Description : ONE OF THE NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW'S 10 BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR A major book about the future of the world, blending intellectual and natural history and field reporting into a powerful account of the mass extinction unfolding before our eyes Over the last half a billion years, there have been five mass extinctions, when the diversity of life on earth suddenly and dramatically contracted. Scientists around the world are currently monitoring the sixth extinction, predicted to be the most devastating extinction event since the asteroid impact that wiped out the dinosaurs. This time around, the cataclysm is us. In The Sixth Extinction, two-time winner of the National Magazine Award and New Yorker writer Elizabeth Kolbert draws on the work of scores of researchers in half a dozen disciplines, accompanying many of them into the field: geologists who study deep ocean cores, botanists who follow the tree line as it climbs up the Andes, marine biologists who dive off the Great Barrier Reef. She introduces us to a dozen species, some already gone, others facing extinction, including the Panamian golden frog, staghorn coral, the great auk, and the Sumatran rhino. Through these stories, Kolbert provides a moving account of the disappearances occurring all around us and traces the evolution of extinction as concept, from its first articulation by Georges Cuvier in revolutionary Paris up through the present day. The sixth extinction is likely to be mankind's most lasting legacy; as Kolbert observes, it compels us to rethink the fundamental question of what it means to be human.
Description : Over the last 530 million years there have been five mass extinctions of species-the last,65 million years ago,when the dinosaurs disappeared.The biodiversity of our planet may now be on the verge,Leakey and Lewin believe,of a sixth extinction,caused this time by the relentless expansion and limitless appetites of human beings. The new science of 'biodiversity',presented clearly and cogently by Leakey and Lewin,combines insights from palaeontology,biology,ecology and even economics.It integrates the role of Darwenian evolution with the increasingly recognised importance of external and unpredictable forces.
Description : This international volume provides a comprehensive account of contemporary research, new perspectives and cutting-edge issues surrounding religion and spirituality in social work. The introduction introduces key themes and conceptual issues such as understandings of religion and spirituality as well as definitions of social work, which can vary between countries. The main body of the book is divided up into sections on regional perspectives; religious and spiritual traditions; faith-based service provision; religion and spirituality across the lifespan; and social work practice. The final chapter identifies key challenges and opportunities for developing both social work scholarship and practice in this area. Including a wide range of international perspectives from Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, India, Ireland, Israel, Malta, New Zealand, South Africa, Sweden, the UK and the USA, this Handbook succeeds in extending the dominant paradigms and comprises a mix of authors including major names, significant contributors and emerging scholars in the field, as well as leading contributors in other fields of social work who have an interest in religion and spirituality. The Routledge Handbook of Religion, Spirituality and Social Work is an authoritative and comprehensive reference for academics and researchers as well as for organisations and practitioners committed to exploring why, and how, religion and spirituality should be integral to social work practice.
Description : Discover the biggest issue in conservation today. This companion to the documentary Cowspiracy explores the impacts of the most environmentally destructive industry on the planet: animal agriculture. The award-winning documentary Cowspiracy presents alarming truths about the effects of animal agriculture on the planet. One of the leading causes of deforestation, greenhouse gas production, water use, species extinction, ocean dead-zones, and a host of other ills, animal agriculture is a major threat to the future of all species, and one of the environmental industry’s best-kept secrets. The Sustainability Secret expands upon Cowspiracy in every way. Journey with authors Kip Andersen and Keegan Kuhn as they discover one shocking statistic after another and interview leading businesses, environmental organizations, and political groups about the subject of animal agriculture and its disastrous effects. Extended transcripts, updated statistics, tips on becoming vegan, and comprehensive reading lists provide an in-depth overview of this planetary crisis and demonstrate effective ways to offset the damage through personal dietary choices. Firmly rooted in science and supporting research, The Sustainability Secret reveals the absolutely devastating environmental impact of the meat and dairy industry and offers a path to global sustainability for a growing population.
Description : Economics for People and the Planet, a collection of essays by James K. Boyce on the environment, inequality and the economy, argues that there is not an inexorable trade-off between advancing human well-being and having a clean and safe environment. The goal of economic policy should be to grow the good things that improve our well-being and environmental quality and reduce the bad things that harm humans and nature. To reorient the economy for these ends, we will need to achieve a more egalitarian distribution of wealth and power. Global climate change – the most pressing environmental challenge of our time – adds urgency to this task and creates historic opportunities for moving towards a greener future.
Description : An account of how the living world became diverse and how humans are destroying that diversity traces the processes that create new species and identifies the events that have disrupted evolution over the past six hundred million years.
