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An assessment of where we are, where we're headed, and what we need to do before it's too late: "Instructive, well-researched, and easy-to-read." -John T. Ackerman, Strategic Studies Quarterly This era of staggering scientific and technological innovations, with major changes in agriculture, manufacturing, commerce, and communications, seems to document unparalleled human achievement. Yet when we examine the long-term implications, it becomes clear that the delicate environmental balance that sustains life on this planet is under serious threat, and the past century may be remembered not as a…mehr

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An assessment of where we are, where we're headed, and what we need to do before it's too late: "Instructive, well-researched, and easy-to-read." -John T. Ackerman, Strategic Studies Quarterly This era of staggering scientific and technological innovations, with major changes in agriculture, manufacturing, commerce, and communications, seems to document unparalleled human achievement. Yet when we examine the long-term implications, it becomes clear that the delicate environmental balance that sustains life on this planet is under serious threat, and the past century may be remembered not as a period of great progress but as one marked by unrestrained consumption and failure to come close to a sustainable use of the earth's limited natural resources. In The State of the Earth, noted historian Paul K. Conkin provides a comprehensive analysis of the many environmental hazards that humans must face in this still-young century. Our activities have threatened the survival of many plants and animals, created scarcities in cultivatable soils and water needed for irrigation, used up a large share of fossil fuels, polluted air and water, and most likely created conditions that will lead to devastating climate changes. This is an invaluable resource for those who desire a broad yet thorough and scientifically informed introduction to present environmental challenges.