmental change and the suffering of the most vulnerable might come to provide the framework through which security is viewed in particular contexts. This book will be of much interest to students of Critical Security Studies, geography, sociology, IR and Political Science in general.
Description : Scope of the study; Organization of the report; The forests and forest sector in Brazil; How much forest is there?; The Amazon; The Atlantic forest; Changes in forest cover; The economic importance of Brazil's forests; Size of the forest sector; International trade; Pressures on the forests; Deforestation and government policies; Forest regulation; Weak institutional environment and enforcement; Logging; Agricultural expansion; Smallholder agriculture in the western Amazon; Agriculture expansion in Parana; Development; Forest fires; Agricultural credit; Protecting Brazil's forests: the role of parks and plantations; Protected areas; Plantation forestry; Important issues in the forest sector; Costs and benefits of managed forests in Brazil; Conservation solutions; Certification; Indigenous communities; Extraction of non-timber forest products; Forest research and forest technology; The changing role of the public sector; The influence of nongovernmental organizations; The World Bank and Brazil; Overview; The Bank program in Brazil; Country assistance strategies; New environmental strategies; Economic and sector work since 1991; World Bank lending portfolio; Evaluation of the bank program in Brazil; Minas Gerais forestry development; Northwest region integration program (POLONOROESTE); Rondonia and Mato Grosso natural resource management projects; Emergency fire prevention; Land management projects; Agriculture and forestry technology development; Global environment facility; Pilot program to conserve the Amazon rain forest (PPG-7); Projects with possible impacts on forests; Transportation projects and the forests of Brazil; Land reform projects; Supplemental tables; The 1991 forest strategy; Economic background; World Bank inspection panel findings for the PLANFLORO Project; OED - and QAG - Evaluated projects; Summary of november 1999 Brasilia Workshop and stakeholder comments; Summary of march 2000 Brasilia Workshop.
Description : This collection of studies by anthropologists, botanists, ecologists, and biologists is an important contribution to the emerging field of historical ecology. The book combines cutting-edge research with new perspectives to emphasize the close relationship between humans and their natural environment. Contributors examine how alterations in the natural world mirror human cultures, societies, and languages. Treating the landscape like a text, these researchers decipher patterns and meaning in the Ecuadorian Andes, Amazonia, the desert coast of Peru, and other regions in the neotropics. They show how local peoples have changed the landscape over time to fit their needs by managing and modifying species diversity, enhancing landscape heterogeneity, and controlling ecological disturbance. In turn, the environment itself becomes a form of architecture rich with historical and archaeological significance. Time and Complexity in Historical Ecology explores thousands of years of ecological history while also addressing important contemporary issues, such as biodiversity and genetic variation and change. Engagingly written and expertly researched, this book introduces and exemplifies a unique method for better understanding the link between humans and the biosphere.
Description : Brazil is considered one of the world’s most important environmental powers. With a continental territory containing almost 70 per cent of the Amazon rainforest, along with a rich biodiversity and huge amount of natural resources, its geopolitical role in environmental decisions is crucial to ongoing global negotiations surrounding climate change. Development policies based on extraction and exportation of raw materials by the mining and agribusiness sectors threaten the global environmental balance and the long-term sustainability of Brazil’s economy. Brazil in the Anthropocene examines Brazil's role within the global ecological crisis and considers how national and international policy is influenced by the interdependence of social, political, ethical, scientific and economic factors in the modern age. With chapters from a diverse range of international scholars this interdisciplinary volume will be of great interest to students and scholars of environmental politics, environmental sociology and the environmental humanities.
Description : Contents: (1) Background; (2) Political Situation: First Lula Admin.; Oct. 2006 Elections; Second Lula Admin.; (3) Econ. and Social Conditions: Econ. Challenges and Efforts to Boost Growth; Social Indicators; (4) Foreign and Trade Policy; (5) Relations with the U.S.; (6) Issues in U.S.-Brazil Relations: Counternarcotics; Counterterrorism and the Tri-Border Area; Energy Security; Oil; Ethanol and Other Biofuels; Nuclear Energy; Trade Issues; Doha Round of the WTO Talks; WTO Disputes; Generalized System of Preferences; Intellectual Property Rights; Human Rights; Race and Discrimination; Trafficking in Persons for Forced Labor; Goldman Custody Case; HIV/AIDS; Amazon Conservation; Domestic Efforts; Carbon Offsets and Other Internat. Initiatives.