Description : Launched to mark World Environment Day 2005, and produced by the UNEP in collaboration with organisations such as the US Geological Survey and NASA, this publication uses text, illustrations, satellite images and ground photographs to depict and analyse humanity's impact on our environment. Issues discussed include: population growth and urbanisation, natural resources consumption, land use intensification, biodiversity and habitat loss; environmental impacts and trends including global warming, air and water pollution, and the impacts on oceans and coastal zones, forests and tundra; changes that result from geo-hazards such as earthquakes and tsunamis, climate hazards such as floods and droughts, and industrial hazards such as nuclear accidents and oil spills; and suggestions for mitigating the effects of global environmental change.
Description : For centuries we believed that humans were the only ones that mattered. The idea that animals had feelings was either dismissed or considered heresy. Today, that's all changing. New scientific studies of animal behavior reveal perceptions, intelligences, awareness and social skills that would have been deemed fantasy a generation ago. The implications make our troubled relationship to animals one of the most pressing moral issues of our time. Jonathan Balcombe, animal behaviorist and author of the critically acclaimed Pleasurable Kingdom, draws on the latest research, observational studies and personal anecdotes to reveal the full gamut of animal experience—from emotions, to problem solving, to moral judgment. Balcombe challenges the widely held idea that nature is red in tooth and claw, highlighting animal traits we have disregarded until now: their nuanced understanding of social dynamics, their consideration for others, and their strong tendency to avoid violent conflict. Did you know that dogs recognize unfairness and that rats practice random acts of kindness? Did you know that chimpanzees can trounce humans in short-term memory games? Or that fishes distinguish good guys from cheaters, and that birds are susceptible to mood swings such as depression and optimism? With vivid stories and entertaining anecdotes, Balcombe gives the human pedestal a strong shake while opening the door into the inner lives of the animals themselves.
Description : Jurassic Park meets The Sixth Extinction in Rise of the Necrofauna, a provocative look at de-extinction from acclaimed documentarist and science writer Britt Wray. A New Yorker “The Books We Loved in 2017” Selection A Science News Favorite Book of 2017 A Sunday Times "Must Read" What happens when you try to recreate a woolly mammoth—fascinating science, or conservation catastrophe? In Rise of the Necrofauna, Wray takes us deep into the minds and labs of some of the world's most progressive thinkers to find out. She introduces us to renowned futurists like Stewart Brand and scientists like George Church, who are harnessing the powers of CRISPR gene editing in the hopes of "reviving" extinct passenger pigeons, woolly mammoths, and heath hens. She speaks with Nikita Zimov, who together with his eclectic father Sergey, is creating Siberia's Pleistocene Park—a daring attempt to rebuild the mammoth's ancient ecosystem in order to save earth from climate disaster. Through interviews with these and other thought leaders, Wray reveals the many incredible opportunities for research and conservation made possible by this emerging new field. But we also hear from more cautionary voices, like those of researcher and award-winning author Beth Shapiro (How to Clone a Woolly Mammoth) and environmental philosopher Thomas van Dooren. Writing with passion and perspective, Wray delves into the larger questions that come with this incredible new science, reminding us that de-extinction could bring just as many dangers as it does possibilities. What happens, for example, when we bring an "unextinct" creature back into the wild? How can we care for these strange animals and ensure their comfort and safety—not to mention our own? And what does de-extinction mean for those species that are currently endangered? Is it really ethical to bring back an extinct passenger pigeon, for example, when countless other birds today will face the same fate? By unpacking the many biological, technological, ethical, environmental, and legal questions raised by this fascinating new field, Wray offers a captivating look at the best and worst of resurrection science. A captivating whirlwind tour through the birth and early life of the scientific idea known as “de-extinction.”—Beth Shapiro, author of How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction Published in partnership with the David Suzuki Institute.
Description : Along a tiny spring in a narrow canyon near Death Valley, seemingly against all odds, an Inyo Mountain slender salamander makes its home. "The desert," writes conservation biologist Christopher Norment, "is defined by the absence of water, and yet in the desert there is water enough, if you live properly." Relicts of a Beautiful Sea explores the existence of rare, unexpected, and sublime desert creatures such as the black toad and four pupfishes unique to the desert West. All are anomalies: amphibians and fish, dependent upon aquatic habitats, yet living in one of the driest places on earth, where precipitation averages less than four inches per year. In this climate of extremes, beset by conflicts over water rights, each species illustrates the work of natural selection and the importance of conservation. This is also a story of persistence--for as much as ten million years--amid the changing landscape of western North America. By telling the story of these creatures, Norment illustrates the beauty of evolution and explores ethical and practical issues of conservation: what is a four-inch-long salamander worth, hidden away in the heat-blasted canyons of the Inyo Mountains, and what would the cost of its extinction be? What is any lonely and besieged species worth, and why should we care?